If you love oranges, you will want to try this moist Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cake recipe. I am crazy about how the fresh orange and almond flavors blend together. The orange and almond flour make this cake so tender and moist. If you want an easy new cake recipe, this is a great one. Make it in under 45 minutes.

A gluten free orange cake on a cake plate.

(*This post was sponsored by California Grown. All of the opinions are my own.)

You are in for a special treat today because this moist, delicious, gluten-free cake with almond flour is so good! It has the perfect blend of juicy oranges and almond flour that makes it taste so good! You will find this doesn’t look like a typical gluten free cake recipe because it is denser. Don’t worry because this moist orange almond cake is as delicious as any of my gluten free cake recipes!

Our family is lucky to live in California and have easy access to delicious fresh foods. We shop at our local farmer’s market here every week, but you can also find California Grown products in your grocery stores!

At this time of year, citrus is king in the markets. I have wanted to perfect my gluten free almond flour cake recipe but add a special twist. I was able to find a vendor with several varieties of fresh oranges. I bought a few different ones to test out the flavors. We like to make cakes a lot in the Fearless Dining household. If you like to bake, you will love these gluten free cake recipes!

I can’t wait to hear what you think! If you are excited about this cake recipe, give this delicious Gluten Free Date Nut Cake recipe a try, too!

Allergen Information:

This delicious orange cake is gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, oat-free, and refined sugar-free.

Photos of the gluten free orange cake ingredients.

Ingredient Notes:

For the full list of ingredients and amounts, please go to the recipe card below.

  • Almond Flour—To make almond flour from scratch, Add 1 cup of raw almonds to your grinder. Grind until the almonds are flour-like. Be careful not to grind over, or you will end up with fresh almond butter!
  • Gluten Free Flour Blend – Gluten free flour blend – I tested this recipe using Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 Gluten Free Flour Blend and King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Gluten Free Blend. That doesn’t mean others will not work; I have not tested other flours.
  • Xanthan Gum – If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain a binder like xanthan gum or guar gum, please add 3/4 teaspoon.
  • Baking Powder and Soda – Use aluminum-free baking powder.
  • Eggs – Use size large eggs.
  • Dairy-Free Milk – I used almond milk, but other dairy-free milk will work. I do not recommend canned coconut milk.
  • Coconut Sugar – I used coconut sugar, but you can use brown sugar if you do not care about the sugar.
  • Coconut Oil – I love the flavor of coconut oil with the orange flavor. You can use any light oil in this recipe or butter.

Step-By-Step Photos and Directions:

The orange cake photos of steps one and two.

Step 1: Add the dry ingredients to a large mixing bowl and whisk to blend.

Step 2: In a smaller bowl, add your wet ingredients and orange zest to a bowl and whisk to blend. If your coconut oil is solid, which is common during the colder months, warm it up in the microwave for 20-25 seconds.

Wet ingredients poured onto the dry ingredients in a bowl.

Step 3: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a large spoon until the batter is barely mixed.

📢 Sandi says: Every gluten-free flour blend has a different starch-to-grain ratio. The brand of gluten-free flour you use will affect the moisture of the batter. If your cake batter is too runny, add more flour, and if it is too thick, add more liquids.
Read Why Gluten-Free Flour Blends Vary to learn more about this.

If you overmix your cake, the cake will be denser because overmixing pops the natural bubbles that form when you mix the ingredients.

Prange slices and brown coconut sugar in a cake dish.

Step 4: Spread out orange slices in a greased 9-inch cake pan. Sprinkle the oranges with one tablespoon of coconut sugar.

Cake batter in a cake pan.

Step 5: Pour the cake batter over the orange slices and bake at 350º F for 40-45 minutes. The baking time will depend on the size and depth of your cake pan. Remove the cake from the oven.

Use the toothpick test to determine if your cake is finished baking. To use this method, insert a toothpick into the middle of the cake. If crumbs or cake batter comes out on the toothpick, your cake needs to be baked longer. You want the toothpick to come out clean, which will happen when your cake is baked.

A photo showing cutting the orange cake with a knife.

Step 6: Place the baked cake on a wire cooling rack. Slice the cake when it is fully cooled. You may also love this lighter Gluten Free Orange Poppy Seed Bundt Cake.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How to make homemade almond flour:

If you have been following me for a while, you know I like to add nutrition to my baked recipes when I can. I added almond flour to this recipe, first to add some protein to balance out the sugars in this recipe and second because almond flour adds moisture to keep this delicious cake moist.

With a Cuisinart or food grinder, you can even grind almonds down to make your own almond flour!

How do you get the upside-down cake out of the cake pan?

My favorite way to get the cake out of the pan is to liberally spray the pan with coconut oil before adding the cake batter. You can also use a thin knife to cut around the edges of the pan to release the cake. Lastly, you can bake the cake in a springform pan, and then it would be easy to release the sides and flip the cake upside down.

How long will this cake keep fresh?

This cake will keep fresh for up to 4 days in an airtight container or up to 4 months in the freezer.

Cake Troubleshooting:

Baking the perfect gluten-free cake can be tricky. The most important parts are choosing the right flour, not overmixing the batter, and ensuring the recipe liquid ratio works for the flour blend you choose.

Why did my gluten-free cake turn out dense or crumbly?

There is nothing more frustrating than having your gluten free cake turn out dense. This can be caused by a few potential issues.

