Sticky Orange Caramel Cake with Chestnut

Add a touch of zest to your baking with this sticky orange caramel cake. Made with 2 oranges and a French touch of chestnut and vanilla paste, it’s a marriage in caramel! Serve warm for teatime, dessert or a decadent holiday brunch.

caramel oozing out of an orange cake

Warming Winter Dessert

This sticky orange caramel cake appeared in a dream. Antoine had picked up two greedy bags of beautiful organic oranges destined for squeezing into juice for breakfasts. Somehow, however, they didn’t quite make it into that glass.  I was instead dreaming of creative ways to use them with their slight zesty tartness, even if table oranges are sweeter and better for baking.

So with oranges in mind, the thoughts of sticky warm caramel came to mind. Plus, in true Corsican style, I added a touch of French chestnut and vanilla paste (I use Clément Faugier) just to add a bit of intrigue to the orange. It’s a marriage in caramel!

The extra half orange used sliced on top of the cake isn’t just for decoration. It also gives it a sharp kick to the cake with the rind included. This sharpness balances well with the orange caramel.

More Recipes with Chestnut Vanilla Purée

Sweetened chestnut and vanilla paste or spread is very French. We use it as a topping on brocciu cheese (see more in my Fiadone cheesecake recipe) in Corsica and served with or in the following:

How Best to Serve Orange Caramel Cake

This sticky orange caramel cake is best served slightly warm. If serving at teatime, delicious with Earl Grey tea or a spiced Chai.
To add a festive touch during the holiday season, add a teaspoon of pain d’épices (gingerbread spice), mixed spice or pumpkin spice powder to the batter.

orange chestnut cake with drip of caramel on plate

Love caramel desserts? Then try:

drop of caramel on an orange cake

Sticky Orange Caramel Cake with Chestnut

Author: Jill Colonna
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course : Brunch, Breakfast, Dessert, teatime
Cuisine : French
Keyword : orange caramel cake, orange chestnut desserts, sticky orange cake recipe
Servings : 10 people
Calories : 344kcal


Add a touch of zest to your baking with this sticky orange caramel cake with chestnut - perfect for teatime, dessert or even breakfast.


Orange Caramel

  • 150 g (5.5oz) Sugar
  • 25 g (1oz) Butter unsalted
  • 1 Large orange (unwaxed) 1 half zest & juice, other half cut into thin slices

Orange & Chestnut Cake

  • 3 Organic eggs large
  • 100 g (3.5oz) Sugar
  • 150 g (5.5oz) Plain flour (all-purpose)
  • 1 tsp Baking powder
  • 100 g (3.5oz) Small tin sweetened chestnut paste (I use Clément Faugier)
  • 150 g (5.5oz) Butter unsalted
  • 1 Large orange (unwaxed) zest only
  • 1/2 tsp powdered vanilla or vanilla extract


  • First butter a round cake pan (24cm diameter), zest half the first orange then  cut it in half.  Prepare the caramel: in a saucepan, melt the sugar with the juice of the zested half orange until it turns into a caramel (this will take about 7-8 minutes over medium heat), stirring occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, cut the other half of the orange into thin slices. As soon as the caramel is golden, take off the heat and stir in the butter. Immediately pour into the cake pan, topping with the sliced oranges and orange zest.  Set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/360°F/160°C fan.
  • Now make the cake batter: in a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs with the sugar until light and creamy. Gradually whisk in the flour, baking powder, chestnut purée, melted butter until the batter is smooth. Then whisk in the vanilla and more orange zest.
  • Pour over the caramel in the tin and bake in the oven for about 35 minutes.
  • Immediately turn the cake upside down on to a serving plate and leave to cool or enjoy when still warm out of the oven.


Best served slightly warm. If serving at teatime, delicious with Earl Grey tea or a spiced Chai.
To add a festive touch for a holiday dessert, add a teaspoon of pain d'epices (gingerbread spice), mixed spice or pumpkin spice powder to the batter.
NUTRITION INFORMATION: 344 Calories per 100g portion (for 10 servings); 4g protein, 43g glucides.

From the market

From the kitchen

18 responses to “Sticky Orange Caramel Cake with Chestnut”

    • Hi Enrique,
      I didn’t mention any substitute here since really the cake won’t be the same without it. If, however, you really can’t find it then you could use speculoos spread (biscoff) or half quantity of marmalade.

  1. It’s funny, Jill, but my comment is almost the opposite of Christina’s! Well this cake is very similar to when her mother made, I have never seen anything like it! I’m wondering if I can get that chestnut paste here in the states… Probably on!

    • Thanks so much, David. Yes, you can find chestnut paste easily on Amazon (Clement Faugier).

    • You can buy it at World Market or get it from King Arthur Flour too. I usually get mine from World Market or Home Goods. In case you live near either one of those stores. Hope this helps David!

  2. I had to make this for my Sister’s birthday and not only was it beautiful but so delicious! She wanted to make sure I thanked you for the recipe. She hates cooking or baking. Her birthday was Jan.22! What a coincidence, right? Thank you she sure enjoyed your cake.

    • Absolutely thrilled to hear you loved it, Bea, and happy belated birthday to your sister. Thanks so much for popping in and sharing this. Enjoy your weekend!

  3. This is similar to a citrus cake my mum made just before I left, and it was wonderful!!! I love drizzle cakes here in the UK, too, so l’d love your orange caramel cake!!! Yum!!

    • You know – I’ve not made a drizzle cake in a long time. Your Mum’s lemon cake must have been super. Been enjoying your IG stories in the UK the last few days, Christina x

  4. What a spectacular cake!! That caramel pushes it over the top!! I’m still not getting your emails…darn it. I will try subscribing with another email and see if that works. I miss stopping by!!!
    P.S. We are planning a June trip to Switzerland. One of my sisters wanted a sister gathering in Paris, but the timing didn’t work for us all. Hopefully some day soon…

    • Lovely have you pop in to say hello Liz. This email alert service is new so I’m so glad you’ve now signed up and so won’t miss a post.
      Switzerland sounds fabulous in June – and no doubt you’ll be enjoying a little chocolate 🙂

  5. Mmm. Wish I could have a piece of this cake right now. I love the addition of chestnut paste and bet it is not too sweet. I have a problem with ‘bought’ cakes because they are far too sweet. Recipe is now in my pending folder. Thank you Jill.

    • Thanks, Thomasina. Yes, you’re right: I always cut back on sugar as much as I can in my baking. I know you’ll love this!

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