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Królewiec – Polish Christmas Cake Recipe

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A delicious krolewiec Polish cake recipe on a plate with a cup of coffee.

Rich decadent layers of honey cake, custard, and chocolate glaze come together to form this traditional Polish king cake or królewiec. Make it for Christmas or as a fancy dessert to serve after dinner!

What Is Królewiec?

Królewiec is a traditional honey-layered cake that was very popular in the past. It’s not that popular in Poland right now, but you can often see it eaten as a Polish Christmas dessert or for Carnival. 

The word królewiec translates to “the cake of the king” since “król” means “king” in Polish. So the królewiec can sometimes be referred to as a royal cake. 

The rich and filling dessert is perfect for the winter and autumn months. Serve with some hot tea or cider!

Polish royal cake in a glass plate.
Polish royal cake or królewiec is popular for Christmas

How To Make The Best Królewiec

Step I – Presoak The Raisins

Soak the raisins or prunes in rum. You can use a mix of both if you prefer.

Step II – Bake The Honey Cake And Sponge Cake

Prepare the honey cake dough and divide it into 2 pieces. Roll out both pieces of dough and bake in pre-lined pans.

Prepare the sponge cake batter and pour it into another pre-lined cake pan. Bake for half an hour.

Honey cake in two pans.
Honey dough cake in two pans
Sponge cake in the oven.
Sponge cake in the oven

Step III – Prepare The Custard

Boil 2 cups of milk with sugar and vanilla sugar. Mix some cold milk with flour and potato starch in another bowl. Add this cold mix to the boiling milk mixture and stir till it thickens.

Lastly, melt the butter and mix in the hot custard. Separate the custard into 2 sections and set aside.

Step IV – Assemble The Royal Polish Królewiec Cake

Assemble the royal cake in the following order:
honey cake 
half of the hot custard
sponge cake
half of the hot custard
honey cake
raisins/prunes soaked in rum

Królewiec cake.
Królewiec cake, the perfect for winter dessert!
królewiec cake in a white plate.
You can see the individual layers of the królewiec cake

Step V – Add The Chocolate Glaze

Beat the egg with a fork and set it aside. Melt all the other ingredients for the glaze in a pot. Once the chocolate glaze is nearly boiling, add the egg to it while stirring continuously.

Pour the hot chocolate glaze directly over the assembled Polish royal cake. Allow the cake to cool down, then refrigerate for a few hours or days before serving!

Królewiec cake and tea.
Serving suggestion: Królewiec cake and tea

Tips For Making Polish Christmas Cake

  • You can make more layers of the cake if you wish. 
  • You can make this cake alcohol-free. 
  • The honey cake and sponge cake need to cool down before assembly.
  • Do not make the layers of custard too thick. 
  • You can sprinkle the chocolate ganache with coconut flakes, chopped walnuts, or almonds flakes.
  •  The longer you keep the cake, the better it tastes!
królewiec cake or Polish royal cake in a plate.
Did you know that królewiec cake is also called Polish royal cake?

FAQs About The Polish Królewiec Cake

What Other Variations Of The Cake Can I Make?

You can make a lot of different changes to the cake, depending on your preferences. 

@KK – please check or modify first point below

  • If you wish to save time, you can make only a single set of layers in this format – honey cake, custard, sponge, chocolate glaze.
  • You can replace the chocolate glaze with jam or fruit preserve. 
  • You can also add jam between each layer of cake and custard. It will make the cake richer. 

Do I Have To Soak The Raisins Or Prunes In Rum?

No, you don’t have to soak the raisins in rum. You can also use vodka or any other alcohol of your choice. If you don’t want to soak them in any alcohol, make a sweet sugar syrup and soak the raisins or prunes in that. 

If you wish, you can skip the raisins or prunes completely. 

What Is The Difference Between Królewiec And Miodownik Cake?

The Królewiec and Miodownik are similar cakes with slightly different ingredients. Think of the Królewiec like a Miodownik with an extra layer of sponge in between. Also, while the Królewiec is covered with a topping of chocolate, the Miodownik is topped with a walnut honey syrup. 

How To Store The Królewiec Cake?

Store the Królewiec in the refrigerator and finish within a week to maximum ten days. Do not freeze. 

Królewiec – Polish Christmas Cake Recipe

Yield: 30

Królewiec - Polish Christmas Cake Recipe

Polish royal cake in a glass plate.

Rich decadent layers of honey cake, custard, and chocolate glaze come together to form this traditional Polish king cake or królewiec. Make it for Christmas or as a fancy dessert to serve after dinner! 

Prep and Assembly Time 45 minutes
Honey Cake Bake Time 35 minutes
Sponge Cake Bake Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes


Honey Cake Dough

  • 2½ cups of all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 1 cup (230g) of butter/margarine
  • 2 tbsps of honey
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 1 egg

Sponge Cake Dough

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • 1 tbsp of vinegar
  • 4 tbsps of sugar
  • 8 tbsps of all-purpose flour
  • a pinch of salt


  • 3 cups of milk
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 4 tbsps of potato starch
  • 4 tbsps of all-purpose flour
  • a package of vanilla sugar [optionally]
  • 2 cups (460g) of butter

Chocolate glaze

  • 3 tbsps of cocoa
  • 1 stick / ½ cup / 120g of butter
  • 1 tbsp of water
  • 2 tbsps of sugar
  • 1 egg


  • 3.5-7oz (100-200g) of raisins or prunes
  • rum


  1. Soak the raisins or prunes in rum.

How To Make The Cakes?

  1. Preheat the oven to 356°F (180°C).
  2. Mix all the ingredients for the honey cake together. Knead using your hands or food processor.
  3. Divide the dough into 2 pieces.
  4. Roll out each piece of the dough, place into pre-lined 9x13" pans, and bake for about 35 minutes.
  5. Start making the sponge cake by dividing egg yolks from egg whites.
  6. Using a spoon, mix egg yolks with vinegar and baking powder.
  7. Beat egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff.
  8. Add sugar and beat again.
  9. Using a spoon, add egg yolk mixture and mix carefully, stirring in one direction only.
  10. Add all-purpose flour and mix carefully using a spoon.
  11. Pour the sponge cake onto the pre-lined pan, and bake for about 30 minutes.

How To Make The Custard?

  1. Pour 2 cups of milk into the pot.
  2. Add sugar, vanilla sugar, and bring to boil.
  3. In the meantime, in a separate bowl or pot, mix cold milk with flour and potato starch.
  4. When the milk and sugar mixture nearly boils, add milk with flour. Stir until you will get the consistency of the pudding.
  5. Melt the butter and add to the hot pudding. Mix using a spoon.
  6. Divide the custard into 2 sections.

How To Make The Chocolate Glaze?

  1. In a pot, melt all the ingredients, except for the egg.
  2. In a separate bowl, beat the egg using a fork.
  3. When the chocolate glaze is almost boiling, pour the egg, mixing all the time.
  4. Turn off the heat.
  5. Pour the chocolate glaze over the cake.

How To Assemble The Królewiec Cake?

  1. Assemble in the following order:
    honey cake
    half of the hot custard
    sponge cake
    half of the hot custard
    honey cake
    raisins/prunes soaked in rum
    hot chocolate glaze
  2. Allow to cool down. Serve after at least a few hours in the fridge or the next day.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 191Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 76mgSodium: 134mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 1gSugar: 15gProtein: 5g

These data are indicative and calculated by Nutritionix

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