Kentucky Bourbon Cake

I really like to make booze cakes (as we affectionately refer to them around my house). The alcohol keeps cakes moist and lends flavor, but you’re not going to get drunk off of a slice. I’m not a huge drinker, but I am a big fan of rum/bourbon in cakes and cupcakes. I have had a lot of luck with mixing alcohol into baked goods so to celebrate hubby coming home from a week long work conference, I made him a Chocolate Espresso Bourbon Cake. It was amazing (I’ll probably post the recipe on here shortly) and got me itching to try another cake. This morning I decided to try my hand at making a “typical” brown sugar Bundt cake, but with the addition of Bourbon. After I made it, it looked awesome, but I thought it could use a glaze so I concocted my version of a caramel sauce.

OMG you guys. It’s ridiculously good. It probably has about 1,000 calories a bite (just kidding. Kinda) but it is SO worth it. I’ve only made this recipe once, so I haven’t tested it as much as the others I post on here, but it’s good enough that I need to share it. It’s pretty easy to make, too, if you’re familiar with Bundt cakes. With Bundt cakes, they’re firmer in texture (to hold their shape) and I wanted to “soften” the cake up, so I made it into a poke cake. A few things to note: I bake like an old Southern grandmother- I use butter and buttermilk in a lot of my recipes. I find that it adds moisture and richness that are really hard to duplicate. I’ve been able to get close to the flavors in my dairy-free/soy-free recipes but it’s still not totally the same thing.

Kentucky Bourbon Cake with Caramel Sauce


3 cups cake flour (yes, it has to be specifically cake flour; I use Swan’s Down)

1/4 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking powder

1 cup buttermilk (or make your own with 1 cup milk and 1 tbsp. white vinegar), room temperature

I cup unsalted butter

1.5 cups sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed firmly

3 XL eggs or 3 L eggs, room temperature

1/4 cup Bourbon

Caramel sauce:

6 tbsp. unsalted butter

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1/4 cup milk or heavy cream

You start with a 10″ Bundt pan and grease/flour the insides. If you want to be a bit lazy like me, use the Pam for Baking spray. It always works well for me. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and make sure the rack is in the center of the oven.






Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder in a bowl and set aside. Combine the Bourbon and buttermilk in another bowl and set that aside as well.

Add the butter/both sugars to a stand mixer and beat it on Medium speed  for about 5 minutes, just until the mixture looks light and fluffy.






Next add an egg at a time, beating after each egg and scraping the sides of the bowl in between with a rubber spatula. Add in the flour and liquid mixtures, alternating so you begin with flour and end with flour (so flour-milk-flour-milk-flour). Scrape down the sides with the rubber spatula and pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan. Place in the oven; bake until the cake is golden, roughly about 35 minutes.

Let it sit on the stovetop while you make the caramel sauce. Make the sauce by adding in the sugars and butter in a saucepan over low heat until the butter is melted. Add in the milk and turn the heat up to medium and let it start to bubble. Whisk it occasionally and let it thicken. It should cook for about 7-8 minutes. Turn the burner off and let the sauce sit while you take a wooden skewer and poke holes in the Bundt cake

IMG_0594Pour the caramel sauce very, very slowly into the holes. Let it soak in and then pour it back into the holes. It’ll take a few minutes, but pour about 2/3 of the sauce over the cake. After pouring, let it sit for 30 minutes.



Flip the cake over on to a plate/platter and take the remaining sauce and pour it over the top of the cake. If it’s too thick to pour, put it back on the stove and let it heat up til it thins out, then pour it over top.

Let the cake sit a few minutes more to cool, and then cut and enjoy!







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