The Best Glazed Orange Bundt cake is pure sunshine, loaded with intense orange flavor from both the juice and peel of sweet navel oranges. It tastes equally delicious with the hot or cold glaze.
My mother and her sisters each had their own way of making orange cake and it was one my mother’s favorites. She had fond memories of my grandfather baking his traybake orange cake on a Sunday afternoon while my grandmother rested.
My favorite scent in the world is the fragrant and aromatic oil contained in the zest… that aroma you smell when you peel an orange and the little droplets of citrus essential oils are released into the air. Sadly, I am highly allergic to that delicious oil and have not peeled an orange since my teens.
Many years ago one of my colleagues noticed that I bought oranges in the morning, but never ate any myself. When I mentioned how allergic I was to the orange oil he made a point of peeling one for me whenever we had oranges.
When I first came to Dubai I made this orange cake to share with my colleagues as they wanted to taste something that reminded me of home. One colleague who doesn’t like cake or sweets in general, fell in love with the Best Glazed Orange Bundt cake with the hot glaze, and I have to bake it at least once every year.
Another colleague mentioned recently that he absolutely loved the Best Glazed Orange Bundt cake and that it was the first time he’d even eaten orange cake. Since then he tried ordering or buying it whenever seeing it in a bakery or on a cafe menu but always found those versions to be dry and tasteless. He has given up trying to find anything close to it and will wait until the next time I make the Best Glazed Orange Bundt cake, to eat a slice or two.
This recipe is adapted from the Butter cake recipe from the Snowflake Tested Recipes file (year unknown, but probably around 1990) and was updated here on 16/04/2016. For a gluten free orange cake please check out my Orange and Almond cake.
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- 250 grams butter at room temperature
- 345 grams fine granulated sugar (approximately 435 ml sugar or 1 ¾ cups)
- 4 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 420 grams cake flour (approximately 750 ml or 3 cups, packed)
- 5 level teaspoons baking powder
- 190 ml orange juice (or ¾ cup)
- 60 ml milk (or ¼ cup)
- Rind of two oranges
- For Boiled syrup - Juice and rind of 1 orange plus 125ml fine granulated sugar plus lemon juice to taste
- For Cold glaze - 150 grams confectioners (icing) sugar plus juice and rind of 1 orange (3-4 tbls)
- Berries and edible flowers (optional)
- Heat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius or 160 fan / 350 F / Gas mark 4.
- Beat together the butter and sugar until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is light and creamy. This may take between 5-10 minutes depending on the type of cake mixer you are using.
- Add the eggs one at a time and beat thoroughly between each addition.
- Add the vanilla extract and ensure that you scrape the sides of the bowl to mix in all the butter and sugar at the bottom and sides.
- Add the flour in three parts alternately with the orange juice and lastly the milk.
- Fold in the grated rind of two oranges.
- Spoon into a greased bundt baking tin and bake for 40 minutes. It may require a shorter baking time if you are using a fan assisted oven. You can use the same batter for cupcakes and they will take about 12 minutes.
- For Boiled syrup - Boil all the glaze ingredients until it starts to get glossy and thick. Use a skewer to poke holes in the cake and pour the syrup over the hot cake when it comes out of the oven. Put the cake back into the oven for three minutes for the glaze to settle. It will be easier and less sticky to cut.
- Let the cake cool for 15-20 mins, then turn the cake out onto the serving plate and pour over the cold glaze.
- For Cold glaze - Add the rind and juice of an orange to the sifted confectioners sugar (icing sugar). Do not add all the juice at once, but check the consistency and add more if required.
- I spread this glaze over the cake when it is lukewarm so that it still melts a little. If preferred you can pour it over when the cake has completely cooled and it will be a thicker and heavier set glaze.
- Decorate with berries and edible flowers (optional)