Fresh-squeezed Orange Juice Cake

This sun-kissed cake truly tastes like fresh-squeezed orange juice! That’s because it’s actually made with juice from fresh oranges. With zesty orange curd and buttercream, it’s a substantial dessert, but tastes so light and refreshing!

The key to this cake is to use fresh oranges and squeeze them for the freshest possible tasting orange juice. I’ve made it with the fresh prepared orange juices from the refrigerator section at the market and the flavor is not nearly as good as when you squeeze your own juices. I think you probably already instinctively know this since you’ve undoubtedly tasted juice straight from a juicing machine compared with the store-bought version. There really is nothing quite like fresh-squeezed orange juice and it’s no exception in this cake either!

So, don’t take the lazy route … be sure to pick up at least 4 oranges and a handheld juicer for this dessert and you will be ecstatic you did!

We love this as an alternative to our lemon buttermilk cake with lemon curd and lemonade buttercream frosting! The key to this cake.

Fresh-squeezed Orange Juice Cake

Ingredients

Butter/Sugar:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened to room temp (1 stick or 1/4 pound)
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest

Dries:

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Liquids:

  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/4 cup juice squeezed from fresh oranges
  • 3/4 cup water

Orange Curd Filling:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 6 tablespoons juice of fresh oranges
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • Dash salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter chilled

Fresh Orange Buttercream Frosting:

  • 1 1/2 sticks butter softened to room temperature (3/4 cup or 12 tablespoons)
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup+ juice of fresh oranges

Instructions

DIRECTIONS

  • Place dries (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt) in a bowl, stir well, and set aside. In a large bowl, beat egg whites on high speed of an electric beater until stiff peaks form; set aside.
  • Combine water and fresh-squeezed orange juice in a separate bowl. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add orange zest and mix well. Alternately add flour mixture and juice mixture, beginning and ending with dries.
  • Gently fold in beaten egg whites and spread into two, well-greased or parchment-lined 8-inch cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 25 minutes, or until center springs back when touched. Cool completely, and cut each layer in half horizontally. Can make a day ahead and refrigerate.

Orange Curd Filling:

  • Mix eggs and sugar well. Add orange juice, orange zest, and salt. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Cool before spreading over half-layers of cake.

Fresh Orange Buttercream Frosting:

  • In a large bowl, cream butter with salt and half of the powdered sugar. Add orange juice a little at a time, adding remaining sugar to get to desired spreading consistency. Spread between whole layers and on top of the cake. If you’re good at it, and you have enough frosting, spread remaining frosting on sides of the cake! (I’m not that good, so I often just frost in between layers and on top!)

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