Home RecipesCakes Incredibly Moist Grapefruit Cake

Incredibly Moist Grapefruit Cake

by Paula

While I can never lay claim to House Stark’s House Words ‘Winter is Coming’, grapefruits, at least, have come to the grocery aisles of Singapore. And perfectly in time for the seasonal collaboration that I’ve been participating in on Instagram.

Just a quick FYI on the state of affairs here in Singapore before I get down to the Winter Collaboration recipe that I created (an incredibly moist grapefruit cake!):

  • The chance of winter ever making  its presence felt here in Singapore is 0% but there is always a 99.99% chance of heat and humidity.
  • Consequently, winter fruits (such as grapefruit) rarely make an appearance and if they do, they’ll stay for only a week or so.
  • I have never before, tasted a grapefruit in my life, but I imagined it would probably taste like pomelo (it sort of does).
  • Game of Thrones: never watched an episode of it nor read a book about it but the motto above ? sounds cool (pun intended).
Incredibly moist grapefruit cake with icing and candied grapefruit slices

Great fruit, grapefruit, what fruit?

Grapefruit is a citrus fruit that is somewhat larger than an orange and has a rather pronounced tart taste.  It tastes like a tarter,  bitterer version of pomelo (shaddock) but looks like an orange on the outside.  Grapefruit has a distinctive pinkish pulp. It is a popular superfood — it is 92% water and has fewer calories than most to boot. It is also said to lower bad cholesterol and speed up weight loss.

Incredibly moist grapefruit cake slices

Like its other citrus cousins, grapefruit can be used for marmalades, candies, flavorings, or be eaten on its own.

Candied grapefruit slices and cakes

I decided to make a simple cake for this collaboration. Nothing too fancy since I’ve never even tasted a grapefruit before, but I figured that something similar to a lemon pound cake would do the trick.

But then I had a brainwave. “Wouldn’t those pinkish grapefruit slices look terrific on top of the cake?” Yes, they would. And making candied citrus slices is easy anyway.

Candied grapefruit slices

I started with a basic lemon pound cake recipe but I replaced the lemon juice with grapefruit juice. You can add some grapefruit zest too, if you like, but I already used up all of my grapefruits for making the candied slices.

A little bit of vanilla and a dash of cardamom (mad props to cardamom, it truly enhances the taste and smell of desserts) and you get an amazing, incredibly moist grapefruit cake.

Incredibly moist cake with icing and grapefruit slices

I was not prepared for how moist this cake would turn out to be. The crumbs weren’t powdery fine, but they were soft and tasty. The cake held up really well too, even after putting it in the fridge and briefly reheating it in the microwave.

A simple icing and a few candied grapefruit slices later and boom! It’s a veritable accompaniment to tea. Or to anything.

Cake slice with candied grapefruit
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Iced Grapefruit Cake with Candied Grapefruit Slices

Incredibly Moist Grapefruit Cake

  • Author: Paula
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours
  • Total Time: 2.5 hours
  • Yield: 1 loaf cake 1x


This a super moist and flavorful cake! The candied grapefruit slices add color and a punch of zest to this delightful dessert.



For the candied grapefruit:

  • 1 grapefruit, small
  • 480 ml (2 cups) water
  • 220 grams (1 cup) sugar

For the cake:

  • 200 grams (1 3/4 cups) all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 113 grams (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 165 grams (3/4 cup) sugar
  • 2 eggs, large
  • 120 ml (1/2 cup) milk
  • 60 ml (1/4 cup) grapefruit juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom

For the icing:

  • 110 grams (1/2 cup) icing sugar
  • 30 ml (1/8 cup) milk


For the candied grapefruit:

  1. Slice the grapefruit very thinly and remove the seeds.
  2. In a large enough pan, place the water and bring to a boil.
  3. Add the grapefruit slices and boil for 1 minute. Remove the slices from the water and cool.
  4. Add the sugar to the boiling water. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.
  5. Lower the heat to medium and add the grapefruit slices to the sugar mixture.
  6. Simmer for 1 hour, or until the grapefruit slices turn translucent. Stir occasionally.
  7. Carefully remove the slices and dry on a wire rack.

For the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325F/170C.
  2. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, mixing after each addition.
  4. Alternately add the flour and the milk. Start with 1/3 of the flour, followed by half of the milk. Mix well after each addition.
  5. Add the grapefruit juice, cardamom, and vanilla. Mix well. The batter will be a bit watery in texture.
  6. Pour over a greased or lined loaf pan and bake for 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes up clean.
  7. Let it cool before pouring the icing over it. Add the candied grapefruit slices over the top.

For the icing:

  1. Combine the icing sugar and just enough milk to form a thick but pourable mixture.
  2. Pour over the cooled cake.


  • I used baking paper to line the sides of the loaf pan. It makes it easier to remove the cake from the pan for serving.
  • The candied grapefruit can be made beforehand. I made mine the night before and let the slices cool overnight.
  • Keep an eye out when cooking the candied grapefruit. Be sure to stir once in a while to prevent the sugar syrup from boiling over.
  • Try to cut the grapefruit slices as thinly as you can.
  • You can use grapefruit juice for the icing as well.
  • If the icing solidifies, add more milk or juice and mix thoroughly until it is pourable.
  • Category: Cakes, Challenges
  • Method: Baking

Keywords: grapefruit cake

I’m participating in the Winter Collaboration on Instagram! Check out the hashtag #greatfruitgrapefruit for more grapefruit recipe ideas.

Looking for more challenges? Check out these recipes!


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