Orange Olive Oil Cake


Look at the beautiful crumb texture.

Following a recipe that I find on line (or even in a cookbook) and not getting the results I had aspired to achieve is really frustrating!  I tested this recipe several times before achieving the perfect texture and posting it on my blog.  I am very happy with this orange olive oil cake, and I think you are going to be delighted too!

Some Keys To The Success Of This Cake:

•Light, fine-textured crumb

Whipping the whole eggs with sugar fills the batter with millions of tiny air bubbles, producing a cake that is fine-crumbed, yet airy.

•Subtle olive oil flavor

I use ¾ cup of extra-virgin olive oil in this cake. Supplementing the fruitiness of the signature ingredient with just a bit of orange zest and cardamom highlights the olive oil flavor.

•Simple (but attractive) appearance

 Adding a sprinkle of sugar on top of the batter before baking forms a crackly crust during baking.

Perfect with a hot cup of coffee (or tea)!

Always use a good quality extra virgin olive oil.  You will want to choose a mild-flavored olive oil.  It will give your cake a fruity note without overpowering it.  Just like you shouldn’t cook with a wine you wouldn’t ordinarily drink, the same goes for the olive oil you bake with.


  • 2 cups (250 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • Zest of two oranges (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1½ cups (300 grams) granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup (160 grams) good quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup (240 grams) whole milk
  • 1/3 cup (160 grams) fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1½ tablespoons (21 grams) turbinado sugar to sprinkle on top before baking


Preheat oven to 325°F.  Place wire rack in the middle of the oven.

*Prepare a 9″ round baking pan with baking spray.  Line the pan with parchment paper to ensure your cake doesn’t stick.

Zest and juice two oranges (strain the pulp from the juice).

Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, cardamom and salt in a medium bowl until combined. Set aside until ready to use.

To a measuring cup, add the milk, orange juice and vanilla.  Stir until combined and set aside.

Add eggs to the bowl of a stand mixer and with a whisk attachment, mix on medium speed until foamy.  While the mixer is still running, slowly add in the sugar until completely incorporated.  Add the zest and mix on high for 3 minutes.  The mixture will be thick and very pale.

With the mixer on low speed, pour in the olive oil and mix until combined.

Add half of the flour mixture and beat on low speed until just mixed. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl.  Add all of the milk/orange juice mixture and beat on low until incorporated.  Add the remainder of the flour mixture and mix until just combined.  I like to finish mixing the batter with a hand whisk so I’m sure not to over mix it.

Pour the cake batter into your prepared baking pan and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar.

**Place in the preheated oven for 60-70 minutes.

*If you don’t have deep pans (at least 2″ tall), I would recommend using a springform pan so your cake batter doesn’t go over the sides.  Nobody wants or needs that mess!

**All ovens are different, and the time on this cake can vary.  Please be patient and make sure your cake is baked through.  This can take up to 1½ hours total to bake.  Begin checking for doneness at 60 minutes.

If the cake seems to be getting too dark on top before it’s finished baking, place a piece of foil loosely over the top.  Cake is done when a skewer placed in the center comes out clean or with a few cake crumbs.  Also, checking the internal temperature to see if it has reached 205°F. works too.  This is a Goldilocks situation, not done enough results in a mushy mess.  If your cake is overcooked, it’s going to be dry.  Checking for proper doneness equals just right:).

When your cake has finished baking, remove it from the oven and put on cooling rack and allow to cool for at least a half hour.  Invert cake onto a flat plate and remove the parchment from the bottom, then invert back on the cooling rack to cool completely.

Lightly dust the top of the cake with a little confectioners’ sugar.  This is optional, but it looks pretty and tastes yummy too!

This cake is so delicious on it’s own, but it can also be served with whipped cream (or orange curd…or both!).

I hope you make this luscious cake the next time you’re craving something special, and if you do, please tag me @goodeatsbymimi.  I would love to hear from you and see your photos!

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