Orange Turmeric Cake

This delicious orange turmeric cake recipe is so easy to make and tasty too! If you’ve found yourself with a bunch of turmeric and wondering what to do with it, why not make a cake! Believe it or not, combined with orange, it’s absolutely delicious!

A slice of turmeric cake sits on a plate with a bite sitting on a fork. An orange and a small bowl of turmeric is behind it.

I have a quote in my bathroom that reads, “Freedom is the ability to act according to your own will.” I don’t know why it’s in my bathroom of all places, but that’s where it resides.

As a perpetual people pleasure I find it necessary to remind myself that it’s OK to be me, quirkiness and all. Sometimes that quirkiness comes out in the strangest of places. Like my cooking. So, I’m putting my people pleasing self aside to share with you this strange, but delicious Orange Turmeric Cake.

Honestly? Strange and delicious are my favorite ingredients!

How to Make Turmeric Cake

It’s easy to make this quirky Turmeric Cake! I recently simplified the ingredients and steps involved to make this cake even easier and tastier than ever!

For the full recipe including ingredients and quantities, scroll down to the recipe card.

For the cake, you’ll combine the flour, salt, baking soda, sugar, orange zest, and ground turmeric in one bowl and give it a good stir.

Looking down on a mixing bowl with flour and other ingredients, including turmeric.

If you don’t have any oranges or orange zest, simply use a teaspoon of orange extract. No orange extract? You can substitute vanilla, coconut, or even lemon extract.

Then, combine the wet ingredients in another bowl. Give that a good stir.

Looking down on a bowl full of water, oil, and orange zest.

Before you combine the wet ingredients with the dry, be sure that your oven is preheated and that your pan is ready!

Next, pour the water mixture in with the four mixture. You’ll want to stir just long enough to break up any big lumps of flour. I’d say 40 seconds to a minute of stirring should do it.

A hand holds the bowl of wet ingredients pouring it into the bowl with flour ingredients.

Pour the cake batter into the prepared baking pan. You can use either a square baking pan or a single round cake pan.

Orange cake batter is being poured into a cake pan.

Place the pan in the preheated oven and bake for 30 – 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. When it’s ready, remove the cake from the oven and set aside to cool.

I usually allow a cake to set for 10 minutes, then run a knife around the edges and invert it onto a plate. Then you’ll want to let it cool completely before frosting it.

Creamy Orange Frosting

For the Creamy Orange Turmeric Frosting, place the vegan butter and vegan cream cheese in a bowl and use a mixer to blend until light and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, orange zest, and turmeric. Then continue beating with the mixer until you reach a nice, fluffy consistency.

Note: If your frosting is too soft, add a little more powdered sugar. If it’s too thick, you can add a teaspoon of plant-based milk.

Once the cake has cooled and the icing is ready, slather a thick layer of frosting on the cake. Sprinkle the top with orange sugar crystals. I happened to have some from a Halloween decoration, but if you don’t it’s easy to make.

You can make your own orange sugar crystals by combing one-half cup of sugar with a drop or two of orange food coloring, or use 1 drop of red and 2 drops of yellow food coloring. Stir until well combined and sprinkle this over the top of the cake.

Delicious Vegan Cakes

If you love easy vegan cakes, you’ll want to try these for sure!

As you can see, I really love baking. It’s my “me” time in the kitchen. I also love that it gets me up and moving around.

But, maybe there’s another reason I like being in the kitchen. It’s my place. I can let my hair down. Be myself. Get a little kooky. Put turmeric in cake. Yes!

Be Yourself. Everyone else is already taken. —Oscar Wilde

Or maybe they’re just jealous they don’t have a cake with turmeric in it. Yep. That could be totally right.

When we lose the right to be different, we lose the right to be free. —Charles Evans Hughs

Maybe that’s why I keep that quote in my bathroom. Starting my day with a reminder to be free, may actually be giving myself permission to be different.

OK. Maybe I’m trying to pack a little too much woo-woo in a cake. It is, in the end, just a cake. But, oh, what a cake it is.

A slice of turmeric cake on a plate with another slice behind it. There's an orange and a bowl of turmeric beside it.

Turmeric is healthy

So let’s talk seriously about this turmeric thing. I knew I was going to make an orange cake. The Food Network magazine just about made me do it with those glorious Orange Cream Cupcakes in last month’s edition of their magazine.

Turmeric is one of my favorite ingredients because it’s a super food. That means for the calories, it offers LOTS of nutrients. Of course, so do many fruits, veggies, and spices. Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory along with many other health benefits.

