You'll absolutely fall in love with this flavorful European Orange Olive Oil Cake! It's easy to make, doesn't require a lot of steps, and is perfect as a Spring or Summer dessert!
When researching various orange and olive oil cakes, I came across a plethora of recipes !
This recipe relies on fresh orange zest and Italian Orange-fused extra virgin olive oil to provide the flavor and texture you'll love!
Why this recipe works:
- Fresh flavor - fresh orange zest orange-fused extra virgin olive oil provide just the right amount of deliciousness; read on to learn the difference between fused and infused oils
- Bake and serve - no need for frosting, icing or any type of topping; I like to serve it with a side of Orange Creme Fraiche, but this recipe can stand alone with no additional toppings
- If you want a little "something" on the top, sprinkle confectioners, or powdered sugar on top after the cake is cooled
- Not "over the top" sweet- I suspect this European dessert recipe is mild in flavor simply because that's how European desserts are--not super sweet, like American desserts, but milder with more emphasis on fresh flavor and texture
If you've never had an olive oil cake, you're gonna be surprised!
At first glance, I thought, "oh, this is a Depression Era" cake, then I realized there was little sugar and olive oil during the Depression, so that convinced me it wasn't a cake from the 30's.
This is definitely a European-type dessert. Mild, fresh flavors with great flavor and texture!
After conducting a bunch of research, I've concluded that some Italian woman decided to make a cake with what she had... olive oil ... and BAM.. the olive oil cake was born!
Here's what you'll need:
A key ingredient is the Orange-fused Extra-Virgin Olive oil. Some high-end retailers and specialty stores carry it, but if not, you can order it.
You will need a hand or stand mixer.
Where to buy Orange Fused Olive Oil:
Any of these places offers orange olive oil; remember, fused oils are more intense then infused. This recipe uses the Italian Orange fused olive oil from Grapevine Olive Oil company in Grapevine, Texas.
Their blend contains fused Italian Blood Oranges...just about as fresh as you can get! If you can't find a high-quality fused orange oil, use a high-quality infused orange oil.
Other than that, it's pretty basic: flour, sugar, table salt, eggs, oranges and milk (2% or whole)
How to make it:
What's the texture like?
The texture of this Orange Olive Oil cake is similar to a pound cake. Somewhat dense, it slices beautifully, and is nice and moist on the inside.
The upper crust is somewhat more crispy than a pound cake, which lends itself to a nice, clean slice!
What's the difference between an olive oil cake and a pound cake?
The primary difference is two ingredients: baking powder and fat (butter vs. olive oil)
The pound cake does not include baking powder, which is a leavening agent that makes the batter rise when baked. And, the pound cake uses butter as the fat, in lieu of olive oil.
The olive oil cake requires baking powder which is a combination of two leavening agents: baking soda and cream of tartar.
What's the difference between "fused" and "infused" olive oil?
In making olive oil, the olives are pressed to produce oil. Fused oils are made when the olives and fruit, herbs, or spices are simultaneously pressed with the olives.
Infused oils are made when the fruit, herb or spice is added to the oil after the olives have been pressed.
Fused, or "agrumato" oils, are stronger and have a more intense flavor than infused and are generally a little more expensive, but in my opinion, totally worth it!
- Prepare the spring foam pan: grease the pan with oil, spray oil or shortening--apply to the inner ring and bottom; place a piece of parchment paper on the bottom; do not spray or coat the top of the parchment paper with anything
- For a clean release, sprinkle some plain sugar around the inner perimeter of the springfoam pan; this does two things: it adds a little sugar to the crust and it allows the cake to release easier
- If you don't want to sprinkle the perimeter with sugar, don't use anything else...no flour...just oil/shortening
- Slide a sharp knife around the sides of the pan before releasing the latch of the pan
- Allow cake to cool about an hour before removing the parchment from the bottom and transferring to a cake plate
- When slicing the cake, I recommend using a serrated knife
If you're lucky enough to have any leftover cake, wrap it in plastic wrap and store it for up to three days on the counter; no need to refrigerate.
I like to serve this scrumptuous cake with a dollop of Orange Creme Fraiche...it really enhances the flavor! If you can't find Creme Fraiche, use homemade whipped cream!
- Orange Italian Cream Cake
- Scandinavian Almond Cake
- Bread Pudding with Whiskey Sauce
- Classic Southern Pecan Pie
- No Bake Lemon Icebox Pie
- Orange Creamsicle Icebox Pie
- Classic Buttermilk Pie
- Eggnog Pound Cake
Orange Olive Oil Cake
- Spring foam pan
- Parchment sheet (for bottom of pan)
- 2 cups flour , all-purpose
- 1½ cups sugar , granulated
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt , table salt
- 3 whole eggs , large
- ¾ cup milk , whole or 2%
- ¾ cup orange olive oil , extra virgin
- 2 teaspoons orange zest , get 2 big navel oranges and zest
- spray oil for pan
Orange Creme Fraiche
- 8 ounces creme fraiche
- 2 large navel oranges , zested and supremed
- 2 tablespoons sugar , granulated
- pinch of salt , table or fine (iodized) salt
- Preheat oven to 350ºF
- Oil or grease spring foam pan; place a piece of parchment paper on the bottom; do not spray the parchment paper; set aside : (option)- sprinkle sugar around the springfoam ring
- Grate orange zest; set aside
Make the Cake
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt; set aside
- In a big mixing bowl, use a stand or hand mixer set to medium speed and whisk eggs for 1-minute, until frothy
- Add all of the sugar and orange zest to the eggs and increase speed to high; continue to whisk for 3 minutes
- Turn mixer to low and drizzle in olive oil while mixer is running
- Add 1 cup of flour mixture; combine then add all of the milk; continue to whip until it begins to blend together (scrape sides of bowl with spatula while mixing)
- Add the remaining 1 cup of flour mixture and whip until it is combined
- Pour into prepared spring foam pan
- Bake @ 350ºF on the middle rack for 40-55 minutes, or until the center is done (test with toothpick)
- When cake is done, transfer to a cooling rack and allow to cool for 15-20 minutes; after the cake has cooled a bit, slide a knife around the perimeter, undo the spring, remove the round side of the spring foam pan and let the cake cool for about an hour; gently remove parchment paper from the bottom before slicing and plating
- Slice cake into wedges and serve with Orange Creme Fraiche (optional)
Orange Creme Fraiche
- In a medium mixing bowl, add 8 ounces of creme fraiche
- Zest two navel oranges; add zest to creme fraiche; add sugar; stir
- Cut away orange skin; cut into segments, removing pith, dice into tiny pieces; strain in finely meshed colander; add to creme fraiche
- Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes before serving with Orange Olive Oil Cake
- Add 1 cup of flour, mix, add all of the milk, mix, add remaining flour, mix.