Portuguese Queen Cake • Bolo Rainha


Bolo Rainha or Queen Cake is a variation of the very traditional Portuguese King Cake, the only difference is that the King Cake has dried and crystalized fruits and the Queen Cake has only dried fruits, so the Queen Cake tends to be the more expensive cake.

This is a wonderful Christmas cake, mostly because you have a very enriched but dense dough with a ton of dried fruits, but instead of something more heavy and sweet like a English fruit cake, this is lighter, creamier and less sweet, also after a couple of days you can cut slices and toast them like bread and eat with some butter, its amazing hehehe, lets check the recipe.

Portuguese Queen Cake • Bolo Rainha

  • Servings: 20
  • Difficulty: Difficult
  • Rating: ★★★★★
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Classic Portuguese Christmas cake, a variation of the traditional King Cake.


  • Flour – 500gr
  • Milk – 100ml
  • Fresh Yeast – 5gr
  • Butter – 100gr
  • Sugar – 175gr
  • Eggs – 3
  • Egg Yolk – 1
  • Orange – 1 (Peel)
  • Lemon – 1 (Grated)
  • Dried Fruits – 300gr (Mix with Dried Fruits and Raisins)
  • Pumpkin Jam – Taste (We call it Doce de Gila)
  • Jelly – To Taste
  • Crystallized Cherries – To Taste
  • Brandy – 1 Bottle
  • Salt – To Taste (About 1 teaspoon of salt)


  1. Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk, then about 1 cup of flour, mix, and let rise for 20 minutes.
  2. Beat the butter with the sugar until creamy, then add the eggs one by one to the mixture.
  3. Add the orange and lemon zest, with the yeast, the remaining flour, and salt.
  4. Finally add the brandy and the coarsely chopped dried fruits, knead again until the dough forms again, create a ball and pour into a large bowl, cover with a cloth and leave to rise for at least 1 hour or until the dough doubles in size.
  5. Now divide the dough into two parts and create two crowns (or make 1 big cake), brush with beaten egg and decorate with nuts, cover with the cloth and let rise for another 30 minutes while the oven preheats to 180ºC.
  6. Take the cakes to the oven for about 35 minutes (or around 45 if you make a big one) until they are golden brown, remove from the oven, let cool a little, then add the pumpkin jam and cherries and finally brush everything with jelly and that’s it, enjoy!
Notes: This is a cake that takes some time to get right so dont get discouraged if it doesn’t comes perfect, that’s the reason why most people in Portugal buy it already made, but the home-made version is pretty good too and a fun treat for Christmas.

This recipe for Portuguese Queen Cake • Bolo Rainha was originally created on BakeAfter.com. Esta receita de Como Fazer Bolo Rainha foi publicada em português no Iguaria.com.


Per Serving: 300 calories; 13 g fat; 34.3 g carbohydrates; 7 g protein.

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Let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below ;D


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