I also love the orangey-yellow tint it ads to so many of my recipes. For example, I even add it to my vegan creme brûlée to add just a bit of color.

Here’s the deal. Food can be tasty, but it also needs to look appetizing. I’m pretty sure that’s why food coloring was invented. I don’t mind adding a little food coloring here or there. I don’t think a little food coloring every now and then is a big deal. However, if I can find a natural way to color something, I will definitely give it a try.

I’ve added spinach to cookies to give them a green hue. I’ve used blueberries in my veggie bean burgers to make them less pale and more palatable.

So that means, adding turmeric to a cake was not that big of a stretch. It gave this delicious orange cake a nice, golden hue. Sure, it’s not really “orange” but it’s at least in the right neighborhood. And I sprinkled it with some homemade Orange Crystals to give it that nice orangey edge.

This is one of my favorite cakes because it was so flavorful and delicious. The combination of the orange and the zest of the turmeric really gives it quite a zing. And when you’re living a life to the beat of your own drummer, a little zing can make for a fun day!

Orange Cream cake is served with a spicy edge by including turmeric

I hope you love this recipe as we do! Have you tried it? Be sure and leave a comment and a rating of this recipe below and then take a quick photo and share it with me using #namelymarly on Instagram. I love seeing your creations!

A slice of turmeric cake sits on a plate with a bite sitting on a fork. An orange and a small bowl of turmeric is behind it.

Orange Turmeric Cake

Enjoy the tender bite of this delicious orange turmeric cake with a fluffy, creamy orange-infused frosting.
5 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Orange Cream and Turmeric Cake, Turmeric Cake
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 9
Calories: 374kcal
Author: Namely Marly

Ingredients

For the Orange Turmeric Cake

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest (from a fresh orange)
  • cup vegetable oil

For the Creamy Orange Turmeric Frosting

  • ½ cup vegan butter softened
  • 3 tablespoons vegan cream cheese
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon orange extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • Orange Sugar Crystals combine ½ cup sugar with orange food coloring or 1 drop of red and 2 drops of yellow food coloring

Instructions

For the Turmeric Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a 9 inch square baking pan with vegetable spray.
  • Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, sugar, and turmeric in a bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl combine the water, vinegar, orange zest, and vegetable oil. Stir to combine. Pour the water mixture into the flour mixture and stir to combine. Make sure all big lumps of flour are mixed. This might take 40 seconds to a minute at most.
  • Pour the cake batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. When it's ready, remove the cake from the oven and set aside to cool completely before frosting.

For the Creamy Orange Turmeric Frosting

  • Place the butter and vegan cream cheese in a bowl and use a mixer to blend until light and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, orange extract, orange zest, and turmeric. Continue beating with the mixer until a nice, fluffy consistency is reached. If it's a little too soft, add a little more powdered sugar. If it's too thick, add a teaspoon of plant-based milk.
  • Once the cake has cooled and the icing is ready, slather a thick layer of frosting on the cake. Prepare the Orange Sugar Crystals by combing one-half cup of sugar with food coloring. Stir until well combined and sprinkle this over the top of the cake.

Recommended Equipment

Notes

In the cake, you can substitute 1 teaspoon orange extract in place of fresh orange zest. If you don’t have orange extract or oranges, you can use any of the following instead: 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, coconut extract, or lemon extract.
Nutrition Facts
Orange Turmeric Cake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 374 Calories from Fat 162
% Daily Value*
Fat 18g28%
Saturated Fat 9g45%
Sodium 354mg15%
Potassium 34mg1%
Carbohydrates 52g17%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 35g39%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 479IU10%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 6mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

We recently updated this post including the recipe and photos. Here are some of the previous photos:

Orange Cream Cake with Turmeric
Orange Cream Cake with Turmeric by Namely Marly13
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11 Responses to Orange Turmeric Cake

  1. Mmmm…I could go for some cake right now! I’m out of cream cheese, but I’ll be tucking this recipe away for when I’m feeling adventurous. And sick of being a people pleaser! 😉

    • I can’t tell you how many times I go to make a recipe only to have some key ingredient missing. I hope you like this cake as much as we have!

    • Thanks, Sylvie! I was worried it would add too much flavor, but the orange combines with it very nicely!

  2. Could something else be used in place of the vegan cream cheese? I really don’t use that and hate to buy it just to use 3 Tbl. Just wondering…

  3. Phenomenal! Thank you so much for such a simple yet tasty cake. Concerning turmeric, is it true that it becomes more bio-available with adding black pepper? Thanks. Great recipes BTW.

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