Pink Grapefruit Yogurt Cake Recipe

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Last week we had our good friend over to celebrate his birthday.  Josh cooked the creamy lemon chicken dinner by himself, so I offered to make dessert. I  baked a cake to keep things traditional.

We love citrus fruits-especially when they come in dessert form:) We usually do lemon or lime cakes, but we had an abundance of pink grapefruit in the refrigerator (it was on sale 8 for $1-score) so this time I created a pink grapefruit cake.  I wanted the cake to have a strong grapefruit “punch” so I added a good amount of grapefruit zest into the cake. For the best results, rub the zest with the granulated sugar before adding it to the rest of the ingredients. The grapefruit scent really comes alive when you do this.

I wanted the cake to be really moist-I hate dry cake, so I used homemade Greek yogurt and canola oil. I didn’t even need a mixer for this cake, it was so easy to put together. I poured the batter into a 9 inch round cake pan and baked it for 25 minutes. I am not a big frosting person, but wanted to top the cake off with something special, so I made a grapefruit syrup and glaze to intensify the flavors. The syrup seeped into the cake, locking in the grapefuity goodness! The glaze made the cake shine like the sun on a hot summer day.

I was a little worried this cake would be too “girly” for the guys, but they loved it! The grapefruit flavor wasn’t too tart, it was just right. This grapefruit cake is perfect for any celebration.I think it would be perfect for a baby or bridal shower. I plan on making this cake again and again!

Thanks for all of your concern about my neck. I am feeling much better, not 100%, but better. I was able to run on Saturday, it felt great to be up and moving. Have a great Monday!

Pink Grapefruit Yogurt Cake

4.5 from 2 votes


  • 3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • Zest of 1 1/2 pink grapefruits
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • Grapefruit Syrup
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 2 T granulated sugar
  • Grapefruit Glaze
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 2-3 T freshly squeezed grapefruit juice


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray. Dust lightly with flour too. Set pan aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, add the grapefruit zest to the sugar. Rub together with your fingers until fragrant. In a large bowl, mix together the yogurt, sugar, and zest with large spoon or spatula. Whisk in the eggs-you can do all three at once. Mix until smooth and then add in the vanilla and stir again.
  4. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients. Mix just until flour is incorporated.
  5. Add the oil and mix well. It might take a minute to get the oil mixed in, but it will.
  6. Pour the batter into your prepared cake pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until your cake tester comes out clean and the cake springs back when lightly touched in the center.
  7. Cool on a cooling rack for about 15 minutes and then remove from the pan. While the cake is cooling make the syrup and glaze.
  8. For the syrup, in a small sauce pan add the grapefruit juice and sugar. Whisk over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.
  9. For the glaze, in a medium bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar and grapefruit juice. If it is too thick, add more juice, if it is too runny, add more sugar.
  10. Poke little holes into the cake with a toothpick. Spoon the grapefruit syrup over the cake and let it soak in. Let the cake cool to room temperature and then add the glaze. Drizzle over the top of the cake.

If you like this cake, you might also enjoy:

Blueberry Lemon Loaf Cake from Two Peas and Their Pod
Coconut Lime Cake from Two Peas and Their Pod
Three Citrus Bundt Cake from Becks & Posh
Gluten Free Orange Cake from Elana’s Pantry
Lemon Drenched Lemon Cake from Joy the Baker

Maria Lichty

I’m Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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CommentsLeave a reply

  1. This looks so refreshing. I have some greek yogurt in the fridge. This cake is on my list of things to make today.

  2. This sounds fabulous! Been waiting for you to post it since you tweeted about it, last week. Think I’ll just suck this into my repertoire – perfect for Florida, or people who wish they were here! :-))

    1. Traci-I used homemade yogurt, recipe is on our blog-look at the recipe index under breakfast/brunch. Oikos would work fine too though!

  3. i’m a new grapefruit fan, and i wish it’d go on sale here! your cake looks fluffy and appropriately moist, although i love what the glaze must add to it. very nice!

  4. Hi, I’m new to your blog and I just have to say I’m way impressed so far. Especially today when I logged on and discovered you had posted a recipe for Pink Grapefruit Cake. I too, bought grapefruits 8/$1 at my local grocery store and was thinking there’s got to be a yummy recipe out there somewhere using this tart fruit. And BAM!!! There it was…a cake recipe none the less…from your blog! Hooray for me…LOL! I can’t wait to try it!!! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Maris-you are so kind. I still have a lot to learn in the photography area-I have no secret, just doing my best:)

  5. Wow. What an interesting cake. I use lemon and lime zest a lot … but never grapefruit zest. I love the fact that you used Greek yogurt and canola oil (so healthy). Did you use lowfat Greek yogurt or full fat? I’d really like to try this recipe!

