Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake

Hello Friends,

Today I am sharing recipe for Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake, which is super simple to make and are made of ingredients which we will easily find in our pantry. Semolina Cake is traditional Middle Eastern sweet cake which was originated in Egypt. It is known as Basbousa in Egypt and North Africa whereas it is also know as Hareesa , Namoura, Revani in different countries. It has its own variations as this sweet cake travels through different countries. This Cake is basically made out of semolina batter and sweetened with simple syrup which can be flavored in numerous ways like rose water, saffron, cinnamon, cardamom, orange or any citrus flavors are some to name a few flavoring agent. I chose orange and cardamom as my flavoring agents.

Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake 13

I am also posting this recipe as part of our A to Z Challenge and this months we have to choose the ingredient with alphabet O and immediately what came in my mind was Orange. This was so obvious as right from out childhood we have been thought “O for Orange”. This is such a beautiful fruit, so delicious with all goodness of Vitamin C. Orange is a very versatile flavor which can easily be used in sweets as well as savory dishes. From a long time I had in mind to make Basbousa and this was the perfect opportunity for me to try it out and flavor with beautiful Orange flavor. I made a mini cake which is perfect for two people. This recipe can easily be doubled or quadrupled to make a half pound or a standard pound cake. Kindly refer the handy notes for all the measurements.

A to Z challenge, a challenge initiated on Facebook Group, wherein a group of bloggers come together and we choose key ingredients alphabetically to cook and post a dish every alternate month. This challenge was initiated by Jolly Makkar and I was introduced to this by my friend Vidya Narayan . We choose key ingredients alphabetically to cook and post a dish every alternate month.

A TO Z Ing logo

This is my 8th dish in the A to Z challenge series, the last seven were  Broccoli and Tofu Stir Fry , Cauliflower Tawa Kebab , Nutty Dates Roll , Aloo Baigan , Almond Honey CookiesSalad on a stick with creamy mayo dressing and Nectarine Salsa. Hope you all will like it.

Serving: a mini cake, serves 2

Preparation Time: 15 min

Cooking Time: 25 min


For Cake-

  • 1/2 cup fine semolina (sooji, rava)
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter/ ghee. (clarified butter)
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup curd/yogurt
  • 3 tbsp orange juice (store bought or freshly squeezed any can be used)
  • 1/4 tsp orange zest

For Syrup-

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • Few thinly sliced orange peel
  • a pinch of orange food color (optional)

For garnishing-

  • 4-5 pistachio thinly sliced


This is a very simple and one bowl recipe where we mix all the ingredients in one bowl and then pour the batter in the cake pan and bake it.

Add butter and sugar in a bowl. Whisk butter and sugar till it is nicely incorporated.

Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake 3

Now add semolina ( this recipe calls for fine semolina, if you have coarse semolina then just take semolina in a grinder jar and grid it little bit to get the fine texture), curd and baking powder. Mix all the ingredients nicely.

Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake 4

Now stir in the orange juice( I have used freshly squeezed orange juice). Mix the batter nicely. Consistency of batter will be perfect by addition of 3 tbsp orange juice but if you feel you are not getting perfect consistency then you can add 1 more tbsp of orange juice.

Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake 5

Add the orange zest and give the batter a final stir.

Take a cake pan and grease it nicely with butter or ghee. I have taken a 4 inch round cake pan. This size is perfect for the mini cakes. They are super adorable. Also preheat the oven at 350 degree fahrenhite or 180 degree celsius for about 10 minutes.

Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake 8

Pour the batter in the cake pan and tap it few times on your counter top so that if there are any air bubbles, it will escape. Now place the cake in the preheated oven. Bake it at 350 degree fahrenhite or 180 degree celsius for about 20-25 minutes. Do not open the oven door before 20 minutes otherwise the cake will sink. Check after 20 minutes with a clean knife or tooth pick in the center of the cake.  If it comes out clean then it fully baked and if not then bake it for some more time and check again. Keep a close eye on the cake after 20 minutes. Do not leave it unattended. Baking time may vary for different ovens.

Once baked take it out leave it on counter top for few minutes to cool down. After 5-7 minutes you can unmould the cake. If you want to keep the cake in the pan and pour syrup on it and serve directly from the pan, then you can do that also. As shown in the above pictures, you will get beautiful golden brown cake.

Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake 9

Meanwhile when the cake is baking, make the luscious cardamom orange syrup to pour over the cake. Take sugar, water, cardamom and orange peel in a pan. You can also add a pinch of orange food color if you want, it is completely optional.  Keep it on medium heat and give it a good boil. We do not need any string consistency, just as you take the syrup between your fingers, it should feel sticky. Once you attain that stage, switch off the heat and let it cool down.

Once cake is little warm then pour the syrup on it with help of a spoon, distribute it evenly. Syrup should completely cool before using and cake should be little warm. Reserve the orange peel from the syrup, we will use it later for serving. Let the cake rest for about an hour to soak all the syrup and flavors before serving. After sometime cake will completely absorb all the syrup.

