Perfectly Steamed Marmalade Pudding

4.94 from 15 votes
My Steamed Marmalade Pudding recipe might just be my favorite dessert of the year — and once you try this cake, you'll know why!
Placing a steamed marmalade pudding onto the table.

Hi Bold Bakers!

Streamed Marmalade Pudding may not be a common dessert in the US, but it’s a favorite in both England and Ireland. Actually, this steamed marmalade pudding may — no joke — be my favorite new dessert this year! 

Steaming cakes, or “puddings,” is very common for us back over the pond. A good steamed pudding brings up lovely memories from childhood for many people who still live in the UK and Ireland and for any ex-pat. For those unfamiliar, this is a cake batter that is steamed. And this steamed pudding recipe results in an unbelievably moist cake that is irresistible when paired with my Creme Anglaise. It’s tangy, sweet, creamy, soft… everything!

A steamed pudding is an easy dessert to make (you can check out my How To Steam A Christmas Pudding informational article if you need to, too), and I am so excited for you to try it out for yourself if you’ve never had one! And even more excited if it brings up some fond memories of your home if you have had it before! 

Close up of steamed marmalade pudding.

What Is A Steamed Pudding?

Steamed pudding isn’t really like pudding. Actually, it’s more like a very moist cake — but instead of baking the cake ingredients, they are put into a mold and slowly steamed for about 2 hours. It’s a simple, easy dessert that needs little attention while steaming. You just have to check to make sure the water doesn’t boil dry.

What You Need To Make Marmalade Pudding

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Medium Mixing bowl
  • 1.4-liter pudding basin
  • Food processor
  • Large pot
  • Steamer  (or an upturned plate)
  • Parchment paper and tin foil

Serving a slice of marmalade cake.

How To Make Steamed Marmalade Pudding

After making this, you’ll understand why Christmas carolers go from wishing you a “Merry Christmas and a happy new year” to demanding “Bring us some figgy pudding and bring it right here!” Here’s how you make steamed marmalade pudding (and don’t forget to get the full recipe with measurements, on the page down below):

  1. Butter the bottom and sides of a 1.4-liter pudding basin and spoon the marmalade into the base.
  2. In a food processor, process the roughly chopped orange (minus the pips) until finely chopped. Place in a bowl and set aside.
  3. Put the softened butter, sugar, eggs, flour, bicarbonate soda (baking soda), baking powder, ginger, and salt in the food processor and process until smooth and creamy. It should take about 20 seconds. Add the chopped orange and process for a second to combine. (There’s no need to wash your food processor between the 2nd and 3rd step.)
  4. Spoon the cake mixture into the pudding basin and cover with parchment paper and then foil. Secure with a string around the basin to make it easy to lift from the pot.
  5. In your large pot, place your steamer. If you don’t have a steamer, you can use an upturned plate. Pour in enough boiling water to reach the base of the streamer. 
  6. Cover and steam for about 2 hours. Be sure to top with more boiling water when needed.
  7. After about 2 hours, while it is still warm, remove the parchment and foil and turn the pudding onto a serving plate. You’ll want it to be still warm, so the sticky marmalade layer stays intact. 

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips For Making Steamed Marmalade Pudding

  • Serve with my homemade Creme Anglaise.
  • Don’t have a pudding basin? click here or alternatively use any round glass or porcelain bowl you can find.
  • You can make this recipe with a large lemon instead of an orange.
  • Be sure to turn the pudding out of the basin while still warm for an easy release.
  • Make your own brown sugar

A slice of my steamed marmalade pudding.

How Do I Store Steamed Pudding?

You can store steamed pudding in your refrigerator for up to 3 days. 

Make More Recipes!

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Full (and printable) recipe below!

