This light and fruity Orange Pineapple Cake is perfect for spring and summer celebrations. Three layers of moist orange cake are filled with a luscious Pineapple and Cream filling and frosted with Whipped Orange Mascarpone Frosting.
Orange and Pineapple is such a flavorful combination and after trying today’s recipe- it’s definitely one that we don’t use often enough. Keep this delicious recipe in mind for spring and summer birthdays, showers, potlucks, or just because!
How to Make Orange Pineapple Cake
The orange cake layers in our Orange Dreamsicle Cake are very similar to this recipe- however our mixing method is different. In today’s recipe, we are using the conventional method of mixing (rather than the Reverse Creaming method). We also opted for a three layer cake this time so that we can get more filling in every slice!
*As a side note, we used orange coloring in our Orange Dreamsicle Cake to tint the cake batter but forgot to add the coloring to the batter for today’s cake! Keep in mind that for a more colorful slice of cake, you can add a little orange coloring when mixing up your cake batter.
**You can find the full, printable recipe below- but here is a quick rundown of our steps!
- After preheating the oven to 325 degrees F, grease and flour three 8 inch pans. (The layers will be about 1 inch tall after baking–if you prefer two thicker layers instead, you can bake in two 8 inch pans at 350 rather than 325.)
- In a separate bowl, add the flour, baking powder, salt and zest of 1 orange — whisk to blend and set aside.
- Next, in another bowl, combine the thawed orange juice concentrate, milk and orange extract. Set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter and mix on medium speed until softened and smooth. Gradually add the sugar and mix on medium speed for 4 to 5 minutes, until the mixture is light and fluffy. (If you don’t have a stand mixer, a hand mixer is fine also!)
- Add the eggs one by one, mixing after each until blended.
- Alternately, add the flour mixture (3 additions) and the milk (2 additions) beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. You can add the orange coloring gel now. Mix just until combined, scraping the sides and bottom of bowl. This recipe makes about 6 cups of batter. Divide the batter between your pans and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached.
Easy Pineapple & Cream Filling
This pineapple and cream filling is so easy to make and tastes amazing! We’ve made many variations of cream fillings over the years and this filling, also referred to as a “mock mousse”, is made by combining instant pudding and heavy cream. (Using heavy cream rather than the milk that the box calls for gives it a much thicker and more mousse-like consistency). You can add a little more cream as needed to reach the desired consistency.
After preparing the vanilla cream filling, we folded in the drained pineapple pieces- Yum!
Alternative Pineapple Filling
Another great option for pineapple filling is our cooked Pineapple Filling, which is a combination of crushed pineapple, sugar, and cornstarch to thicken.
Whipped Orange Mascarpone Frosting
We decided to go with an orange frosting rather than pineapple since the pineapple filling adds a lot of pineapple flavor to our cake and we wanted a nice balance of the two flavors.
Our Whipped Orange Mascarpone Frosting is a very light, whipped frosting which behaves much like whipped cream (although the mascarpone helps to stabilize it). We love it with this cake recipe and used the orange frosting around the sides of the cake and for rosette and shell borders.
You could also use our Orange Cream Cheese Frosting or add orange extract to our Classic Vanilla Buttercream recipe if you would rather!
If you’ve never tried mascarpone cheese, it is much like cream cheese, but doesn’t have the tanginess. It is very smooth and creamy, and when combined with a little powdered sugar and extracts and added to whipped cream, it gives the whipped cream a little more stability and richness of flavor.
Whipped frostings like this one (as well as our whipped cream cheese frosting), do not go on quite as smoothly as buttercream or cream cheese. So, when working with these frostings I often opt for a textured design. However, if you would like a smoother finish around the sides of your cake, you can gently glide over sides of the chilled, frosted tier with a heated bench scraper or spatula.
Assembling the Orange Pineapple Cake
Once the orange cake layers have cooled, and you are ready to assemble, place the first orange cake layer onto a cake base or pedestal. Spread with pineapple and cream filling. There is no need to pipe a dam for this filling since it is fairly thick, but I do recommend spreading to about 1/2 inch from the edge of the cake. This will keep it contained as you stack your layers.
Place the next cake layer on top of the filling and repeat. Finish with the third cake layer and top with another layer pineapple and cream on top of the cake. I left about 1/2 inch to 1 inch space around the top edge of the cake that would later be filled in with our orange frosting border.
Next, I frosted the sides of the cake and finished with a top and bottom border of rosettes and shells piped with a 2D piping tip.
More Fruity Cake Recipes with Orange and Pineapple
If you love orange and pineapple, don’t miss these other favorite fruity pineapple & orange cakes, fillings, and frosting!
