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Drizzling caramel icing over brown sugar pound cake

Brown Sugar Pound Cake

Brown sugar pound cake may be the best cake you've ever tasted! Dense, moist, and molasses-and-caramel-flavored - perfect to bake in chilly weather.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword brown sugar cake, bundt cake, dessert, pound cake
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings 12 slices
Calories 919kcal
Author Kathleen



  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter softened
  • 2 cups brown sugar firmly packed
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs, room temperature
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 (8-ounce) package toffee bits
  • 1 cup toasted pecans, chopped

Caramel Icing:

  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup brown sugar firmly packed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Prep. Preheat oven to 325°F. Spray a 12-cup bundt pan with nonstick baking spray.
  • Combine. In the bowl of a stand-up mixer, set on medium speed, beat butter (1 1/2 cups), brown sugar (2 cups), and granulated sugar (1 cup) for 4 minutes or until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, until the yolks disappear.
  • Dry ingredients. Add the flour (3 cups), baking powder (1 teaspoon), and salt (1/2 teaspoon) to a medium mixing bowl. Whisk until combined. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture alternatingly with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture mixing just until combined after each addition.
  • Fold in toffee bits (8 ounces) and pecans (1 cup) until evenly combined. Pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake in preheated oven until a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour and 25 minutes. Check during the baking time for excess browning and cover with foil if necessary. Let cool in pan set on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Invert pan and place cake on serving plate or cake stand. Allow the cake to cool completely before beginning the glaze.
  • Icing. Bring condensed milk (14 ounces) and brown sugar (1 cup) to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking almost constantly. Reduce the heat and simmer for 8 minutes, whisking often. Take off of the heat and stir in butter (2 tablespoons) and vanilla (1/2 teaspoon).
  • Assemble. Cool for 5 minutes before drizzling on the cake. Allow glaze to harden before slicing, and enjoy!


  1. Does brown sugar make cake moist? Yes, brown sugar adds moisture and creates softer baked goods. It also absorbs moisture so when used as an ingredient, it keeps baked goods moist longer.
  2. Brown Sugar: This will add a slight caramel or molasses flavor. You can use either light or dark brown sugar. Both are good choices. If you use dark, the cake will have a more pronounced molasses flavor. Whichever you use, make sure you pack firmly when measuring.
  3. Can I substitute brown sugar for white sugar? No, not in this recipe. The molasses flavor of the brown sugar imparts is key to the overall flavor of this cake.
  4. Eggs: I use large eggs. For best results, it's important for them to be at room temperature. They will mix into the batter more easily and you’ll also get better volume.
  5. How To Quickly Bring Eggs To Room Temperature: According to Bon Appetite, simply place eggs in a small bowl of warm water (not hot or you can cook them!) for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Milk Vs. Buttermilk: This is not a brown sugar pound cake with buttermilk. Because it's already so moist due to the large quantity of brown sugar, it doesn't need the added moister buttermilk would bring. In fact, it would have more of a gummy texture.
  7. No Sour Cream? I often make brown sugar pound cake with sour cream to add extra moisture but again, as I said above, this cake has extra moisture from the brown sugar so it's not needed.
  8. How To Toast Pecans: Don’t skip this step! It's easy to do just follow the steps below. Be careful not to overbake or they may burn. If they burn, they are best thrown out!
    1. Spread pecan halves in a single layer on a heavy baking sheet.
    2. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.
    3. Stir halfway through baking.
    4. Cool completely.
  9. Baking Nonstick Cooking Spray: This is the only type of cooking spray I use when I make this cake. This cake is dense and heavy and doesn't release as easily as many cakes do. This type of spray differs from the regular type in that it also contains flour. Spray on a thick coating, right before you pour the batter into the pan.


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 919kcal | Carbohydrates: 127g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 43g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 176mg | Sodium: 223mg | Potassium: 370mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 102g | Vitamin A: 1223IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 213mg | Iron: 3mg