Orange Ricotta Cake

Inspired by a ricotta olive oil cake from Southern Italy, this cake uses canola oil and additions include Chia seed for crunch and cardamom to enhance the orange flavour. The result is a not too sweet, dense bundt cake, good for brown bag lunches, an afternoon snack, or even breakfast.


Tip: A micro plane makes quick work of grating citrus rinds

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Makes: 16 slices


3 cups (750 mL) all purpose wheat flour
1 Tbsp (15 mL) baking soda
1 Tbsp (15 mL) baking powder
1 tsp (5 mL) salt 
1 Tbsp (15 mL) cardamom
2 Tbsp (30 mL) Chia or poppy seeds
4 large navel oranges, zested and juiced or 2 cups (500 mL) orange juice

1cup (250 mL) canola oil
1 ½ cups (375 mL) brown sugar
3 eggs
1 cup (250 mL) ricotta cheese
1 cup (250 mL) milk or semi sweet chocolate pieces


Pre heat oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease and lightly flour a 10 cup (2.5 L) bundt pan.

In a large mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cardamom and seeds.

Grate the rind of the two oranges until there is 2 Tbsp (30 mL) of orange zest. Juice the oranges well, including any pulp from the juicer. This should yield 2 cups (500 mL). You will need 1 ½ cups (375 mL) for the batter, and remainder for making the chocolate glaze.

In another bowl whisk together 1 ½ cups (375 mL) orange juice, orange zest, canola oil, brown sugar, eggs and ricotta.

Pour wet ingredients into the dry and with an electric mixer or whisk stir until ingredients are blended and smooth. Batter will be thick, similar to muffin batter.

Spoon into the prepared bundt pan. Tap lightly on the counter to even out the batter in the pan. Place on the middle rack and bake for 40 minutes, until cake is golden on top, and an inserted knife comes out clean. Cool on a rack in pan. Invert cake onto a serving plate.

To Glaze:

Melt chocolate in a saucepan or microwave in 1/3 cup (75 mL) of remaining orange juice, stir until very smooth, cool to thicken slightly and pour over cake to drizzle down the sides.