Grapefruit Cake


After make the Margarita Cake, I was still in the mood for something citrus-y and wanted to make another cake. I started hunting for blood oranges (because I thought it would be good and possibly add a bit of color), but I was unable to find any at the store, so I settled on ruby red grapefruit. This was also going to give me the excuse to try to adapt my white cake recipe into a yellow cake.

My goal was to make a bundt cake with a grapefruit glaze. I decided to use 2 whole eggs instead of 4 egg whites and substituted ½ cup of the buttermilk for grapefruit juice and also add about a teaspoon of grapefruit zest to the batter. The glaze was a simple mixture of juice and powdered sugar. Overall the cake was ok. I attempted to put the entire batter into a bundt pan and I wasn’t sure how it would turn out. I ended up baking the cake for about 55 minutes. At the 35 minute mark, I could see that the cake was brown on the sides, but the top was still pale yellow. At 40 minutes, the top was a light golden brown, but when I inserted a toothpick, the top was still gummy, so back in the oven it goes. At 55 minutes, it was perfectly golden brown on top and spongy to the touch. Great. But now the sides were a little too brown (but luckily not hard) and the cake was a little tough and dry. I will definitely experiment with this recipe again, but next time I think that I would just bake it 35-40 minutes and cut off the bottom. I’d also like to be able to keep the full amount of buttermilk in the recipe while also adding grapefruit juice.


Grapefruit Cake

  • Servings: one 9 inch bundt cake
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  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon grapefruit zest
  • 2 eggs
  • 5 tablespoons freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 3/4 cups powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease and flour (I usually just use spray pan coating) bundt pan.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar together until fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Add eggs and zest and combine until smooth.  Whisk together flour, salt and baking powder in a large bowl.  To make the cake batter, add the flour mixture and the buttermilk and grapefruit juice to the creamed butter, alternating between wet and dry ingredients and beating after each addition  After everything is well mixed, add the vanilla and almond extracts, mix again to incorporate. Divide evenly between the prepared pans and smooth the top of the batter.  Bake for approximately 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Cool the cake completely on a cooling rack, then remove from the baking pan.    

For the glaze, combine juice and sugar in a bowl until smooth.