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Sticky Toffee Pudding

Scott Phillips

Yield: Yields about 1-1/3 cups sauce.

Servings: 6-8

Baking soda (known as bicarb to Brits) plays two roles in this recipe: It helps soften the dates, and it helps the wet, heavy batter rise during baking. If you can only find golden sugar in regular granulation, just blend it in a food processor for 1 or 2 minutes to get a superfine texture.


For the cake:

  • 2 oz. (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature; more for the pan
  • 6 oz. (1 cup lightly packed) pitted dates (Medjools, if possible), coarsely chopped
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 6 oz. (3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs.) golden superfine sugar (or white superfine sugar), sifted if lumpy
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 oz. (1-1/4 cups plus 1 Tbs.) self-rising flour, sifted

For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup packed light or dark muscovado sugar (or light brown sugar)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 4 oz.(1/2 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Vanilla ice cream for serving (optional)


  • Make the cake: Heat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 11×7-inch nonstick baking pan that’s at least 1 inch deep. If your pan isn’t nonstick, butter the sides and then line it with enough parchment to come 1 inch up the short sides; butter the parchment as well.
  • Put the dates in a small saucepan with 1 cup water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until softened, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in the baking soda, and set aside. (The mixture will foam up and take on a greenish color; this is normal.)
  • Combine the butter and the golden sugar in a bowl. Beat with a hand mixer on high speed until the mixture is well combined and lighter in color, about 4 minutes. Beat in the vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. With a wooden spoon, stir in the flour and then stir in the date mixture; the batter will be sloppy. Pour the batter into the greased pan and bake until it’s risen, a deep golden brown, and firm to the touch but still a bit spongy (it should spring back a little, but not entirely, when indented, 35 to 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the sauce:

  • Put the muscovado sugar, honey and butter in a small saucepan and heat gently, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a simmer and cook until it gets thick and bubbly, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the cream, let it bubble down and then remove the pan from the heat.

To serve:

  • When the cake is done, remove it from the oven and let it rest for 5 minutes; then turn it out onto a cutting board and invert it onto a wire rack to cool slightly. Cut the warm cake into slices or squares, put on serving plates along with a scoop of ice cream, if using, and drench with the sauce.  


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Reviews (5 reviews)

  • chefwannabe | 02/19/2018

    Very simple but elegant dessert. I used a 9 inch round cake pan with 1 & 1/2 inch sides and it fit perfectly . Mine was done after 30 minutes . I didn't have self rising flour so I used all purpose and added 1 teaspoon of baking powder . Served with vanilla ice cream which does enhance the dish because the sauce hardens on the ice cream . Mmmm!

  • llacim | 12/26/2013

    Followed recipe exactly. Turned out very well. I poured some of the sauce onto the cake to soak in a little. Will definitely make it again.

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