Orange Layer Cake Recipe

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My sister gave me this recipe over 50 years ago...and I still make it for Christmas. With its creamy nut frosting and tangy orange flavor, its a family favorite.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 40 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
MAKES:12 servings
Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 40 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1-1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (1 each) equals 459 calories, 20 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 37 mg cholesterol, 355 mg sodium, 64 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 5 g protein.


  1. In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in orange peel. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda; gradually add to creamed mixture alternately with water and orange juice.
  2. Pour into two greased and floured 9-in. round baking pans. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  3. In a small saucepan, stir flour and milk until smooth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 1 minute or until thickened. Remove from the heat; cool to lukewarm.
  4. In a small bowl, cream the shortening, sugar and salt until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Add cooled milk mixture; beat on high speed for 5 minutes or until fluffy. Remove about 2/3 cup; fold in nuts. Spread between cake layers.
  5. Gradually add confectioners' sugar to remaining filling; beat until fluffy. Frost top and sides of cake. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Orange Layer Cake in Country Woman Christmas Annual 2003, p49

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