This easy, alcohol-free Christmas Fruitcake Loaf recipe is perfect for a Christmas brunch or potluck, or as an afternoon treat with a cup of tea or coffee.
Ready to eat the day it’s baked, this fruitcake loaf requires no month-long seasoning, making it the perfect last-minute dessert for Christmas.
Not Your Traditional Fruitcake
Traditional fruitcake is dense and filled with spices. It is seasoned with alcohol, sometimes for a month or more before serving.
This fruitcake is not your traditional fruitcake. It is lighter in both colour and texture. There is no alcohol in this recipe either. So there is no seasoning for days, weeks, or a month.
Ready The Day It’s Baked
This Christmas Fruitcake loaf can be enjoyed the same day it is baked. That’s what makes this a great Christmas dessert. The holidays are already busy enough, who has time to baste a cake every day?
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Ingredients for Christmas Fruitcake Loaf
To make this simple fruitcake loaf recipe, you will need a few basic ingredients. Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature for best results.
- All-Purpose Flour
- Baking Soda
- Baking Powder
- Milk- (I use 2% milk for making this recipe.)
- Orange Juice
- Vanilla Extract
- Almond Extract
- All-vegetable Shortening
- White Sugar
- Brown Sugar
- Candied Fruit Mix
Where To Find Candied Fruit
Candied fruit also known as Glace Fruit Mix is easily found at Christmas time in the bakery aisles of grocery stores. It is usually sold in two different sizes. For this recipe, I use a small container.
The fruit mix can also be found at bulk food stores like Bulk Barn in Canada. In the United States, Paradise Mix can be found on Amazon.
How To Serve This Fruitcake
After the fruitcake cools, it can be cut just any other loaf into slices for serving. It is best served at room temperature.
Serve it as part of a brunch or at a potluck.
It is great served with coffee, tea, or a glass of milk.
Additions and Substitutions
There are a few ingredients in this recipe that can be swapped or omitted.
- Low-fat milk can be used to replace the 2% milk.
- The orange juice can be replaced with an orange liqueur such as Cointreau, Grand Marnier, or Triple Sec.
- Almond extract can be omitted if you don’t have it or if there is a risk of allergies.
- Slivered almonds can be added for texture. Fold into the batter with the fruit.
- Butter can be used in place of shortening.
Storing Christmas Fruitcake Loaf
Once the loaf has cooled completely, the best way to store this fruitcake is to tightly wrap it in aluminum foil. This will keep it from drying out and will last at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Christmas Fruitcake loaf can also be frozen for up to 2 months. wrap it in foil and place it in a freezer bag or air-tight container before freezing. Thaw it at room temperature before slicing and serving.
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Christmas Fruitcake Loaf (Alcohol-free)
- Stand mixer or hand mixer
- ⅔ cup milk
- ¼ cup orange juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup shortening
- ¾ cup white sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¾ cup candied fruit
- Preheat oven to 350℉. Spray a 9-inch bread pan with non-stick spray or line with parchment paper,
- Mix milk, orange juice, and extracts together. Set aside
- Place shortening and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat until blended and creamy. Scrape the side of the bowl as necessary.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth.
- In a separate bowl, whisk flour with the powder, baking soda and salt.
- Add ⅓ of flour mixture to the shortening and sugars, beating on low speed.
- Slowly pour in ½ the milk mixture.
- Add in ½ the remaining flour mixture.
- Add the remaining milk mixture followed by the remaining flour mixture.
- Once the flour is mixed in, turn off the mixer and fold in the candied fruit. (Don't overmix the batter.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
- Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, check for doneness. Bake until center is cooked through.
- Cover loosely with foil if the top of loaf starts to brown too much.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Slice and serve once cooled.