Caramel Malva Pudding

 I love a warm baked saucy pudding. This Caramel Malva Pudding is a traditional South African dessert. This dessert recipe for Malva Pudding adds a little twist to the original with a sweet and sticky caramel sauce. Malva Pudding is a comforting and belly warming winter dessert.

I could almost not believe it when I looked through the blog recipe indexes for both Baking Recipes and Dessert Recipes and realized that I had not yet, in all this time, posted a recipe for Malva Pudding.  Malva Pudding!! One of South Africa’s most loved desserts.  Obviously, this oversight needed to be rectified immediately.

Do we really need to talk about Malva Pudding? Do I really need to try and sell you the idea of baking one over this long weekend? I did not think so.

So now that it is agreed that you are going to bake a Malva Pudding for Sunday lunch, here is the most important part; you must bake this exact recipe.  I should explain.  This recipe instructs that the milk sponge be baked in a deep and rich caramel sauce.  Doing this results in a Malva Pudding that is stickier and sweeter than ever.

“Goodness gracious me,” you say, “that sounds like heavenly baked bliss!” Why, yes. It is exactly that.

 I love a warm baked saucy pudding. This Caramel Malva Pudding is a traditional South African dessert. This dessert recipe for Malva Pudding adds a little twist to the original with a sweet and sticky caramel sauce. Malva Pudding is a comforting and belly warming winter dessert.
 I love a warm baked saucy pudding. This Caramel Malva Pudding is a traditional South African dessert. This dessert recipe for Malva Pudding adds a little twist to the original with a sweet and sticky caramel sauce. Malva Pudding is a comforting and belly warming winter dessert.

Do you know what I love the most about good old traditional recipes like this (or do we call them “vintage recipes” now)?  Old recipes use simple, everyday ingredients which even the most sporadic baker would probably have on hand in the pantry.

We are not spending hours scouring delis, patisseries and expensive food emporiums in search of the rarest Polynesian vanilla pods or hand ground organic Dutch cocoa powder.  Nope, we are just picking up the deepest, darkest brown sugar along with toilet paper and a globe for the bathroom light.

Malva Pudding is where extravagance arrives at the table disguised as simplicity. The only matter left to be decided is whether we are going to serve it with cream, homemade custard, ice cream or all three?

I think that this is a question which deserves its own poll – leave your vote in the comments. Sam Taylor Food Blog





5.0 from 3 reviews
Caramel Malva Pudding
Serves: 4-6
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Caramel Sauce
  • 375 ml (1 ½ C) cream
  • 125 g (½ C) butter, cut into blocks
  • 200 ml (¾ C + 2 t) dark brown sugar
  • 1 ml (¼ t) salt
  • 15 ml (1 T) apricot jam
  • 30 g (2 T) butter
  • 100 ml (⅓ C + 4 t) dark brown sugar
  • 45 ml (3 T) apricot jam
  • 1 egg
  • 5 ml (1 t) bicarbonate of soda
  • 125 ml (½ C) milk
  • 250 ml (1 C) cake flour
  • 1 ml (¼ t) salt
  • 20 ml (4 t) vinegar
Caramel Sauce
  1. Place all the ingredients together in a medium saucepan and stirring continually; bring the sauce to the boil.
  2. Reduce the heat and simmer for two minutes.
  3. Remove from the heat and keep warm.
  1. Cream the butter and the sugar together until the butter is pale and soft.
  2. Beat in the apricot jam.
  3. Beat in the egg.
  4. Dissolve the bicarbonate of soda into the milk.
  5. Sift together the cake flour and the salt and add to the batter alternatively with the milk.
  6. Beat in the vinegar.
  7. Spoon the batter into an ovenproof pudding bowl or individual ramekins that have been sprayed with non-stick spray.
  8. Pour half of the caramel sauce over the batter.
  9. Bake the malva pudding in an oven preheated to 180˚C for 40 minutes (20 minutes for individual puddings) or until risen and golden.
  10. Remove from the oven and pour over the remaining sauce a little at a time until all the sauce is absorbed by the hot pudding.
  11. Serve hot with custard, cream or ice cream.


