Cardamom Lime Olive Oil Cake

I was gifted with another large box of yellow limes the other day which I can safely call the highlight of my week. After I arrange a choral ode of praise to a certain mamacita whose lime tree has rained citrus excellence upon my humble kitchen, I’ll finish figuring out what to do with all of them! See you all here for margaritas when the sun comes out, ok?

The first thing I decided to put these shiny suns to work on was an olive oil cake. I haven’t made one since Lottie + Doof’s olive oil cake with raspberries, and that was WELL over a year ago. I was due.

The first time I made a cake with olive oil was an unfortunate evening when I was twelve and making what I thought would be a totally excellent chocolate cake from a box. I can’t think of that many ways to seriously endanger the edibility of something as simple as a dry mix that you must only add one egg, some water and a bit of oil to before baking. Of course there’s always the possibility of burning it but if you remain so unsuspecting as I was at the age of twelve, you could also use olive oil where canola is called for. You could also, err, accidentally use DOUBLE the amount listed. I’m not even going to attempt to explain my way out of that one. Anyway, I took one bite of the cake and spit it clear across the kitchen. Not sexy.

Let us speak of better things. This cake absolutely intends to contain olive oil. It’s a requirement! The flavor depends on it. If you’ve never tasted an olive oil cake then I think it’s probably your time. This confection is an option to consider for those of you who are watching your intake of animal fats. Yes, there are three eggs in the batter but not a trace of butter is to be found. I feel good about that!

The flavor of this cake is great on it’s own but I wanted an added textural element. My first thought was candied lime slices, but I didn’t want to take the limes overboard. I opted for a grapefruit compote. . . and some powdered sugar. Don’t judge.

Cardamom Lime Olive Oil Cake


½ C Olive Oil

1 C All Purpose Flour

½ C Semolina Flour

1 ½ tsp Baking Powder

1 tsp Ground Cardamom

½ tsp Salt

¼ tsp Baking Soda

½ C Sugar, divided

3 Large Eggs, separated

1/2 C Nonfat Greek Yogurt

¼ C Lime Juice

1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 Degrees F and line an 8×2” cake pan with a parchment round. Whisk both flours together with baking powder, cardamom, salt and baking soda. Set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat ¼ C sugar with the olive oil for one minute. Beat in egg yolks and then flour mixture. Beat in yogurt, lime juice, and vanilla. In a separate, medium bowl, with a hand mixer, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in remaining ¼ C sugar until peaks are stiff. Fold egg whites into batter in two additions until just blended. Transfer to cake pan, smooth top. Bake on a rack centered in the oven until top is uniformly golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, approx 40-45 minutes. Let cake cool in pan 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack. Allow to cool completely before serving. Serve with grapefruit compote.

Ginger Grapefruit Compote


½ C Water

1 C Sugar

4 T Fresh Ginger, Cut into 4 large pieces

1 Ruby Grapefruit, pith and peel removed, cut into rounds

Directions: In a medium saucepan, bring water and sugar to a boil, stirring sugar until it dissolves.  Add the ginger and grapefruit, reducing the heat, and simmer until the liquid has reduced to a thick syrup. Remove from heat and allow to cool before serving.

5 thoughts on “Cardamom Lime Olive Oil Cake

  1. oh i don’t judge i just have to get some powdered sug right now to try this! it has to be better than continuing to overboard on the margaritas which i have been drinking without the sun, result: really annoying (to others) teeth chattering and painful ( to me) brain freeze

    • Is it raining on you today? Cuz it’s raining whiskers on us! I thought to save margeys for a sunny day but you might have had the right idea to use tequila as a space heater.

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