`Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Mascarpone Buttercream and Candied Orange Zest - Olive Oil Times

Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Mascarpone Buttercream and Candied Orange Zest

This lemon scented olive oil cake is a dream to make and will quickly become a fan favorite around your table.
Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Mascarpone Buttercream and Candied Orange Zest
Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Mascarpone Buttercream and Candied Orange Zest
Sep. 1, 2020
Paul Kostandin

Olive oil cakes are some of the eas­i­est and most enjoy­able cakes to make at home. They require less work because you aren’t wor­ried about cream­ing but­ter and sugar together, and they tend to stay moist longer than their dairy laden cousins. I like to use a del­i­cate, less spicy olive oils when bak­ing. They add just a hint of olive fla­vor that plays per­fectly with the sweet ingre­di­ents in this cake. With just whis­per olive and a hint of lemon in the sponge off­set by the deli­cious can­died orange sliv­ers on top, this cake is the per­fect Sunday after­noon treat.


Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Mascarpone Buttercream and Candied Orange

Course: DessertCuisine: American, French


Prep time


Cooking time



This light and lemony olive oil cake is the per­fect sum­mer after­noon treat. A light lemon-scented sponge, topped with a rich mas­car­pone but­ter­cream and elec­tri­fy­ing can­died orange zest, this cake is sure to become a house­hold sta­ple!


  • For the Cake
  • 4ozExtra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 3/4cupSugar

  • 2eaLarge Eggs

  • 1tspLemon Juice

  • 1tbspLemon Zest

  • 1/2cupWhole Milk

  • 1 1/2cupsAll Purpose Flour

  • 1tspBaking Powder

  • 1/2 tspSalt

  • For the Mascarpone Buttercream
  • 4ozMascarpone

  • 4 ozButter

  • 2cupsPowdered Sugar

  • For the Candied Orange Zest
  • 1eaOrange

  • 1/4cupSugar

  • 1cupWater

  • 1cupSugar (for toss­ing the fin­ished zest)


  • For the Cake
  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. 
  • Combine olive oil, eggs, and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer
  • Mix with the whisk attach­ment until the mix­ture is light and fluffy. 
  • Add the lemon juice, zest, and milk to the mixer
  • Add the flour, bak­ing pow­der and salt.
  • Mix until the dry ingre­di­ents are com­pletely com­bined and the bat­ter is smooth. 
  • Pour the bat­ter into two, 6 inch cake pans. Place the cake spans in the pre­heated oven and bake for 25 – 30 min­utes or until the cake is golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean. 
  • Remove the cakes from the oven and allow them to cool fully before dec­o­rat­ing. 
  • For the Mascarpone Buttercream
  • Combine the but­ter and mas­car­pone in the bowl of a stand mixer. 
  • Mix on medium speed with the whisk attach­ment until the but­ter and mas­car­pone are light and fluffy and com­pletely com­bined. 
  • Reduce the mixer to low speed. 
  • Add the pow­der sugar while the mixer is run­ning, a 1/4 cup at a time. Allow the sugar to mix in before adding another scoop. 
  • Once all the sugar is com­bined, increase the mixer speed to medium/high and mix for about a minute. 
  • Transfer the but­ter­cream to an air­tight con­tainer and store in the refrig­er­a­tor until needed. Allow the but­ter­cream 15 min­utes to warm up before using it.
  • For the Candied Orange Zest
  • Using a peeler, care­fully remove the outer zest from the orange.
  • Once the zest is com­pletely removed, slice the zest into thin shreds. 
  • Place the zest in a small sauce pan with the water, and sugar. 
  • Squeeze the juice from the orange into the sauce pan and place it on the stove over medium heat. 
  • Reduce the liq­uid in the sauce pan until it is thick and syrupy, the zest should begin to look translu­cent. 
  • Strain the excess syrup away from the cooked zest. Toss the zest in 1/2 a cup of sugar, mak­ing sure that each strand is com­pletely coated in sugar. 
  • Store the zest in the sugar until needed for dec­o­ra­tion. The zest will keep best in a cool, dark place with low humid­ity like a cab­i­net or drawer. 
  • To Assemble
  • Place 1 cake round on a cake stand or cake plate. 
  • Spoon a third of the icing on top of the cake round and spread it evenly over the top.
  • Gently place the sec­ond cake round on top of the first.
  • Spoon another 1/3 of the icing on top of the sec­ond cake round and spread evenly to the side. 
  • Using an off­set spat­ula care­fully apply the last 1/3 of the frost­ing to the out­side of the cake and spread it evenly around the sides.
  • Sprinkle the can­died orange zest over the cake to gar­nish.
  • Enjoy!


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