Italian Dessert: Olive Oil Cake Recipe With Orange Glaze

This olive oil cake recipe with orange glaze makes a delicious dolce – an Italian dessert.

March/April 2015

  • Olive oil cakes with orange glaze are the perfect Italian dessert.
    Photo by Karen K. Will

Olive Oil Cakes With Orange Glaze

With its Mediterranean climate, citrus groves dot the Italian countryside, especially the Amalfi Coast. Just about every Italian family has lemon or orange trees, or both, in their backyard.



• 1-1/4 cups sugar
• 2 tablespoons grated orange zest
• 2 large eggs
• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 2/3 cup half-and-half
• 1 cup all-purpose flour
• 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon finely minced fresh rosemary


• 3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
• 1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons orange juice
• 1-1/2 teaspoons unsalted butter, melted
• 1-1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil


• Rosemary sprigs


1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Brush 6- or 12-cup mini Bundt or muffin pan with melted unsalted butter (about 1 tablespoon). Lightly dust with flour, and shake out excess.

To make cakes:

2. Place sugar and orange zest in blender, and pulse until combined, stirring to mix if necessary. Add eggs, one at a time, then gradually pour in olive oil and half-and-half, pulsing until thin batter forms, about 30 seconds. Scrape down sides and mix with rubber spatula. Do not over blend.

3. In small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and minced rosemary. Add to blender in two batches, pulsing lightly until just combined. Stop to scrape down sides of blender as needed. Pour batter evenly into prepared pan.

4. Bake until cakes just begin to pull away from sides of pan and spring back when lightly touched — 30 to 35 minutes for 6-cup Bundt pan, or 22 to 25 minutes for 12-cup Bundt or muffin pan. Remove from oven and cool in pan for 10 minutes, then loosen sides with small knife, and invert cakes onto cooling rack.

To make Glaze:

5. Whisk together confectioner’s sugar, orange juice, butter and oil until smooth. (If mixture is too thick, add a bit more orange juice.)

To put it all together:

6. Drizzle glaze over warm cakes, and garnish with rosemary sprigs.  

Craving more fresh Italian recipes? Check out Farmhouse Style Italian Recipes.

Karen K. Will is editor of Heirloom Gardener magazine, and co-author, along with Editor-in-Chief Oscar H. Will III, of Plowing With Pigs and Other Creative, Low-Budget Homesteading Solutions (New Society Publishers, 2013).

Live The Good Life with GRIT!

Grit JulAug 2016At GRIT, we have a tradition of respecting the land that sustains rural America. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing to GRIT through our automatic renewal savings plan. By paying now with a credit card, you save an additional $6 and get 6 issues of GRIT for only $16.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of GRIT for just $22.95!

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds