This post may contain affiliate links.

A boxed cake mix jump-starts this flavor-packed Eggnog Poke Cake recipe, making it a quick & easy dessert!  If you’re looking for a festive dessert for the holiday season, this is the ONE!

Jump to Recipe
A slice of eggnog poke cake with a bite out of it on a white plate.

Everyone loves a good poke cake, no matter what time of the year it is.  A berry cheesecake poke cake is perfect for spring, lemon in the summer, and pumpkin in the fall.  Though I love my hot chocolate poke cake, this eggnog poke cake is giving it some fierce competition (in the best way)!

Ingredients needed to make an eggnog cake.

Ingredients Needed

  • Box Cake Mix – You can use a box of yellow cake mix, white or vanilla
  • Eggnog – I used the store-bought eggnog in the carton 
  • Water
  • Vegetable Oil – You can use melted butter instead if you wish
  • Eggs – I use size “large” eggs when baking
  • Ground Nutmeg – You’ll use this in the cake and as a garnish on top
  • Instant Pudding Mix – Vanilla, white chocolate, or cheesecake instant pudding mixes work great
  • Spiced Rum – Totally optional! (can replace with additional eggnog)
  • Whipped Topping – Store-bought (Cool Whip) or homemade (though if you make your own, make sure it’s a stabilized whipped cream 

How to Make an Eggnog Poke Cake

Bake the Cake.

Because we’re using a cake mix, this comes together really quickly.  You’ll combine the box of cake mix with eggnog, water, eggs, vegetable oil and some ground nutmeg.  You can use a stand mixer, but it’s just as easy to mix by hand.

Vanilla cake batter.

Pour the cake batter into a prepared 9 by 13-inch pan and bake until a toothpick pressed into the center of the cake comes out clean (or with just a few moist crumbs).

PRO TIP!  Let the cake ingredients (eggnog and eggs) come to room temperature before mixing up the batter.  This will give the cake a more even, smooth texture.

Then you’ll poke holes into the warm cake with the rounded end of a wooden spoon (or a thick straw).  

Make the Creamy Eggnog Filling

The filling is SO simple.  You’ll combine the eggnog, spiced rum and pudding in a medium-sized bowl and whisk until smooth.  NOTE:  You can skip the spiced rum and use additional eggnog instead.  If you still want some of the rum flavor, add 1/2 teaspoon rum extract.

Eggnog pudding mixture over a cake.

Put it all Together

Once the eggnog pudding has set up a bit, pour it over the top of the cake.  Spread the pudding mixture until it’s in an even layer.  Cover with plastic wrap and cool completely.

A cake topped with whipped topping and ground nutmeg.

Garnish the Cake

You’ll top the cake with a layer of whipped topping.  Adding a sprinkle of nutmeg on top of the eggnog cake is a really simple, but beautiful garnish for the cake.  It also really helps bring out the eggnog flavor.  

I also like to add some red and green sprinkles for a festive flair!

Try adding caramel!!

Adding a drizzle of caramel sauce (or salted caramel sauce!) over the eggnog pudding layer is SO good.  You can also add a drizzle for garnish on top, if you’d like!

A slice of eggnog poke cake on a white plate surrounded by Christmas decor.


Why is it called a Poke Cake?

Simply because of the “pokes” you make to allow the filling to better soak into the cake!

How should I store leftover poke cake?

​Leftover poke cake will stay good in the fridge for about 3 days.

Can I freeze eggnog poke cake?

I do not recommend it.  The different textures of the cake simply won’t hold up through a freeze-thaw cycle.

A bite of cake on a fork.

Other Delicious Eggnog Desserts

  • Eggnog Pie – This no-bake dessert is quick, easy and full of flavor!
  • No Bake Eggnog Dessert – Layers & layers of flavor and texture in this delicious dessert.
  • Eggnog Cookies – Coming SOON!
  • Eggnog Bread Pudding – Coming SOON!
A slice of eggnog poke cake with a bite out of it on a white plate with greenery in the background.
Slice of eggnog poke cake with a forkful out of it.
5 from 2 votes

Eggnog Poke Cake

Author: Kelsey
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 26 minutes
Chill Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 46 minutes
A boxed cake mix jump-starts this flavor-packed Eggnog Poke Cake recipe, making it a quick & easy dessert!  If you're looking for a festive dessert for the holiday season, this is the ONE!


  • One 9×13-inch pan



  • One 18.3 ounce box vanilla cake mix
  • 2/3 cup eggnog
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Filling & Topping

  • One 3.4 ounce box instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 cups eggnog
  • 1/4 cup spiced rum*
  • One 8 ounce tub whipped topping
  • Ground nutmeg


Bake the Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350F and grease the bottom of a 9×13-inch pan; set aside.
  • Add the cake mix, eggnog, water, oil, eggs and nutmeg to a large bowl and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  • Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 26-28 minutes.

Fill & Top the Cake

  • Use the handle of a wooden spoon or a large straw to poke holes into the cake; set aside.
  • In a mixing bowl, whisk together the instant pudding mix, eggnog and spiced rum.
  • Pour batter over the cake slowly, giving it time to sink into the holes.
  • Cover the cake then refrigerate for 4+ hours.
  • Spread the whipped topping over the cake and sprinkle with additional nutmeg before serving.


Spiced rum is completely optional in this recipe.  If you’d like to keep it alcohol free, simply replace the rum with additional eggnog.  You can add 1/2 teaspoon rum extract if you’d like to keep the flavor.


Calories: 217kcal | Carbohydrates: 31.5g | Protein: 3.8g | Fat: 8.4g | Saturated Fat: 3.2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 53.2mg | Sodium: 225.2mg | Potassium: 82.7mg | Fiber: 1.6g | Sugar: 20.9g | Vitamin A: 183IU | Vitamin C: 0.5mg | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 0.7mg
“Dance Around the Kitchen” is not a dietitian or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

did you love this recipe?

Share it with me on Facebook and find more recipes on Pinterest for more!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    This cake was so fast to make. I took it to a party this evening, and everyone loved it. They kept telling me this cake really taste like eggnog. Great recipe. I will be making this again for the holidays.

  2. 5 stars
    Definitely a keeper! My entire family loved it. Sprinkled top with cinnamon instead of nutmeg, was concerned about having too much nutmeg and overpowering the egg nog.