Orange Vanilla Cake

Orange Vanilla Cake

This week, I found myself craving orange and vanilla cake. Once I get such a craving, I’m on a mission. I had to try creating my own recipe. I think this particular craving goes back to my childhood love of an ice cream combination, orange sherbet with vanilla ice cream, which came side-by-side in a carton. I don’t know if they still make it, in America, since I live in Australia now. I always loved the zesty, sweet orange sherbet with the creamy vanilla ice cream. The two were so good together. Sometimes, I get such a vivid food memory, and I try to evoke the sensory memory in my own kitchen. This search led me back to a recipe for an orange vanilla cake, which I had tried a couple of years ago, and had wanted to change a bit, to suit my own tastes.

I’m very happy with the way this cake turned out. The orange flavour is deliciously balanced by the vanilla flavour. My big change to the previous recipe was to add a thick orange vanilla glaze topped with a smattering of orange zest. I always love a nice glaze on a cake. It is the easiest frosting in the world, and I never tire of it. The crumb of this cake is so soft and sumptuous, thanks to the brown sugar used. It is just a delightful cake.

Orange Vanilla Cake

I served it with vanilla bean ice cream after dinner last night. This morning, I paired it with orange slices. I think it would be lovely with a dollop of cream, as well. Of course, you can just serve it all by itself.

Orange Vanilla Cake

I hope you will like this recipe as much as I do. My 3 year-old son liked this cake so much, he said “Mommy, you make the best cakes!” That meant the world to me.


Orange Vanilla Cake

A lovely orange and vanilla cake, topped with a thick glaze and orange zest. Perfect for after dinner or with your morning cuppa.

My recipe was inspired by a recipe for Vanilla and Orange Cake by Delicieux. Note: I’ve increased the amount of orange zest in the recipe as of April 2018. I found that I wanted the cake to be a bit more zesty. Feel free to adjust the zest to your taste.



  • 100 g/ 3.5 oz unsalted butter
  • 90 g/ 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp. vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • Zest from 3 medium to large navel oranges, reserving 1-2 Tbsp for garnishing the glaze
  • 2 large eggs
  • 210 g/ 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. bi-carb soda/ baking soda
  • 2/3 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice (use the 2 oranges you zested)
  • A dash or 2 of ground cardamom or cinnamon (optional)


  • 1 cup icing mixture/ confectioner’s sugar
  • 2-3 Tbsp. fresh orange juice
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1-2 Tbsp. orange zest


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/ 350F. Prepare a 22cm non-stick springform pan by spraying with oil and lining the bottom with baking paper.
  2. Using a stand mixer, cream the butter, brown sugar, vanilla, and orange zest until golden and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs to the batter, one at a time, beating well after each addition, to combine.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and spice (if using). Gradually fold the flour mixture into the batter, on a very low speed.
  5. Lightly mix in the Greek yogurt, then the orange juice, until just combined.
  6. Pour the batter evenly into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  7. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean except for a couple crumbs. Cool cake in pan on a wire rack, draped with a clean tea towel.
  8. Once the cake is cool, carefully remove from pan. Then do the glaze.
  9. To make the glaze, whisk together the icing mixture, orange juice, and vanilla until a thick yet pourable glaze forms. Pour the glaze all over the top of the cake, working from the centre outwards. Smooth the glaze evenly with an angled spatula. Sprinkle the orange zest on top, while the glaze is still moist. Allow the glaze to set before serving the cake.

Orange Vanilla Cake

All written content and photos are copyright Kimberly Sequoia 2017 for a delicious moment.

If you would like to use this recipe on your own site, please re-write it in your own words and link back to my original post.



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