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Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake with Espresso and Almonds

6 votes, average: 3.67 out of 56 votes, average: 3.67 out of 56 votes, average: 3.67 out of 56 votes, average: 3.67 out of 56 votes, average: 3.67 out of 5


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Easy but takes some time
Pumpkin olive oil cake | Something New For Dinner This Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake is a nice option to pumpkin pie. Frankly it is so delicious you will not want to reserve it just for Thanksgiving. It is mildly sweet, crunchy on the outside and moist and tender on the inside, almost like a good chocolate chip cookie. It makes for a wonderful dessert, but I am willing to bet if you have any leftovers you will enjoy it for breakfast the next day with a nice cup of coffee. I admit it, that's what I do!

Why Olive Oil Cake?

Olive oil makes for an incredibly moist cake, with a light and delicious crumb. An olive oil cake will last days without drying out or losing its deliciousness. In fact, an olive oil cake is better a day or two after it is made. Just wrap it tightly in plastic wrap until you are ready to serve.  

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An Important Step When Making this Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake

Although this cake recipe includes both baking powder and baking soda to help it rise, the methodology of beating the eggs with the sugar for a solid 10 minutes is important to help the cake rise and achieve a light-but-toothsome crumb. So don't shortcut the beating of the eggs and sugar. Set a timer and do a thorough job.

Sugared Espresso Almond Crust

Pumpkin olive oil cake | Something New For Dinner Instead of greasing the cake pan with butter, you use olive oil and then you dust the pan with a mixture of granulated sugar and espresso powder. Likewise, before you put the cake in the oven you sprinkle the top with the sugar and espresso mixture and finish the cake with a healthy sprinkling of sliced almonds. This creates a crisp, slightly sweet, espresso-scented, nutty crust that surrounds the moist cake.
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Tools Needed to Make This Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake

Pumpkin olive oil cake | Something New For Dinner
  • 9" spring form pan - I think this is the perfect pan for this cake.
  • Offset spatula -- If you don't own one of these already, treat yourself and buy one. You will be amazed at all the good things you can do with them, from releasing cakes and muffins from their pans, to spreading frosting, to pushing brownie batter into the corner of a baking pan.

More Olive Oil Cakes

Pumpkin olive oil cake | Something New For Dinner If you like this pumpkin olive oil cake, you will want to check out these additional cakes made with olive oil. Print

Pumpkin Olive Oil Cake with Espresso, Grand Marnier and Almonds

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  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hours 35 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • 1 1/2 cups olive oil, divided, plus some extra for oiling the pan
  • 1 1/4 cups of granulated sugar, divided
  • 4 t espresso powder, divided
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 1/3 cup almond flour (you can buy it or toast almonds and grind your own)
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 2 t ground cinnamon
  • 1 t powdered ginger
  • 1/2 t freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 t ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup Grand Marnier (bourbon would be good too)
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 t vanilla
  • Zest from 1/2 an orange
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • Edible flowers (optional)
  • Mint sprigs (optional)


  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut a circle of parchment paper to fit the bottom of a 9″ springform pan. Wipe the bottom and the sides of the pan with olive oil. Place the parchment circle in the bottom of the pan and smooth to remove air pockets. 
  2. Mix 1/4 cup granulated sugar with 2 teaspoon of espresso powder in a small bowl. Sprinkle half of the mixture in the bottom of the pan, moving the pan around to coat the bottom and sides of the pan.  Set pan and remaining sugar and espresso mixture aside.
  3. In a medium bowl mix cake flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and 2 teaspoons of espresso powder together. Set aside.
  4. In a small bowl whisk together the Grand Marnier, orange juice and vanilla. Set aside.
  5. Put the eggs, 1 cup of sugar and orange zest in a large bowl and whisk together on high speed for 10 minutes until the mixture has become pale and yellow. 
  6. Using a measuring cup with a pour spout slowly add 1 1/4 cups olive oil to the egg and sugar mixture, beating in until fully incorporated. 
  7. Fold in the pumpkin puree and mix just until blended. 
  8. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the egg, sugar, pumpkin and olive oil  mixture, mixing on low speed until incorporated. Scrape down and add one half of the Grand Marnier and orange juice mixture and mix until incorporated. Repeat, mixing in one third of the dry ingredients, then the remaining Grand Marnier mixture and finally the last third of the dry ingredients, scraping and mixing until fully incorporated. 
  9. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Sprinkle the remaining sugar and espresso mixture over the top of the batter. Finish by sprinkling the sliced almonds over the sugar-topped batter. 
  10. Place the cake in the center of the oven and immediately reduce the temperature to 350 degrees F, or 325 degrees F if you have a convection oven. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes until a toothpick inserted deep into the cake comes out clean. 
  11. Allow the cake to cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Using a chop stick, poke holes all over the top of the cake. Slowly drizzle the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil over the top of the cake and into the holes, allowing the cake to absorb the oil.
  12. Run an offset spatula or a knife around the edges of the pan to loosen and release the springform pan. Transfer to a rack to cool completely. If not eating the same day, wrap in plastic wrap until you are ready to eat. Cake will get better the next day and will keep for several days wrapped in plastic.
  13. When ready to serve decorate with edible flowers and mint.


Use a high quality, extra virgin olive oil for this recipe. You can also use an orange infused olive oil. It is most important that the olive oil you use to drizzle the cake is a high quality fragrant olive oil.


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