Greek Yogurt Grapefruit Cakes

Greek yogurt grapefruit cakes

One recent afternoon I found myself with a little time on my hands and a lot of Greek yogurt and grapefruit in the fridge. I remembered that Thomas Keller had an interesting-looking recipe for grapefruit cake and flipped open Ad Hoc at Home to check it out.

The recipe didn't call for any Greek yogurt, but it did call for milk, so I decided to replace the milk with some Fage, my favorite kind of Greek yogurt, to create a more dense and moist cake. I also was out of canola oil after frying up all those onion strings but remembered that grapeseed oil could be used in baked goods as well. And lastly, the recipe called for pink grapefruit, and mine were supposedly red. I say supposedly because they were labeled red grapefruit, but when I cut into them, they definitely looked pink.

Mostly because I didn't have a loaf pan large enough to make one large cake, I made four mini cakes in my mini loaf pan. The best part about making mini loaves like this is that you can keep some and give some away. I wrapped up two of these cakes and brought them to friends and kept the other two for Jeff and me to nibble on at home.

Greek yogurt grapefruit cakes

The moist cakes get basted with grapefruit syrup right when they come out of the oven, and miraculously the cakes soak up every last bit of that syrup even when you think they can soak no more. Once they cool completely, they get iced with a light and sweet glaze of grapefruit juice and confectioners' sugar.

These grapefruit cakes definitely make me think spring, sunshine, and warm weather!

Greek yogurt grapefruit cakes

Greek Yogurt Grapefruit Cakes (adapted from Ad Hoc at Home)


2 cups flour
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 cup Greek yogurt (preferably Fage Total 0%)
3/4 cup grapeseed oil
1 tablespoon grated red or pink grapefruit zest
1 teaspoon Tahitian vanilla extract

Grapefruit syrup
1 cup strained fresh red or pink grapefruit juice
2/3 cup granulated sugar

Grapefruit icing
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh red or pink grapefruit juice


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 4 mini loaf pans (2-cup capacity) with baking spray, line with parchment (for easy cake removal), and spray again.

Sift together flour and baking powder, and stir in salt. Set aside.

In bowl of stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, blend sugar and eggs on medium speed for about 3 minutes. (They will thicken and the whisk will leave a trail.) Beat in the yogurt, and then the oil, grapefruit zest, and vanilla.

Reduce speed to low, and add the flour mixture, scraping bowl as necessary.

Divide batter between the four pans. I ended up filling each pan with 1 cup plus about 1 tablespoon of batter.

Smooth the top, and then lightly oil a paring knife, and run the knife lengthwise down the center of the batter, about 1/2-inch deep (if you want a nice crack down the middle of each cake).

Bake for 20 minutes, rotate the pan, and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached.

While the cakes are baking, make the grapefruit syrup. Combine the grapefruit juice and sugar in a small saucepan.

Bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar, and continue simmering for 1 minute. Turn off heat, and set syrup aside.

As soon as the cakes come out of the oven, use a skewer to poke holes every 1/2 inch or so in the tops of the cakes.

Immediately brush the syrup over the cakes. I alternated, brushing each cake once, and then repeating until all the syrup was gone. At some points I thought the cakes couldn't soak in any more syrup, but give them a few seconds and continue brushing.

Let the cakes cool in pan for 10 minutes, then unmold and let cool completely right-side up on a cooling rack.

When the cakes are cool, make the icing. Stir powdered sugar and grapefruit juice together in a small bowl until smooth. (You may need to trickle in a little more grapefruit juice. My icing was way too thick.) Either use a spoon to drizzle the icing over the cakes or spread it across the cakes using a baby offset.

Greek yogurt grapefruit cakes

Slice and serve!

Greek yogurt grapefruit cakes

Store the cakes, loosely covered, at room temp for 2 days.

What flavors make you think spring?