This sour cream plum pound cake is super easy to make and a great way to use up one of summer's favorite stone fruits. Especially if you have a plum and pluot trees like mine that puts out over 30 pounds of fruit each tree each summer. No mixer needed, not too sweet and goes excellent with vanilla ice cream.
I think we can all agree that summertime stone fruit season is the best fruit season.
Peaches, nectarines, cherries, plums etc etc. All so good, sweet, juicy and amazing to bake with. When we had a bumper crop with our white donut peach tree I made ice creams, jam, compote for pancakes and waffles and this summer peach cake. That again, goes great with ice cream. This year the big crop has been our plums and pluots.
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- Plums - Any plums or pluots will work - I like to use firm but ripe, anything overripe is better for jam. Our biggest stone fruit tree is a Dapple Dandy pluot tree, and the fruit I used in this recipe. It is a cross between a plum and an apricot. It has much more of a plum flavor and texture.
- Flour - I have tested this recipe with both all-purpose and cake flour and I prefer cake flour for the tender crumb it yields.
- Caster sugar - since this recipe doesn't require a stand or hand mixer, just a whisk, I use the finer grained caster sugar instead of regular, larger grained granulated sugar to dissolve faster when mixed with the eggs and sour cream.
- Sour Cream - This adds richness and makes the cake oh so moist. I only used full fat sour cream in all of my tests but I am sure plain full fat Greek style yogurt would work well here too. I often swap yogurt for sour cream.
- Butter - unsalted, don't worry about needing to bring to room temperature since it will be melted. There is also a little softened butter for the top of the cake.
- Baking Powder - Rumsford is the brand I love to use
- Kosher Salt
- Brown Sugar, Cinnamon and Cardamon - for the topping to give the cake a nice crackly surface with a hint of spice.
See recipe card for quantities.
What I love about this plum pound cake is that it can be made without a stand mixer or hand mixer. There is no creaming of butter and sugar. It is a unique mostly one bowl recipe.
It is not a one bowl recipe since you need to melt the butter and set that aside, whisk the sugar and eggs together then add to the sour cream and vanilla in a bigger bowl then add the two together.
I clean out the bowl the sugar and eggs are mixed in to whisk together the dry ingredients since those are added in to the bigger bowl alternated with the melted butter. I have found that adding in the melted butter with the flour adds to a cake that stays moist for days after it is baked.
My instructions include piping a line of butter down the middle of the cake before baking - I forgot to get an image of that. It helps melt the sugar on top, keeps the plums from sinking and can help add a nice crack in the middle - as long as you keep the plums on either side of the butter line.
Hint: See those binder clips? They are one of my favorite baking tools. When I make recipes such as this cake or brownies or anything in a square or loaf style pan that once its cool enough to remove from the pan, I much prefer to have parchment paper hanging over to edges to lift out easily to cool completely.
These are bakes that you don't want to turn the pan upside down like you would with say a layer cake. The parchment can be tricky though and the clips help keep it out of your way as you are filling the pan. Just don't forget to remove them before baking because they will melt and ruin your bake!
Pound Cake Substitutions and Variations:
This is such a great base poundcake recipe (although not a true pound cake by definition which originally was a pound of each flour, sugar and butter) but one that you can make with a variety of flavors.
- Stone fruits - instead of plums or pluots, you could use cherries, peaches, nectarines, apricots.
- Other fruits or berries - Strawberries, blueberries or any other berries would also be great. I even think Mango would work well here.
- Alternative Diets - I have NOT tested this to be gluten free, vegan, sugar free or whatnot. Please do so at your own risk as I cannot guarantee the same results. If you want a vegan or sugar free pound cake this probably isn't the recipe for you. I suggest searching for a specific diet friendly poundcake recipe.
The kind of loaf pan you use will affect the outcome of the recipe. Stone bakeware takes longer to heat up than metal pans, and also retain heat for longer, which will overbake the outsides, or even burn them while the middles are still raw. Same with glass bakeware. My go-to is always aluminum. Lighter colored pans cook more evenly than darker.
