Orange pound cake is packed with sweet citrus flavor! It is made with staple ingredients in just a few minutes hands-on time.

Our orange pound cake is buttery, moist and dense with flecks of orange zest throughout the cake. The icing is flavored with orange juice, making it smooth and bright. Its adds one more layer of moisture and complements the cake perfectly.

An orange pound cake on a white serving platter.
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This orange pound cake is incredibly moist. It’s got a vibrant, delicate orange zest, and it’s covered with a sweet orange glaze to make it irresistible!

Every bite of this orange pound cake – from the moist cake, to the vibrant icing and down to the very last crumb – tastes like spring!

The light and citrusy flavor of orange is fresh and happy, like spring itself. That makes orange pound cake the perfect dessert to serve at celebrations like Easter and Mother’s Day.

However, you don’t need to save it just for holidays – it’s so easy to make that you can turn any day into a special occasion! Check out my pound cake collection for tips that will ensure your cake is perfect!

A slice of orange pound cake on a white plate.

Why You’ll Love It

Versatile – Pound cake is amazing for breakfast, brunch and dessert.

Staple Ingredients – It’s made with staple ingredients and the juice and zest of an orange.

Effortless – It takes just a few minutes hands-on time to create this beautiful and flavorful dessert.

A slice of orange pound cake on a white plate.

Ingredients

  • Butter – Salted or unsalted, your preference, at room temperature.
  • Sugar – White granulated sugar not only sweetens pound cake, but also aids in the leavening process when mixing with butter.
  • Eggs – At room temperature for best results.
  • Flour – All purpose flour is great in this recipe – bleached or unbleached.
  • Milk – Any milk from skim to vitamin D works well.
  • Orange Zest – Use zest of naval oranges, mandarin oranges or clementine for sweet orange flavor.
Ingredients for baking orange pound cake arranged on a white surface, including flour, sugar, butter, eggs, milk, and an orange.

Orange Glaze Ingredients

  • Butter – Salted or unsalted, your preference.
  • Powdered Sugar – Also known as confectioner’s sugar, it gives the glaze a smooth consistency.
  • Orange Juice – Freshly squeezed or store-bought, your preference.
A glass bottle of orange glaze, with a small orange beside it

Variations

  • Add your choice of nut to the batter, or just sprinkle nuts on the icing.
  • Mix in mini chocolate chips for an orange and chocolate pound cake!
  • Add poppy seeds to the batter for that slight nutty flavor and crunch.
  • Bake in mini loaf pans for darling orange pound cakes. Cut baking time to 50 minutes.
A glass bottle of orange glaze, pouring over an orange pound cake.

Recommended Loaf Pans

  • 1 Pound Loaf Pan – Make as directed.
  • Citrus Loaf Pan – This loaf pan is a little smaller. Dispose excess batter or use to make a miniature loaf. When cake has cooled, trim off excess from rise and invert to remove.
An orange pound cake on a white serving platter.

Test Kitchen Tips

  • Cream Butter and Sugar Until Light and Fluffy – This gives pound cake its rise in lieu of a leavening agent.
  • Use Only Orange Zest – When zesting an orange, be careful not to zest the white rind, which is bitter in flavor.
  • Bake Low and Slow – Baking low and slow ensures the cake bakes evenly all the way through, without over baking the exterior.
  • Prepare Loaf Pan – Use an easy release spray to generously coat the loaf pan and any crevices to effortlessly release.
An orange pound cake on a white serving platter.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a pound cake the same as a sponge cake?

No, a pound cake is moist and dense while a sponge cake is lighter and has a spongy consistency because the egg whites are whipped.

When do I remove a pound cake from the pan?

Let the cake cool in the pan for at least 15-20 minutes so it can firm up. Then gently turn the pan over to release the cake. If you used enough spray oil, the cake should slide right out.

An orange pound cake on a white serving platter.

What to Do with Leftovers

  • Make French ToastClassic or Crème Brûlée French Toast
  • Freeze Individual Slices – They make a great last minute snack!
  • Make a Trifle – Cut into cubes and layer with pudding, whipped cream and fresh fruit.

