Wente Vineyards' Best Almond Cake

This delectably nutty almond cake is the perfect way to end your meal. It tastes great plain or topped with Orange Crème Fraîche!

Servings: 8 – 10

Cook Time: 1 1/2 hours plus 2 hours cooling

Pair With: Wente VIneyards Riverbank Riesling

Source: Recipe and photo courtesy of America’s Test Kitchen and Wente Vineyards


1 1/2 cups plus 1/3 cup blanched sliced almonds, toasted
3/4 cup (3 3/4 ounces) all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups (8 3/4 ounces) sugar
plus 2 tablespoons sugar
3 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon
zest (2 lemons), in two parts
3/4 teaspoon almond extract
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup vegetable oil


1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 300° F Grease 9-inch round cake pan and line with parchment paper. Pulse 1 1⁄2 cups almonds, flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in food processor until almonds are finely ground, 5 to 10 pulses. Transfer almond mixture to bowl.

2. Process eggs, 1 1⁄4 cups sugar, 1 tablespoon lemon zest, and almond extract in now-empty processor until very pale yellow, about 2 minutes. With processor running, add melted butter and oil in steady stream, until incorporated. Add almond mixture and pulse to combine, 4 to 5 pulses. Transfer batter to prepared pan.

3. Using your fingers, combine remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and remaining 1⁄2 teaspoon lemon zest in small bowl until fragrant, 5 to 10 seconds. Sprinkle top of cake evenly with remaining 1/3 cup almonds followed by sugar-zest mixture.

4. Bake until center of cake is set and bounces back when gently pressed and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 55 to 65 minutes, rotating pan after 40 minutes. Let cake cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes. Run paring knife around sides of pan. Invert cake onto greased wire rack, discard parchment, and reinvert cake onto second wire rack. Let cake cool, about 2 hours. Cut into wedges and serve. (Store cake in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 3 days.)

Makes about 2 cups

2 oranges
1 cup crème fraîche
2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt

Remove 1 teaspoon zest from 1 orange. Cut away peel and pith from oranges. Slice between membranes to release segments and cut segments into 1/4-inch pieces. Combine orange pieces and zest, crème fraîche, sugar, and salt in bowl and mix well. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Chef's Notes:

If you can’t find blanched sliced almonds, grind slivered almonds for the batter and use unblanched sliced almonds for the topping. Serve plain or with our Orange Crème Fraîche (recipe follows). 

Recipe Courtesy Of

Wente Vineyards

Wente Vineyards is the oldest continuously operated family-owned winery in the United States. From its earliest years, it has also been a leader in the world of wine, maintaining a global vision for quality and integrity in every aspect of the wine industry.