Spanish almond and orange cake

A flour-free, butter-free treat, works well as an effective on-the-bike energy booster or post-exercise treat to replenish muscles with carbohydrate, protein and lost minerals

(serves 6-8 people)

Nutrition per serving

Energy 323kcal
Protein 9g
Carbohydrate 31g (sugars 30g)
Fat 18g (saturates 2g)
Salt 0.1g
Fibre 2g



4 eggs, separated
Zest of 1 large orange
225g caster sugar
225g ground almonds
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice
Icing sugar to decorate

Preparation time 10mins
Cooking time 30-35mins
Equipment 23cm spring-form cake tin or flan dish, lightly greased with butter



  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Separate the egg yolks, leave to one side in the shells and whisk the egg whites to a soft peak stage with an electric whisk.
  2. Put the egg yolks, orange zest and sugar into a separate bowl and whisk until pale and creamy. Stir in the almonds, the cinnamon and the orange juice.
  3. Fold in the egg whites. Make sure you do it slowly, a little at a time.
  4. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and cook in the oven for about 30-35mins until golden. If you poke a skewer into the middle of the cake, it should come out clean. Cool in the tin, on a wire rack. When cool, decorate with icing sugar.



Based on the ‘Tarta di Santiago’, a traditional cake offered to pilgrims to welcome them to the Spanish town of Santiago di Compostella at the end of the arduous pilgrimage from France, this cake has just three basic ingredients: almonds, sugar and eggs (yes, no flour, no butter!). It’s a great natural energy food, providing plenty of cholesterol-reducing monounsaturated fats (good fats) and significant amounts of the antioxidants vitamin C and E. It also contains magnesium and potassium; is deliciously moist, gluten free and very light on the stomach; and is extremely quick and easy to make.