Brown sugar pound cake with caramel icing is a rich, moist cake, flecked with toffee bits and smothered in an easy, decadent caramel sauce.
Every June, the extended family of J.’s maternal grandfather gathers at the town community center for a reunion. J. and I have been married a while- seven years to the day as I type this!- so I’ve been to a few reunions.
Last year, I brought this brown sugar pound cake. There’s a relative, Ms. Ruth, who, according to the family, doesn’t eat a lot of sweets. She took a slice of cake, though, and she raved about it. And then she took another slice. I heard, from no fewer than three relatives, how great that cake must be for Ms. Ruth to have two pieces.
This year, a couple days before the reunion, I got word that Ms. Ruth wouldn’t be able to make it, but that she was hoping I would make the brown sugar cake again. She promised me some of her famous chocolate-covered peanut butter sandwich crackers in exchange for a slice.
How could I say no to that? I couldn’t, of course, which is how this cake became a family reunion staple.
brown sugar pound cake with caramel icing
adapted from lady behind the curtain
for the cake
3 sticks butter, softened
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
8 oz. bag chocolate toffee bits
for the caramel
14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 12-cup Bundt pan (a 10-cup pan will be too small) with cooking spray. Beat the butter until it’s creamy, and then add the sugars. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and then the vanilla.
Add the baking powder, salt, and one cup of flour and beat until just combined. Add half the milk and beat until just combined. Alternate adding flour, then the rest of the milk, and then the rest of the flour, mixing each time until just combined. Fold in the toffee bits.
Transfer the batter to the Bundt pan and spread evenly. The pan will be pretty full.
Bake for 70-85 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the middle comes out clean. Allow cake to cool for thirty minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool more. Once cake is removed from pan, prepare the caramel sauce by heating sweetened condensed milk and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring mixture to a boil, whisking constantly. Reduce heat and simmer for five minutes, still whisking constantly. Remove from heat and mix in vanilla and butter.
While caramel is hot, spoon it over the cake. You can allow the sauce to cool slightly, but don’t let it cool too much or it will get too thick to spread over the cake. You can use all the caramel on the cake, or you can reserve some to dip fruit in or to serve over ice cream. I used the whole batch on the cake, hence the little caramel pool in the center.
This cake is best served warm, but I can personally attest to its goodness the next day. Or the day after…
What recipe or dish are you always asked to make?
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