Blood Orange Apple Cider Bundt Cake
Updated: Jan 18
Blood oranges give a sweet and slightly tart flavor that I love! Zesty blood oranges paired with an apple cider reduction make this Bundt cake moist and flavorful. Buttermilk is the secret ingredient, creating a light and airy texture that is unmatched. This Bundt recipe celebrates citrus season with fresh blood oranges and the warmth from the cider and a bit of spice will tide us over until spring arrives. I love this cake so much because while it sounds complex to make, we are really just pouring and stirring here. The result is deliciously rewarding and smells heavenly.
I had originally made this recipe with ghee which provided a nuttier flavor to this cake but did not change the texture. Feel free to use ghee in place of butter in the same amount for a bolder taste to this cake.
I'm often asked how I am able to get my cakes to release so easily from the Bundt pan and the answer is always butter. Many recipes will instruct you to grease the pan with butter and then lightly coat the pan in flour. I don't do this. After many trials, filled with error and flour clumps all over the outside of my Bundt, I gave up on dusting or coating any pan in flour. The trick is to generously (very generously), coat your Bundt pan with soft butter. When I say coat, I really mean slather. Once you've coated your pan, place it in the refrigerator until it is time to bake. The butter will remain at a temperature that will create a barrier between your batter and the pan, forming a perfectly golden outer egde to your cake and prevent sticking. When it's time to remove your cake from the oven, allow the cake to cool for about 20 minutes in the pan before inverting it onto your counter or hard surface (such as a cutting board) to release it from the pan. Once inverted, tap evenly on the bottom of pan before lifting the top to release the cake. This should help the cake slide easily from the pan without getting stuck. I hope this helps you in your Bundt baking!
Let's get baking!
Blood Orange Apple Cider Bundt Cake
1 ½ cups of fresh apple cider*
Zest of 2 blood oranges
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
1 cup of unsalted butter, softened
3 eggs, at room temperature
4 tablespoons of olive oil
3 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup juice from blood oranges (6 to 8 ounces needed, depending on size)
½ cup buttermilk at room temperature
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the Orange-Apple Cider Glaze:
2 tablespoons of reduced apple cider
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh blood orange juice
2 cups powdered sugar
1. To make the reduced cider, cook the 1 ½ cups of apple cider on high until it has reduced to just over ¼ cup. The cider will become slightly thick. Reserve 2 tablespoons of cider for the glaze.
2. Preheat the oven to 350° and grease the Bundt pan generously with butter. Place prepared pan in the refrigerator until it’s time to pour the batter.
3. Whisk together the dry ingredients including spices and set aside.
4. In a separate bowl, juice ½ cup from the blood oranges and whisk together with the buttermilk and vanilla extract and set aside.
5. Using a stand mixer, mix the sugar and orange zest until the sugar becomes crumbly. Add the eggs and beat on medium-high speed until the mixture becomes light and fluffy.
6. Add the ghee to the mixture, beating on medium speed and slowly pour in the olive oil.
7. Slowly add flour mixture to wet mixture, mixing on low and alternating between the orange juice-buttermilk mixture. Combine well but make sure not to over-mix.
8. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cake. Let stand for 10 to 15 minutes before inverting onto rack of platter.
For the glaze, whisk together ingredients until glaze becomes thick. Pour over or pipe glaze onto the top center of the cooled Bundt cake and let drip down the sides of the Bundt. Enjoy!
*If you do not have apple cider, Simply Apple Juice is a great substitute.