Easy Persimmon Pudding Cake

Persimmon Pudding

Thank you to Sprouts Farmers Market for sponsoring this post

My first taste of persimmon pudding was in the kitchen of cookbook author Marion Cunningham, a master at old-fashioned desserts. She baked it the traditional way, in a decorative persimmon pudding mold (which looks a bit like a small bundt pan) that was set into a water bath and steamed in the oven for a couple of hours. Once done, she inverted it onto a plate, cut it into wedges, and served it with softly whipped cream.  It was revelation — so good that I marched out and bought myself a persimmon pudding mold that same day.

Persimmon Pudding

A Simpler Persimmon Pudding

Since then, I’ve hardly used the thing. The idea of hunting down the pudding mold, doing up a water bath, and two hours of baking feels like three steps too many for my holiday kitchen. But I miss the warming flavors and texture of persimmon pudding, which is why I decided to create a simplified version of my own. Developing the recipe for my monthly collaboration with Sprouts Farmers Market was a no-brainer, since they seem to have a ready supply of persimmons starting in mid-November.

Persimmon Pudding Ingredients

More Cake Than Pudding

If the term “pudding” conjures up images of  the vanilla or chocolate Jello variety, think again. Persimmon pudding is more akin to a cake, but with an exceptionally moist crumb. I took the old-school recipe, and gave it a modern update by working in Sprouts Organic Almond Meal, whole-grain flour, and scaling back the sugar. Instead of baking it in a pudding mold, the recipes calls for a standard cake pan and skips the water bath altogether. The result is a cake as tender as I remember with the flavors of cinnamon, cloves, and ginger that are just right this time of year. Persimmon Pudding

Use Ripe Persimmons

One important tip for making persimmon pudding: Use very ripe persimmons!  They should be soft enough to push a finger right through and a color so deeply orange, it’s nearly red. You can expedite the ripening process by putting the persimmons in a brown paper bag along with an apple or banana and store in a cool, dark place.

Side note: If you want to try Marion Cunningham’s original persimmon pudding, you can find it here.

Persimmon Pudding
4.75 from 8 votes

Persimmon Pudding Cake

This takes an old-fashioned holiday dessert and gives it a modern update, notably, healthier ingredients and a simplified method of baking. Be sure to use very ripe, very soft persimmons to make this cake. When topped with lightly sweetened whipped cream, it’s just right for the holiday table. Leftovers are excellent for breakfast with a spoonful of plain Greek yogurt. 

Course Dessert
Keyword persimmon pudding
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 257 kcal
Author Katie Morford


  • 4 medium very ripe hachiya or fuyu persimmons (deep orange color, very soft)
  • cup sugar
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter, plus more for greasing the cake pan
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup Sprouts organic almond meal (almond flour)
  • 1 ¼ cups whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon cloves
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Lightly sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Generously grease a 9-inch round cake pan with butter. Cover the bottom of the pan with a piece of parchment cut to size. Butter the parchment.
  2. Use your hands to peel the skin and stem off the persimmons and put the flesh into a food processor or blender. Puree the persimmons. Measure 1 cup of the persimmon puree and put into a large bowl (save any remaining persimmon for another use, such as for topping yogurt or blending into a smoothie). Add the sugar, buttermilk, butter, egg, and vanilla to the persimmon and whisk thoroughly.

  3. Into a medium bowl, sift the almond meal, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and salt (if some of the almond meal remains in the sifter, just dump it into the bowl). Add to the persimmon mixture and whisk together until smooth and blended. Pour into the prepared cake pan and transfer to the oven to bake
  4. Pour into the buttered pan and bake until firm to the touch (no indent when you press with a finger), and a toothpick comes out clean, 50 minutes.

  5. Let cool for 10 minutes. The cake will deflate, but that’s what makes it as much pudding as cake! Cut straight from the pan or invert pan onto a plate and set right side up.
  6. Cut into wedges and serve with a whipped cream or ice cream.

Recipe inspired by Marion Cunningham


11.29.2018 at 10:39 PM #

Pamela Prime

This is definitely my next party desert! I am imagining the delicious aroma— can’t wait! Thank you😊

12.10.2018 at 10:47 AM #

Brynn at The Domestic Dietitian

I am relatively new to the wonderful world of persimmons but have never had them in a pudding or in a cake! This sounds fantastic

12.10.2018 at 10:47 AM #

Katie Morford

I can’t get enough this time of year and this cake is a terrific way to try them.

12.11.2018 at 11:13 AM #

Erica @ Functional Nutrition Answers

Cool! I’ve never heard of persimmon pudding, but now this has me intrigued 🙂

12.12.2018 at 4:00 PM #

Stacey Mattinson

I am drooling looking at these photos! Saving this for later!

12.13.2018 at 9:11 AM #

Bronte Grooms

What a great way to use Persimmons. Ill have to try this for Christmas.

12.17.2018 at 12:35 PM #

Stephanie @ Nutrition Hungry

This looks fab! Persimmon is still a pretty new fruit for me, and I’ve never even thought about baking with it! Can’t wait to try this.