Orange Cardamom Semolina Cake 12

Top the cake with thinly sliced pistachios and orange peel before serving. Beautiful, delicious orange cardamom semolina cake is ready to be enjoyed.

Trust me this is one plate of deliciousness. My husband is not a fan of cakes but he also loved this cake. It looked so so beautiful that it was difficult for me to cut the cake at the same time was not able to resist to taste it. You can flavor this cake with any thing of your choice like lemon, cinnamon, saffron,rose or even simple syrup. Just skip the orange juice and orange zest in the batter. You can add any flavor of your choice in the syrup and enjoy it. Store it in a air tight container and it is good for 2-3 days.

Handy Tip:-

  • You can easily double or quadruple the recipe to make a big cake. You have to take the cake pan accordingly and baking time will also increase as it will be bigger cake.
  • Measurements for double the recipe:-

    For Cake-

    • 1 cup fine semolina (sooji, rava)
    • 6 tbsp unsalted butter/ ghee. (clarified butter)
    • 1/2 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 1/2 cup curd/yogurt
    • 4 tbsp orange juice (store bought or freshly squeezed any can be used)
    • 1/2 tsp orange zest

    For Syrup-

    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 3/4 cup water
    • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
    • Few thinly sliced orange peel
    • a pinch of orange food color (optional)

    For garnishing-

    • 7-8 pistachio thinly sliced
  • Baking time will be anywhere around 40-45 minutes. It will vary according to oven.

Also try Eggless Fruit CakeDouble Chocolate Banana CakeChocolate Sponge CakeVanilla Sheet CakeUpside Down Apple Cake and many more in the sweet tooth section.

So friends please try out this and let me know how you like it. Enjoy !!

Please share your comments, feel free to post / email me your queries or if you need any additional details.

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30 Comments Add yours

  1. Nisha Sharma says:

    That sounds so incredible 😻

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a lot Nisha😊


  2. What a beauty of a cake! I love desserts with notes of citrus in them, and this orange cake sounds right up my alley. 🙂 I’m sure the intense orange flavour would be brilliant!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a lot for liking it 😊


  3. Wow loved the colour of the cake. Orange semolina cake looks so tempting. And I loved the idea of soaking it in the orange cardamom syrup. That must impart a nice falvour and colour.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  4. poonampagar says:

    My family loves semolina cake to the core. Adding citrus flavors to it must be so flavorful and refreshing !

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes orange gave a beautiful flavor to the cake, it was scrumptious. Thank you so much for liking it 😊


  5. Cake looks fabulous. I can feel the aroma of orange. Loved the use of sugar syrup with orange peel. Syrup soaked cake will definitely taste heavenly. Saving the recipe to try sometime.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. Do let me know how it turned out😊


  6. sizzlingtastebuds says:

    this is a cake fit for a celebration. loving the flavours of pistachio and orange in this cake … and the slivers of orange peel… wow wow…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a ton for such beautiful words😊


  7. Absolutely decadent cake. Citrus flavour cakes are truly delish and I love the aroma while baking too. The candied orange peels on top just takes it up a notch.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a lot Vidya for such kind words 😊


  8. Aruna says:

    Oh my, oh my! Isn’t this a cake redolent with citrusy flavours? I have been making Rava cake once a fortnight during this lockdown and now I know how to take it to the next level.


  9. Just love this mini cake, perfect to indulge in once and then no more left to tempt me further. As for the flavors orange and cardamom, so refreshing and delicious. I tend to add orange juice, zest or both to most of my bakes. So am sure will love this melt in the mouth orange cardamom semolina cake.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ya mini cake are just awesome. You have another reason to bake one more mini cake as the previous one is over soon 😁. Thanks a lot for liking it 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Paarul says:

    O My ! look at this gorgeous orange cake , I would just love to have a slice. The citrus flavor an that aroma while baking is so nostalgic. I love these bakes anytime.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. M glad that you liked it😊


  11. Rafeeda - The Big Sweet Tooth says:

    That feels to me like a baked kesari! Such a lovely orange color to that perfect looking cake… Looks totally tempting…

    Liked by 1 person

  12. JollyHomemadeRecipes says:

    Absolutely beautiful and delish cake. Love the cardamom and Orange flavor into cakes are truly delicious and I love the aroma while it baking too. The candied orange peels on top must taste heavenly.


    1. Yaa orange peel were cherry on this cake, it was scrumptious. Thank you so much for such kind words😊

      Liked by 1 person

  13. namscorner18 says:

    Orange semolina cake soaked in sugar syrup must be delicious and flavorful treat. Your post tempting me to try semolina in bakes soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Indeed it was super delicious. I am glad that you liked it 😊


  14. Seema Doraiswamy Sriram says:

    The colour of this orange and semolina cake looks so beautiful. It will be such a lovely treat to a teatime. Yum.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much 😊


  15. Geri Lawhon says:

    I have never heard of this dessert. It is a very interesting recipe, and thanks for posting it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am glad that you liked it 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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