Olive Oil Cupcakes

Do you have a favorite dessert when you offer to bring one to a gathering (remember those?)? This recipe is my go-to option. Pre-COVID I used to bake a whole cake and sprinkle it with powder sugar and decorate it with a sprig of my olive tree. It looked beautiful. Today, instead I make cupcakes, so it’s an individual dessert, and people can grab their own. They look pretty and it’s a safer option.

I adapted this recipe from Food52 Mailiano’s Olive Oil Cake. I made the following substitutions: instead of using whole milk, I use buttermilk or a combination of whole milk and yogurt. Buttermilk or greek yogurt are the best addition for cake recipes as it makes them fluffy and moist. I don’t use Grand Marnier, as the original recipe calls for, I use fresh orange juice. I’ve also used a combination of oranges and Meyer lemons and the result was amazing.

This is a really easy and kind recipe. By kind I mean that it is fool-proof, you won’t mess it up and believe me when I say it’s a crowd-pleaser. Let me know if you make it. Tag me if you do @mycupofteablog!

Much love,


Some lovelies you might need to make them…

Olive Oil Cupcakes

Course Dessert
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes


  • Muffin pan or cake pan
  • Mixing bowls
  • Whisk
  • Unbleached parchment paper or cupcake liners


  • 2 cups all purpose flour I use Bob's Red Mill Pastry Flour
  • 1 ¾ cups sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp Himalayan salt (fine)
  • ½ tsp baking powder I use aluminium free
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 ⅓ cups good olive oil
  • 1 ¼ cups buttermilk Substitute for 3/4 cups of greek yogurt + 1/2 cup of whole milk. Yogurt is what makes a cake moist and fluffy
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ½ tbsp grated orange zest
  • ½ cup orange juice I once used Meyer lemons and it turned out superb


  • Line your cake pan with parchment paper or you muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  • In a bowl combine flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Whisk to combine.
  • In another bowl combine olive oil, buttermilk, eggs, orange zest and juice.
  • Gradually, pour in the dry ingredients into the wet ones, folding them until combined. Do not overmix
  • Pour the batter into your pan.
  • If you're making a cake it will take one hour or until the top is golden brown. If you're making cupcakes they will take from 22-25 minutes. Remember these times are approximate and depend on your oven. Check them regularly without opening the oven. When the tops are golden it's time to do a toothpick test.
  • Take them out of the oven and let them cool down.


I adapted this recipe from Food52 Maialino’s Olive Oil Cake