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Cardamom almond loaf cake with almond icing.

High Altitude Cardamom Almond Loaf Cake

Heather Smoke
An easy, high altitude recipe for a simple cardamom almond loaf cake that's tender, buttery and moist, drizzled with sweet almond icing.

All recipes on Curly Girl Kitchen are developed for high altitude at 5,280 feet. See FAQs for adjusting to higher or lower elevations.

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings1 loaf


  • Standard-Sized Loaf Pan



  • 1 ½ cups + 2 tbsp cake flour, spooned and leveled
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp coarse Kosher salt (if using table salt, use half the amount)
  • ¼ tsp ground cardamom
  • ¼ cup almonds, finely chopped (optional)
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • ¾ cup whole milk
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp almond extract


  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 2 ½ tbsp whole milk
  • 1 tbsp almonds, finely chopped



  • Preheat the oven to 325 F. Line a standard sized loaf pan with a sheet of non-stick baking paper or parchment paper, so that the paper hangs over two sides. The paper serves as a "sling", making it easy to lift the cake out of the pan. Lightly spray with non-stick baking spray.
  • In a bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cardamom. Whisk in the chopped almonds.
    Note: The chopped almonds add a slightly heartier texture to the cake, but the cake is a bit more soft and fluffy without the almonds.
  • Add the eggs, milk, melted butter, vanilla and almond extract, and whisk for about 15 seconds, until smooth.
  • Pour the batter into the pan. Bake the cake on the center oven rack for about 37-40 minutes, until a cake tester or sharp knife comes out clean. The top of the cake should be domed, golden brown and cracked down the middle.
  • Cool the cake in the pan for 20 minutes, then gently lift the cake out (using the paper) and set on a cooling rack. Cover loosely with a clean kitchen towel, and cool completely for several hours before drizzling with icing.


  • When the cake is cool, set it on a serving plate.
  • In a bowl, whisk together all of the icing ingredients (except the chopped almonds) until smooth. It will be thick, but drizzly, and should be thicker than you think it should be, or it will just run off the cake.
  • Spoon the icing over the cake, letting it cover the top and drip over the sides. Sprinkle with the chopped almonds before the icing sets. The icing will set in about 15-20 minutes.
  • Note: If you like less icing, or want it thinner and less opaque, make half the icing recipe and increase the milk slightly.


Store leftover cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.  The icing will get a little sticky when the cake is stored.
Keyword Almond, High Altitude, Loaf Cake
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