23 Comments on Caramel Malva Pudding

  1. Jess
    August 7, 2015 at 2:39 pm (4 years ago)

    Is it acceptable to just eat Malva for dinner?

    • sam
      August 7, 2015 at 3:01 pm (4 years ago)

      But yes of course it is Jess. Malva contains 1 whole egg – there is some protein right there, AND it has apricot jam so fruit which is basically like salad. Sounds perfectly balanced to me.

  2. Janice Wald
    August 8, 2015 at 11:04 am (4 years ago)

    Hi Sam,
    I’m Janice from Mostly Blogging. You visited my site today. Thank you so much for your glowing comments. I am putting them on my About page under testimonials. I wrote you on my site that you wish you could save time as well as network. That’s what I do, I offer suggestions for blogging and blogging quicker at my site.
    Nice to meet you.

  3. Stacey @ staceyhomemaker
    August 10, 2015 at 4:13 pm (4 years ago)

    I vote for all three! I’ve never tried malva pudding before but I love anything with caramel! YUM. Thanks for linking up to the Best Recipes of the Week link party! I hope to see you next week too!

    • sam
      August 11, 2015 at 8:44 am (4 years ago)

      Hi Stacey – if you love caramel and hot puddings its one for you. I will be there on Sunday – great fun!

  4. adrianscrazylife
    August 12, 2015 at 9:25 pm (4 years ago)

    I’ve never heard of Malva pudding, but it sounds delicious and I do love anything that is pudding-like and has caramel. Mostly, I just wanted to pop over and say Hi. We have quite a few South African friends and they are the most lovely people. I can now recognize the accent in an instant. It’s surprising that almost everywhere we go we run across someone from SA.

    • sam
      August 13, 2015 at 11:38 am (4 years ago)

      Hi Adrian. Thanks so much for stopping by. Why, yes, we are all actually the loveliest people 😉 Most folk confuse our accent with the British or Australian one, so I love that you can tell the difference. PS If you make this Malva Pudding for your South African friends they will burst into tears from homesickness. See you on Pinterest!

  5. Carol Lopez
    August 11, 2016 at 9:48 am (3 years ago)

    Mmm, this is so delicious, thank you, Sam, that you gave us this recipe, its really good)

    • sam
      August 12, 2016 at 3:51 pm (3 years ago)

      This is such a great recipe, I make this malva pudding often – especially in the winter. Thank you for the great feedback Carol, I am delighted you had fabulous success.

    • Cindy
      September 15, 2019 at 6:00 pm (2 months ago)

      Can this recipe be doubled and if so how do I adjust the cooking time? Can this recipe be made a day or two ahead and reheated in the oven or microwave?

      • sam
        October 7, 2019 at 8:12 am (1 month ago)

        Hi Carol. Yes this recipe will double up very easily. If the pan is deeper it will take slightly longer to bake yes, although not twice the time. You can make it ahead, I would save some sauce – or make a little extra and pour it over the pudding before reheating in the oven. Enjoy.

  6. Landi
    November 12, 2017 at 2:11 am (2 years ago)

    Hi Sam. Thank you for posting this lovely recipe. I love the fact that it has a caramel sauce too😊😊. I am from SA too and lives in
    NZ and just have to bake your version of this pudding. Just a question – what size dish should do I use? Once again, thank you😊

    • sam
      November 13, 2017 at 9:47 am (2 years ago)

      Hi Landi. Thank you for stopping by. I use a weird size dish which is 27 cm x 22 cm. Anything similar, although not bigger will be work great. It really is a great recipe, I hope you enjoy making it.

