eggnog poke cake

Eggnog Poke Cake

No need to be intimidated– this sponge cake is ridiculously easy to make and comes together fast, making this a no-brainer dessert this holiday season. Kind of like a Tres Leches Cake, this Eggnog Poke Cake is a light-as-air sponge cake with rich eggnog and  creamy whip. It is heavenly.

Recipe by Liz Clements of Think Like a Baker, helping home bakers become confident and creative in the kitchen.


For the Sponge Cake:

  • ⅔ cup (80g) all-purpose flour
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ⅛ tsp ground or freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar


For the Soak:

  • 1 ⅓ cup (315g) eggnog (store-bought or homemade)
  • ¼ cup New Deal Distiller’s Workshop Brandy
  • 1 Tbsp (15 g) Mud Puddle Bitter Chocolate Vodka
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp Spiritopia Peppermint Liqueur (or peppermint schnapps)



For the Whipped Cream Topping:

  • ⅔ cup (175g) Heavy Cream
  • 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • Nutmeg and ground cinnamon to garnish



For the Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. Whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and spices to break up any clumps and evenly distribute.
  3. Using a stand mixer or handheld mixer, whip the egg whites until frothy and add the sugar in a spoonful at a time until no sugar remains.
  4. Continue whipping until egg whites are glossy and soft peaks form.
  5. Add in egg yolks one at a time.
  6. Gently fold in the dry ingredients with a whisk until fully incorporated.
  7. Switch to a rubber spatula and gently scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl to ensure the mix is homogenous.
  8. Pour into an un-greased, unlined 1 ½ – 2qt baking dish (8×8, 7×11, or 6×9 inch) and spread batter evenly with a spatula.
  9. Bake at 350 F for 20-30 minutes until the top is golden brown, springs back to the touch, and a cake tester comes out clean.
  10. Let the cake cool for 15 minutes.
  11. Whisk together the eggnog and brandy.
  12. Using a skewer or a fork, poke holes all over the cake.
  13. Pour half of the eggnog mixture over the top of the cake and let stand for 15 more minutes.
  14. After 15 minutes, pour the remaining egg nog over the cake.
  15. Wrap the cake in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours before serving.


To Serve:


  1. Whip the cream, granulated sugar, and vanilla extract to medium-stiff peaks (until it holds a line but still looks silky smooth).
  2. Using a spatula or the back of a spoon, spread the whipped cream over the top of the cake.
  3. Sprinkle nutmeg and cinnamon over the top to garnish.
  4. Store wrapped tightly in the fridge for up to 3 days.


This recipe uses store-bought eggnog without alcohol added. If using homemade eggnog that already has booze, use the total weight of the eggnog+brandy listed in the recipe to get the right amount of soak.
Want to serve more people? Double the recipe and bake in a 9×13 in baking dish.


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