This mandarin olive oil cake with mascarpone frosting has a beautiful texture and a rich taste. It is soaked in a mandarin and honey syrup and finished with candied mandarins and pistachio nuts. Talk about a showstopper on your tea table.

Mandarin olive oil cake

This mandarin and olive oil cake is easy to bake and sò very tasty. There is something magical that happens when you combine the fruity undertones of olive oil with the sweet citrus flavors of mandarin oranges. Add some rich mascarpone and pistachio nuts and you have me doing a little happy dance. If you have been following me for a while, you will know that I love citrus flavors in a variety of dishes. There is just something about the aroma of oranges, lemons and even grapefruit that makes me want to break out in spontaneous opera.

Mandarin olive oil cake

Is olive oil suitable to use in a cake?

Yes, it is. There will be no distinct olive oil taste, however, the olive oil leaves beautiful rich flavors and savors. I am a die-hard butter fan but, I have to agree that a good quality olive oil enhances the flavors of the honey and citrus undertones. The olive oil makes a dense, moist cake that is not overly sweet.

Mandarin olive oil cake

Why is olive oil good for you?

Olive oil is full of monounsaturated fats and has numerous health benefits for a happy heart. It is also good for the brain, joints and more.

Be sure to read your labels carefully to make sure you buy Extra Virgin Olive oil and not a blend with other refined oils. Extra virgin olive oil is high in anti-oxidants, unlike the blended varieties that lack the same nutritional value.

Mandarin olive oil cake

Did you enjoy this post?

If you liked this post remember to pin to Pinterest and share it on Facebook. The buttons are at the bottom of the post. I would also love to hear from you in the comments section.

Also, check out these posts:

The best carrot cake ever:

Best carrot cake ever.

Apple cake with earl grey apples

Mandarin olive oil cake

A rich mandarin olive oil cake, drizzled with a honey, rosemary and clementine syrup. It is topped with a creamy mascarpone frosting and pistachio nuts.
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Italian cake, mandarin cake, olive oil, olive oil cake
Servings: 12


  • Electric beater. Oven.


Mandarin honey syrup

  • 90 ml light brown sugar
  • 60 ml honey
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 mandarin sliced thinly
  • 500 ml water


  • 250 ml cake flour
  • 125 ml semolina
  • 7.5 ml baking powder
  • 1 large pinch of salt
  • 180 ml olive oil
  • 80 ml butter melted
  • 5 ml vanilla essence
  • 4 extra large free-range eggs
  • 250 ml light brown sugar
  • zest of 2 mandarins

Mascarpone and mandarin frosting

  • 1 tub mascarpone cheese
  • 125 ml Icing sugar
  • zest of 2 mandarins
  • 30 ml fresh clementine juice


  • 1/4 cup chopped Pistachios


Mandarin orange syrup

  • In a small saucepan bring all the ingredients excluding the mandarins to a simmer over medium heat. Once the syrup is simmering reduce the heat and add the clementine slices. Simmer the syrup further for about 40 minutes until reduced to about 1 cup of syrup.
  • Remove from heat. Remove the mandarin slices and put both the syrup and the fruit aside.


  • Heat the oven to 180°C.
  • Prepare a 26cm round baking tin by spraying it with a non-stick spray and lining the bottom with baking paper.
  • Sieve the flour, semolina, salt and baking powder together.
  • Add the butter, vanilla, and oil to a small bowl and whisk together
  • In an upright beater with a whipping attachment, beat the sugar, zest, and eggs until the mixture is very light in color and fluffy.
  • Lower the speed of the beater and alternate adding the flour mixture and the oil mixture in small amounts. Start and finish with the dry ingredients.
  • Once all the ingredients have been mixed, add the mixture to the cake tin.
  • Bake for 45 minutes until golden brown.
  • Once the cake is removed from the oven, poke holes into the cake with a fork and pour 250ml of the mandarin syrup over the cake. Leave to completely cool down before frosting.

Mascarpone Frosting

  • Place all the ingredients into a mixing bowl and mix with an electric beater until smooth. Spoon the mixture onto the cake and distribute evenly over its surface. Decorate with the candied mandarin slices and chopped pistachio nuts.


While the syrup is simmering, you can start with the cake.  Just keep an eye on the syrup to make sure that it does not reduce too much. 
Mandarin olive oil cake

I borrowed this recipe from The Globe and Mail and adapted it slightly. Head over and look at some of the other delicious recipes on their page.

0 0 votes
Article Rating