I tasted a wonderful orange cake once and craved it ever since: its fresh citrus scent, sweet orange flavour, mouth melty-ness and general squidginess. The search was on to find a similar recipe that matched its heady aroma of oranges and earthy almonds. After trying countless flourless orange cakes recipes that didn’t match my memory I found the one.

This is the best Orange and Almond Cake recipe. The first cut slides through the cake like a cloud making an enticing squishy sound. As the first slice is removed, a warm rush of orange-scent is released. My spoon effortlessly carves through the crumb; the first mouthful dissolves away on the tongue… Heaven.

Recipe adapted from Stephanie Alexander’s The Cooks’ Companion, attributed to Claudia Roden.

You will need: a 23cm (9in) round springform cake tin

Orange and Almond Cake

Orange and Almond Cake
Cake Mistress Print Recipe
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This is the best Gluten Free Orange Cake recipe. The first cut slides through the cake like a cloud making an enticing squishy sound. As the first slice is removed, a warm rush of orange-scent is released. My spoon effortlessly carves through the crumb; the first mouthful dissolves away on the tongue… Heaven.
Servings: people at least



  1. Place entire unpeeled oranges into a medium saucepan. Cover the oranges with water. Boil the oranges on medium heat with the lid on for 30 minutes. Drain the water, cover the oranges with fresh water and boil them again for 60 minutes.
  2. Remove oranges from the pan and allow them to cool. When cool, trim the green ends and cut the oranges into quarters. Remove any pips. Place the orange quarters into a food processor and turn them into a pulp. Put aside.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (160 fan-forced; 350 F).
  4. Add the eggs and sugar to the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on high speed until the mix turns fluffy and pale. This takes about 3-5 minutes. Beat in the baking powder. Gently fold in the almond meal and cooled orange pulp.
  5. Line the springform tin with baking paper and grease the sides with non-stick spray. Pour the mixture into the springform tin until it’s 2/3 to ¾ full. Ensure the oven is at the correct temperature, then place the cake tin on the middle rack of the oven. Bake for about 45-55 minutes. The cake is ready when a skewer in the centre comes out clean and the top is golden brown. If the top looks like it’s getting too brown, cover it with aluminium foil.
  6. Allow the cake to cool upright in the tin. Do not attempt to turn the cake upside down onto a wire rack. When the cake is cool, remove it from the tin, keeping it upright. Dust the top with icing sugar if desired.

Baking Tips

  • Use ripe quality juicy oranges for the best orange flavour. Organic unwaxed oranges are best.
  • The boiling process reduces the bitterness of the orange pith and softens the rind. But there’s enough sugar in the recipe to compensate if it’s still bitter.
  • The baking time is tricky to judge here. I’ve seen baking times from 45 to 60 minutes, so keep an eye on your cake regularly.
  • This cake is too soft and delicate to bake in anything but a springform tin.
  • If your tin size is smaller, still fill it 2/3 to 3/4 full and use the leftover batter for cupcakes.
  • Store cake at room temperature inside an airtight container


TheBookDepository.co.uk The Cook’s Companion (free worldwide shipping)

Amazon.co.uk The Cook’s Companion

Fishpond.com.au The Cook’s Companion [2004 Ed.] (free AU and NZ shipping)


  1. Viviane

    Ah, the greatest orange almond cake of them all….this looks fabulous. Hmmm we need to sort out how to transport slices via web…. :)

  2. Kari @ bite-sized thoughts

    Oooh. I can imagine your joy on discovering / finding this recipe! I’m sharing it somewhat, in fact :) Thanks for sharing – this is bookmarked already.

  3. Winnie

    What a beautiful looking cake!
    Looks very very tasty too

  4. Di-licious

    Ooohhhh….it does look lovely. I baked Steph’s recipe for Fathers Day last year and it was very moreish. Nothing says “Hello Afternoon Tea” quite like Orange and Almond Cake….would you like one lump or two?

  5. ck

    I’ve been eyeing this recipe off for more than a year myself, on the SBS site, and I think you have just given me the kick I need to make it. Looks beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Tori (@eat-tori)

    I’m so thrilled to have found you and count myself so lucky for having spent the last hour reading through your archives- such fantastic distraction. Orange almond is one of my favourites- particularly with creme fraiche ice cream (Jane Strode’s recipe for it is fantastic).

  7. Emma

    I’ve seen this recipe around for a while and am in love with it. I love almond meal in cakes but the most extreme thing is the whole oranges! I love that.

