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top view of cake on white plate with orange slices on top
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4.41 from 15 votes

Hazelnut Orange Syrup Cake

Bursting with vibrant and refreshing orange flavour, this hazelnut and orange syrup cake is incredibly moist and fluffy, with a soft crumb. And the best thing? It pops right out of the pan, fully decorated and ready to eat with a big scoop of whipped cream, coffee mascarpone or vanilla ice cream! A drizzle of easy orange sugar syrup amplifies the refreshing citrus tang, making each bite completely irresistible. It is perfect for afternoon tea, or any time of the day!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
0 mins
Total Time1 hr 45 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Australian
Servings: 10
Calories: 483kcal


Orange sugar syrup

  • ¾ cups caster sugar
  • cup orange juice (juice from 1-2 oranges)
  • 2 oranges thinly sliced (leave the peel on, or remove it depending on your preference)

Orange and hazelnut cake

  • 1 cup butter (250 grams), room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups caster sugar
  • 4 eggs large, room temperature
  • 1 cup hazelnut flour
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • zest of two oranges
  • ¾ cup orange juice approximately 3 oranges
  • ½ cup sour cream


  • Pre-heat oven to 160C° (fan forced). Grease and line a 23cm cake tin with baking paper, with the paper also folded slightly up the sides.

For the orange sugar syrup

  • Place the sugar and juice into a large saucepan and place over low-medium heat. Bring to a slow simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Place the orange slices into the hot syrup and simmer, covered, for 3-4 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and carefully remove the orange slices using a fork. Arrange the orange slices evenly along the bottom of the lined cake tin, on top of the baking paper. Leave the syrup in the saucepan (off the heat) and set it aside to finish cooking when the cake is almost done.

For the cake

  • Place the butter, and sugar and orange zest into a large mixing bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until pale and creamy.
  • Add the eggs, one at a time, beating between each addition until completely combined and fluffy.
  • Combine the hazelnut meal, flour and baking powder into a bowl and stir to combine.
  • Fold in half of the hazelnut mixture to the butter mixture, until just combined.
  • Add the juice and sour cream and stir until combined.
  • Fold in the remaining hazelnut mixture until just combined.
  • Pour the cake mixture into the cake tin, over the top of the sliced oranges.
  • Cover the cake tin firmly with foil and slow bake for 1 hour and 30 - 1 hour and 40 minutes, or until the cake is completely cooked through. You can test by inserting a wooden skewer into the centre of the cake. If it comes out clean, with a few crumbs, the cake is ready.
  • When the cake is almost done, return the orange syrup to a low simmer for around 5 minutes, until slightly thickened. Add the syrup to a pouring jug.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and carefully turn it onto a wire rack. Using a wooden skewer, poke several holes in the cake, about halfway down. Using a tray directly beneath the cake/wire rack to catch any stray drips, slowly pour the hot orange syrup over the top of the cake and allow it to soak in.

To serve

  • Cut the cake into slices and serve either hot or cold with some whipped cream, coffee mascarpone or vanilla ice cream. Enjoy!


  • To prevent the orange slices burning in the bottom of the pan, use a layer of baking paper that continues up the edges of the pan (this also helps to prevent any juice leaking). And don’t add the syrup to the cake tin, save it for drizzling over the cake at the end.
  • Keep an eye on the sugar syrup, and gently simmer over low heat. It should not turn brown or become too thick.
  • Check to make sure your orange slices don’t have any remaining seeds, they are not nice to bite into!
  • Take the zest from 1-2 oranges before juicing them.
  • The cake batter requires only minimal mixing, just until the ingredients are combined. Take care not to overmix.
  • Try this cake with some easy coffee mascarpone! To make it, simply beat ½ cup mascarpone with ½ cup thickened cream, 1 teaspoon of vanilla, ⅓ cup icing sugar and 3 tsp espresso coffee (or use 1 tsp instant coffee dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water). Beat until thick and fluffy and store in the fridge until required.
  • The low oven temperature and slow cooking time are important for this recipe, to prevent the orange overcooking and going hard, as well as preventing the cake from over browning in the bottom of the pan. Avoid the urge to turn up the temperature to speed things up!


Calories: 483kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 97mg | Sodium: 44mg | Potassium: 248mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 687IU | Vitamin C: 28mg | Calcium: 97mg | Iron: 2mg