This gluten-free lemon olive oil cake recipe uses fresh lemons and lemon zest, almond flour and sugar to create a light, moist, just-sweet-enough dessert! A slice of this lemon olive oil cake pairs perfectly with a cup of coffee or tea. This recipe is easy enough to whip up on a weeknight but fancy enough to impress at a party!
I’ve had the idea of making a lemon olive oil cake for a while now, mostly because most of the gluten-free desserts I make tend to be really rich – heavy on the butter and sugar, which is usually meant to complement the more dense gluten-free flours called for in gluten-free baking. Desserts that I consider JessOBSESSED specialties, like my:
But, I wanted to try something different. Something light and fluffy, flavorful but not rich. I wanted to create a dessert that would be easy to whip up on a weeknight but would still make that weeknight dessert feel special – you know what I mean?
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I tried a few different versions of this cake, and found most of them too dense. I tried pairing two cake layers with my favorite cream cheese frosting from my Banana Chocolate Chip Cupcakes but it was too overpowering for this cake. Turns out, the light dusting of powdered sugar on top was all this cake needed!
It might seem like a simple cake recipe, but the olive oil and almond flour create a deceptively complex flavor and the use of fresh lemon zest really helps the bright, sunny lemon flavor shine.
What Ingredients Do I Need To Make Gluten-Free Lemon Olive Oil Cake?
The simplest of ingredients! This recipe comes together so quickly with ingredients you likely have on hand:
- Fresh lemons: I highly recommend organic lemons, if you are able. Because this recipe calls for fresh lemon zest, you’ll significantly minimize your exposure to pesticides with organic lemons.
- Almond flour: I used unblanched almond flour, which maintains the skin of the almonds, and is typically less fine than blanched almond flour. I liked the texture and extra nuttiness of the almond skins, but I think blanched almond flour would work just as well.
- Gluten-free flour: I like to mix different types of gluten-free flours for the best flavor and texture in gluten-free cake recipes. I used this gluten-free flour for the recipe.
- Olive oil: I recommend using a high-quality Italian extra-virgin Italian olive oil, preferable cold-pressed and unrefined.
- Powdered sugar: The perfect finishing touch to add some extra sweetness and texture to the lemon olive oil cake
Can You Make Lemon Olive Oil Cake In Advance?
Most definitely! You can make this cake up to 2-3 days in advance of serving, storing in an airtight container at room temperature and it will stay moist and delicious.
The cake will keep for up to 5 days and can also be frozen for up to six months!
How To Make Gluten-Free Lemon Olive Oil Cake
This recipe is so simple, all you need is 10 minutes to whip up the cake batter, and then 45-50 minutes in the oven, and you’ll be able to enjoy a homemade lemon olive oil cake.
Start by mixing together the flours, baking powder and salt and mix really well in a medium bowl so all the dry ingredients are well-combined.
Juice and zest the lemons.
In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together until pale yellow and frothy, I like to use an electronic hand mixer. Add olive oil, lemon juice and zest and mix by hand (you don’t want to over-mix).
Fold the flour mixture into the eggs/sugar/lemon/oil bowl and mix by hand until just combined.
Pour batter into an 8-inch round pan and bake at 350F for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cake.
Let the cake cool and then sprinkle powdered sugar on top. Store for up to 5 days in an airtight container or serve immediately!
Pro tip: Make a quick berry sauce (blueberries or strawberries with half a cup to one cup of sugar, cooked down in a pot for roughly 20 minutes) to pour over the cake just before serving for an extra-delicious topping!
- 3 eggs
- 3/4 cup sugar
- Zest of one lemon
- 1 cup gluten free flour
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 3 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- Pinch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Cut a piece of parchment paper to place on the bottom of the pan and then lightly grease the paper and pan.
- Measure out and mix together the flours, baking powder and salt and sift together really well in a medium bowl so all the dry ingredients are well-combined.
- Zest and then juice the lemon. Measure 2 tbsp of the lemon juice and set aside in a small bowl.
- In a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar together with a mixing stand or hand mixer until pale yellow and frothy.
- Add olive oil, lemon juice and zest to the egg mixture and combine by hand (you don’t want to over-mix).
- Fold the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and mix by hand until just combined.
- Pour batter into the greased 8-inch round pan and bake at 350F for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cake.
- Let the cake cool and then sprinkle powdered sugar on top. Store for up to 5 days in an airtight container or serve immediately!
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