Cherry Spice Cake Recipe
Cherry Spice Cake Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Cherry Spice Cake Recipe

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At least four generations of women in my family have been baking this Cherry Spice Cake. It's always my mom's pick for her birthday. I like to use cream cheese frosting, but when my mother was growing up, my grandma frosted the cake with butter cream.—Laurie Sanders, Manchester, Michigan
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake 25 min. + cooling
MAKES:16 servings
Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake 25 min. + cooling
MAKES: 16 servings


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) pitted tart cherries, drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 3-3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons water
  • 2 to 3 drops red food coloring, optional
  • Additional chopped pecans, optional

Nutritional Facts

1 slice equals 387 calories, 14 g fat (7 g saturated fat), 58 mg cholesterol, 192 mg sodium, 62 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 5 g protein.


  1. Line two 9-in. round baking pans with waxed paper. Grease and flour the pans and paper; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine the flour, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add to the creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating well after each addition. Fold in cherries and pecans.
  3. Transfer batter to prepared pans. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  4. For frosting, in a large bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Add confectioners’ sugar and enough water to achieve spreading consistency. Tint with food coloring if desired. Spread frosting between layers and over top and sides of cake. Garnish with additional pecans. Store in the refrigerator. Yield: 16 servings.
Originally published as Cherry Spice Cake in Taste of Home Christmas Annual Annual 2011, p124

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Reviewed Apr. 20, 2016

"My family moved to a farm in 1952 that had tart cherry trees along with many other fruit trees. My mother had no recipes for tart cherries at the time so a neighbor lady gave her a recipe for Cherry Cake. It is very similar to this recipe with just a few minor changes, for instance allspice instead of cloves, and plain milk instead of buttermilk. A few ingredients amounts differed somewhat also, but basically the same. I have made my mother's recipe for this cake on many special occasions over the years and my family and relatives have always loved it. I am going to make it using your recipe and see if there is any difference in the taste. But on the whole, it is a very delicious cake."

Reviewed Jan. 12, 2016

"I've been making this for years, but with only 1/2 C. of sugar. I bake it in a 9 x 13 pan and use brown sugar frosting. It's my husbands favorite. His mother gave me the recipe 58 years ago."

Reviewed Dec. 28, 2015

"I was not at all happy with this recipe. The cake was very dense and heavy and had no taste. I did not feel that the cherries added enough moistness. The frosting was too sweet .will not make again"

Reviewed Oct. 24, 2015

"A perfect cake for special occasions and not fussy to make either. The cherries keep it nice and moist."

Reviewed Oct. 4, 2013

"Everyone really enjoyed this cake. I was surprised that the cherries and spices went together so well."

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