Pan d’arancio, a Sicilian orange cake

pan d'arancio

Lemons, tangerines, clementines, oranges.
If there’s something I impatiently wait at this time of the year, that are citruses.
The scent of the lemon zest, the sweetness of a clementine, the intensity in colour and aroma of a blood orange: each citrus has its own features which add value to both savoury and sweet recipes.

If you have a look at the recipes on this blog, you would easily find here and there lemon: you’ll see its juice in these meatballs with leeks, its lemon zests in pasta dishes as these amazing linguine with squids and chickpeas puree, or in some sweet treats like the short crust of Valentini biscuits or as the hero in lemon curd.

Lemon is my big love, but I want to start experimenting more and more also with tangerines. clementines and oranges. While in the backstage of my kitchen I’m testing some new recipes, today I share with you a cake I have been making for two years, and it has always got huge success.
It is a very simple cake directly from Sicily, which celebrates its most famous winter citrus: Pan d’arancio, a moist and soft orange cake.
The peculiarity of this cake is that you have to use the whole orange, including its skin. Be sure to choose an organic orange and if you find too many seeds, just remove them.

The mixing method is the same of muffin or banana bread, where you keep the dry ingredients separated to the wet ones, and then you roughly mix them with a fork. In this way, the cake texture will be much softer.
The recipe is from Letizia Bruno and written inside the Facebook group “Paoletta di Anice e Cannella”, an amazing source for memorable sweets, bread and ‘grandi lievitati’ as panettone.

pan d'arancio


Ingredients for a bundt cake pan of about 23 cm diameter
(I used the one for Gugelhupf)

1 big orange (skin included), about 280-300 g
300 g flour
15 g baking powder
250 g sugar
100 g delicate seed oil
100 g milk
3 eggs

1.Carefully wash the orange, dry it out and cut it into pieces. Mix them until you get a smooth purée and pour it in a bowl. Add the milk, the oil and the eggs, previously slightly beaten with a fork.

2.In another bowl, sift the flour and the baking powder and add the sugar and mix well. Now add the dry ingredients into the wet ones, add a pinch of salt and mix roughly with a fork, stirring not too much and leaving some traces of flour in the batter.

3.Grease with butter and sprinkle with flour a cake pan and pour the batter in it. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 175°C for about 40 minutes. Check the cake for doneness with a toothpick.

4.Let the cake cool down and then remove it from the cake pan and place it over a dish. It will be soft for some days, if properly covered with a dome.


Recipe Name
Pan d'arancio, a Sicilian orange cake
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This post is also available in: Italian

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