This glazed orange cardamom cake is a wonderfully simple dessert bursting with winter citrus and spice. It’s moist, hearty texture and sticky glaze make it perfect with a cup of tea.

This glazed orange cardamom cake is a wonderfully simple dessert bursting with winter citrus and spice. It's moist, hearty texture and sticky glaze make it perfect with a cup of tea.

Car-da-mom! Can I get a ‘heck yeah!’ for the most amazing spice out there?

Honestly, if I had to pick only one spice to bake with from now on, it’d be the amazingly aromatic cardamom, no contest.

When I was a kid, we’d make the trek down to White Plains (about 30 minutes outside NYC) to this Indian restaurant called the Bengal Tiger maybe 3-4 times a year.

Somehow my dad discovered this hole in the wall years earlier, made quick friends with the maitre d’, Samson, an eerily tall and large Indian man who he’d practice his declining Hindi pleasantries with and refused to go anywhere else to eat Indian food no matter how highly recommended the place came.

He insisted Bengal Tiger was the best, most authentic Indian cuisine around (even though there were many much closer to where we lived than this one) and once inside, we’d start with all the appetizers he grew up eating as each bite of samosa would bring him back to his childhood in Calcutta.

While the poori bread was a close runner up, Bengal Tiger night’s were all about one thing for me, the orange kulfi dessert.

They served it in an orange peel itself and I thought that creamy, ice cream-like deliciousness was the best thing in the entire world.

While most 10 year olds would probably tell you some Duncan Hines cake mix in cupcake form, brownies, Rice Krispie treats studded with sprinkles or something equally as Americana (aka: processed crap) was their favorite dessert, here I was all about the sweetened condensed milk with rose water, cardamom, saffron and pistachios.

This simple winter cake is bursting with orange flavor and cardamom spice. Brushed with a sweet sticky glaze, it's simplistic yet delicious.
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At 10 though, I had no idea what it was that gave kulfi that very distinct and unique flavor profile.

I just knew I liked it and any time I tasted something with cardamom for years to come, I’d immediately liken it to kulfi, still not recognizing it was the spice tying things together.

I have no idea when I finally wised up to cardamom being the common denominator but ever since, it’s been a spice I can’t live without.

I’ve been adding a tiiinnny bit more of it to the coconut bourbon coffee nog I’ve been sipping all season and loving it!

And despite its rather shell shocking price at the grocery store, it will always have a spot in my spice drawer as queen of all the baking spices.

The sweet orange glaze on this orange cardamom cake takes it from tea worthy to holiday dessert worthy.

So it should come as no surprise that cardamom was the ingredient in which this cardamom orange cake was built around.

Something that could easily pair with a cup of tea.

Something moist, and textured but also something so aromatic and flavorful like those orange kulfi desserts of my childhood that it could easily be put on a holiday dessert table.

This orange cake studded with cardamom flavor is all those things and more.

This glazed orange cardamom cake is a wonderfully simple dessert bursting with winter citrus and spice, perfect for your holiday table.

Why You’ll Love This Orange Cardamom Cake Recipe

  • Aromatic Flavor: This cake features the delicious and aromatic combination of orange and cardamom, creating a unique and bold flavor profile.
  • Moist and Hearty Texture: The cake has a moist and hearty texture thanks to the almond flour and cornmeal.
  • Sticky Glaze: The sticky glaze adds an extra layer of sweetness and texture to each bite. It’s a simple yet classic adornment that doesn’t require a lot of effort.
  • Perfect for Tea Time: This cake is an ideal accompaniment to a relaxing afternoon wih a cup of tea.
  • Winter Citrus and Spice: Bursting with the vibrant flavors of winter citrus and the warmth of spice, this cake is a perfect treat during the colder months but also light enough for any time of year.
  • Easy to Make: The recipe is simple and straightforward. Any level baker can give this cake a go and won’t be disappointed in the results.
  • Festive Dessert: The cake’s flavors and vibrant appearance make it a perfect addition to any holiday dessert table.
Don't let the simple appearance of this cake fool you, it's bursting with flavor and spice. Moist, tender and begging to be made this holiday season.

What You’ll Need To Make This Cardamom Cake

Ingredients Needed:

  • Caster sugar: Can be substituted with homemade caster sugar using granulated sugar processed in a food processor.
  • Unsalted butter: Ensure it’s at room temperature for easier mixing.
  • Eggs: Preferably at room temperature.
  • Plain Greek yogurt: Adds moisture and tanginess to the cake.
  • Orange juice: Divided for both the batter and the glaze.
  • Orange zest: Provides a burst of citrus flavor.
  • Whole wheat white flour: For a more wholesome and heartier texture.
  • Almond flour: Adds a nutty flavor and enhances the texture.
  • Cornmeal: Adds a slight crunch and texture to the cake.
  • Cardamom: Ground for flavor depth and warmth.

