Blood Orange and Almond Cakes

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I love the classic combo of orange and almond – borrowing from the concept of an upside-down cake with this recipe

I had an entire box of blood oranges to work through, so have been dreaming up all sorts of recipes!

Vovotelo, a local Cape Town based restaurant used to make an absolutely moreish orange and almond cake. They have since closed down, but I am still determined to create a similar cake one day.

The base of this recipe was adapated from Sweet, by Ottolenghi and Helen Goh. By now, you would know that is my baking bible and I always look to that for inspiration.

I have replaced the lemon in the original recipe with orange, and have add an orange slice on the base of the cake, so when turned over, adds a bit of flair. I decided to take it a step further and add some flaked almonds around the edges of the cake. Using the marmalade imparts a slightly bitter taste, which provides a nice balance to an otherwise sweet cake.

If you make this recipe, please share it with me by tagging me on Instagram @adventureswithsugar or on Facebook at Adventures with Sugar.


  • 60ml water
  • 100g sugar
  • 1 – 2 medium blood oranges


  1. Grease a 12 cup cupcake tin and line the bottom of each cup with a disc of baking paper, covering just the base of the cup. Set aside.
  2. To make the syrup, add the sugar and the water to a microwave safe bowl and heat in around 30 second bursts.
  3. Give it a stir now and then to make sure the sugar completely dissolved into the water.
  4. The syrup should be slightly thickened, once all the sugar has dissolved. Set aside to cool and thicken further.
  5. Thinly slice your blood oranges into rounds. I find this easiest to do with a sharp serrated knife. Slice off the skin of the oranges to remove the bitterness.
  6. Take each slice, and place it onto the base of each cupcake tin. If it is too big to fit onto the base, make a slit from the middle of the slice to the end, such that you can manipulate the slice to fit the base of the cupcake tin.
  7. Pour the syrup into each of the cups, until just covering each orange slice, and set aside.


  • 180g salted butter
  • 160g caster sugar
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 4 jumbo eggs, room temperature
  • 180g ground almonds
  • 45g cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8tsp salt
  • 60ml blood orange juice, freshly squeezed
  • 4 Tablespoons orange marmalade
  • 100g flaked almonds.


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius. Place the 100g of flaked almonds on a baking tray and toast until golden. This should take between 4 – 6 minutes. Keep a close eye on it, as it can burn.
  2. Cream the butter, sugar and orange zest, until pale and fluffy. This should take around 4 minutes.
  3. Add in the eggs, one at a time. Wait until the one egg is fully incorporated until you add the next one. Do not worry if the mixture curdles.
  4. Fold in the almond flour, flour, baking powder and salt.
  5. Finally add the orange juice and two tablespoons of the marmalade.
  6. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes, until the edges of the cake are golden and a skewer inserted comes out clean.
  7. Let the cakes cool in the tin for an hour, before turning them out. Then let them cool to room temperature.
  8. When cool, add a teaspoon of water to the marmalade and heat it for about 10 seconds in the microwave. Give it a stir. This helps to thin the marmalade.
  9. Brush the marmalade around the side of the cakes and then stick the flaked almonds to the sides, using the marmalade as glue.

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1 Comment

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    […] fact, these cakes remind me a bit of my blood orange and almond tea cakes, but are less fussy as the slices go on top of the cake and the risk of them sticking to the tin is […]

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