This is my all-time favourite pound cake recipe. I love the texture of this cake. It’s dense, but it is also moist. It slices beautifully, so you can have a thin slice and not feel guilty.
I made this cake for my niece’s birthday celebration yesterday. Everybody loved it. This cake is really moist. If you use an intricate Nordic Ware bundt cake pan, you’ll also have the benefit of crisp edges, which is kind of fun. I greased the pan with a generous coating of butter and flour. I wanted to be sure that I got the cake out in one piece, When your cake batter is dense like this one, it’s a good idea to put the greased cake pan in the fridge for 15 minutes so that the butter firms up. That way the dense batter won’t move the butter/flour coating and you’ll be able to successfully turn out your cake every time, hopefully.
Because I like this recipe so much, I adapt it with different flavours depending on what’s in season. Blood oranges are available in stores right now, so I’m including an easy blood orange glaze recipe.
I have also included a chocolate marble variation. It adds another flavor profile and a little decadence. I used ruby Callebaut chocolate in my niece’s birthday cake below. It goes really well with the blood orange glaze. It’s also really beautiful. It would be a great cake to make for Valentine’s Day, a birthday or any occasion.
Moist pound cake
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tsp orange or lemon zest (one orange or lemon)
- 4 large eggs (room temperature)
- 1 cup buttermilk (room temperature)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
Generously grease the bundt cake pan with butter. Be sure to get the butter into every corner of the pan. Put the buttered pan in the refrigerator while you make the batter. (Refrigerating the buttered pan will ensure that the butter coating doesn't move when the batter is poured into the pan).
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a bowl, beat the butter, sugar and orange zest until light and fluffy, around 3-4 minutes.
Add the eggs one at a time. Blend until incorporated. The batter may look a little curdled. This is normal.
Mix all of the dry ingredients together with a whisk (flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt). Add half of the dry ingredients to the batter. Blend on low speed until mostly incorporated.
Add half of the buttermilk and the vanilla. Blend until mostly incorporated.
Add the remainder of the dry ingredients and blend until mostly incorporated.
Add the remaining buttermilk. Blend until mostly incorporated. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer. Finish mixing the batter by hand with a spatula.
Remove the cake pan from the refrigerator. If you're using an intricate cake pan, you will want to flour the pan for extra insurance. Pour the batter into the pan. (See marble variation below for specific instructions).
Bake the cake at 325 degrees for 60 to 65 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Allow the cake to cool for 15 minutes before flipping the cake onto a serving plate. Shake the pan from side to side to determine if it has released from the sides of the pan. If not, check again in five minutes.
You'll need 50 grams (1/3 cup) of quality chocolate for the marble variation.
Cut the chocolate into small pieces. Put the chocolate in a bowl and microwave for 30 seconds at a time until the chocolate is mostly melted. Then stir by hand until it has completely melted. Allow the chocolate to cool for 5 minutes. (I added 2 drops of burgundy gel food colouring to the melted Ruby chocolate to enhance the colour of the chocolate in this recipe).
Pour half of the batter into the pan. Then add the cooled chocolate. (Try to keep the chocolate away from the edges of the pan). Then add the rest of the batter.
Use a skewer or a fork handle to swirl the chocolate into the batter. Five to six swirls is enough movement to incorporate the chocolate into the batter and create a nice pattern.
Blood Orange Bourbon Glaze
- 2 tbsp blood orange juice
- 1 tsp bourbon (optional)
- 1 cup icing sugar
Whisk together until smooth. Allow the glaze to rest 5 minutes before topping the cake. Wait until the cake is cool before topping the cake.
You can add more icing sugar for a thicker glaze.