Equipment Needed:

  • 9-Inch springform pan – makes removal of the cake very easy
  • Rubber spatula

My Pro Tips

Recipe Tips

  • Slivered almond topping: Slivered almonds would make for a lovely presentation on top of this cardamom orange cake. A thin layer will adhere nicely on top of the stick glaze.
  • Rose water and vanilla: Adding 1/2 -1 teaspoon of either or both of these will add a nice flavor to the cake that pairs perfectly with the cardamom flavor and bright orange taste.
  • Make it in a bundt pan: If you’re looking for something a bit prettier in appearance, use a bundt pan to bake the cardamom cake. Make sure it’s greased exceptionally well.

I bring a lot of food we can’t possibly finish to the gym or pawn off on Ulysses’ coworkers but sometimes, even though the last thing I want to do 3 weeks before a beach vacation in Mexico is eat an entire cake, I just can’t part with a recipe because it’s so perfect.

This cardamom cake is one of those times.

The sweetness from the orange, the aromatic cardamom, the incredibly moist yet textured (thanks to almond and cornmeal) crumb, the sticky glaze…it’s all just magical.

This orange cardamom cake with a sweet orange glaze is guaranteed to be enjoyed by all.

Using orange juice as well as the zest makes the orange flavor just pop in baked goods like orange muffins and this orange cake.

Its natural sweetness also helped cut down on the overall need for sugar in the cake and the glaze.

In fact, the glaze is made by reducing just the juice itself until thick and sticky, no need for additional sugar which is always a bonus.

If you want a festive garnish besides the orange glaze to finish this cake off, check out my recipe for making candied lemon slices and just use orange slices instead! Sugared cranberries would be another option for a seasonal pop of color on top.

FAQs

What does cardamom taste like in cake?

Cardamom adds a unique, warm and slightly citrusy flavor to cakes, it’s deeply aromatic and ever so slightly spicy at the same time.

Does cardamom taste like cinnamon?

While both cardamom and cinnamon are warm spices, they have distinct flavors. Cardamom offers a more complex and floral taste with hints of citrus, whereas cinnamon has a sweeter and earthier flavor profile.

Can you freeze cardamom cake?

Yes, you can freeze the cardamom cake for later. Wrap the cooled cake tightly in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. Thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

While I usually make this apricot brandy cake (an absolute flavor stunner) for our family Christmas celebrations, or more recently, this cranberry curd tart (a showstopper in looks!) this year things are changing and orange glazed cardamom cake will be on the table.

I’m excited for the fam to taste it!

This moist, hearty orange cardamom cake is the perfect with a hot mug of your favorite winter drink is the best way to celebrate this holiday season.

More recipes like this to try

This honey cake recipe also includes orange juice in the batter for another lovely seasonal dessert option.

For more orangey flavor, try our orange infused cranberry almond chocolate chip cookiescranberry orange oatmeal cookie bites and these irresistibly soft and fluffy orange rolls.

This almond flour lemon cake is a lovely gluten-free citrus forward recipe too.

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4.84 from 18 votes

Orange Glazed Cardamom Cake

Servings: 8 servings
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour
This moist, hearty orange cardamom cake is the perfect with a hot mug of your favorite winter drink is the best way to celebrate this holiday season.
This glazed orange cardamom cake is a wonderfully simple dessert bursting with winter citrus and spice. It’s moist, hearty texture and sticky glaze make it perfect with a cup of tea.

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup caster sugar, (*see note on how to make your own)
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 eggs
  • 5 ounces plain Greek yogurt
  • 3/4 cup orange juice, divided
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1 1/4 cups whole wheat white flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons cardamom
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 inch cake pan with butter and line it with parchment paper (the butter helps the parchment stick to it, making it easier to pour the batter in evenly).
  • Beat sugar and butter in a stand mixer until light and fluffy, about 7-10 minutes.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, beating well beaten each one.
  • Add the yogurt, 1/4 cup of the orange juice and orange zest and continue beating until well combined.
  • Combine the flours, cornmeal, cardamom and baking powder in a medium bowl.
  • With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the flour mixture and beat until just combined.
  • Transfer the batter to the lined cake pan and spread evenly, smoothing the top with a spatula.
  • Bake for about 45 minutes or until center is set and edges are just starting to turn golden brown and pull away from the sides of the pan.
  • During the last 5-10 minutes of baking time, add the orange juice for the glaze to a small sauce pot. Bring to a boil then simmer on low until thickened.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and place on a wire rack in the pan. Brush the glaze on the top of the warm cake. Let it cool for about 15-20 minutes before removing from the pan and letting cool further directly on the rack.
  • Dust with powdered sugar before serving.

Notes

Make your own caster sugar by placing granulated sugar in a food processor and processing for 1-2 minutes until very fine but not quite powdered.

Nutrition

Serving: 1SERVINGCalories: 506kcalCarbohydrates: 71gProtein: 13gFat: 21gSaturated Fat: 10gPolyunsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 109mgSodium: 131mgFiber: 6gSugar: 30g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
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Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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Recipe Rating




27 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Citrus and spice is a natural combination of flavors. This was so good! My family really loved it so I saved it so that I can enjoy this on repeat!

  2. 5 stars
    Cardamom has an amazing scent! Love this recipe. Made it over the weekend and paired it with my roasted coffee..ahhhhhhhhhhh heaven ♥