Orange Walnut White Wine Cake

Midterms started this week, so the stress level around our suite has been pretty high for the past several days. On Thursday night, we decided to start the weekend a little early and have some wine and dessert before buckling down to study for exams. And, of course, I felt like baking to destress and make something to enjoy with our wine.

For a while, we had a mostly full bottle of unpalatable White Zinfandel sitting in our refridgerator because no one could bear to pour it all down the drain. So I decided to put the undrinkable wine to good use and bake with it. I made a cake with olive oil and cornmeal and orange zest and yucky White Zinfandel and it turned out wonderful! I know the combination of ingredients sounds really odd, but they all come together to make a really lovely cake.

Yes, I know, this cake is not pretty. My horrible photography skills probably make it look even worse, but please do not judge this cake by its looks because it is sooo good! Trust me. I ate half the thing by myself in one sitting.  It’s light and moist and citrusy, and the crunchy walnut sugar topping is super yum. This cake was terrific with multiple glasses of wine, but it would be lovely with a cup of tea too 🙂

Orange Walnut White Wine Cake

Source: adapted from Vanilla Garlic


  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • finely grated zest of one orange
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup sugar, plus 1/4 cup for topping
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup White Zinfandel (Or any white wine)
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper and brush with olive oil.

2. In  large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.

3. In a separate bowl, whisk together oil, eggs, sugar, wine, and orange juice until smooth.

4. Add dry ingedients to wet ingredients and whisk gently, until just combined. Stir in orange zest.

5. Pour batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle chopped walnuts and remaining sugar evenly on top of cake batter.

6. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.



Filed under Cakes/Cupcakes, Dessert

6 responses to “Orange Walnut White Wine Cake

  1. hanjoon

    ah i really liked this one..too bad i only got a slice

  2. Princess

    This cake was very light and fluffy!
    Not so sweet with just the right texture.
    Another plus: I didn’t feel guilty while eating it!

  3. what a unique and delicious cake!

  4. Oranges, Walnuts & White Wine?! Oh My…Gotta have some!

  5. Popped in to say hi! This looks even better than the pumpkin roll!

  6. sounds interesting! I’ll put this recipe on my list of cakes I want to try. sounds right up my alley. 🙂 thanks! Cheers! sheila

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