Coffee Cake Friday: Orange and Poppy Seed Quick Bread

This week’s coffee cake is actually a small loaf–like a tea cake. Yes, I know it’s for Coffee Cake Friday, but you can eat all of these cakes with the beverage of your choice. I decided to include a smaller type of cake for those times when you want a little something but don’t need something as big as a bundt cake. I’ve used this recipe over the years as my quick recipe when I have guests coming over shortly and I’ve not prepared anything. I usually have the ingredients on hand and they come together easily. It’s got a light, delicate crumb, and the poppy seeds add a bit of a nice crunch.

Interestingly enough, I adapted this recipe from a free card I picked up at Whole Foods. I love gathering recipes from local stores. And the origin of this recipe illustrates my tendency to gather recipes from many different sources. If you have a Whole Foods in your area, you should check in with them to see if they have free recipes. Here in Seattle, they always have several out in their bulletin board area, usually in keeping with the season of the year. I think I got this one around Christmas. I’ve also recently discovered that they have many recipes on their web site.

One thing that’s nice about this bread is that you can either eat it as is, or you can slice it, toast it, and add butter and/or jam for an even more decadent snack.

Orange and Poppy Seed Quick Bread
-adapted from one from Whole Foods

Special Equipment Needed
-hand mixer is nice for mixing the batter
-6 cup loaf pan (8 1/2×4 1/2×2 1/2)

1 1/2 cupsĀ Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup milk
1/3 cup orange juice (I like to use freshly-squeezed)
Zest of one orange, finely grated
6 tablespoon butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
2 extra-large eggs, room temp
3 tablespoons poppy seeds
extra butter and tapioca flour for pan

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
-butter and flour pan using tapioca flour
-in a small bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, and salt
-in another small bowl, whisk together orange juice, zest, and milk
-in a large bowl, beat butter with hand mixer until fluffy
-add sugar and beat more
-add eggs, one at a time, beat after each addition
-alternately add flour mixture and milk mixture to butter mixture, starting and ending with flour mixture
-fold in poppy seeds
-pour batter into prepared pan–smoothing top
-thump pan on the counter to release any trapped air bubbles
-bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes–until a tester comes out clean
-cool in pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto rack to complete cooling


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  1. Michelle says

    My neighbor just gave me a big bag of gorgeous navels from his tree, so this was a perfect use! I had a tiny bit of juice left over, so mixed it with some powdered sugar and glazed half of the loaf, just to see. Great recipe! He also gave me some meyer lemons, so may try it with them next… Thanks!

  2. Lee says

    I made this with lemon instead of orange and it seemed to work beautifully, until I put it on the rack to cool. Then it fell from the loaf size to 2 or 3 inches! It still tasted great, but this seems to happen whenever I make bread – any suggestions?
    I love all of your recipes by the way – and so does my family – Thanks!

    • admin says

      Lee: Hm. It sounds like this rose too high and then deflated a bit. With a yeasted bread, I would recommend that you don’t let it rise above the top of the pan, but that isn’t the case here. Are you baking at high altitude?

      • Lee says

        Nope I’m in the midwest, not high altitude. I ‘m not sure what happens. With this bread everything looked great, but then it deflated. With yeast bread I watch to make sure it doesn’t rise too much, but it always deflates. Thankfully both breads still taste wonderful, just hoping to figure this out. :)

        • admin says

          Lee: OK. I would recommend reducing the baking powder and see if that works. Reduce it to 1 tsp and see if that helps.

    • Priscilla Mendenhall says

      sweet rice is a particular kind of rice, commonly called glutinous rice though it does not contain glutin! there are a number of varieties – short and long grained. sweet rice is used in sushi, in mocha, in Chinese dim sum, in northeast Thailand and Laos a s a staple rice.

  3. Megan says

    pudding makes it VERY moist.. I used to do it when i could eat gluten.. so im wondering if it would work the same.

    • admin says

      Megan: Oh, got it. This cake doesn’t need extra moistness, but you can always try it and see what happens!

  4. Megan says

    how do you think this recipe would taste with lemon juice instead of orange.. and a package of instant lemon pudding?

    • admin says

      Megan: lemon juice would be fine–it would just be a lemon cake. Not sure about the instant pudding. Do you mean putting pudding in the middle of the cake or something?


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