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Christmas recipe – Clootie Dumpling

A slice of clootie dumpling is displayed on a white plate, with the rest of the pudding in the background.
Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without that delicious, traditional Scottish pudding, Clootie Dumpling. Here’s how to make your own, and delight family and friends!

Prep: 20 mins
: 3 hrs
: 6


125g suet
250g plain flour
125g oats
150g sultanas
125g currants
1 tbsp golden syrup
75g caster sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp milk
1 tbsp flour for the cloth
Custard or ice cream, to serve (optional)


1. In a large bowl, rub the suet into the flour.

Then add the oats, baking powder, sugar, sultanas, currants, ginger and cinnamon.

Stir well, then add the beaten eggs and golden syrup.

4. Stir thoroughly and add the milk, a little at a time, to bind the ingredients together to create a firm dough. Be careful not to over-mix or make the mixture too sloppy – it should be firm to the touch.

Mixing clootie dumpling with a whisk
Mixing with a whisk

5. Put the clootie cloth into the sink and pour a kettle of boiling water over it. Once cool enough to touch, wring the cloth out. Place the cloth on your work surface and sprinkle with flour.

6. Place the dumpling mixture into the centre of the clootie, gather up the edges of the cloth and tie up but not too tightly; leave a little room for the dumpling to expand.

A pudding tied up in cloth and fastened with string
A tied-up clootie dumpling

7. Place a saucer or tea plate upside down into a large cooking pot. Place the tied cloot onto the saucer and cover with boiling water. Cover the pot with a lid and simmer for 3 hours. From time to time, check that the pot is not boiling dry and top up with water if needed.

8. Once cooked, carefully remove the dumpling from the water. Remove the cloth then sprinkle the dumpling with a little caster sugar and place into an oven at 100°C/ 225°F for 30 minutes, or until a shiny skin forms. If you wish to be more traditional, then dry the sugar-covered dumpling in front of an open fire.

9. Serve the Clootie Dumpling with custard or ice cream, and enjoy!

Two slices of Clootie Dumpling are on a plate.
A slice of Clootie Dumpling, ready to serve

Nutrition: per serving

514 kcal | 27g fat | 12g saturates | 60g carbs | 9g protein