orange syrup pound cake recipe
This is orange syrup pound cake recipe isn’t mine – let’s get that out of the way! Nope, not mine, it’s from NZ Masterchef judge Ray McVinnie and it’s a recipe I’ve made regularly for close to 15 years.   It’s a proper ‘grown ups’ cake, although a 13 month old came for lunch recently and he scoffed it. So I guess it’s really a cake for all ages!

Ray’s base recipe uses lemons, but my orange tree is still going bananas, so I substituted the lemons for oranges and in the syrup I reduced the sugar content as the orange juice brings additional sweetness. I’ve made this using limes too: YUM.   I wrote a post a recipe a few months back that was quite similar to this one (I guess I like oranges!) but this recipe is much simpler and quicker, especially if you are lucky enough to own a cake mixer. Katie (My-Kitchen-Aid-Cake-Mixer) does a beautiful job of this for me, it’s a doddle and the cake itself only takes about 6 minutes to make. Besides, you’ve gotta love a cake that has batter requiring five ingredients (keeps the purists happy).

The cake…

Orange Syrup Pound Cake

orange syrup pound cake


    For the cake
  • 200g butter
  • 350g sugar (ideally castor, but normal works well enough!)
  • Finely grated zest 2 oranges (or lemons/limes)
  • 5 eggs
  • 250g plain flour
    For the syrup
  • 300g sugar (if you use lemons or limes - use 400g sugar)
  • 250ml water
  • Grated zest of 1 orange (or lemon/lime)
  • Juice of 3 oranges (or lemons/ limes)
  • Ÿ


    For the cake
  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees (normal bake).
  • Butter a 20cm diameter loose bottomed cake tin and line bottom with greaseproof/baking paper.
  • Cream the butter, castor sugar and citrus zest with vigorous beating until pale and fluffy (use a beater or, ideally a cake mixer).
  • Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Stir in the flour until well mixed, but do not beat.
  • Pour mixture into greased cake tin and bake for 45 mins to 1 hour, or until a bamboo skewer comes out clean.
  • Remove cake from tin and let cool. If you like you can leave the cake like this, forgo the syrup (and save your teeth!) and dust with icing sugar.
    For the syrup
  • Put the sugar, water, citrus zest and juice into a saucepan and bring to boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar.  Boil for 2 mins.  Remove from the heat. You have two options for the syrup:
  • ONE: Follow Ray's original recipe and pour all the syrup over the cool cake so the cake soaks it all up (you'll want to put the cake in a deep dish)
  • TWO: Or you can do what I like to do - pour half the syrup over the cake and let it soak up and keep the other half of the syrup to serve with the cake.
  • Either way - serve the cake with cream or Greek yogurt (I only had special addition Meadow Fresh Custard and Rhubarb yoghurt when I made this - it was a beautiful accompaniment!)
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