Christmas Rum Sauce

Georgina Palmer / Getty Images
  • Total: 20 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Yield: Serves 6
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
231 Calories
12g Fat
22g Carbs
4g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: Serves 6
Amount per serving
Calories 231
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 16%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 28mg 9%
Sodium 173mg 8%
Total Carbohydrate 22g 8%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Protein 4g
Calcium 133mg 10%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

A traditional British Christmas pudding is an essential part of the festive lunch. But what should you serve with it, as there are a variety of sauces to choose from?

A Christmas rum sauce is thought of as a classic for this pudding, especially if the dessert already has rum added to it. The hints of spices in the sauce marry so well with the fruits in the pudding that some would say this is a match made in heaven.


  • 2 ounces/55 g unsalted butter
  • 2 ounces/55 g all-purpose flour
  • 1 pint/470 ml whole fat milk
  • 2 cloves
  • Pinch nutmeg (freshly grated)
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 2 ounces/55 g fine sugar
  • 5 tablespoons dark rum

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Slowly melt the butter over a low heat, then add the flour. .

  3. Raise the heat slightly and beat the flour into the butter using a wooden spoon to create a thick paste (also knowm as a roux). Cook for about 1 minute, taking care to make sure the paste does not burn.

  4. In a separate saucepan, put the milk and spices and gently warm through, but do not boil.

  5. Lower the heat on the butter and flour. Strain the warmed milk over the pot with the paste.

  6. Using a hand whisk, vigorously whisk the sauce until it's smooth, thick, and glossy; this will take at least 3 minutes, maybe even a little longer if you aren’t vigorous enough. While whisking, do take care to move the sauce around on the base of the pan to prevent it sticking, or worse, burning.

  7. Once you have a lovely smooth sauce, add the sugar and whisk again until the sugar has dissolved completely. Lower the heat and allow the sauce to cook, stirring it from time to time. If the sauce feels too thick, it is at this point you can thin it down with a little milk to your desired consistency.

  8. Finally, add the rum and stir again.

  9. If not using immediately, let the sauce cool completely, cover, and refrigerate.

  10. Once you're ready to serve, pour the sauce over your Christmas pudding, or have it on the side in a heatproof gravy boat or jug.


  • The sauce will keep for a few days and just needs a gentle reheating on the stove-top, or even in the microwave. Do not let the sauce boil though or you will burn off some of the rum flavors. Should the flavor diminish in any way, just add a few drops of dark rum to enliven it. 
  • This recipe can be cooked without spice and by changing the alcohol for something better suited to your pudding. The variations are endless. 
  • As there is alcohol in this sauce, it is not suitable to serve to children. Instead, we recommend serving a little ice cream or custard sauce to the wee ones.