    1. Liz-we use our homemade Greek Yogurt-recipe is on our blog under breakfast/brunch.
      You can use any yogurt though, fat free or full fat, use your favorite.

  6. I love grapefruit cake. I usually make gale gands version but this is so much more lighter great recipe!!


  7. Wow Maria, Grapefruit cake! That sounds awesome. I wish I had some for breakfast right now (I so love dessert fo breakfast, and this has citrus!).

    I can’t believe how bright and beautiful that grapefruit looks – great shot!

  8. Stunning cake! I can only imagine the tart and fresh taste of grapefruit shining through! Really well done, I am looking forward to making this!

  9. Maria, this cake is beautiful. So delicate and light!
    I must try it! We have been enjoying grapefruit a lot lately and this looks like just the thing!

    1. Thanks everyone. I am usually a cookie person, but I really, really loved this cake! It’s a keeper!

  10. Such a nice recipe. I love grapefruits and yogurt – it must taste great! And not too much butter/oil. A perfect cake, I add it to my wish list to be tried very soon. Thanks for sharing!

  11. Yum — I totally crave grapefruit, so this is right up my alley. One question though — when I’ve made grapefruit cake, it has that sort of tongue numbing bitterness from the grapefruit peel — do you know what I’m talking about? Does this cake embrace that or neutralize it?

  12. Grapefruit is not used nearly enough in baked goods! I’ve considered using it in quick bread before, not hadn’t thought of a cake like this. It looks delicious! I will definitely be giving this a try.

  13. Ooooh! I missed this earlier in the week. It sounds perfect. I actually picked up some pink grapefruit to try your broiled grapefruit recipe and remembered seeing a recipe for grapefruit cake in one of my cookbooks. Thanks for tweeting it.

  14. i can tell from your photo that this is a very tender moist crumb. looks heavenly! my mouth is watering…and puckering from those beautiful grapefruit shots.

  15. I love adding the zest to the sugar called for in a recipe. I think that really makes the dessert! Your cake looks like a tart and tangy winner! You definitely have me wanting grapefruit now.

    Btw, glad to hear that you feeling some what better!

  16. Girl, you speak my language! I love citrus, but I LOVE LOVE LOVE grapefruit! I love how quick and easy this is. Sounds like we’ll be having some pink grapefruit yogurt cake for dessert next week!

  17. I’m making this Saturday for a baby shower. I was going to do mini-cupcakes, do you think they will work? Thanks, I love your blog!

    1. Heidi-I haven’t tried cupcakes with this recipe, but I am sure they will work. Drizzle the syrup and glaze over them to make sure they stay moist. Let me know how they turn out. I am sure they will be super cute!

  18. Just wanted to let you know that they worked great! I cooked them for 15 minutes and they turned out perfect. Thanks for the great recipes, I just found your blog and I love it!

  19. I love grapefruit and when I found this recipe I decided to have it for my birthday cake next month. But I have a few questions. 11/2-is that five and a half grapefruits? Also, I’ve never zested before but I have a vague idea of how its done. If you could give me any tips on the subject I would greatly appreciate it

    1. It is one grapefruit and a half of a grapefruit. I use my microplane to zest citrus fruits. It is the best tool ever! Don’t go too deep because the white part tends to be bitter. Enjoy!

  20. Yummy yummy cake! Thanks for the recipe! I added some cream cheese to the glaze. So good. My husband and I just loved it!! thanks again!

  21. You’ve saved me! We have this vanilla flavored greek style yogurt we love. The company that makes it also makes this large tub of vanilla flavored greek yogurt that we’d thought we’d try since we were going through the smaller containers so quickly. It turned out to be horrible compared to the yogurt we loved. It was grittier, and the vanilla tasted artificial. Now you might tell me to just toss this stuff in the garbage, but I’m much too thrifty for that. I looked up recipes for French yogurt cake, but then I ran into another issue, an abundance of pink grapefruit that only i would eat, and I wasn’t. It just popped into my head that I could make a grapefruit glaze, so I Googled, and found you lovely recipe. Thank you so much. I’m not a frequent baker, much to my honey’s chagrin, hopefully I won’t have eat this all by myself.

  22. 4 stars
    Made this cake and the flavor is fantastic! However, my cake turned out tough. I’m am a seasoned Baker so not sure if it was due to over mixing/over baking or if just the recipe.

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