Ciambellone | Italian breakfast cake

Prepare this delicious Ciambellone at home in just a few steps and enjoy it in the morning with a foamy cappuccino. The recipe is very simple and in a few minutes you will be enjoying an aromatic italian cake that tastes exactly like nonna’s!

Make me a cake, please…

Every now and then Max (my husband) asks me to bake him un semplice ciambellone per il cappuccino, per favore, amore… … And well, I can’t say no because I love to indulge my family with their favorite treats.

So I make his mom’s ciambellone because is a recipe that has never failed and is so easy to make. Every time I bake this, the house will fill with this wonderful fragrance of baking goods and in less than one hour we will be enjoying this wonderful cake still warm from the oven.

A ciambellone cake placed on a blue serving plate

What is Ciambellone?

Ciambellone is a very common Italian breakfast cake served in the morning to accompany the traditional cappuccino or to have it as an afternoon snack.

It is a soft and fluffy sweet cake, with a rich aroma of citrus and vanilla and shaped like a big donut. Is not so buttery but moist enough to enjoy it alone.

In Italy it is prepared in many ways, there is ciambellone with chocolate, vanilla or a combination of both (marmorizzato).

The recipes are also very varied, for example with or without butter, gluten-free, without eggs, with water or milk, or as in this case, yogurt, which is the one we like the most at home.

Is ciambellone a dessert?

It can be, yes. Even though this cake is eaten mostly as breakfast or sometimes as a snack; it can also be serve as a dessert.

I like to serve it with a caramel or chocolate sauce or also with a scoop of mascarpone gelato on top of a slice. People love it this way!

Soft, tall Ciambellone

How to store

  • You can store the cake in a container with a lid and leave it at room temperature for 4-5 days maximum.
  • As many cakes, don’t leave it without covering properly or it will dry and become hard.
  • You can also wrap it with cling film, this is my favourite way for storing ciambellone because keeps it very soft.
  • If you want to freeze it you can do it; just cut the cake into small portions, then wrap them tightly with cling film.

Ingredients for Ciambellone Cake

FLOUR – All purpose flour is what we use. You can also use cake flour, just make sure to add one teaspoon less of baking powder.

SUGAR – White sugar or any other sugar you prefer. Sometimes I make it with brown sugar and it turns wonderful, a little bit more brown but still so good.

EGGS – I used 3 mediums eggs which weight in total about 220gr. If you using small eggs I recommend adding four instead.

YOGURT – Use plain yogurt with no sugar. Or if you don’t have that just use normal yogurt, even with fruit. the taste will change sightly but it will be still delicious.

OIL – I used canola oil because it has a neutral flavour, but actually my MiL uses extravirgin olive oil and the cake comes out amazing!

AROMAS – Lemon zest and vanilla extract are the obvious choices, but ciambellone can also be flavoured with orange zest, almond extract, rum, etc.

RAISING – Baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Ciambellone ingredients

Cimbellone Recipe

Grease and flour a ring-shaped pan (read notes. Heat the oven at 180 °C (350F).

Put the eggs into a mixer bowl, add the salt and beat for 1 minute on medium speed. Add the sugar and beat on high speed for 5 minutes.

Add the lemon zest and vanilla extract, continue beating on high speed until you get a fluffy, light yellow mixture (see video). Add the oil and the yogurt, mix for a few seconds at medium speed so that the ingredients are integrated.

Place a strainer over the bowl, add the flour, baking powder and baking soda, sift well. Mix for a few seconds, it does not matter that there are a couple of lumps left as far as you don’t overmix.

Pour the mixture into the pan and gently tap it to even out. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Remove the ciambellone from the oven and place it on a cooling rack; let it sit for 10 minutes and then carefully remove it from the pan and place it on the rack to let it cool completely.

Notes

  • All ingredients must be at room temperature.
  • Do not open the oven door to check the cake until at least 30 minutes have passed from when you put it inside.
  • If you see that 40 minutes have passed and the cake is not completely baked, cover it with foil to prevent the surface from browning too much and keep baking for another 15-20 minutes.
  • For the original ciambellone shape you will need a ring-shaped pan. If you don’t have it you can use a plum-cake pan or a 23cm round pan.

Ciambellone | Italian breakfast cake

Prepare this delicious Ciambellone at home in just a few steps and enjoy it in the morning with a foamy cappuccino. The recipe is very simple and in a few minutes you will be enjoying an aromatic italian cake that tastes exactly like nonna’s!
PREP 10 minutes
COOK 40 minutes
TOTAL 50 minutes
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Servings: 10
Author: Maricruz

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups (300 gr) all purpose flour
  • 1 cup (200 gr) white sugar
  • 4 medium eggs
  • ¾ cup (180 gr) plain yogurt
  • cup (80 gr) canola oil
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt

Instructions

  • Grease and flour a ring-shaped pan (read notes). Heat the oven at 180 °C (350F).
  • Put the eggs into a mixer bowl, add the salt and beat for 1 minute on medium speed.
  • Add the sugar and beat on high speed for 5 minutes.
  • Add the lemon zest and vanilla extract, continue beating on high speed until you get a fluffy, light yellow mixture (see video).
  • Add the oil and the yogurt, mix for a few seconds at medium speed so that the ingredients are integrated.
  • Place a strainer over the bowl, add the flour, baking powder and baking soda, sift well.
  • Mix for a few seconds, it does not matter that there are a couple of lumps left as far as you don’t overmix.
  • Pour the mixture into the pan and gently tap it to even out.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Remove the ciambellone from the oven and place it on a cooling rack; let it sit for 10 minutes and then carefully remove it from the pan and place it on the rack to let it cool completely.

NOTES

  • All ingredients must be at room temperature.
  • Do not open the oven door to check the cake until at least 30 minutes have passed from when you put it inside.
  • If you see that 40 minutes have passed and the cake is not completely baked, cover it with foil to prevent the surface from browning too much and keep baking for another 15-20 minutes.
  • For the original ciambellone shape you will need a ring-shaped pan. If you don’t have it you can use a plum-cake pan or a 23cm round pan.
Nutrition
Calories: 310kcal
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7 Comments

  1. It’s in the oven. Had to use satsuma rind and strawberry yoghurt though…..
    Oh and didn’t have a ring shaped tin.
    Smells delicious. Thanks.

      1. I am curious to try this. I make a similar one with double the oil. I use the zest of 2 oranges and 1 lemon using a peeler and chop them fine in food processor with the sugar.

    1. Hi Susan, here in Italy, baking powder comes in small bags of 16 g, that’s about 4 teaspoons and I always use 1 bag to make the batter.

      It doesn’t taste bad or ruin the batter, believe me. Have you tried? or maybe you want to try first with less baking powder and see how it goes?

      By the way, this ciambellone is about 9 inch tall.

      1. Thanks for responding. I will try using the usual baking ratio, 1tsp. per cup of flour and see how it goes. I will let you know.

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