Old-Fashioned Orange Slice Cake

Old-Fashioned Orange Slice Cake

The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 2 hrs 30 mins
Inactive Time: 12 hrs
Total: 14 hrs 50 mins
Servings: 12 to 16 servings

The orange slice cake is an old-fashioned favorite cake, and you can count on it to be a sure crowd pleaser. This popular sweet orange cake is made with orange juice and orange slice candies. For the very best results, bake the cake a day before you plan to serve it.

The dates and chopped orange candies make it super moist and delicious. Another bonus is the fact that there's no need to make a frosting. The orange juice and confectioners' sugar mixture is poured over the hot cake, giving it all the flavor and moisture you could want.

The cake has generated many positive comments, with several people comparing it to their mother's or grandmother's version. One reader suggested baking it in small loaf pans for gift-giving. It's an excellent cake to bake for the holidays, and it's less expensive to make than the ubiquitous holiday fruitcake.

This version is made with chopped pecans, but walnuts can be substituted with excellent results. If you're making the cake for a winter holiday party or gathering, consider adding some halved red and green candied cherries to give it a festive color.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter (room temperature)

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 4 large eggs

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 cup buttermilk (well-shaken)

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 pound dates, chopped

  • 1 pound orange slice candies, chopped

  • 2 cups pecans, chopped

  • 1 1/4 cups flaked coconut

  • 1 cup fresh orange juice

  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Old-Fashioned Orange Slice Cake ingredients

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  2. Preheat oven to 250 F. Grease and flour a 10-inch tube cake pan.

    Grease and flour a 10-inch tube cake pan

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  3. Cream butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, until light and fluffy.

    Cream butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl, hand mixer

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  4. Add eggs, one at a time; beat well after each addition.

    eggs added to the butter mixture in the bowl, hand mixer

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  5. Dissolve baking soda in buttermilk and add to batter.

    batter in a bowl

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  6. Place flour in large bowl and add dates, orange slice candy, and nuts. Stir to coat all pieces thoroughly.

    Place flour in large bowl and add dates, orange slice candy, and nuts

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  7. Add flour mixture and coconut to creamed mixture. At this point, batter will be stiff. It might be easier to mix with hands or a sturdy spoon. 

    Old-Fashioned Orange Slice Cake batter in a bowl

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  8. Spoon batter into prepared cake pan and spread evenly.

    batter in a cake pan

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  9. Bake in preheated oven for 2 1/2 hours.

    Old-Fashioned Orange Slice Cake in a cake pan

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  10. Just before cake comes out of the oven, make topping. In a medium bowl, combine orange juice and confectioners' sugar. Stir until smooth and well blended. Gradually pour juice mixture over hot cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. Use a toothpick to prick cake in several places, if desired. Let orange slice cake stand in pan overnight.

    Old-Fashioned Orange Slice Cake in a cake pan on a cooling rack

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  11. Carefully invert cake onto a cake plate; slice and serve.

    Old-Fashioned Orange Slice Cake, sliced

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Tips

  • Creaming the butter and sugar together adds air to the batter. This method helps to produce a lighter cake with finer texture. For the best results, beat the mixture for about 3 minutes or until light in color and fluffy.
  • If you don't have buttermilk, you can substitute with soured milk. To a 1-cup measure, add 1 1/2 teaspoons of vinegar or lemon juice. Pour milk into the cup to the 1/2-cup line and let it stand for about 5 minutes. Stir to blend and then use it in the recipe.