Steamed Marmalade Pudding Recipe

4.94 from 15 votes
My Steamed Marmalade Pudding recipe might just be my favorite dessert of the year — and once you try this cake, you'll know why!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 8 people
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
My Steamed Marmalade Pudding recipe might just be my favorite dessert of the year — and once you try this cake, you'll know why!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 8 people


  • 3 tablespoons coarse orange marmalade
  • 1 medium orange with skin on roughly chopped
  • ½ cup (4oz/115g) butter softened
  • cup (4oz/115g) light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 ¼ cup (6¼/177g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Creme Anglaise to serve


  • Butter the base and sides of a 1.4-liter pudding basin or a medium glass or plasitc mixing bowl. Spoon the marmalade into the base.
  • Put the roughly chopped orange (minus the pips) in a food processor, then process until finely chopped. Place in a bowl and set aside.
  • In the same food processor after the orange, put softened butter, sugar, eggs, flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, ginger, and salt and process until smooth and creamy, roughly 20 seconds. There is no need to wash the food processor between these steps.
  • Lastly, add in the chopped orange and process for a second to combine.
  • Spoon cake mixture into the prepared basin. Cover with greaseproof paper and then foil. Secure with a string around the basin to make it easy to lift it from the pot.
  • In a large pot, place in a steamer. Pour in enough boiling water to reach the base of the steamer. If you don't have a steamer you can place the basin on an upturned plate.
  • Cover and steam for roughly 2 hrs, topping up with water when necessary.
  • While still warm, remove the parchment and foil and turn the pudding onto a serving plate. Do this step while it's warm so the sticky marmalade layer stays in tack.
  • Serve the pudding hot with Creme Anglaise or vanilla ice-cream. Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days.

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2 Images

Brigitte Cosgrave


53 thoughts on “Perfectly Steamed Marmalade Pudding

  1. Tastes awesome ! Absolutely divine ! I’m so happy with the result. Have uploaded the picture. Gemma your recipes are so perfect…gave me the required confidence as a new baker.
    Thanks for sharing this amazing pudding recipe.
    Love 💕

  2. Absolutely delicious. Everyone loved it. I have never made many puddings before following your site. Last year was my first Christmas pudding and I will make that again this year. I love your site and watching your videos. Thank you from New Hampshire 🙂

    1. Fantastic, Colin! Hearing my bold bakers’ success with my recipes really pleases my heart !
      Keep up your good work! We will have a brand new recipe every day from now until Christmas ! All seasonal and Holiday focused plus recipes from around the world ! Stay tuned and sign up here to make sure you’re NOT missing them out:
      Get ready for a wonderful holiday with me!

      Best, Gemma

  3. Any idea of how long to steam this in a instapot pressure cooker on steam? Or would it be for the same amount of time?

    1. Hi Linda. You can steam it using a pressure cooker. You should have a trivet in the bottom of the pressure cooker, water up to about 3/4 way of the bowl, you then simmer it at low pressure for about 30 minutes to get the heat through the mix and the pudding to rise, then you can increase the pressure to medium and let it go on for about an hour – depending on the size of the pudding – this direction will be for a 2-pound pudding.

  4. Made this today and it’s absolutely delish, can’t wait to try a lemon one but as I live alone this one will last a few days…….or maybe not!
    Thank you

  5. I made it exactly following the recipe. It is spectacular! I plan to explore some additional “pudding” recipes and am ordering a real pudding basin. The only problem I had was unmolding it. Some of the marmalade (actually most of it) stayed in the mold.. Did I unmold while it was too hot. How long do you usually wait. I have some ginger preserves. I am thinking about trying it with those or perhaps half ginger and half orange.

    1. Hi Charlotte!

      I’m thrilled you tried this recipe. I have said this is probably one of my favorite recipes of 2020. Your note is a good one and I’ll add it to the post that yes do untold while this hot. This makes all the difference. Maybe wait 10 minutes.

      I love these types of puddings. I do have another 3 coming also around the holidays so stay tuned including a ginger pudding with whiskey caramel sauce 😊 so stay tuned.

  6. Wow yes remember all those steamed pudding spotted dick Christmas puddings with Birds custard. I grew up In Ireland. Galway. Now. Living out side Boston

    1. Hi Kim. If gluten is the only issue, then I recommend you use a gluten free all purpose flour blend. It will give you a result that is closest to one with gluten. I hope this helps.

  7. I love steamed puddings! Sometimes I pour a maple syrup in the basin before adding the batter, and it makes a wonderful top for the pudding.

  8. Hello dear and amazing Gemma,
    Is there some error occurred or this recipe is not supported by video?

    All the best from Mne

  9. Gemma, this looks so good! Would love to make this. For recipes like this can you please also include the timing for cooking in the Instant Pot as so many of us have one and it saves filling the house with steam and is quicker as it can be done on high pressure. I just don’t know how long to set it for.

