Orange Cardamom Pound Cake

Orange Cardamom Pound Cake is a light citrus-flavored cake made with olive oil instead of butter, orange juice and zest and the warm spice, cardamom. 

I’ve always been hesitant to bake with olive oil instead of butter. I expected that the dessert I was making would end up oily or greasy and be too dense to eat. If you have ever thought the same thing, let me tell you, we were wrong. That is not the case at all, especially for this Orange Cardamom Pound Cake. Instead, the cake is moist and light, filled with orange and cardamom flavor.

Orange Cardamom Pound Cake is really easy to make. All of the ingredients are whisked together in one bowl, then poured into a prepared baking dish. 50 minutes later, the cake comes out of the oven and is ready to serve. Frosting is not needed on this cake at all, a simple sprinkle of powdered sugar will do. But if you feel it needs a glaze, whisking together some orange juice and powdered sugar would be the perfect topping.


Olive oil is healthier than butter, in regards to fats. Olive oil has more monounsaturated fats which are linked to “good cholesterol” and less saturated fats like butter has. For centuries, the Mediterranean people have been baking with olive oil instead of butter and their desserts have turned out delicious. One of the most common olive oil cakes is this orange and olive oil one.


Cardamom is my favorite spice. But that alone may not be enough to sell you on purchasing some, so I’ll also tell you that cardamom is a spice made from the seeds of several plants. It has a rich and warm aroma, smelling slightly like citrus, so it pairs really well with citrus fruits as well as meats like chicken, lamb and pork which also pair nicely with citrus flavors.


  • extra virgin olive oil
  • zest from 1 large orange
  • fresh squeezed orange juice
  • eggs
  • sour cream
  • honey
  • cardamom
  • cinnamon
  • salt
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • all purpose flour
  • powdered sugar


  • Cut a circle of parchment to fit inside a 9 inch round cake pan. Place in the cake pan.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Whisk all ingredients except powdered sugar together in a large bowl.
  • Pour batter into prepared cake pan.
  • Bake for 50 minutes. Let cool.
  • Sprinkle with powdered sugar.
  • Slice and serve.

The ingredients for October’s Improv Cooking Challenge were Olive Oil and Orange. Many of us decided to go the cake route. Check out what all of the other bloggers have made.

The #ImprovCookingChallenge is a monthly blogging event where two ingredients are assigned to a month. Bloggers can make any recipe they like as long as it features the two ingredients. If you are a blogger and would like to join us, please visit our Facebook page. You can also read more about the event on our our home page. If you’d like to see previous creations, check out our Pinterest board.

October Improv Cooking Challenge

Olive Oil and Orange



    Orange Cardamom Pound Cake

    Orange Cardamom Pound Cake is a light citrus-flavored cake made with olive oil instead of butter, orange juice and zest and the warm spice, cardamom. 

    • Author: NicholeL
    • Prep Time: 10 mins
    • Cook Time: 50 mins
    • Total Time: 1 hour
    • Yield: 9 inch cake 1x
    • Category: Cake
    • Method: baking


    For the Cake:

    • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
    • zest from 1 large orange
    • 1 cup sour cream
    • 3/4 cup honey
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 tsp cardamom
    • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp baking soda
    • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

    For the Topping:

    • 1/4 cup powdered sugar


    1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut out a parchment circle and place into a 9 inch round cake pan.
    2. In a large bowl, whisk all cake ingredients together.
    3. Pour into prepared pan.
    4. Bake for 50 minutes. Let cool and then remove cake from the pan.
    5. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut into slices.


    Picture: the pictures of this cake are with a mandarin, not a navel orange because I forgot to buy a second one.

    Storage: cake can be stored on the counter for 3 days. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze for up to 3 months.

    Keywords: olive oil orange cardamom cake, baking with olive oil, orange cardamom pound cake, improv cooking challenge

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  1. I love cardamom. This sounds delicious. Thanks for hosting each month Nichole.

  2. I love cardamom as well, I can just imagine how well it paired with the orange in your cake. Thanks for hosting Nichole, and for being so nice about changing my blog and recipe info at the last minute.

  3. The perfect sized cake…and it sounds like it tastes amazing! I can only imagine how good it must smell!

  4. sneha datar

    I love the use of cardamom to make this cake.

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