For the Orange Cake
- 2 1/2 cups (285g) cake flour - if you do not have cake flour see * NOTE at the end of the recipe
- 2 1/2 teaspoons (12g) baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon (3g) salt
- zest of 1 orange
- 1 1/2 sticks (12T) (169g) unsalted butter, slightly softened
- 1 1/2 cups (300g) sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 3/4 cup ( 190g) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
- 1/2 cup (121g) milk
- 1 Tablespoon (10g) orange extract
- orange coloring gel (optional) we used a small amount of AmeriColor orange
For the Pineapple and Cream Filling
- 1 small box instant vanilla pudding
- 2 cups heavy cream or whipping cream - (add a little more if needed for desired consistency)
- 1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple, DRAINED.
For the Whipped Orange Mascarpone Frosting
- One 8 ounce package mascarpone, softened.
- 1 cups (115g) powdered sugar, sift then measure
- 1 teaspoon (4g) orange extract
- 1 1/4 cups (302 g) heavy whipping cream
- *Orange coloring gel (optional)
For the Orange Cake
Preheat to 325 if using three 8x2 inch round pans like we did. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees if using two 8x2 round pans.
Grease and flour three 8 x 2 inch round pans. (You can also use two 8x2 inch round pans for thicker layers but we like the additional layer of filling that three cake layers allows.)
In a separate bowl, add the flour, baking powder, salt and zest of 1 orange — whisk to blend and set aside.
In another bowl, add the thawed orange juice concentrate, milk and orange extract. Set aside.
In the bowl of your mixer, add the butter and mix on medium speed until softened and smooth. Gradually add the sugar and mix on medium speed for 4 to 5 minutes, until light and fluffy, a bit longer if using a hand mixer.
Add the eggs 1 at a time, mixing after each until blended in.
Alternately, add the flour mixture (3 additions) and the milk (2 additions) beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. You can also add orange coloring now, add just a little at a time so you can control the intensity of color. Do not over mix the batter or mix above medium speed. Scrape bottom and sides of bowl. Pour into prepared pans, smoothing the top of the cake batter with the back of a spoon.
This recipe makes 6 cups batter
FOR CAKE LAYERS : If using 3 cake pans bake at 325 degrees for 22 to 25 minutes. For 2 pans Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with only a few crumbs attached. Let cool in pans 5-10 minutes then turn out.
FOR CUPCAKES: Bake at 350 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes. This will make 2 dozen plus cupcakes.
For the Pineapple and Cream Filling
Combine the pudding mix and heavy cream in a mixing bowl. I prefer to mix with a hand held mixer, but a whisk fine also. If using a mixer, start on low speed until well combined. Then, switch to high speed and whip the pudding until thick and fluffy. If mousse is too thick, mix in small amounts of heavy cream to reach desired consistency.
If mixing by hand, simply whisk rapidly for a couple of minutes or until mixture is nice and thick.
Fold in crushed, drained, pineapple until well combined.
For the Whipped Orange Mascarpone Frosting
Freeze your mixing bowl and beaters 15 minutes before whipping the cream (30 minutes if chilling in the refrigerator.
Use the whisk attachment for a stand mixer, beaters on your hand mixer. Beat the whipped cream until stiff peaks form. (While beating, you can add drops of orange coloring gel if you like) This can happen very quickly so don't walk away from the mixer. You are at the stiff peak stage when you lift the beater and the cream stands straight up forming a peak. Keep in the refrigerator while completing the next step.
In another bowl combine the mascarpone, powdered sugar and extract. Beat until very smooth. Fold the whipped cream into this mixture and frost.
Assembling the Cake
Place the first cake layer on your pedestal or cake base. Spread with pineapple and cream filling. It is thick enough that no dam is required, but I spread the filling about 1/2 inch from the edge of the cake.
Place the second layer on top and repeat. Top with the third cake layer and spread the top with the pineapple and cream filling. I left about an inch of space around the filling which I later filled with my frosting border.
Frost the cake with whipped Orange Mascarpone Frosting. This is a softer frosting with a whipped consistency. You may find it easier to pipe it on using a piping bag with the tip snipped away (or an icer tip) and then smooth over it with a bench scraper. This is what worked well for me.
I piped a rosette border around the top edge of the cake using a 2D piping tip, and also piped a shell border using the 2D tip around the base of the cake.
*Cake should be refrigerated until closer to the time of serving.
To Make Cake Flour: For each cup of all-purpose flour in a recipe, remove 2 Tablespoons of the all-purpose flour and replace with 2 Tablespoons cornstarch. For this recipe, you will measure out 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, remove 5 Tablespoons of the flour and replace with 5 Tablespoons of cornstarch. Whisk to blend.
Thanks so much for stopping by! We hope that you enjoy this recipe. If you try it, we would love for you to leave a comment and photo below!
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