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Orange Cake

Updated: Apr 11, 2020

And another one! Another what, you ask? A 1958 cake recipe. Now, this is the third one I've tried, and the first to not have a surprise when it didn't give me an instruction or measurement that I needed. I was kind of apprehensive about making an orange cake. I thought it would be less enjoyable than lemon cake, which I love. I'm happy to share that I was wrong. This cake is amazing and deserves to be made time and time again.

It has a hot syrup that you pour over the cake at the end, which I always love. It's probably because it reminds me of rum cake. The original recipe said to use rum flavoring. I used rum instead. I also decided increase the number of oranges just in case the orange flavor wouldn't come through.


for one 10 inch bundt pan

  • zested rind from 3 oranges and one lemon

  • 1 cup butter

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 2 1/2 cups flour

  • 2 eggs

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 cup sour milk (or buttermilk, or milk with a splash of vinegar)

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1 cup chopped walnuts + a little extra for the pan

For the syrup

  • The juice from 3 oranges and 1 lemon

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1/3 cup rum


  1. Grate or zest the rinds of the lemon and oranges. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 10 inch bundt pan. Sprinkle some of the chopped walnuts in the bottom of the pan.

  2. Beat the butter on medium until it's light and fluffy. Add the sugar, and beat again until it's fluffy.

  3. Add the rinds, eggs and vanilla. Beat until light, at least 30 seconds.

  4. Add the salt, baking powder and baking soda. Mix until combined.

  5. Alternate mixing in the milk and flour. Beat until light. Use a spatula to fold in the walnuts.

  6. Pour into the pan and smooth a little with a spatula. Bake for around 70 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

  7. Near the time the cake it done, put the juice, sugar and rum into a pot over medium heat for around 15 minutes. You don't need to stir it. Turn it to low until you're ready to pour over the cake.

  8. Cool for 15 minutes on a wire rack. Line the plate (or whatever you' put cake on) with foil (heavy duty foil, if you have it). Leave enough to turn the sides up so the syrup doesn't escape.

  9. Turn the cake out onto the plate and turn the sides of the foil up. Slowly pour the syrup over the cake. It will collect in the middle and around the sides.

  10. Let it sit for at least half an hour to give the syrup a chance to soak in. Overnight is better, but I understand wanting warm cake!

I'm ready to make this cake again tomorrow to be honest. The orange flavor really came through in a delicious way that never knew I needed. The syrup also made the cake a little sticky, which was great.


  • If you don't use a bundt pan, you should poke holes in the cake with a toothpick to give the syrup somewhere to soak in.

  • Everyone except me thought this was the perfect amount of syrup. If you have had rum cake and you actually like the slices to be kind of wet, make more syrup!

  • This syrup had a hint of rum taste. If you would like this to be more of an orange rum cake, put a splash of rum in the cake batter and double the rum in the syrup.


This empty cake plate 4 hours later speaks for itself.


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