Gin & Tonic Cake

Wooooh boy, this cake packs a punch – unlike most boozy baking goods where the booze cooks off in the oven, this one’ll getcha drunk because both the glaze that soaks the cake and the icing on top are infused with gin and tonic water.  Both are fully adjustable to your taste…consider the ratios below a suggestion rather than a hard and fast rule.  My advice is to put in one tablespoon of gin into the glaze and the icing at a time and taste it, adding tablespoons of gin or tonic water as you prefer, until you end up with something that’s just the right level of tasty fun time for you.  If you’re a teetotaler, you can always just skip the gin entirely and use only tonic water – you’ll still end up with a citrus-y, refreshing treat.  Thanks to How Sweet Eats for the recipe!

I considered bringing this into the office, but I made the icing pretty strong (as my husband can attest) and decided that as hilarious as it would be to not tell anyone and just see them react, I’d spare my co-workers the surprise mid-day buzz.  This is the perfect cake to make for a party where adult beverages are going to be served.  I’m enjoying this foray into boozy baking (my first experiment was with these Sweet and Salty Margarita Bars) and am excited to keep exploring the possibilities!  A couple things I’ve got my eye on involve sparkling wine, one of my favorite things in the world…

Yield:  15 servings        Total Time: 50-55 minutes (15-20 active)

Gin and tonic 6


Cake batter

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons freshly zested lime rind
  • 1/4 cup gin
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • juice of 1 lime

Gin Glaze

  • 1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons gin
  • 2 tablespoons tonic water
  • the juice of 1 lime

Gin Icing

  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons gin
  • 1 tablespoon tonic water
  • drop of vanilla extract
  • 2 limes, as thinly sliced as possible, for garnish (optional)

Gin and tonic 5


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Mix flour, baking powder, and salt together in a bowl and set aside.
  • In the bowl of your standing mixer, beat the butter with the paddle attachment on medium speed until creamy.  Add in the sugar and beat the mixture on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Add in each egg one at a time, beating until its fully incorporated before adding the next.  Add in the vanilla and lime zest and mix.
  • With the mixer on low speed, add in half of the dry ingredients.  Add in the 1/4 cup of gin, milk, and lime juice, mixing until everything is combined.  Add in the remaining flour mixture and beat until just combined.  Pour the batter into a liberally buttered 9×13 baking dish and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until top is golden and center is not jiggly.
  • While the cake is baking, make the gin glaze.  Mix the ingredients together until a runny glaze forms.  When the cake is done, remove it from the oven and immediately poke holes all over the top with a toothpick or fork.  Pour the gin glaze over the cake while it’s hot, then let the cake cool completely.

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  • While the cake is cooling, mix up the icing.  Mix the gin and other ingredients together until a very thick, but spreadable, icing forms.  Once the cake has completely cooled, spread a thin layer of icing all over it.  If you’re garnishing with slices of lime, place them evenly across the surface of the cake so that each slice will have one in the middle.  Serve immediately, or refrigerate so it firms up and serve cold.  Enjoy!

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4 thoughts on “Gin & Tonic Cake

  1. This recipe looks awesome! I love when people incorporate alcohol in to their cooking, it’s my favorite. How did you come up with this?


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