This Orange Olive Oil Cake is so tender, so light, and so moist with a lovely hint of orange and a rustic, crackly topping. It’s sure to become a family favorite!
Does it taste like olive oil?
If you’ve never tried olive oil in cake, don’t let the name fool you. It doesn’t taste like olive oil! But something magical happens to the flavor and the texture. The fruity, complex flavor of a good quality extra virgin olive oil complements the orange flavor and lets it shine through. The tender crumb is so light and so moist. It’s even moister the day after you bake it which is great for making it in advance.
A crispy, crackly topping
Sugar is sprinkled on top of this Orange Olive Oil Cake before baking to create a crispy, crackly topping. The top will puff up and crack during baking creating a rustic crust that contrasts beautifully with the moist tender crumb.
Perfect for breakfast or snacking
This Orange Olive Oil Cake is perfect for breakfast or snacking. It’s so simple and not overly sweet. Enjoy it with a cup of coffee or pack a piece in with lunch. It’s totally fuss free – perfect for a bake sale, to take along on a picnic, or to give as a gift.
How to make Orange Olive Oil Cake
The key to the moist, light crumb of this Orange Olive Oil Cake is whisking air into the eggs. The eggs are whipped with a whisk attachment in a stand mixer for a minute. Sugar and orange zest are added and then whipped on high speed for another three minutes.
With the machine running, olive oil is slowly poured in and whipped another minute. The dry ingredients and orange juice are mixed in alternately until combined.
The batter is poured into a 9-inch (or 10-inch) springform pan and sugar is sprinkled on top. As it bakes, the cake will puff up, cracking the crust, and leaving a crispy, crackly topping.
This recipe is adapted from Cook’s Illustrated’s Olive Oil Cake. I swapped orange juice for the milk and 1 tablespoon orange zest for 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest.
Orange Olive Oil Cake
- 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour (8.75oz, 248g)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1 ¼ cups sugar (8.75oz, 248g)
- Finely grated orange zest from 2 oranges (1 tablespoon, 6g)
- ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil (5.25oz, 149g)
- ¾ cup orange juice (6.9oz, 197g)
- 2 tablespoons sugar (.9oz, 25g)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick baking spray.
- Put flour, baking powder, and salt in bowl and whisk to combine.
- Using stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, whip eggs on medium speed until foamy, about 1 minute.
- Add sugar and orange zest. Whip on high speed until mixture is fluffy and pale yellow, about 3 minutes.
- Reduce speed to medium. With mixer running, slowly pour in oil and mix until oil is fully incorporated, about 1 minute.
- Add half of flour mixture and mix on low speed until incorporated, about 1 minute, scraping down bowl as needed.
- Add orange juice and mix until combined, about 30 seconds. Add remaining flour mixture and mix until just incorporated, about 1 minute, scraping down bowl as needed.
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons sugar over entire surface.
- Bake until cake is deep golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs, 40 to 45 minutes.
- Let cake cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Remove side of pan and let cake cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours.
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