Glazed Sweet Potato Cake With Bourbon and Pecans

bourbon pecan sweet potato cake
Diana Rattray
  • Total: 85 mins
  • Prep: 25 mins
  • Cook: 60 mins
  • Yield: 16 Servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
480 Calories
22g Fat
60g Carbs
5g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16 Servings
Amount per serving
Calories 480
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 22g 29%
Saturated Fat 5g 23%
Cholesterol 67mg 22%
Sodium 446mg 19%
Total Carbohydrate 60g 22%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Protein 5g
Calcium 137mg 11%
*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.)

This rich, dense sweet potato cake is filled with chopped pecans and bourbon-plumped raisins. The cake is finished with a fabulous bourbon-spiced caramel glaze. Feel free to use either golden or dark raisins, and be sure to make a good quality bourbon. 

Add this wonderful cake to your holiday dessert table.


  • 3/4 cup raisins (golden or dark)
  • 3/4 cup bourbon whiskey
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil (neutral, such as canola)
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups mashed sweet potato
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (13 1/2 ounces)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • For the Glaze:
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar firmly packed
  • 4 Tablespoons butter
  • 3 Tablespoons whipping cream​

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Preheat oven to 350F. 

  3. Grease a 10-inch one-piece tube cake pan or Bundt cake pan and dust with flour.

  4. Combine the raisins and bourbon in a small bowl; let stand for about 1 hour.

  5. In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, beat the eggs with the granulated sugar until thick and pale in color (about 3 minutes). Add the oil and vanilla; beat until blended.

  6. Place a sieve over a small bowl and drain the raisins, reserving the bourbon. Set the raisins aside.

  7. Add 1/2 cup of reserved bourbon to the batter along with the sweet potatoes; blend well. Set the remaining bourbon aside; it will be used later for the glaze.

  8. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg; stir with a whisk or spoon until well blended.  Add one-third of the flour mixture to the batter; blend and add half of the milk. Add another one-third of the flour; blend and add the remaining milk. Add the remaining flour and blend until the batter is smooth.

  9. Fold the raisins and chopped pecans into the batter.

  10. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until a toothpick or skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Place the cake on a rack to cool for 10 minutes.

  11. Meanwhile, in a saucepan, combine the brown sugar, butter, cream, and 2 tablespoons of the remaining bourbon. Place the pan over high heat and bring to a boil; lower the heat and continue cooking for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the mixture is reduced and syrupy. Watch it carefully; it boils over easily.

  12. Place a rack on a large sheet of foil or wax paper to catch drips. Invert the cake onto the rack and prick all over with a toothpick or skewer. 

  13. Spoon some of the glaze over the top of the cake and brush the rest over the sides. Let the cake cool completely before slicing.

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