    1. Hi Julie,
      I have not used the Instant Pot for this pudding, but it is of course perfect for that job.
      I cannot give you precise instructions. However, when cooking a steamed pudding in a pressure cooker you would place the pudding on the trivet and fill the pot with boiling water to about 3/4 way up the pudding bowl. Then bring it back to the boil and simmer, valve open for the first 20 minutes to allow the batter to heat through and rise – then you crank up the pressure to medium and cook for 20 minutes.
      You have to go easy at the start to ensure a good rise.
      There are other suggestions online, google to satisfy yourself,
      Gemma 🙂

  10. Hello Gemma,
    What can I use to replace an 1.4-liter pudding basin since I do not own one?
    Thank you in advance for answering my question.
    Diane Springer

    1. This is one of my favorite recipes that I actually made all year. it’s so delicious.

      You can use a glass mixing bowl if you don’t have a pudding basin. Have a look around your kitchen and you will probably find something that can be used instead.


  11. I’m not familiar with your version of a steamer. Is it special equipment? Does it have a cover and go into an oven or use on the cooktop? When I steam vegetables I do it with an expandable gadget to hold the veggies, on the stove in a normal pot, covered, and keep the water boiling. Is this what you mean?
    This recipe sounds so delicious and I love marmalade’s!

    1. Hi Barbara,
      that expandable thingy – haha – is precious – we used that all the time at home, in all sorts of pans.
      Yes, but the pan has to be deep enough to take the bowl, and the water needs to come about 1/2 – 3/4 way up the sides of the pudding bowl.
      Tight lid too – then gentle simmer once the boiling point has been reached. That takes a bit of a fiddle as the contents of the bowl also need to reach the right temperature. Do use your steamer/trivet if possible, it helps to keep the bowl off the high heat,
      Gemma 🙂

      1. Hi, Gemma,
        I remember the “expandable thingy” as a vegetable steamer which were popular when I was growing up in the 70s. Then, in my house, (my mom really didn’t cook), it was a “fad” gadget.

        In the recipe you say “Pour in enough boiling water to reach the base of the steamer” which would be roughly one inch with my expandable veggie steamer. Here you saythe water needs to come about 1/2 – 3/4 way up the sides of the pudding bowl” which in my chosen bowl will be closer to 3 inches.

        Can you clarify how much water is needed for steaming? Thanks!

        1. Oh yeah it is super old school. It’s just always what my mum used so I use it also.

          When steaming bring the water to the level of the base of the steamer. You don’t want your pudding sitting in tons of water. Every so often top up with boiling water as it will evaporate.

          I hope you enjoy this as it is one of my all time favorites.

    1. Hi Catherine,
      YES! though I am not sure of the timing – your instruction book should help with that – it is a method of baking with specific instructions, I will need to get to it at some point. The important thing is to get the water to boiling point and allow it to simmer until it is consistently simmering as this allows the bake to rise without pressure – the timing is what I am not clear about – you can raise the pressure at some point, but I am not too sure for how long,
      Gemma 😉

    1. Hi Linda,
      Not for this recipe – this is stovetop steamed – a traditional thing in the UK and in Ireland back in the day.
      Actually this type of thing can be oven-baked also – in a bain-marie, well covered down with foil. This is often done with Christmas puddings now, though I prefer the traditional way,
      Gemma 🙂

    1. Hi Patricia,
      I do not think your ware is oven safe – as far as I can see.
      Pyrex glass ovenware – or similar brands are widely available and come in that pudding-bowl shape too.
      Take a look in oyur local store or do a little search here ( to see the type – it needs to be oven-safe,
      Gemma 🙂

    1. Sorry I don’t have one yet. But hope you can refer to timing for similar dishes in your instruction book or online. From what I’ve seen, pressure(manual)-HIHG for around 35 minutes.

      1. I clicked the link for the deep bowl and the dimensions were listed as 2.66 x 2.66 x 1.57 inches, this can’t be correct. Can you please give us approximate dimensions of a bowl size that would work? thanks!!

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About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere! No matter your skills, I have you covered. Sign up for my FREE weekly emails and join millions of other Bold Bakers in the community for new recipes, baking techniques, and more every week!

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