Traditional Christmas Pudding Recipe

The one word which you hear over and over again this time of year is ‘Tradition’ and no where is this more used than in the food we put on the table and in this case I’m referring to the good old Christmas Pudding.

So many of us use recipes which have been handed down through the generations but in many cases it will be you who starts a particular recipe and once you get to pass it on to your own children or another relation, then there begins your own family tradition.

I make Pudding every year but not from a recipe I inherited recipe from my Mam!  She is a terrific cook and makes so many Puddings for Christmas, but if I’m totally honest, while they are lovely, they are not quite to my taste – sorry Mam 🙂

This recipe is one which I devised myself and includes the things we like in our annual Christmas Pudding here in the Connell Household.  There were a few pre-requisites which had to be included when I was creating it – the pudding wasn’t to be dark and so I use light brown sugar instead of dark, no suet was to be included – not that I have anything against suet but I like a more ‘cakey’ texture rather than that which you get with suet; I didn’t want any mixed peel (simply because I don’t like it) and it also had to include lots of nuts.

I hope that if you get a chance to make it that you enjoy it as much as we do…

3oz Self-Raising Flour
½ Teasp Mixed Spice
½ Teasp Cinnamon
¼ Teasp Grated Nutmeg
100g White Breadcrumbs
150g Soft Brown Sugar
400g Mixed Dried Fruit (whatever mix you like – sultanas, raisins, currants or dried cranberries)
75g Chopped Walnuts, Almonds or hazelnuts (or a mix of all three)
Finely Grated Rind of 1 Orange and 1 Lemon
100g Butter
2 Eggs
¼ Pint Guinness
2 Tablspns Whiskey, Rum or Brandy


  1. Sieve the flour and spices into a bowl, add the breadcrumbs, sugar, fruit and nuts, lemon and orange rind and mix well.  Melt the butter and cool to lukewarm.  Whisk the eggs and mix with the Guinness and spirits.  Add the the melted butter and the egg mixture to the dry ingredients.  Mix thoroughly.  At this stage the mixture will be quite soft.  Cover and allow to stand for an hour or better still overnight.
  2. When ready to cook – Grease and base-line a 2 Pint/1 Litre Pudding Bowl.  Cut two large rounds, one of grease-proof paper and one of tin foil and make a pleat in both.  Then lay on top of each other at right angles to allow for expansion of the pudding as it cooks.  Grease the paper.
  3. Pour the pudding mixture into the greased bowl and cover with the prepared grease-proof paper and foil and tie this in place with string.
  4. Place a saucer in the bottom of a saucepan of steaming water and sit your pudding bowl in on top and ensure the water comes half way up the bowl.  Steam for 4 hours making sure the saucepan does not go dry or low in water – top it up form time to time using the water from a boiled kettle
  5. After 4 hours remove the pudding bowl from the saucepan and leave it, untouched until cold.  Remove from the tin and wrap in fresh grease-proof paper and store until needed
  6. I don’t bother steaming this again when I want to use it but just simply slice off whatever I need and warm in the microwave!  Serve with whipped cream and custard or whatever you like yourself!!

Tip:  If I get a chance, I will make my pudding in September/October but this very rarely happens and I have been known to make it Christmas week.  Perhaps the flavour is better if cooked ahead and left to mature but I’ve never had any complaints 🙂

By the way, there is another Christmas Pud which I make every year – it’s based on the Traditional Pudding but the twist is that it includes cranberries, cocoa, chocolate chips and no alcohol.  I don’t tend to make this one until a few days before Christmas – only because not including alcohol,  I can’t be sure if it would stay fresh any longer than a normal cake would.  I will be posting the recipe too so keep an eye out for it 🙂

Merry Christmas ♥

Bernie xx



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