Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Ricotta cheese makes this grapefruit pound cake extra moist, and the sweet grapefruit cream cheese frosting is the perfect balance to the tart cake. You will love the bright citrus flavor in this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting!
This past weekend I celebrated my birthday. It was a great weekend, filled with a nice balance of family time, me time, and birthday fun!
Saturday morning we took the kids to a birthday party for one of their friends. Then I spent three hours Saturday afternoon cooking and photographing two new recipes. I’ll give you a hint: they both include orange, both turned out fabulously, and I’ll be sharing them with you very soon! Oh, and you know you’re a food blogger when dinner is leftover homemade pizza along with reheated asparagus that you cooked and photographed in the afternoon. 🙂
On Sunday, I set my alarm for 5:30a.m. so that I could have some quiet time/blogging time before the kids woke up. I got started on writing my posts for this week, while enjoying my cup of coffee. The rest of the day was spent hanging out with the kids, and then in the evening we went to my parents’ house for dinner. I even did a little baking in the afternoon. Shocker, right?
Did I forget to mention there was cake? Lots of cake actually. Kid birthday party cupcakes, birthday cake after dinner on Sunday, and a few slices of this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting here and there as well. Yes, there was cake, and it was wonderful.
I am not a huge grapefruit eater. I enjoy half a grapefruit with breakfast maybe a couple of times a year. We have recently started getting a Farm Fresh to You delivery of fresh fruits and vegetables each week, and our box has included the juiciest, most delicious grapefruits. I think I might be getting hooked on grapefruit! It was only a matter of time before I tried baking with these tart citrus fruits. (If you live in the delivery area and want to sign up for Farm Fresh, be sure to enter my referral code, KRIS8174. We will both get a discount! 😉 )
To make this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, I adapted one of my all-time favorite recipes, my Lemon Ricotta Cake with Almond Glaze. I swapped out the lemon for grapefruit, and added a sweet grapefruit-cream cheese frosting to balance out the tartness. The frosting recipe makes quite a lot, more than you think you will need, but I left it as is because I like to slather it on thick. Cream cheese frosting is just soooo good, ya know? If you’re short on any of the frosting ingredients, you could totally make a half recipe work, though.
The ricotta cheese makes this cake extremely moist, and it’s more of a dense pound cake than a light and fluffy cake. Which is awesome but I just want to make sure you know what to expect if you make it. There’s a definite tartness from the grapefruit, which is delicious paired with the cream cheese frosting. And since this Grapefruit Ricotta Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting is in the shape of a loaf it’s totally acceptable to eat a slice for a snack or breakfast, right?
- 1½ cups (192g) cake flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. salt
- 2 tbsp. grapefruit zest
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 6 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
- 4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup (120g) powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp. grapefruit juice
- 1 tsp. grapefruit zest
- pinch of salt
- grapefruit slices, for garnish, if desired
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray. Place a piece of parchment paper on the bottom of the pan, letting it hang up and over the sides on the two ends.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, salt, and grapefruit zest. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Add the ricotta, grapefruit juice, and vanilla and beat on medium speed, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed, about 2 minutes.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in three additions. Beat until combined, 1-2 minutes.
- Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes, until a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Be sure to insert the tester all the way down to the bottom of the cake, as the top may be done but the bottom might still be gooey.
- Let cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes and then remove from pan to cool completely before frosting.
- Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until light and creamy. Beat in the powdered sugar, a little at a time, until incorporated. Beat in the grapefruit juice, zest, and salt. Spread icing over top of cooled cake in a thick layer. Garnish with grapefruit slices, if desired. Store frosted cake in the refrigerator.
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