Storage Tips

Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Individually sliced pound cake keeps for 3-4 days, covered or wrapped. Or, store covered or in an airtight container up to 7 days in the refrigerator. Make sure that the side that has been cut is covered with plastic.

An orange pound cake on a white serving platter.

To freeze, wrap pound cake in plastic wrap then add an extra layer of aluminum foil or put in a freezer bag to prevent frost and to keep freezer odors from getting into your cake. Freeze up to 3 months.

Serving Suggestions

Garnish with fresh fruit, such as strawberries or blueberries, at a breakfast or brunch.

An orange pound cake on a white platter, surrounded by fresh oranges with green leaves.
An orange pound cake on a white serving platter.
5 from 5 votes
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Orange Pound Cake

Classic pound cake with bright orange flavor! Dense and delicious with a tender crumb and picture perfect slice.
Prep: 10 minutes
+ time to frost and decorate: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 10
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Ingredients  

  • 2 cups unsalted butter softened
  • cups white granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs room temperture
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest

Orange Glaze

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • cup orange juice fresh squeezed or store bought

Optional

  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

Instructions 

  • Grease a 1 pound loaf pan and preheat oven to 300°F.
  • In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat butter until light in color and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Gradually incorporate sugar.
    2 cups unsalted butter, 1½ cups white granulated sugar
    Ingredients for baking orange pound cake arranged on a white surface, including flour, sugar, butter, eggs, milk, and an orange.
  • On low speed, add eggs one at a time. Scrape the bowl down, if needed.
    3 large eggs
    Electric mixer whisk lifting out of a glass bowl with creamy orange pound cake batter, emphasizing the thick texture clinging to the whisk.
  • Alternate adding flour and milk until just incorporated. Add orange zest.
    2 cups all purpose flour, ¾ cup milk, 2 tablespoons orange zest
    A close-up view of creamy orange pound cake batter in a mixing bowl.
  • Pour batter into loaf pan. Bake 1 hour 20 minutes or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Allow cake to cool on wire rack. Invert to release.
    Orange pound cake batter in a rectangular baking dish on a white surface.

Orange Glaze

  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine melted butter, powdered sugar and orange juice until smooth. Pour over cooled cake and allow to set.
    6 tablespoons unsalted butter, 3 cups powdered sugar, ⅓ cup orange juice
    A bowl of flour beside smaller bowls containing cubed butter and melted butter, set against a marble background for making orange pound cake.

Julie’s Tips

  • Cream Butter and Sugar – This gives pound cake its rise in lieu of a leavening agent.
  • Use Only the Zest – When zesting an orange, be careful not to zest the white rind, which is bitter in flavor.
  • Bake Low and Slow – Baking low and slow ensures the cake bakes evenly all the way through, without over baking the exterior. Use the toothpick test for accuracy in bake time as ovens vary.
  • Prepare Loaf Pan – Use an easy release spray to generously coat the loaf pan and any crevices to effortlessly release.

Variations and Substitutions

  • Add chopped nuts into the batter, or just sprinkle nuts on the icing.
  • Mix in mini chocolate chips for an orange and chocolate pound cake!
  • Add poppy seeds to the batter.
  • Bake in mini loaf pans for mini pound cakes. Cut baking time to 40-50 minutes.

Storage Tips

Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Or, store covered or in an airtight container up to 7 days in the refrigerator. Make sure that the side that has been cut is covered with plastic.
To freeze, wrap pound cake in plastic wrap then add an extra layer of aluminum foil or put in a freezer bag to prevent frost and to keep freezer odors from getting into your cake. Freeze up to 3 months.

Video

Calories: 676kcal | Carbohydrates: 68g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 45g | Saturated Fat: 28g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 172mg | Sodium: 414mg | Potassium: 81mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 67g | Vitamin A: 1483IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 1mg

Estimated nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is not guaranteed.

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14 Comments

  1. some of your pound cake recipes use 1 cup of butter and some use 2 cups of butter but the other ingredients are the same.

    just checking if this recipe should truly be 2 cups of butter.

    thanks

  2. This is such an easy and delicious pound cake. I took your suggestion and added poppy seeds. Wow! Delicious nutty flavor. I also added mini chocolate chips to another which was a big hit.