Regional Recipes: Newcastle Pudding

November 11, 2019
Newcastle pudding - a steamed pudding with a cherry topping

Newcastle pudding is a traditional steamed pudding with a topping of cherries. Serve with custard for a lovely dessert on a cold day.

I am finding it really interesting finding out about regional recipes. Britain is a small island but the range and diversity of the dishes we have across the length and breadth of it is amazing. It is like our range of accents, unique to each region and distinctive. Even when two regions have a similar recipe, there are subtle variations that make it specific to that area.

Recently I have been concentrating on traditional recipes from North East England. These often have musical names like Pan Haggerty or Singin’ Hinnies which reflect the lilting Geordie accent.

Whilst looking for other recipes from the region I came across a reference to Newcastle Pudding. Intrigued, I had to find out more.

Newcastle pudding

Newcastle pudding - a steamed pudding with a topping of cherries on a plate

The earliest reference I could find came from The Cook and Housekeeper’s Dictionary by Mary Eaton in 1822. The basic instructions were as follows:

NEWCASTLE PUDDING. Butter a half melon mould or quart basin, stick it all round with dried cherries or fine raisins, and fill it up with custard and layers of thin bread and butter. Boil or steam it an hour and a half.

Investigating further it seems Newcastle Pudding is also used to refer to a lemon bread and butter type pudding and also a steamed sponge pudding with almond essence.  It is also an alternative name for cabinet pudding which is a pudding made with bread or cake in custard

I decided to try and recreate the steamed pudding version. Now the autumn is here there is nothing nicer that a steamed pudding with custard. It makes you feel warm inside, ideal when the wind is howling round the house. The result was a success, it has a lovely taste and is a light steamed pudding with the cherries giving it a touch of sweetness.

A steamed pudding with a topping of cherries on a plate

The cherries make a lovely pattern in the top of the pudding so it would make a great centrepiece for a special occasion. It is a perfect pudding for spring days when the sun is out but the air is still cold. Eating this makes you feel warm and the pudding is not too stodgy. It is almost similar in texture to St. Stephens Pudding, another steamed pudding this time with an apple base.

I must admit to being quite pleased that Newcastle has it’s own pudding and a very tasty one at that. I will definitely be trying this one again soon, taking more care to grease the pudding basin properly beforehand.

Newcastle pudding - a steamed pudding with a cherry topping

How to make Newcastle pudding




Newcastle pudding is easy to make.  First grease a pudding basin with some butter or margarine. This allows you to remove the pudding from the basin when it is cooked.

Chop the cherries in half and use them to create a decorative pattern in the top of the pudding basin.

Cream the butter and eggs together and then beat in the eggs. Gradually mix in the other ingredients and add milk until the pudding has a dropping consistency.

Pour the mixture into the pudding basin

Place some silver foil over the top of the pudding basin and tie tightly with string.

Put the basin in a pan, add water until the level is half way up the bowl and bring to the boil. Simmer for a couple of hours until the pudding is cooked. You will need to keep an eye on the water level to make sure it does not get too low. Top it up as needed.

Let the pudding stand for five minutes and then turn it out onto a plate. You might need to use oven gloves.

Newcastle Pudding Recipe

Newcastle pudding - a steamed pudding with a cherry topping

Newcastle Pudding

A light steamed pudding with a topping of cherries. Serve with custard for a delicious dessert
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Course Dessert
Cuisine British
Servings 4 people


  • Pudding basin
  • Large pan
  • Measuring scales
  • Sharp knife
  • Hand mixer
  • string
  • silver foil


  • 25 g 1 oz glacé cherries
  • 100 g 4 oz butter
  • 100 g 4 oz caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 150 g 5 oz plain flour
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 60 ml milk


  • Grease a pudding basin
  • Cut the cherries in half and make a pattern on the base of the pudding basin
  • Cream together the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl.
  • Gradually beat in the eggs
  • Stir the flour, salt and baking powder into the egg mixture and then add the milk until the pudding has a dropping consistency.
  • Pour the mixture into the pudding basin.
  • Cover the basin with greaseproof paper and tin foil and secure with string.
  • Half fill a saucepan with water and bring to the boil.
  • Put the pudding dish into the pan, the water should come half way up the basin.
  • Steam for an hour and a half to two hours until the pudding is cooked.
  • Before turning out let the pudding stand for 5 minutes.
Step by step pictures showing how to make Newcastle pudding

Have you ever made this pudding? Let me know below.

Why not pin for later?

Newcastle pudding. A steamed pudding with a cherry topping that is the perfect dessert for a cold night. Serve with custard and enjoy

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13 responses to “Regional Recipes: Newcastle Pudding”

  1. Corina says:

    I’ve never heard of this before either but I love steamed puddings. It sounds really tasty and it’s always nice to discover a new pudding!

  2. I have never heard of Newcastle Pudding before but it looks delicious. My family would love this sort of pudding with custard 🙂 x #TastyTuesdays

  3. I love reading your regional recipes – fab that they are being given a new lease of life via your blog 😀

  4. Ooh this looks lovely and I have everything I need in the cupboard ! Not sure if your linkie is still going but I’ve finally tried out some Sussex recipes –

  5. Galina V says:

    I have never tasted or even heard of the Newcastle pudding. Would love to try a piece of your pud, it sounds so yummy

  6. 5 stars
    Love steamed puddings but I’ve not heard of this. I’ll have to ask my mum if she knows of it

  7. Anca says:

    This sounds delightful. I like those cherries on top, the pudding looks great like that.

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