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Best Italian Hangover Cake Recipe

Italian Hangover Cake is a moist, delicious cake that has been infused with amaretto, rum and triple sec! It is a decadent dessert that reminds me of a rum cake, but better! This lightly sweet sponge cake with a little boozy twist is growing in popularity. And for good reason…it is a delicious dessert!

A slice of Italian Hangover pound cake on a plate with orange rinds.


Have you ever heard of a an Italian Hangover Cake? Me either…at least not until recently. It has become a popular recipe since being featured on David Portnoy’s review of DeFazio’s Pizzeria in Troy, New York. Italian Hangover cake is a family recipe that is on the menu at the pizzeria.

Since the original recipe is a Defazio family secret, I made my own version based on what I know about the cake. Authentic Italian hangover cake is an orange flavored cake infused with amaretto, rum and vodka. In my version the orange flavor comes from swapping out triple sec for the vodka. Then I up the almond flavor to make it characteristic of traditional Italian cakes that I grew up with.

The result is a sweet cake that pairs perfectly with a cup of espresso on lazy Sunday mornings, or at the end of a holiday dinner. You don’t actually have a hangover to enjoy this boozey cake!

It is a great make ahead dessert because the flavors infuse into the cake as it sits and it tastes even better the next day.

Ingredients for making a Bundt cake.


For the cake:

All purpose flour, baking powder, salt, eggs and :

  • Sour cream: This provides additional moisture and a little acidity to the cake. You can substitute full fat Greek Yogurt quite easily.
  • Unsalted butter: If you use salted butter then I suggest leaving the salt out of the recipe.
  • Milk: I use whole milk but you can also use 2% milk. I have not tried making the cake with low fat or fat free milk so I cannot recommend it.
  • Almond extract: Orange flavored extract can be used in place of the almond flavoring.
  • Vanilla extract: as above you can either leave this out or replace it with orange flavored extract

For the Syrup

Honey, amaretto, rum and:

  • Triple Sec: Any orange flavored liqueur such as Grand Marnier or Cointreau work well
3 photos for steps to make a bundt cake.


This Italian Hangover Cake comes together in a few simple steps.

  1. Make the batter
    • Combine the all purpose flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
    • In a large mixing bowl, mix the eggs and sugar with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add the, melted butter, milk, sour cream and extracts to the eggs. Slowly add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients. Beat on medium speed until the cake batter is smooth.
  2. Bake the Cake
    • Pour batter into a lightly greased and floured Bundt cake pan and bake at 350F for 30-35 minutes. When the cake starts to turn a light golden brown I would start to check for doneness. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  3. Make the syrup
    • In a small saucepan, combine the honey, amaretto, triple sec and rum. Set the pan over medium heat and stir just until the honey has completely melted. Remove from heat and allow it to cool to room temperature.
  4. Add the syrup to the cake
    • When the cake is done, remove it from the oven and use a toothpick to poke holes in the top of the cake. Brush half of the syrup over the top of the cake. Let the cake cool slightly and invert it on to a serving plate. Brush the remaining syrup all over the cake. Let the cake cool to room temperature before serving.
A slice of cake with the whole cake in the background.


This incredibly moist cake is perfect on it’s own, but these are a few of my favorite ways to serve it:

  • Top each piece of cake with some fresh berries for a refreshing summer treat
  • Add a spoonful of homemade whipped cream to each slice of cake
  • Make this a layer cake and spread Italian pastry cream between the layers. Then top it with whipped cream.
    • To do this use 2 8-inch cake pans instead of a Bundt pan and bake it for 25- 30 minutes.


The cake can be stored in a covered cake plate or tented with aluminum foil and placed in the refrigerator for several days. It can also be wrapped in plastic wrap and foil or placed in an airtight container and frozen for up to 2 months.

A slice of cake with the whole cake in the background.


If you are interested in more Italian desserts here are some of our family favorites. My Apple Cake (Torta di Mele, Almond Cake and Orange Cake are always a big hit. They are so easy to make and unbelievably moist! If you have chocolate lovers in your life then you will want to try our Mousse Al Cioccolato – Italian Chocolate Mousse or Chocolate Budino. Both are intensely chocolatey, smooth and decadent!

I love to get your feedback so if you tried this Italian Hangover Cake or any other recipes on this website, please leave me a comment below.  I hope you enjoy our recipes and look forward to hearing from you!

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A slice of cake with the whole cake in the background.

Italian Hangover Cake Recipe

A deliciously moist boozy cake, spiked with amaretto, Rum and Triple Sec.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 1 cake
Calories 4339 kcal


  • 1 Bundt Pan



  • cups All purpose flour
  • 2 tsp Baking powder
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 3 Eggs large
  • cups Sugar
  • ¾ cup Butter unsalted, melted
  • ½ cup Sour cream
  • 1 cup Milk whole or 2%
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp Almond extract


  • 2 tbsp Honey
  • 2 tbsp White rum
  • 2 tbsp Triple Sec
  • 3 tbsp Amaretto


  • Pre-heat the oven to 350°. Grease and flour a Bundt pan.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
  • Add the eggs and sugar in a large bowl and beat with a electric mixer for 1 minute. Add the butter, sour cream, milk, vanilla and almond extract and beat 1 more minute. Slowly mix in the flour and continue to beat at medium speed for 2 minutes.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  • While the cake is baking, combine the syrup ingredients in a small sauce pan and stir over low heat until the honey has completed dissolved.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and use a toothpick to poke hoes in the top of the cake. Brush about half of the syrup on the top of the cake. Let the cake cool for 5-10 minutes. Invert the cake onto a plate and brush the remaining syrup evenly on the cake. Allow the cake to cool completely before serving.


Serving: 1cakeCalories: 4339kcalCarbohydrates: 559gProtein: 61gFat: 185gSaturated Fat: 108gPolyunsaturated Fat: 10gMonounsaturated Fat: 48gTrans Fat: 6gCholesterol: 954mgSodium: 3437mgPotassium: 1134mgFiber: 9gSugar: 318gVitamin A: 6079IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 1056mgIron: 18mg
Keyword Bundt cake, amaretto, vodka, rum
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