12.17.2018 at 12:35 PM #

Katie Morford

Oh good. It’s a super easy cake to make. Leftover persimmons make excellent smoothies 🙂

12.21.2018 at 1:12 PM #

Lindsey Pine

Persimmons are my fave fruit of all time! This cake looks so delicious!

12.21.2018 at 1:12 PM #

Katie Morford

And it’s very easy to make, too!

12.21.2018 at 2:21 PM #

Catherine Brown

I don’t think I’ve ever seen persimmons used like this… I cannot wait to try this!!

11.26.2019 at 4:27 PM #

Angela Nowlin

I don’t have almond meal. What can I substitute for it?
Thanks, I am looking forward to making this!

11.26.2019 at 4:27 PM #

Katie Morford

Hi Angela,

You could substitute any other kind of flour or other finely ground nuts.

11.28.2019 at 11:49 AM #


How should you store this cake if it’s not going to be eaten right away? Also if I wanted to warm it before serving but made it hours in advance, could I warm it in the oven (and if so, what temperature)?

11.28.2019 at 11:49 AM #

Katie Morford

If it’s just overnight, I’d wrap it and store in on the counter. To reheat, I’d do it at 300 F until just warm.

01.24.2020 at 4:34 PM #


Very disappointed in how sugary this turned out. I really worked hard: starting with picking the persimmons which was quite an ordeal what with them being picked all around the bottom, behind two fences and blackberry bushes. Then of course, ripening them over several weeks time, freezing them, carrying me to where I had an oven and then of course all the cooking time

I’m kind of a new baker. I wished it had turned out less sweet. .

01.24.2020 at 4:34 PM #

Katie Morford

Hi Sarah,

Amazing that you have persimmons to pick and you certainly worked hard to get this cake made. I’m sorry to hear that it was too sweet for your tastebuds. I like the level of sweetness here, but it’s all very individual. You could certainly scale back the amount of added sugar to better suit your palate. You could also serve it with Greek yogurt, which would add nice tang to the plate.

10.22.2020 at 7:18 AM #

Janet Deutsch

Can one use all purpose flour and rice flour in this recipe?

10.22.2020 at 7:18 AM #

Katie Morford

If you are thinking of substituting all-purpose flour for the whole-wheat and rice flour for the almond flour, then, yes! I think it will work.

10.25.2020 at 1:13 PM #

Dean R

A delicious cake/pudding, moist/chewy with strong seasonal flavors. I forgot to add the butter and only had 1/3 cup sugar but still loved it. I always have an abundance of persimmons and have been tying out different cakes for a while. I’ll just use this recipe from now on using the pulp I’ve frozen. I baked two cakes from this recipe, one using a 6.5″ round pan and the other 4.5″ round so that I could give one as a gift. Thank you I’m happy to have found such a good recipe.

10.25.2020 at 1:13 PM #

Katie Morford

Wonderful! How lucky to have an abundance of persimmons. I’m crazy about this cake, too!

11.15.2020 at 11:47 PM #


I made this for my husband tonight and we both loved it. The texture of this was absolutely wonderful! I’m so excited by how good it was. We used a monk fruit substitute instead of sugar which was good. It ended up a bit less sweet than a normal cake but was still sweet enough. When I try it next time we will likely cut the clove down a bit and try adding some nutmeg. Overall this was a great recipe. I just need to get my hands on some more persimmons!

11.15.2020 at 11:47 PM #

Katie Morford

That’s great to hear. I love this cake, too. It’s nice to hear that it worked using monk fruit. If you remember, I’d love to know how much you used. Good luck finding persimmons!

09.30.2021 at 7:00 PM #


Hi, I have persimmon pulp that I’ve processed and frozen- how much should I use in place of the four hachiya or fuyus that you have listed in the ingredients?

09.30.2021 at 7:00 PM #

Katie Morford

Hi Hannah, I don’t know exactly off the top, but I’d guess about 1/2 cup of puree per medium fruit, so that would be 2 cups of puree.

02.13.2022 at 1:50 PM #


This was delicious and made the whole house smell wonderful. I cut the sugar in half, because I like a less-sweet dessert and it turned out just the right sweetness for me. Next time I need way less clove, maybe just a dash. And I want to try it with a custard sauce to make it even more decadent. Would be fantastic for breakfast or afternoon tea. Thanks for the wonderful use for my persimmons!

10.27.2022 at 7:15 PM #

Monica Ng

Made this again and it delivers on flavor and texture. I substituted coconut sugar and it comes out more spicy than sweet! Happy to put those very squishy persimmons to good use!

10.27.2022 at 7:15 PM #

Katie Morford

It’s that time of year! Love hearing your swaps. Thanks for sharing.

11.21.2022 at 7:57 PM #


What fun! I made your cake and it came out perfectly. I had frozen persimmon pulp from last season and needed to clear out my freezer. And what a cake!

It is moist, flavorful, and I will make this recipe again and again.
Love it !

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