(NBC TODAY) – This fun and festive Bundt cake is reason enough to throw a party this spring. It takes inspiration from a mint julep, the classic bourbon cocktail brightened with fresh mint and simple syrup that’s the signature drink of the Kentucky Derby.


1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup neutral oil
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup light brown sugar
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup bourbon
5 large eggs


1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons water
1/4 cup bourbon
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves


12 mint leaves, washed and patted dry
1 large egg white, whisked until frothy
1/4 cup granulated sugar


1½ cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons bourbon
1 tablespoon milk or cream
1 teaspoon lemon zest


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Evenly coat a 12-cup Bundt cake pan with neutral oil and dust it with flour, tapping out the excess.
  2. To make the cake: Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, and cook until it turns toasty-brown in color and smells nutty, 4 to 6 minutes, frequently stirring and scraping up any bits from the bottom so they don’t burn. Immediately remove the pan from heat and stir in the vegetable oil. Set aside to cool while prepping other ingredients.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and kosher salt.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together brown butter-vegetable oil mixture, brown sugar, granulated sugar, sour cream and bourbon until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, whisking well after each addition.
  5. Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined and no streaks or lumps of flour remain. Transfer the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
  6. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a paring knife or toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Internal temp should be 200 to 205 F.
  7. Meanwhile, make the bourbon-mint syrup: In a small saucepan, heat the brown sugar and water over medium heat until dissolved. Take the pan off the heat and immediately add the bourbon and mint. Let the mint steep in the syrup while the cake bakes. Strain out the mint before using.
  8. When the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn it out onto a baking rack set over a large plate. Brush the bourbon-mint syrup slowly over top and sides of the cake, allowing it to be absorbed. Set aside to fully cool.
  9. Make the sugared mint leaves: Place sugar on a small shallow plate or bowl. Brush both sides of each mint leaf lightly with egg white; then lightly and evenly dredge in sugar. Transfer mint leaf to rack, then repeat with remaining leaves. Let stand, uncovered, at room temperature until dry, about 4 hours.
  10. Make the glaze: In a small bowl, stir together the powdered sugar, bourbon, milk and lemon zest. Add more bourbon or milk (as needed) until the glaze is thickened yet pourable.
  11. When the cake is fully cooled, pour the glaze evenly over the top of the cake, letting it drip down the sides. Adhere the mint leaves to glaze before it sets (if using). Let the glaze fully set before serving.