Orange, Pomegranate and Polenta Cake (DF/GF)

This dairy and gluten free upside down cake will brighten up your winter meals with it’s perfect balance of sweet and citrus flavours. The polenta gives it a course texture but the oranges and almonds make it moist and it’s perfect paired with a big  dollop of (dairy free) creme fraiche.



  • 2tbsp vegetable oil, for greasing
  • 3tbsp runny honey
  • 1 whole orange, sliced
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 225ml sunflower oil
  • 225g caster sugar
  • zest 1 orange (reserve the juice)
  • zest 1 lemon
  • 150g polenta
  • 200g ground almonds
  • 1 1/2 tsp (gluten free) baking powder
  • For the syrup: 1 pomegranate (seeds only), 200ml reserved orange juice (top up with water if you don’t have enough), 50g caster sugar



  1. Preheat the oven to 180c. Generously grease an 8 or 9 inch cake tin with the oil and place a disc of greaseproof paper in the bottom.
  2. Drizzle the base with the honey and arrange the slices of orange on top.
  3. Place the egg yolks, oil, 175g of the caster sugar and the orange/lemon zest in a bowl. Beat until thick and pale then add the polenta, almonds and baking powder and stir together.
  4. In a separate (very clean) bowl, whisk the egg whites until they come to soft peaks then add the remaining 50g caster sugar and whisk until medium/stiff peaks form. Put one large spoonful of the egg white into the other ingredients and mix to loosen, then fold the rest in.
  5. Carefully scrape the finished cake mix into the prepared cake tin (don’t drop it in from a height or you will push out all the air you’ve incorporated!). Level off the top carefully and bake for 30-40 minutes (or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted).
  6. While the cake is baking, make the syrup. Simply place the orange juice (and water if needed) and sugar in a saucepan and heat gently until the sugar dissolves. Once the sugar has dissolved bring to the boil for about 5 minutes- once the syrup has thickened slightly take off the heat and add the pomegranate seeds. Set aside.
  7. When the cake is ready, turn out of the tin and drizzle with syrup. Arrange the pomegranate seeds on top.
  8. Serve warm or at room temperature with a spoonful of dairy free creme fraiche/yoghurt.



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