Tart cranberries, subtle rosemary, and buttery tender cake simply baked in a bundt pan and drizzled with sweet white chocolate ganache. Cranberry rosemary bundt cake is the perfect from-scratch holiday cake for an after dinner treat or to slice up for a sweet brunch option!
If you're looking for the perfect end to your holiday meal, or maybe you want to have seasonally appropriate cake for breakfast. Whatever the reason, this cranberry cake is it!
Rosemary and cranberry are the holiday flavor team in this house. We're putting it on flatbread, stuffing it in muffins, and now baking it into beautiful swirling and simple cranberry rosemary bundt cake. Here's why you're going to love making this:
- the rosemary adds a great cooling flavor without being too in your face
- tart cranberries balance the sweet icing
- the softest, buttery vanilla cake
- no cake layers or frosting, just bake in a simple bundt pan
- easy white chocolate ganache lazily poured over the top
Baking with bundt pans
Baking cakes in bundt pans is a beautiful, simple option if you're in the market for a stunning cake that doesn't require a whole lot of effort. When you make a bundt cake there's no leveling of cakes, no layering, no fancy piping and the delectable cake ingredients shine on their own.
If you've never baked using a bundt pan, there are some tips and trick to make sure your cake is perfect the first time around!
HOW TO PREVENT YOUR BUNDT CAKE FROM STICKING
The simple answer is grease your bundt pan. The easiest and guaranteed method is to use a baking spray containing flour. This is sure to get all the nooks and crannies of your pan, especially if it has a fancy design.
Other ways to keep your bundt cake from sticking is to brush the inside with "baker's goop." Baker's goop is a great tool to have stocking in the pantry for a fast way to grease any pan for baking. Just whisk together equal parts vegetable shortening, vegetable or canola oil and all purpose flour.
Last but certainly not least is to grease the pan with butter or shortening using a paper towel and then dust the pan with all purpose flour, shaking out the excess. This is my least favorite method since it's hard to get an even application, but still effective.
HOW LONG DO YOU COOL A BUNDT CAKE?
Cool the bundt cake in the pan 10 to 20 minutes. Because your cranberry rosemary bundt cake is thicker than traditional cake layers, it needs time to set in the pan before flipping. Giving it a little extra time to cool in the pan will also ensure it will release perfectly from the pan without cracking or sticking.
OTHER TRIED AND TRUE TIPS
Not just for bundt pans, these tried and true tips will ensure perfect bakes everytime:
- Keep the oven door closed! Opening the door let's heat escape and can lead to your bakes falling if they're not done.
- Do the toothpick test in the thickest part of the cake
- If the top of the cake starts to brown too quickly, cover with aluminum foil
- Don't overmix. While you want your ingredients well incorporated, overmixing cake batter can cause a tough and dense cake.
How to make cranberry rosemary bundt cake
In traditional bundt pan fashion, this bundt cake uses a beaten butter and sugar base then alternate adding dry and wet ingredients.
Our wet ingredients for this cake is the rosemary infused milk. Making this is going to be the very next step after turning on the oven. Doing this first is important because the milk and rosemary need steeping time after simmering to really infuse the rosemary flavor into the milk.
If the milk seems very rosemary-y, don't stress! This flavor will be very subtle after all the ingredients are baked together.
Fresh (or frozen!) cranberries are an excellent tart flavor to balance out both the sweetness of the cake and the chocolate ganache. To keep the cranberries from "bleeding" into the batter, give them a light dusting of flour.
Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl after beating the butter and sugar, and then again after all the ingredients are mixed together. This will prevent any clumps in the batter and give you an evenly baked cake.
This cranberry bundt cake will rise close to the top of the pan during baking. If you're using a 10-cup bundt pan it won't spill over the top, but just in case you can place a sheet pan on the shelf below to catch any batter should it drip.
HOW TO MAKE WHITE CHOCOLATE GANACHE
The white chocolate ganache is the perfect sweet pairing to this tart and fresh herb cake. While it may seem odd to not melt the chocolate in a pan, we're going to let the cream do all the work.
Bring the cream to a simmer and pour over the white chocolate chips in a bowl. Let it sit, covered, for about 5 minutes then whisk together. Easy? You betcha.
Here's the hardest part. Waiting. After the white chocolate ganache comes together, let it cool before pouring over the cake to create a nice thick chocolate coating. Room temperature is just about what you're going for. If the cake or the ganache are still warm, the ganache will thin. This is still a delicious option since it melts into the cake and drips all over, but it does get a tiny bit messy, that's all.
Serve this tart, buttery and sweet confection for the end to your holiday meal, bring it to a party or eat it for breakfast (my favorite option!) For more makes and more luscious after dinner holiday confections, check out the easiest gingerbread house or the spice cake that's #1 on the blog right now!
Cranberry Rosemary Bundt Cake
- 3 cups + 1 tablespoon all purpose flour (divided)
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- ¾ cup unsalted butter (softened)
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 ¾ cup light brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 5 large eggs
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ¾ cup whole milk
- 3 large springs fresh rosemary
- 1 ¾ cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- ¾ cup white chocolate chips
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 10-cup bundt pan with baking spray.
- Prep the ingredients: In a small sauce pan, bring the rosemary and milk to a simmer over low heat. Once the milk starts to simmer, remove from heat and let steep while making the rest of the batter. In a small bowl, toss together the cranberries and 1 tablespoon all purpose flour. Remove any excess flour that doesn't stick to the cranberries.
- Make the batter: In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt, set aside. In the bowl of standing mixer with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar and continue to mix until well incorporated, about 2 minutes, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl if needed.
- With the mixer running on medium speed, add the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla. Stop and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl if needed.
- Reduce the speed to low and add the dry ingredients. Once the dry ingredients are mostly incorporated, remove the rosemary springs from the milk and pour the milk into the batter. Gradually increase speed to medium so the milk doesn't spill over the sides of the bowl. Mix on medium speed until fully combined, about 1-2 minutes.
- Using a spatula, fold in the cranberries. Transfer the batter to the greased bundt pan and bake for 55-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
- Allow the cake to cool for at 20 minutes before turning out onto a flat surface. The cake should be mostly cool when applying the white chocolate ganache. The warmer the cake, the more the glaze will run.
- Prepare the glaze: In a small saucepan, bring the heavy cream to a simmer over low heat. Pour the chocolate chips into a small bowl, when the cream comes to a simmer pour the cream over the chocolate chips, cover with plastic wrap or a clean towel and let sit for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, stir the chocolate chips and heavy cream until smooth. Let the white chocolate ganache sit until room temperature, about 15 minutes.
- Pour the glaze over the cranberry rosemary bundt cake and let it slip down the sides. Serve immediately or let the glaze cool and then cover and refrigerate until serving.
- You can toss the cranberries with the flour in a colander or sifter so any excess flour is automatically sifted out. This will prevent the cranberries from 'bleeding' red color into the batter.
- If the cake starts to brown on top too quickly, cover lightly with aluminum foil for the remainder of the baking time.