My favorite pans for baking loaf cakes/bread, cookies, muffins etc are USA bakeware pans.
Weighing ingredients Vs using cups:
I use my food scale and weigh out ingredients in grams because this is the most accurate way to get the best quality baked goods. Cups aren't accurate because not only are all cups not the same the sizes vary from brand to brand as well as from different countries. I have done tests with different brands of measuring cups and they all came out with different weights after I did the spoon and level as well as scoop method and then weighed in grams.
Baking is a science and science needs accuracy. Weighing is accurate and precise. Not to mention a lot easier. Another issue with cups is that I have no control over how people use measuring cups to measure dry ingredients especially flour. You could pack in way too much which would result in a sub-par baked good. Too much flour could throw everything off. Same with not enough. Not to mention also some ingredients are difficult to measure in cups such as nuts, dried fruit, chocolate etc. This is why weighing in grams is the most accurate.
I also use grams for most liquid measure since 100 grams equals 100 ml of water. Smaller amounts of items measured in teaspoons I usually leave as teaspoons, tablespoons are sometimes listed in grams as well but for the most part the different tablespoons I have used have all resulted in the same amount. Aside from cute, decorative ceramic tablespoons and teaspoons are never accurate. Those are better as decoration than for being used for baking.
Keep wrapped up in plastic wrap, foil or an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. Or wrapped up in plastic wrap or foil then in a freezer safe bag up to three months in the freezer.
Make sure your plums or pluots are ripe but not overripe. Firm but ripe will be nice and jammy once baked. Underripe will taste too tart and overripe will just be mushy. Any variety of plum or pluot will work.
Yes it can easily be doubled and made in a bundt pan instead of two loaf pans if desired.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
Make it a whole meal with an entree and a cocktail:
Sour Cream Plum Pound Cake Recipe:
Sour Cream Plum Pound Cake Recipe
- Supplies needed:
- Loaf pan
- Food Scale
- parchment paper
- For the cake:
- 130 g butter unsalted, melted and cooled
- 115 g sour cream, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 250 g caster sugar
- Three large eggs, room temperature
- 275 g cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 6-8 plums, (any kind) stone removed, chopped or diced, divided (about 100-125 grams plums without the stone)
- 30 g brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom
- 1 Tablespoon butter soft (14 g)
- Heat oven to 350°F. Make sure your oven rack is in the middle of the oven. Prepare loaf pan with butter or cake release and a piece of parchment paper that hangs over the long sides of the pan. You can use clips to hold the paper down remember to remove them before baking the cake.
- Melt the butter and let it cool.
- In a large bowl whisk together the sour cream and vanilla until smooth. You do not want any lumps.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until well mixed then add that to the sour cream and whisk those together well.
- Clean out the bowl you used for the sugar and eggs and sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.
- Alternate adding in the flour and melted butter to the sour cream mixture and mix until you don't see any more streaks of flour. There will be some small lumps of flour and that's OK. You just don't want large lumps of flour. This is why I prefer to sift the flour over because it helps make it so there's no large lumps of flour.
- Scoop about a little less than half of the batter into the prepared pan, then scatter half of the diced plums over the batter. Top with the remaining batter.
- Mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon and cardamom and sprinkle half of it over the top of the cake.
- Next, using a decorating piping bag or a plastic baggie with a corner cut put the soft butter in the bag, squeeze to the end of the piping bag or baggie, cut open so there's a small opening in the piping bag or corner or the baggie, and pipe a line down the middle of the cake. Scatter the remaining plums all over the top of the cake on either sides of the piped butter line, then sprinkle the remaining brown sugar over the top of the cake.
- Place the cake in the oven and bake for 45 to 60 minutes until the cake is golden brown and a skewer stuck into the middle comes out mostly clean. A few crumbs is OK.
- Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes then using the overhanging parchment paper, carefully lift it onto a wire cooling rack to cool completely before serving.
- You can serve the cake warm or room temperature goes great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.