Grandma's Orange Glaze Cake

This is one of those recipes that I hold very near and dear to my heart.  It is not really one of mine but, one that came from my husband’s grandmother.  Although Brian says he really does not remember his grandmother making it (she passed when he was still quite young) his mom carried on the tradition making it in the winter when oranges are in season.  She always made it in a sheet pan and glazed it while still warm. It is a lusciously moist cake that you will want to continue to snack on. We would devour it; well all but Brian’s father who hates oranges. Ever since she gave me the recipe I have been making it. I made the addition of the dried cranberries when the original always had raisins. Brian and I both feel that the dried cranberries add a nice balance of tartness to the sweetness of the cake; not to mention the speckling of color the dried cranberries add look beautiful. When I would make it in my bakery I would make it in a nine inch round pan. It was really popular, loved by many, and often requested when I catered brunches.  I think Brian’s grandmother would be so pleased to know her recipe has carried on like it has.

Orange Glaze Cake


8 oz of butter

1 cup of sugar

2 eggs

1 ½ cup of flour

1 tsp of baking soda

1 cup of buttermilk

1 cup of dried cranberries, chopped

Zest of 1 orange



Juice of 1 orange

¾ cup of sugar

First, pre heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Take a sheet pan and lightly butter,  four it, and set it aside. In the bowl of a mixer place your butter and sugar and cream it well. Add in your eggs and mix again until smooth and light.

Next, in two stages, add in a bit of your flour mixed with the baking soda.  Once that is combined add in half your butter milk and combine well. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl and repeat with your flour and buttermilk. Gently fold in your zest and dried cranberries. Pour into your prepared pan, smooth out and place in the center of your pre heated oven and bake for about 25 minutes, until firm and it will start to pull away from the sides of your pan.

Finally, while you cake is baking mix together your glaze by whisking together your sugar and orange juice until well combined. If you feel your glaze is too thick  you can add a bit of water to it or more freshly squeezed juice…you are looking for  it to be thick yet runny. Pour your glaze over the warm cake and spread evenly if needed. Let it cool about 15 minutes before slicing and serving. Wrap well and store at room temperature up to 3 days – if you can make it last that long