Using pantry ingredients, this Gluten Free Orange Almond Cake is a surprisingly easy yet tasty cake to create. The moist, fragrant sponge is topped with tangy greek yogurt and a sticky sweet orange and honey syrup off set with crunchy pistachios. With zero flour, this simple recipe will win you over.
This is another addition to my small batch baking series that is proving popular during this pandemic. There are many people in the world, old and young, who are living by themselves. Or there are only a few members in the household and standard recipe sizes just don't suit. They aren’t able to share their bakes with family, friends, work colleagues like they used to. So a batch of 12 cupcakes , 24 cookies or a 2 tiered cake is just TOO large.
And so this, and my other small batch recipes, are designed to be low in quantity size. However the best bit is that they can easily be doubled for those that need to make larger servings.
This cake originally combined flour, semolina and almond meal in the cake batter but I really wanted to develop the recipe to be gluten free. I literally just subbed the flour and semolina for almond meal and it worked so well.
I’ve seen other orange Almond Cakes that boil whole oranges and then blend them to go into the batter, such as Rick Steins version . However, I wanted this one to be quick and easy and so subbed the boiled orange pulp for zest, orange blossom water and honey. Both executions leave you with an incredibly moist cake like nothing you’ve tasted before. I can’t wait for you to try it!
What ingredients go in this Gluten Free Orange Almond Cake?
You'll probably find that you have most of the ingredients in your pantry. (Especially if you’ve followed my Guides on What Ingredients To Stock In Your Baking Pantry and How To Organise Your Baking Pantry.
Butter and Sugar: Standard cake ingredients that get creamed together
Egg: Helps bind the ingredients together, create structure and stability to the batter but also create moisture.
Almond Meal: Also known as ground almonds or almond flour, made solely from almonds, this is a substitute for regular flour
Baking Powder: Acts as a standard leavening agent within the cake
Honey, Orange Blossom Water and Orange Zest: The flavours within the cake batter. All subtle on their own but when combined they come together with the almonds to create a gently flavoured moist cake.
How to make the cake
It's an incredibly simple cake to make and that’s why I love it. It's quick and easy to put together and whilst baking you can make the orange honey syrup. Within an hour you'll be sitting down to a slice of this with a cup of tea. What could be more perfect.
1: You’ll need to cream the butter and sugar together in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
2: Add the eggs in one at a time and mix between each addition.
3: Add the remaining ingredients, almond flour, baking powder, honey, orange blossom water and orange zest and mix until combined.
4: Pour batter into a prepared 7-inch tin and bake for 30-40 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
5: Once the cake is baked and cooling, add the syrup ingredients, orange juice, honey and sugar into a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Allow to boil for five minutes and then set aside to cool. The syrup will thicken as it cools. Serve cake topped with greek yogurt, chopped pistachios and the orange honey syrup.
The crumb on this cake is like no other. Because of the almond meal it has a slightly larger crumb in texture yet the moisture and softness of the cake is unbelievable. Plus the honey addition creates this slightly caramelised out layer on the edges of the cake. My favourite bit if truth be told!
Substitutions that you can make.
So I understand that at this current time it’s harder to get out to the shops for specific ingredients if you don't have them on hand.
Here are a few substitutions that you can make:
- Granulated sugar: Sub for caster sugar or golden sugar or golden caster sugar
- Honey: Sub for maple syrup
- Almond Meal: Sub for hazelnut meal
- Orange: Sub for mandarines
- Orange Blossom Water: This ingredient is totally optional, sub for 1 teaspoon orange extract if you have it or vanilla bean extract
- Light brown sugar: sub for white or brown sugar
- Pistachios: Sub for almond flaked or chopped
- Greek yogurt: Sub for whipped coconut cream or whipped double cream
If you make any of these substitutions then the overall taste will be altered. That being said, in these times we all have to be a little bit flexible. The cake will still taste great!
For other SMALL BATCH baking recipes you can check out the following:
Gluten Free Orange and Almond Cake Recipe
- 130 g unsalted butter, room temperature
- 80 g sugar
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 180 g almond meal, almond flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp orange blossom water, optional
- 30 g runny honey
- 1 orange, zest
Orange honey syrup
- 60 ml orange, juice
- 15 g runny honey
- 30 g light brown sugar
- 80 g greek yogurt
- 25 g pistachios, chopped
- Cream butter & sugar. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Grease and line the base and sides of a 15cm (6-inch) cake tin with parchment paper. Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
- Add the eggs. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Make sure to scrape down the base and sides of the bowl before and after beating the eggs in.
- Add in the flavourings. Add in the honey, orange zest and orange blossom water and mix until combined.
- Add the dry ingredients: Add the almond meal and baking powder and mix with a rubber spatula until you can still see a few flour streaks. Note, the batter is fairly thick which is what it's supposed to look like.
- Bake! Spoon the mixture into the cake pan. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the centre. If the cake browns too quickly then tent with aluminium foil. Once baked, remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for ten minutes before turning out onto a wire rack and allow to cool completely.
- Make the orange honey syrup. Whilst the cake is cooling, add the orange juice, honey and light brown sugar into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Boil gently for 5 minutes and then set aside to cool. The syrup will thicken as it cools.
- To serve. Once the cake has cooled completely, spoon the Greek yoghurt onto the top of the cake and smooth it with the back of the spoon. Sprinkle the pistachios over the top and drizzle with orange honey syrup. Slice and serve immediately.
All recipes are developed and tested in Metric grams. I strongly recommend that you bake using digital scales for a more accurate result. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.