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Best Lemon Olive Oil Cake Recipe

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5 from 8 reviews

A simple and beautiful cake that offers a moist texture, and the rich essence of olive oil brings a touch of Mediterranean decadence to every bite! It all comes together in one bowl and is easy to prepare.

  • Total Time: 60 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil. See the recipe post for choosing an olive oil.
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice*
  • zest from 3 fresh lemons*
  • 2 cups organic all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt (or whole milk)
  • powdered sugar for dusting (see the optional glaze in the instructions)

*you can swap orange juice and zest and make an orange-scented olive oil cake

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a 9″ springform pan by greasing the bottom and the sides with cooking spray. Line the bottom with parchment paper. 
  2. In a large mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the eggs and sugar, thick and pale yellow in color, about 3-4 minutes with an electric mixer, more if whisking by hand. 
  3. Add the olive oil and whisk to combine.
  4. Add the vanilla, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Whisk briefly to combine.
  5. Place a sifter or mesh strainer on top of the wet ingredients bowl. Sift in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Sift about half of the dry ingredients and stir to combine.
  6. Add yogurt (or milk if using) and sift in the rest of the flour mixture. Mix to combine. 
  7. Do not over-mix the cake batter. Mix until no streaks of dry flour remain. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Gently tap the pan on the countertop to remove air bubbles and even out the batter.
  8. Bake for 45-55 minutes until golden brown and fragrant. Cover the cake loosely with foil if it starts to brown too much at the end.
  9. Allow the cake to cool for about 10 minutes. Remove the cake from the springform pan and let it cool on a baking rack. Dust with powdered sugar! Enjoy warm or room temperature. 

Optional Lemon Glaze:

Mix 1 cup of powdered sugar with 2-3 tablespoons of lemon or orange juice for a simple glaze until you achieve a smooth, pourable consistency. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake. You can also serve with fresh fruit, fresh berries, or whipped cream. 

Notes

TOP TIPS

Use Room Temperature Ingredients: This helps for even baking.

Choose Quality Olive Oil: Opt for a high-quality extra virgin olive oil with a mild and fruity flavor to ensure a delightful taste. Avoid overly strong or bitter olive oils that could overpower the cake’s balance.

Measure Ingredients Accurately: Precise measurements are key to consistent results. Use measuring cups for dry ingredients and liquid measuring cups for wet ingredients to maintain the right ratios.

Mix Gently and Don’t Overmix: When combining wet and dry ingredients, mix only until they’re incorporated. Overmixing can lead to a tough texture, so stop stirring as soon as the batter is smooth.

Baking Time and Toothpick Test: Keep a close eye on the cake as it bakes, and use a toothpick inserted into the center to check for doneness. If it comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs, the cake is ready.

Proper Cooling and Storage: Allow the cake to cool in the pan briefly before transferring it to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, wrap it well in plastic wrap or store it in an airtight container to maintain its moisture and flavor.

  • Author: Elena Davis
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: Sweet
  • Method: Italian
  • Cuisine: Italian