  1. I always tell my readers not to use a stand mixer when they mix cake batter. They tend to overmix your batter, leaving you with a denser cake. Mix the gluten free cake batter only until the ingredients are combined, and avoid overbaking by checking the cake a few minutes before the suggested baking time.
  2. Another reason for a dense cake is that every gluten-free flour blend has a high starch-to-grain ratio. This will greatly affect the cake’s moisture level. If you are using a flour blend I didn’t test, you may need to adjust the liquid or flour amount to get the right batter consistency.
  3. The same answer for #2 applies if your cake is crumbly. You may need to add more liquid to your cake batter to compensate for the grain-to-starch ratio of your flour blend.

Why did my gluten-free cake sink in the middle?

  1. I know it is tempting to open the oven door and check on your cake, but opening the door while your cake is baking can cause it to sink in the middle. Cakes need a consistent, steady baking temperature. Opening the oven door lets cooler air into the oven, slowing the baking process.
  2. Always check the expiration date of your baking powder or baking soda before using it. An expired leavener can cause all sorts of issues in your baking.
  3. Is the cake underbaked? Know that the cake bakes from the outside in, so if you take it out of the oven too soon, the middle hasn’t had a chance to finish baking. Do the toothpick test to ensure your cake is thoroughly baked. Insert a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, it is done baking. If you see batter or crumbs, the cake needs to bake longer.

For more cake troubleshooting help and tips, see my Gluten-Free Cake Troubleshooting Guide.

A close up of the caramelized oranges on the upside down cake.

More Gluten Free Cake Recipes:

Love This Recipe?

If you made and enjoyed this recipe, I would be incredibly grateful if you could leave a comment below. Please include which flour blend you used. This will help others know this recipe is delicious. Thank you!

A close up of the caramelized oranges on the upside down cake.

Gluten Free Upside Down Orange Almond Flour Cake

Sandi Gaertner
A delicious gluten free upside down orange cake that is also dairy free and refined sugar free.
4.88 from 16 votes
dairy free allergen icon
gluten free allergy icon
soy free allergy icon
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Gluten Free Cake Recipes, Gluten Free Dessert Recipes
Cuisine American
Servings 12 slices
Calories 187 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup gluten free flour blend * see note
  • 1 cup almond flour * see note
  • ¾ cup coconut sugar (separate out 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder aluminum free
  • teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk
  • cup coconut oil melted
  • orange slices

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350º F.
  • In a food processor or grinder, grind 1 cup of almonds into almond flour. (If you are using almond flour, just use that.)
  • Add all dry ingredients to a large bowl and whisk to blend.
  • Add wet ingredients to a bowl and whisk to mix.
  • Pour wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well.
  • Spray a cake pan with coconut oil. Spread orange slices on the bottom. Sprinkle the 1 tablespoon coconut sugar over the oranges.
  • Add cake batter on top of the orange slices.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes until done.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a cooling rack. Turn the cake upside down on a plate and serve.

Notes

  1. I have tested this recipe with King Arthur Measure for Measure GF, Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 GF blend, and Authentic Foods Multi Blend. That doesn’t mean others will not work.
  2. If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain xanthan gum or guar gum, please add 3/4 teaspoon.
  3. I highly suggest using almond flour and not almond meal. Almond meal is coarser and will make your cake grainy.
  4. I used almond milk but other dairy-free kinds of milk will work, but I do not recommend canned coconut milk.
  5. To test for doneness, insert a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, it is done baking. If you see batter or crumbs, the cake needs to bake longer.
  6. This cake will keep up to 4 days in an airtight container, or up to 4 months in the freezer.

SPECIAL NOTE

Please know that every gluten free flour blend has a different starch to grain ratio. If you use a blend I didn’t test, you may need to adjust your moisture levels in your baked goods.

Nutrition

Serving: 1sliceCalories: 187kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 4gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 27mgSodium: 173mgPotassium: 55mgFiber: 2gSugar: 8gVitamin A: 52IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 71mgIron: 1mg
Tried this Recipe? Pin it for Later!Mention @FearlessDining or tag #FearlessDining!

Nutrition Disclaimer

Nutritional information is an estimate provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the actual nutritional information with the products and brands you are using with your preferred nutritional calculator.

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Recipe Rating




21 Comments

  1. Hi Sandi!
    Yum! Orange cake! I have an allergen to coconut. Is there a low glycemic sugar I can use instead? Most flour blends have coconut in them. Do you have some blends you like to substitute?
    With gratitude,
    Mariane

    1. Hi Eve, In theory, goat milk should work. I have not tested dairy in this recipe so if you try it, please let us know how it turns out 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    This cake sounds absolutely perfect. Love that it doesn’t have any refined sugars.It’s also very pretty to look at. I will need to try this soon!

  3. 5 stars
    Sandi, you know I love everything that you make!! Your gluten free desserts are truly so tasty! Love that you use almond flour to make such a tasty and perfect-for-Spring cake. Drooling!

  4. 5 stars
    Sandi – I had fallen in love with this cake when I saw it on social media earlier. I am so glad that you made it so healthy. Thanks for the tips on home made almond four.

  5. 5 stars
    I love the California Grown’s mission, it’s so true that we’re often curious about food’s stories, especially told by the farmers!
    It’s very nice when you also use your handmade almond flour.
    You didn’t remove the peel from the oranges, so is it bitter when we eat the cake with that part?

    1. Hi Natalie, I love the farmer’s stories too. I didn’t remove the peel, because I sprinkled coconut sugar over them, they caramelize and get sweet.