The Boozy Ingredient That Will Amp Up Your Carrot Cake Recipe

Adding alcohol is a great way to zhuzh up a cake, particularly a slightly spiced option like a carrot cake. While there are plenty of foolproof ways to add booze to a cake in its liquid form, adding rum-infused raisins to your carrot cake recipe doesn't require you to reconsider your measurements to retain consistency. All you need to do is add the raisins to the cake at the same time as your shredded carrots and pecans (or walnuts, if you prefer).

You can pick up some rum-infused raisins from the store, although store-bought versions tend to also come coated in chocolate, so keep that in mind. They're also fairly easy to make at home, provided you have rum, raisins, an airtight container, and some spare time. All you need to do is place the raisins in a jar, cover with your rum of choice, and leave to soak for an hour or two. The brand of rum you use is up to you, although it's worth noting that a dark, spiced rum will complement the cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger in a carrot cake especially well. (We've also ranked popular rum brands, worst to best, to help you decide.)

If you don't have any rum, or if you'd like to try something different, you could soak your raisins in other dark liquors like bourbon or sherry. Both tipples have a similar effect to rum, particularly if you use slightly spiced variations, adding a rich flavor and a strong boozy kick.

If you don't like raisins, substitute them for other dried fruits

Not everybody appreciates the addition of raisins to their desserts, and that's okay. There are plenty of other dried fruits that can be both soaked in alcohol and mixed into a carrot cake, and the good news is that the soaking method and timings stay the same. If you aren't too put off by the taste, other dried grape varieties like currants and sultanas make great additions to a carrot cake, and can create a more colorful appearance if you use a mixture of the two.

If you want to add a burst of sweetness to your carrot cake, pick up some dried apricots and soak them in your liquor of choice. Dried pineapples are quite tangy, and make for a great choice if you've whipped up some delicious lemony cream cheese frosting for your carrot cake. If you choose pineapple as your fruit, you might want to switch the alcohol up and soak it in a white rum, as its more subtle sweetness combines better with pineapple. Alternatively, pick up a coconut-infused white rum and soak your pineapple in that. PiƱa colada carrot cake, anyone?