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Simply Relish | Low Waste Vanilla Iced Orange Pound Cake with Sprinkles

If you’re trying to limit waste, homemade baking is a great alternative to store-bought options. Sometimes, it’s a bit more work but it usually offers up a better tasting treat as well. Consider making this vanilla iced orange pound cake, complete with rainbow sprinkles, at your next party!

One of my favorite things about hosting a party is making dessert. I enjoy trying out new dessert recipes but hate having an entire cake or batch of cupcakes and very few mouths to eat them. Inevitably, I eat most of it, and my boys indulge in more than their fair share as well. 

This, of course, is neither good for my health nor my sanity. I don’t need 87 mini cupcakes with homemade frosting. My boys bounce off the walls and then crash hard after too much dessert, just as you’d expect from little ones overloaded with sugar. 

This past weekend, we hosted about 40 people at our house for a casual gathering. This is the perfect time to play around in the kitchen with sugar and sweets without anyone eating too much of a good thing. 

Presumably because of the sprinkles, this vanilla iced orange pound cake was a big hit with the kids and the most popular item on the dessert table. 

I first made this pound cake several years ago while living in Chicago. Just before J was born, T and I attended a series of kids cooking classes. We made this simple, orange pound cake one afternoon, and I’ve held on to the recipe ever since then. 

We had an extra orange in the fridge that wasn’t the best of the bunch and had lingered in the produce drawer for a while. Although it didn’t make a great snack on its own, I knew the juice and zest would be perfect for this pound cake. I hate to see food go to waste, so the lonely orange inspired orange pound cake for dessert. 

I whipped up some buttercream frosting and added a bit of extra milk so I could drizzle it over the cake. J suggested we add sprinkles because, according to him (and probably all little kids), everything is better with sprinkles. 

He loaded up the sprinkles, and we were off to the races with our fancy-ish cake. 

Low Waste Baking

When we bake, I try to limit the waste we generate. I’ve shared a summary of our zero and low waste baking tips in this Comprehensive Beginner’s Guide to Zero Waste Baking. For this iced orange pound cake, we generated some waste but not much. 

We used up the lingering orange that might otherwise have ended up in the compost bin. I purchased the sprinkles from the bulk section at our grocery store. The zero waste baking guide includes all sorts of details on how to limit waste as it relates to the standard baking ingredients, like flour, sugar, and eggs. 

While making the icing, I ran out of powdered sugar. Luckily, I had a bit of turbinado sugar in our pantry, so I threw that in our Magic Bullet and turned it into powdered sugar. Did you know making powdered sugar is that easy? 

I had no idea until I started exploring zero waste baking. Powdered sugar can be hard to find in bulk or without plastic. We’re more likely to find turbinado sugar in zero waste or plastic-free packaging, so it’s an alternative when you want to limit waste but need powdered sugar for a recipe. 

I’ve included the recipe for the orange pound cake below. Check out the icing from this post, and add a bit of extra milk until you’ve reached your desired consistency. I like the icing to be thin enough that I can pour it over the cake without it all running right off the top.

We had a great time at the party. The cake was a big hit. And lesson learned… never forget the sprinkles!

Have any other zero or low waste baking tips? I’d love if you shared them in the comments!

Orange Pound Cake

Orange Pound Cake

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes


  • 1 large orange, zest
  • juice of orange, about 2 tbsp
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup yogurt, Greek
  • 1/4 cup oil, canola
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup flour, whole wheat
  • 1/2 cup flour, all purpose
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a 1.5 quart loaf pan or bundt pant.
  3. Whisk eggs in a medium bowl until yolks and whites are combined.
  4. Add sugar, yogurt, oil, vanilla, orange zest and orange juice. Whisk together.
  5. Mix in flours, baking powder and salt.
  6. Pour batter into pan and bake for 30 - 40 minutes until a knife or cake tester comes out clean.
  7. Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes.
Nutrition Information:
Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g

Did you make this recipe?

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