Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake

Long title, huh?

It’s worth it.


Usually, when I go to pair chocolate with something in the realm of sweetness, I go with raspberry or cherry (as evidenced by the umpteen chocolate-raspberry or chocolate-cherry flavor combinations on this website).  But, recently at a “I really shouldn’t go because I’ll spend money I don’t have” trip to King Arthur Flour Company, I walked away with a set of flavoring citrus oils (lime, lemon, and orange) and absolutely no idea of what to do with them.

I’ve never really been a fan of the chocolate-orange combination, either.  Which is why it was a leap of faith when I decided to take a regular sour cream pound cake (oh, yeah!) and mix in a little orange oil and orange zest.  It’s citrus season, right?

The results? Well, the chocolate pound cake speaks for itself.  How can that not be good?  Dense, rich, chocolatey.  I added in chocolate chips, well, because, you know…..who in their right mind wouldn’t?   The powdered sugar glaze was almost like a thick, candy coating. And, as far as that orange flavoring?  Holy smokes.  I think I’m a convert.  I cut this loaf into little bite-sized pieces and brought them into work, for two different departments.  At the end of the day, every crumb was gone.  I assume this means that it was good. 🙂

How to find the flavoring oils?  Most bakery/specialty stores will have them.  You can find them online at King Arthur here.  I’m not sure what the equivalent would be if you tried to use zest in place of the oil (It would have to be a lot because these are pretty potent.)  But, they are worth the splurge.


Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake

Servings: 1 loaf



2 and 1/4 cups cake flour

3/4 cup cocoa powder

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 cups granulated sugar, divided

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 teaspoons orange oil

1 cup sour cream

6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips

1/2 cup water

Zest from one orange



1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

2.  Generously butter the bottom and sides of a loaf pan (I used a 9-inch) with butter, and place a pre-cut piece of parchment paper on the bottom of the loaf pan.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda; set aside.

4. In the bowl of your standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and 1 cup of the granulated sugar at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.

5. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.

6. Add the vanilla and the orange oil.

7. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the sour cream and dry ingredients (alternating them) in 3 separate additions.

8. Add the chocolate chips and mix until completely combined.

9. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and gently smooth the top with a rubber spatula.

10.  Bake until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 1o minutes.

11. Remove the cake from the oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes before inverting onto a cooling rack.  Let cool completely before glazing.

12. For the glaze:  In a small saucepan, combine the remaining 1 cup of granulated sugar and the water over medium-high heat.

13.  Bring the sugar water to a simmer and stir until the sugar is completely dissolved, about 5 minutes or so.

14. Brush the cake with the glaze and let sit for about 5 minutes (you should wait for the glaze to soak in and dry slightly.)

15. Repeat the glazing process two more times.  **The glaze should end up thick and shiny.  Sprinkle with orange zest.


Source: Adapted from Food and Wine.


February 19, 2012 - 5:54 am

Medeja - It looks very beautiful and I imagine that it had that lovely orange flavor..

February 19, 2012 - 9:01 am

Maureen - A lot going on in this cake and it all spells delicious!

February 19, 2012 - 11:34 am

Jillian {Her Split Ends} - I literally said “yummmm” out loud when i read the title of this post {my husband gave me a very strange look!} Sounds delicious…will be testing this one out soon!!

~ Jillian

February 19, 2012 - 2:13 pm

Heidi @ Food Doodles - This is beautiful! Especially that glaze – yum! The sprinkling of orange zest over top is pretty too, such a nice pop of color 😀 And I loooove the chocolate and orange combo!

February 19, 2012 - 2:31 pm

Megan - Shannon, This looks great! I am jealous you are able to visit the King Arthur store often. I recently visited and had a great time! I purchased the Fiori di Sicilia flavoring. It is also a bit pricey, but potent and so good. You should give that a try!

February 19, 2012 - 6:50 pm

Heidi - yum! can’t wait to see what you do with the lime and lemon oils

February 20, 2012 - 2:13 pm

Heather @ Kids in the Sink - It’s a dream of ours to visit the King Arthur store some day! But we will have to get rich first because there are SO many goodies from King Arthur! I’be never been a fan of orange and chocolate either but I see so many recipes floating around that I wonder if in missing out on something. Maybe I should follow you and take a leap of faith.

February 20, 2012 - 11:30 pm

Jennie @sundayswithjennie - That looks incredible. I love citrus and this pound cake looks amazing!

February 21, 2012 - 5:00 pm

Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake | *bespoke* zine - […] never made a pound cake before but this Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake looks delicious!  I love the little orange rind on the top.  It’s darling!  A big thanks […]

February 24, 2012 - 9:57 am

Javelin Warrior - This is my kind of pound cake! Moist, chocolatey, coated in sugar – perfection… I have featured this post in today’s Friday Food Fetish roundup. Let me know if you have any objections and thanks as ever for the inspiration…

February 25, 2012 - 8:09 am

Sample Saturday | Homekeeping Adventures - […] Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake – The Curvy Carrot shares a recipe and some awesome photography for this beautiful loaf cake. […]

February 25, 2012 - 9:54 am

Annie - Oh dude. This sounds *really* good. I want it, like now.

March 10, 2012 - 3:34 am

Elisa - I LOVE the pairing of chocolate and orange – I don’t think there are enough dessert that pair the two! Thank you for sharing this recipe, this cake sounds fabulous!

Also, I am impressed with your food photography skills. Can you give a gal a few pointers?

March 10, 2012 - 8:07 am

srlacy - Hi Elisa–
Thanks for the kind words! As far as photography goes, there’s a lot to talk about. I only use natural light-no light boxes. I’m just not a fan. I also take several shots of each food and then edit them down. I don’t like photos where it’s the same angle, same props, etc over and over again. You can email me directly for some more tips if you want-I am certainly not an expert by any means 🙂

May 9, 2013 - 7:41 am

Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake - […] source: […]

May 26, 2013 - 11:14 pm

Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake | *bespoke* magazine ~ handmade craft vintage art design vintage | Australia - […] never made a pound cake before but this Chocolate Orange Sour Cream Pound Cake looks delicious!  I love the little orange rind on the top.  It’s darling!  A big thanks […]