How to Make Pirate Cake (Halloween Special)

Pirate Cake is a rum cake baked in a canning jar. Homemade cakes in jars are easy to ship, convenient and adorable.

By Carroll Pellegrinelli, The Spruce Eats

Want to share your favorite cakes with family and friends who are far from home? Making cakes in jars is one great idea. Baking and serving cakes in the same container also saves time and is very convenient, not to mention adorable. 

Thanks to Scotterkitten for posting her directions for baking Pirate Cakes (rum cakes) in canning jars. She shipped her Pirate Cakes to her husband while he was serving in Iraq.​

Total: 65 mins
Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 45 mins
Yield: 6 1-pint jars (6 servings)

Related recipe: Pumpkin Spice Cake Recipe


For the Cake:

  • 1 2-layer yellow cake mix (or white cake mix)
  • 1 box instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup rum

For the Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup rum

Related recipe: Pumpkin Patch Cupcakes

Steps to Make It

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  • Lightly grease six wide mouth one-pint canning jars. Place them on a sturdy-sided baking sheet.
  • Make cake batter by mixing ingredients for at least 2 minutes with an electric mixer. Fill jars halfway with batter. Bake jar cakes for 45 minutes.
  • While cakes are baking, make the glaze by melting the butter in a pan. Stir in water and sugar. Boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in rum. Place the pan on low to keep warm, if necessary, while canning jar cakes finish baking.
  • Before removing cakes from oven, test for doneness with a toothpick or wooden skewer. Once baked, remove baking sheet with cakes from oven. With a meat fork, poke holes in cakes and pour warm glaze over hot cakes. Carefully with gloves, cover cakes with metal seals and lids. Screw lids on tightly, but not too tightly.
  • Within 15 to 20 minutes the canning jars will begin popping while creating an airtight vacuum.

Recipe Tips

According to Scooterskitten, these Pirate Cakes have survived shipping to Iraq and on the shelf for 2 months. She recommends freezing them if you wish for them to last longer.

See more at: The Spruce Eats


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Cake Magazine: How to Make Pirate Cake (Halloween Special)
How to Make Pirate Cake (Halloween Special)
Pirate Cake is a rum cake baked in a canning jar. Homemade cakes in jars are easy to ship, convenient and adorable.
Cake Magazine
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