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Recipe for an Orange Cake

Recipe for an Orange Cake – While we don’t bake nearly in much in summer as we do the cooler seasons, Orange Cake really brings our baking bug back into full swing! Made with in-season, fresh oranges, and totally dairy, gluten, and refined-sugar free, this is a sweet treat we just can’t get enough of!

recipe for an orange cake

Recipe for an Orange Cake

If you’ve never had orange cake before, you’re in for a real treat! Bursting with fresh orange flavor, and topped with a sticky fresh orange glaze, this citrusy cake perfectly encompasses all the flavors of summer. It really is a must-make during the warm seasons!

This Orange Cake, in particular, is texturally similar to a pound cake. While dense, this cake is moist, sweet, and of course, oh-so delicious! Due to it’s lightly sweetened flavor and pound-cake-like texture, this cake makes for the perfect dessert, or grab-and-go meal for breakfast!

recipe for an orange cake

How to Make a Recipe for an Orange Cake Healthy

Like mentioned above, this cake is gluten, dairy, and refined-sugar free like always! While free of some of these top inflammatory ingredients, it most definitely is not free of flavor. Instead, we simply switched these unhealthy ingredients for healthy alternatives!

So how exactly did we make this Recipe for an Orange Cake both healthy and crave-worthy? Here are the main swaps…

Swap Wheat Flour for Whole Grain Gluten Free Flour

Gluten is a protein found in various grains, including wheat. This is one thing Aimee and I choose to completely avoid. As we both have autoimmune diseases, we have noticed a ginormous improvement in our health by giving up this single ingredient!

Gluten, in essence, can trigger inflammation, causing leaking gut, microbiome imbalances, and more (at least the type of gluten we have in America). It’s one protein that many people are sensitive to, and can lead to a major exacerbation of symptoms and damage to the certain individual’s body’s.

Thankfully, gluten is incredibly easy to replace these days. Measure-for-measure whole grain gluten-free swaps are readily available, and don’t require any conversion in conventional recipes. Simply swap measure-for-measure gluten free flour for the exact same amount of wheat flour, and you’re good to go!

recipe for an orange cake

Swap Butter (Dairy) for Coconut Oil

Here at Clean Cuisine, we tend to avoid most dairy. That’s because we simply believe that the risk does not outweigh the benefit, especially with so many easy alternatives these days! It is very common to be lactose intolerant. Lactose is a sugar that consists of glucose attached to galactose. As young babies, we have an enzyme called lactase that can break lactose apart, however, after the age of weaning most people in the world lose that enzyme and are therefore lactose intolerant. Because of this (amongst other reasons), dairy can be very inflammatory for many people, which can lead to additional health conditions and undesirable symptoms.

Coconut oil is an excellent alternative for butter, and the difference in taste is barely, if at all noticeable (especially in dessert recipes like this one)! Simply use a measure-for-measure method when baking for a quick and easy swap.

Love the taste of butter, but trying to cut down on your lactose? Ghee is a great alternative as well! Ghee is clarified butter, and contains minimal lactose. For those who don’t want to give up their butter, ghee is something to look into!

Swap Refined Sugar for Natural Sweeteners

Refined white sugar is arguably, one of the worst things we can consume when it comes to food. Refined sugar, like used in almost all of our food products these days, is an empty calorie, inflammatory, and addictive. And when I said that it is used in almost all of our food products from grocery stores or restaurants, I’m not exaggerating. From obvious examples like candy bars, all the way to tomato sauces, salad dressings, dried fruit, and more, sugar is hidden everywhere! If you’re looking to make a big healthy food adjustment, refer to the many hidden names of sugar, and start reading labels! Those healthy benefit claims on the front of food packaging is nearly always stretching the truth, or is simply totally untrue, and should never be believed without doing your own research first.

Now, after downing sugar for the last paragraph, I should let you know that I have a huge sweet tooth myself, and would never give up sweet treats (clearly as show in this recipe). Instead of avoiding sweets, I simply use natural sweeteners instead! The natural sweeteners in this recipe are coconut sugar, and maple syrup. Both of these sweeteners contain nutritional value (therefore, they aren’t an empty calorie), and taste just as great as the real deal!

Recipe for an Orange Cake

More Citrusy Desserts

If you enjoy this Orange Cake, it’s like you like other types of citrus as well! Below, you’ll find some of our favorite, citrus-based recipes, with both savory, and sweet options!

Recipe for Lemon Ginger Tea: With only 4 simple ingredients, and 5 minutes of your time, you can be enjoying this Recipe for Ginger Lemon Tea in no time!

Key Lime Pie No Bake: Key Lime No Bake Pie is bursting with key lime flavor, a nutty crust and a new recipe that you will want to make all summer long.

Recipe for Lemon Cupcakes: Recipe for Lemon Cupcakes are super easy to make, delicious and full of healthy nutrients. The lemon frosting is the easiest frosting EVER!

Lemon Salad Dressing: Lemon Salad Dressing recipe is perfect to add to any salad or for dipping vegetables. You can also drizzle it on chicken or fish!

Key Lime Cheesecakes: If you are lactose intolerant or dairy free, this key lime cheesecakes recipe is the perfect replacement for your cheesecake craving.

Citrus Salad with Asparagus: While not all salads are healthy, This Salad with Asparagus is both nutritionally dense, and filling!

Recipe for an Orange Cake

Ready to enjoy this delicious Recipe for an Orange Cake? Let’s get into the details!


Recipe for an Orange Cake

Made with in-season, fresh oranges, and totally dairy, gluten, and refined-sugar free, we can’t get enough of this Recipe for an Orange Cake!

Recipe for an Orange Cake
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  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 70 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x





  1. Begin by preheating your oven to 350ºF, and lining a cake pan with unbleached parchment paper. 
  2. Combine all dry ingredients for cake in large mixing bowl.
  3. Combine all wet ingredients in a separate bowl, and mix until smooth. 
  4. Add wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and mix until smooth. 
  5. Add about 1/2 cup water into a small, oven safe dish on the bottom rack for adding extra moisture to the orange cake.
  6. Pour orange cake mixture into cake pan, and place in the oven on the top rack.
  7. Allow to bake for approximately 40 minutes, or until cake is turning golden brown, and a tooth pick comes out clean.
  8. While cake is baking, make Orange Glaze.
  9. In a small saucepan, add in everything for the Orange Glaze except for the coconut sugar and chopped oranges. 
  10. All mixture to warm (about 5 minutes on a medium heat), and then add in coconut sugar. Mix constantly until mixture slightly thickens (this took mine an additional 5-10 minutes). 
  11. Remove from heat, and add in chopped oranges. 
  12. Once cake has cooled, poor Orange Glaze on top, and enjoy chilled, or slightly warm.  

Last Step! If you loved our recipe, leave us a review below. This helps future recipe makers and ensures continued high-quality recipes for years to come!

© 2024 clean cuisine Recipe by:

Madison Suttles

Madison is passionate about health, fitness, and Jesus. She has lived with autoimmune symptoms nearly her entire life, but was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease in 2016. She shares her experience with Crohn's and living on a modified Specific Carbohydrate Diet as a resource to others on their health journeys.

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Kimberly Hoover-Frey

Friday 6th of April 2018

For a gluten-free version, which flour would you substitute for spelt?

Ivy Larson

Friday 6th of April 2018

Hi Kimberly! I have been having a lot of success lately by combining oat flour with cassava flour---so in this recipe you might want to substitute 1/2 cup oat flour + 1/2 cup cassava flour for the 1 cup of spelt flour. I am almost certain that would work! Please let me know if you try it...

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