  7. Landi
    November 13, 2017 at 10:34 am (2 years ago)

    Hi Sam. I’ve baked this pudding yesterday and used an enamel dish similar to the one on your blog. All I can say is wow, wow, wow!! This recipe is now on my list of favourite puddings. I loved the darker, gooey edges soaked in caramel sauce. Hubby asked that the traditional Jan Ellis pudding I love to bake in winter time be replaced with this one but I have to admit, I will happilly bake this all year round 🙂

    • sam
      November 13, 2017 at 12:09 pm (2 years ago)

      Hoorah!! I knew you would love it. I also happen to agree that there is no off season for a good Malva Pudding recipe.

  8. Gin
    December 24, 2017 at 12:41 pm (2 years ago)

    Sam, I must confess to never having rated Malva Pudding. A friend was away and I was hosting a birthday dinner for her husband and asked what his favourite desserts were, so I went in search of a Malva pudding recipe and found yours, my mouth was watering just reading it. I set to it and was worried as it was just too simple….. once dinner was served and pudding time arrived, I was apprehensive but brought it out with custard, cream & ice cream and dished up. The silence was worrying but I soon realised that it was complete adoration, so a large exhale from me and I had my first taste, sublime to say the least.
    My friend messaged me later that evening to say her husband had called her to say it was the best Malva he had ever tasted.
    Thank you millions

    • sam
      January 9, 2018 at 11:32 am (2 years ago)

      Hi Gin. Gosh, but I do love reading feedback like this. Thank you so much. I am super chuffed for you that it was a huge success. Sometimes the simple things are just perfection, especially when one serves them up with custard, cream and ice cream ;), all three being the obvious choice.

  9. Kim
    March 15, 2018 at 1:08 am (2 years ago)

    Hi Sam,

    My family has a themed lunch each month, this month is “Messy March.” I thought your Malva Pudding sounded perfect for our theme and want to give it a try (plus my husband lived in SA for a little while and he might love to have some!). I have a few questions though:
    What type of cream did you use? Heavy Whipping Cream or is it more like Sweetened Condensed or Evaporated Milk?

    Have you ever tried making this in a larger dish for a crowd (think sheet cake pan size)? Do you have suggestions on length of cooking for a bigger dish?

    Thanks for any help you can provide!

    • sam
      March 15, 2018 at 1:10 pm (2 years ago)

      Hi Kim. Hah, Messy March, I love that. It is normal cream that I use so Heavy Whipping is just fine. Please don’t use either the condensed or evaporated milks, neither will work but for different reasons. I actually just made this pud over the weekend when we went camping, I doubled up the recipe and it worked perfectly. I used a silver drip pan about 35 cm x 30 cm. It baked for 40 minutes. Set your timer for about 35 minutes and then just check the middle every 5 to ten minutes until firm. Thanks for stopping by, Sam

  10. Rosemary
    June 3, 2018 at 1:01 am (1 year ago)

    Thank you! Amazing at dinner party last night. I actually baked pudding ahead of time. I seperately reheated it and the last half of the sauce gently at dessert time and then put sauce in as directed!

    • sam
      June 4, 2018 at 1:34 pm (1 year ago)

      I wish I had been there! Thank you for the great feedback Rosemary – this recipe is definitely a keeper!

  11. The Rebel Sis
    December 3, 2018 at 4:20 am (12 months ago)

    This was THE BEST!!
    I made this for a Sunday afternoon pudding, but I forgot to make custard!
    So in a desperate bid to salvage the custardy-goodness, I mixed a teaspoon of custard powder into the remaining sauce, added just a dash of extra cream and then carefully poured it over the hot pudding.
    My sister was appalled at the act, this was sacrilege!…

    …until she tasted it.

    It worked out perfectly. The teaspoon of custard was just enough to give that hint of vanilla, but not too much that it turned the pudding into a yellow blob of goo.
    My sister has already demanded the next batch, and this time I’ll take care to remember the proper custard 😉

    • sam
      February 25, 2019 at 10:07 am (9 months ago)

      I am delighted. I also think you username is perfect for your kitchen style 🙂 Thank you so much for the feedback. The best dishes often come from improvisation don’t they.


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