This Dark Chocolate Fruitcake is not your average fruitcake! It’s made with dried cranberries, dates, apricots, raisins, pineapple, brandy, a blend of holiday spices, vanilla, nuts, and chopped dark chocolate. It’s an incredibly delicious, modern take on the classic fruitcake!
(This post is sponsored by Chocolove! Thank you so so much for reading and supporting the brands that I love!)
This is the fruitcake that converted me into a fruitcake lover. Fruitcake is notoriously known for being not the most favorite dessert at the holiday table, and for it being filled with unnatural candied fruits and other things! This is not that fruitcake. This fruitcake is SO incredibly delicious, and I could.not.stop. eating it! Forever converted.
I’m pretty sure that a big part of that – is the chocolate! If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that I have a serious love affair with Chocolove chocolate. It’s hands down the best chocolate I’ve ever tasted, especially their dark chocolate. Everyone I introduce it to, is like, “How have I not had this chocolate before?!?! It’s incredible!”
And it just takes this fruitcake to the next level.
I mean, look how chock-full of goodness it is! No pun intended.
I never realized how insanely FULL of goodness fruitcake was. The batter is so super thick, you’ll feel like it’s not gonna work, but trust me, it is! The final product is dense, but not overly so.
There’s a ton of different kinds of dried fruit in this, and you can absolutely use your favorites. My blend of choice is: dried pineapple, golden raisins, dried apricots, dried dates, and dried cranberries! Dried cherries would be delicious in here, as would regular raisins, currants, figs, prunes, or whatever else your heart desires.
The only thing that really truly matters, is the chocolate, of course!
I love using their 70% dark chocolate for this, but really any of their bars will be amazing here.
In addition to all of the dried fruit, I forgot to mention that you SOAK it in brandy. I never really realized that fruitcake was traditionally boozy, until I made this one. And it’s SO good! It just adds a little depth and interest to it, but not overly so! I’ve never been a huge brandy fan, but I love love love it in this!
You can either soak the fruit overnight, or microwave it for a couple minutes with the brandy. I actually prefer the microwaved version, as I feel like it really plumps up the fruit and you get more of the brandy flavor.
Another thing about this, is I found it gets better as the days go on. Kind of like banana bread does! The flavors just concentrate and get more and more delicious. So if you want to make this for Christmas, I’d recommend baking it this weekend, wrapping it tightly in plastic wrap, and it will be even better on Christmas Day.
Also – don’t be alarmed at how long these have to bake. They are DENSE cakes. If they seem to be browning too much on top, Just tent them with aluminum foil, and you’ll be good to go!
I still can’t get over how full of goodness these cakes are. And the dried fruit and chocolate combo mixed with all of the cozy spices is just soooo darn good!
And it never hurt to enjoy these with a little brandy too! Or better yet, Christmas Sangria!
Dark Chocolate Fruitcake
This Dark Chocolate Fruitcake is not your average fruitcake! It's made with dried cranberries, dates, apricots, raisins, and pineapple, brandy, a blend of holiday spices, vanilla, nuts, and chopped dark chocolate. It's an incredibly delicious, modern take on the classic fruitcake!
- 1 cup chopped dried pineapple
- 1 cup golden raisins
- 1 1/2 cups chopped dried apricots
- 1 1/2 cups chopped dried dates
- 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
- 1 cup brandy
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons allspice
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 cups light brown sugar, loosely packed
- 4 large eggs
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 1/2 cups chopped nuts*
- 2 (3.2 ounce) bars Chocolove 70% dark chocolate, chopped
Preheat oven to 325℉. Liberally grease two 9x5 loaf pans and line with parchment paper. Set aside. Place dried pineapple, raisins, apricots, dates, cranberries, and brandy in a large microwave safe bowl and stir to combine. Microwave for 1 minute, stir, then microwave for another minute. Set aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside. In another large mixing bowl, whisk together the light brown sugar and eggs until smooth. Add the maple syrup, melted butter, vegetable oil, vanilla, and water and whisk again until smooth. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing with a rubber spatula until just combined. Drain off any excess brandy from the dried fruit (it's ok if a little bit remains), and add to the batter. Stir to combine. Fold in the chopped nuts and chopped dark chocolate. Batter will be THICK.
Pour batter evenly into both loaf pans, smoothing out the top with a rubber spatula. Bake for 80-90 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, and the center is set. If at any point the tops seem to be getting too brown, tent them with aluminum foil for the remainder of the baking time. Let cool for 30 minutes in their pans, then invert onto a cooling rack to cool the rest of the way. Let cool completely before slicing!
*I used a mixture of chopped walnuts and pecans!
*I find that the fruitcakes get more delicious as the days go on. I'd make them 2-3 days before you want to serve them, and store them tightly wrapped at room temperature!
loosely adapted/inspired by this recipe.