Buttery, moist pound cake is bursting with orange goodness in these citrus-infused mini loaves that taste like sunshine and will have you dreaming of summer!
Y'all. I just got back from SNAP Conference to learn about building and improving this blog, and I'm still trying to process all of the amazing information I soaked in and all of the fabulous bloggers I met! I appreciate your patience over the past week or two as my blog schedule has been a little off and I took longer than usual to reply to comments and respond to e-mails due to my trip. But now I'm home and hugging my babies tight (yippee!), ready to get back in the swing of things and looking forward to life getting back to normal. I'm planning a little recap of SNAP soon for those of you who are interested in hearing more, but in the meantime, I have a new recipe to share. Yay!
April is coming to a close and we've officially reached 90-plus degrees in Texas. That didn't take long, did it? It's entirely possible that we'll hit 100° by the end of May, which makes it incredibly hard for me to fathom the fact that some parts of the country are still getting snow! (Or did I miss the memo and the snow has finally stopped?)
Well, today I have the perfect recipe for those of you already
suffering through enjoying summer temps…as well as for those of you wistfully longing for warmer weather. These mini pound cake loaves are bursting with sunshine-y flavor, thanks to fresh squeezed orange juice, gorgeous flecks of orange zest, a soaking of orange-infused simple syrup, and a sweet and orangey glaze.
Don't they just look happy? Take it from me…they taste happy, too. They're moist, they're sweet, they're full of citrus goodness. You'll want to make this recipe all summer long, whether it feels like that season has already arrived mid-spring, or whether it feels like it will never get here (y'all hang in there…it will!).
You could certainly make this pound cake in a Bundt pan, but I like to make mini loaves because it's easy to freeze a couple of them if we're not going to eat them all within a few days. It's also fun to enjoy a loaf or two ourselves and then give the rest away. After all, these cute cakes make great gifts…who wouldn't enjoy receiving a little loaf of sunshine?! I think they'd be perfect for end-of-school or teacher appreciation gifts coming up in May.
And finally? Mini loaves bake faster...and after enjoying the scent of buttery citrus emanating from the oven, you'll be ready to slice into this yummy cake as soon as the timer goes off! Whatever pan size you choose to use, just be sure to grease and flour your pan(s) well. I even line my loaf pans with a strip of parchment paper to ensure that there’s no sticking.
So the next time you're in a baking sort of mood, I hope you'll keep this recipe in mind. Enjoying a slice of this sunny, citrus-infused pound cake, with its flecks of orange zest and sweet and puckery glaze, is the perfect way to celebrate (or hurry along!) warmer weather!
Orange Pound Cake Mini Loaf Recipe
Orange Pound Cake Mini Loaves
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs, at room temperature
- ¼ cup orange zest
FOR SIMPLE SYRUP:
- ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- ½ cup sugar
FOR GLAZE (OPTIONAL):
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 ½ tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously grease and flour four 5 ¾" x 3 ¼" x 2" mini loaf pans and lay a strip of parchment paper along the bottom and up the two long sides of each pan, pressing the paper into the corners of the pan.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. Measure buttermilk, orange juice, and vanilla into a measuring cup. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter until creamy. Blend in sugar and beat for a few minutes until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs, one at a time, and orange zest, and beat until well incorporated.
- With mixer on low, slowly pour in ⅓ of the flour mixture. Mix in half of the buttermilk mixture. Blend in another ⅓ of the flour mixture and remaining buttermilk mixture. Add remaining flour mixture and mix until just blended.
- Divide batter between prepared pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- While loaves bake, prepare orange simple syrup. Stir together ½ cup orange juice and ½ cup sugar in a small pot. Bring to a boil over medium heat while occasionally stirring, then reduce heat and simmer for a few minutes. Remove pot from heat and set aside to cool.
- When cakes are done, cool for 10 minutes before turning out onto wire rack. Set rack over a sheet pan or piece of foil, and using a brush or a spoon, soak each cake with simple syrup. Allow to cool completely.
- For glaze, whisk together powdered sugar and 1 ½ tablespoons orange juice in a small bowl. Drizzle over cakes and allow to set and harden before wrapping loaves or storing them in an airtight container.
- If you don't have buttermilk on hand, make your own by pouring 2 generous teaspoons of lemon juice or white vinegar into a measuring cup, and then adding milk up to the ¾ cup line. Allow to sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes or until it begins to thicken and curdle.
- Two large oranges gave me enough juice and zest for this recipe.
- If making this recipe in two 8 ½ x 4 ½ x 2 ½-inch loaf pans or one Bundt pan, start checking for doneness at 45 minutes. Cake is done when a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean (after probably no longer than an hour).