Spanish Oil Cakes Recipe - Tortas de Aceite

Tortas de Aceite
By Dodo (Own work) [ GFDL or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons
  • Total: 55 mins
  • Prep: 40 mins
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Servings: 8 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
180 Calories
12g Fat
16g Carbs
2g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 180
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 16%
Saturated Fat 2g 9%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 469mg 20%
Total Carbohydrate 16g 6%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Protein 2g
Calcium 48mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Oil cakes or "tortas de aceite" originated in Andalucia, specifically near Sevilla. They became popular in the 19th century and recently have seen a surge in popularity, especially in the USA. These cakes are a light and healthy alternative dessert, simply made with flour, water, yeast, and olive oil and sprinkled lightly with sugar.


  • 1 tbsp. (10 g.) dry yeast
  • 6 tbsp. Spanish virgin​ olive oil
  • 12 tbsp. warm water
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 1/3 cups (300 g. unbleached white flour)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (for topping)
  • 1/4 cup Anise seeds (for topping)

Steps to Make It

  1. In a large mixing bowl, mix 6 tbsp. warm water, yeast, salt, and olive oil until yeast is completely dissolved. Gradually add flour, mixing thoroughly. As dough mixture becomes too dry to continue to mix, sprinkle in a bit more water and mix. Repeat until all water is gone and the dough has a smooth consistency. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and leave in a warm spot for 30 minutes.

  2. Heat oven to 450 F (230 C).

  3. Grease 2 cookie sheets with oil. Turn the dough out onto a floured board. Pinch off a small amount of dough and roll into a ball about 1 ½ times the size of a golf ball, using your hands.

    Using a rolling pin, roll the ball of dough out until very thin. Roll out the dough to approximately 8-inch circles, then carefully transfer each one from the cutting board to the cookie sheet. Sprinkle with sugar and anise seeds.

  4. Place cookie sheets in hot oven and bake. After approximately 10 to 12 minutes, if the edges are turning brown, remove them from oven and allow to cool. Serve warm as a light dessert.

Recipe Variations

  • Dessert Toppings: Top with sugar and finely chopped almonds or hazelnuts. Finely chopped candied fruit can also be used as a topping.
  • Salty Toppings: How about serving tortas as a tapa or snack rather than a dessert? Top with chopped sardines or thinly sliced or chopped chorizo. Sprinkle garlic powder, olive oil, or salt and pepper for a healthy alternative to garlic bread. Sprinkle a teaspoon of parmesan cheese for extra flavor.