  8. Holiday Baker Man

    I have everything to make this tomorrow. I just went Christmas supply shopping. :)

  9. Sara (Belly Rumbles)

    Orange and almonds are such a winning combination, end with usually a moist and as you described aromatic delicious cake.

  10. Alison

    ah, we love this cake – and lately we’ve been swapping the oranges for an equal weight in apple or pear puree. yum.

  11. Drew Murray

    I used to bake this cake for our restaurant but my variation; you poured a simple lime syrup over the cake straight out of the oven. Could not make enough of them.

  12. GourmetGetaways

    I know the feeling when only one flavour is the correct recipe. Based on your recommendation I will be making this cake as my next baking project! It must be good :)

    Thank you for sharing xx

  13. Alison Borgas

    This is a cake I’ve been wanting to make for years. I made it today; and it has turned out very well… Thanks for the detailed instructions!

  14. msihua

    How will I know if the rinds aren’t bitter? Would I be able to tell just from picking them up? I can’t wait to try this recipe!

  15. Mutablis

    I have been making this wonderful cake for over 20 years, and it is attributed Claudia Roden by most people including Stephanie Alexander. Now that you have discovered this beauty, it should become a regular baking (and eating) pleasure.

    I never worry about the bitterness of the oranges, and use the original recipe’s 250g caster sugar. Oh, and don’t obsess too much about the weight of the oranges. This cake will never be the same every time you make it! Sometimes it will be very moist and other times just moist (but never dry), and the freshness of the almonds and eggs will also impact on the final result. Just relax and enjoy as this is a very forgiving cake!

    I always use a 24-25cm springform tin, and just a ballon whisk, spatula and a large bowl once the oranges are cooked and pureed. I only whisk the eggs and sugar by hand for 2-3 mins until well combined, then just fold in everything else,

    If you can never have enough chocolate (which I assume is most of us), and love Jaffas, try this variation: increase the baking powder to 1 tablespoon and add between 150-200g best quality chopped dark chocolate. Yum. It’s one of my most requested cakes.

    The one thing that no one mentions is that unless you buy organic oranges, they will be waxed. This is not easy to remove before cooking

    Oh, and I usually cook double the oranges, or equivelant tangelos or honey murcott mandarines (lovely variations), and puree and freeze the extra. Sure does make it quick and easy to cook the next one!

  16. Doll Cottage

    Fabulous cake! Especially cause it’s so easy to bake and so delicious! Thank you for sharing the recipe with us!

  17. Christina @ The Hungry Australian

    Perfect timing. I have a 3 kg bag of oranges sitting on my kitchen bench and was wondering what I should do with them. I always think oranges have such an uplifting, feel-good scent. I can’t wait to make this cake.

  18. Baking Crazy

    Thank you! This recipe is perfect, so moist and tasty.

  19. Cassandra @foodmyfriend

    Yum! I think my nana makes a very similar cake. I always request it at birthday time. So nice with a simple cup of tea!

  20. Bryan

    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe and your tips for success. I made it yesterday and it is so easy and fuss free unlike a few others I read. So beautiful just with a dollop of double cream!

  21. Darren

    My wife loves a good almond cake. My next cake to bake.

  22. Valerie Lam

    My family loves fruit in cakes, and this recipe is unique because real fruit pulp is incorporated. Thanks for the recipe! Will be saving this for Christmas.

  23. vob editor

    I like to eat this recipe. It is  my one of the  favorite recipe. It such a testy recipe. Thanks for sharing such a great recipe.
    mts editor

  24. kbcfan

    Hi There! It’s my 1st try and I am excited. I boiled the oranges for one hour, drained and reboiled them for 45 minutes. When I pureed them in blender, the puree is extremely bitter. So, I was wondering whether or not to proceed with the rest of the recipe? Is it normal for puree to be bitter and it will vanish with sugar, eggs, almond and baking? Or, if your puree is tasting nice and sweet, then only you should proceed with the rest of the procedure. Pls reply quickly…. Thanks,

  25. Rachel Page

    Wow says it all. This may well be my new favorite cake.

  26. Jessica

    Hi! Just wondering… what is the best way to store this cake? Does it need to be kept in the fridge?

  27. Chris

    This is a claudia roden recipe. Has nothing to do with women’s weekly. They must have lifted it.
    You will get a much more consistent bake if you use a loaf pan. Also cooking to the point of coffee dark brown helps create a stronger crust but doesn’t dry out the crumb. Leaving you with a deceptively moist cake that holds well in an air tight container for over a week.