If you never baked with olive oil, make room for this cake recipe because you'll want to make it often! It's moist, full of lemon flavor, keeps well and can be frozen. Make is in a bundt or loaf pan, or cupcakes, it's always good, especially with the powdered sugar glaze.
If you already added olive oil to your baking repertoire you know this recipe rocks! Oh yes it does, big time!
I started using olive oil in baking while developing recipes for a client and discovered a whole new world. I was skeptical at first too, thought the final product would be fine but not amazing.
Well, I was wrong. So, so wrong. With the right olive oil, recipes such as this lemon bundt cake climb a few steps.
Baking with olive oil
Baking recipes usually call for neutral tasting oils, such as sunflower or canola. That ensures that it will not mask the flavor of the cake, cookie or whatever it is you're baking.
Olive oil tends to have a deeper and stronger flavor than regular oils. So a classic, mild or light extra virgin olive oil works perfectly. I only use extra virgin, but I guess virgin olive oil works fine too.
In some cases, flavored oils might be used to. Nowadays there can be many to choose from. It is really a matter of personal taste.
Nowadays I make all kinds of cakes with olive oil. And to tell you the truth, I'm tempted to use olive every single time a recipe calls for oil. I'm an olive oil baking groupie.
My favorite is the apple walnut cake, very moist and easy to make, it's just SO good! And if you want to make crumble but omit the butter give this lemon blueberry crumb cake a go, it's made with olive oil and it's beyond amazing.
Give it a try if you haven't used olive oil in baking recipes. You won't regret it at all.
- Olive oil. See above for details on how to choose it.
- Lemon. Use freshly grated lemon zest.
- Sugars. White granulated is used for the batter and powdered is used for the glaze.
- Vanilla. Use pure extract or paste if possible.
- Flour. I use cake flour but all-purpose works just fine.
- Baking powder. It's necessary to give the cake a boost and rise well, so make sure it's active.
This is a simple oil cake that comes together quickly. You'll need an electric mixer or stand mixer for best results.
WATCH THE STEP-BY-STEP VIDEO👇🏻
My top tips
- Organization: always read the whole recipe first and have ingredients measured and cake pan ready before you start.
- Flavor: I use lemon zest but you can add some pure lemon extract to intensify it, maybe ¼ to ½ teaspoon.
- Olive oil: using it instead of butter gives this cake a fabulous moist crumb and a rich flavor that complements perfectly with the citrus. Use a mild extra virgin olive oil for the best results.
- Add-ins: you can add a handful of chopped walnuts to the batter or use limes together with the lemon.
- Pan size: you can make 1 bundt cake, 10 to 12 mini bundts, or 2 medium loaf cakes. For the last two the baking time will be less, between 35-45 minutes, so be vigilant with it.
- Storing: you can keep the baked cake at room temperature for 2 days, in the fridge for a week, well wrapped to avoid dryness, or in the freezer for a month. If you're making it ahead, I recommend freezing it without the glaze, unless you're storing leftovers.
Frequently asked questions
Olive oil makes the cake very moist. If you don't want to use butter it's a good alternative.
Of course you can! I use it in this cake and in many others. Extra virgin oil comes in different strenghts, so choose a mild or light one.
Absolutely! I do it all the time, because I'm a huge fan of baking with olive oil. It goes great with chocolate and many fruits.
Related recipes you might like:
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Super flavorful and moist, this is a wonderful bundt cake with simple flavors and the surprise ingredient olive oil that is amazing!
For the cake:
- 2 cups (280g) cake or all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 5 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 ¼ cups (250g) sugar
- 1 cup (250ml) mild extra virgin olive oil
- Zest of 2 lemons
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the glaze:
- 1 ½ cups (240g) powdered sugar
- Lemon juice (from about 1 lemon)
- Preheat oven at 350°F/180°C.
- Butter or spray a 10 cup (26cm) bundt cake pan and dust with fine dry breadcrumbs or flour, shaking off excess. Refrigerate the pan while making the batter.
- In a large bowl (or bowl of the stand mixer) start beating eggs and add sugar gradually. Beat for 3-4 minutes, until foamy and light.
- Add the oil in a thin stream while you keep beating. It will thicken and be satiny.
- Add the lemon zest and vanilla. Mix.
- Add sifted dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt) in 2 parts and mix until combined but don’t overmix. I sift dry ingredients directly over batter, but you can do it separately.
- Pour into the prepared cake pan (that's cold because you just took it out from the refrigerator) and bake for 50-60 minutes, until a tester comes out clean. Ovens and pans are different and this is a large cake, so it might take longer. You can turn the oven to 325°F/170°C if you feel it needs to bake longer.
- Let cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes and carefully remove from pan. Let cool completely before pouring the glaze.
- Mix sugar and juice until creamy and lump-free. It should have the consistency of thick honey.
- Pour over cooled cake and let drip down the sides.
Organization: always read the whole recipe first and have ingredients measured and cake pan ready before you start.
Flavor: I use lemon zest but you can add some pure lemon extract to intensify it, maybe ¼ to ½ teaspoon.
Olive oil: using it instead of butter gives this cake a fabulous moist crumb and a rich flavor that complements perfectly with the citrus. Use a mild extra virgin olive oil for the best results.
Add-ins: you can add a handful of chopped walnuts to the batter or use limes together with the lemon.
Pan size: you can make 1 bundt cake, 10 to 12 mini bundts, or 2 medium loaf cakes. For the last two the baking time will be less, between 35-45 minutes, so be vigilant with it.
Storing: you can keep the baked cake at room temperature for 2 days, in the fridge for a week, well wrapped to avoid dryness, or in the freezer for a month. If you're making it ahead, I recommend freezing it without the glaze, unless you're storing leftovers.
- Serving Size: 1/10
- Calories: 489
- Sugar: 42.9 g
- Sodium: 153.9 mg
- Fat: 25 g
- Carbohydrates: 63.1 g
- Protein: 5.8 g
- Cholesterol: 93 mg
Keywords: olive oil lemon cake