Grapefruit Greek Yogurt Cake

Light and refreshing grapefruit greek yogurt cake is simple to prepare and drizzled with a grapefruit glaze. Made with creamy yogurt, fresh grapefruit juice, and sweet brown sugar, the flavor and texture are both incredible. 

slices of grapefruit Greek yogurt cake

We’re having cake for breakfast and rearranging the way we eat grapefruit and yogurt every morning.

I don’t actually eat grapefruit and yogurt (or, sadly, cake) most mornings, but if you slapped a thick slice of this grapefruit greek yogurt cake on my plate, I wouldn’t fight it. Today’s citrus cake is a little different from my lemon berry yogurt cake. This one is softer and more cakey, while the latter is more buttery and creamy. I dare you to resist eating only 1 slice!

grapefruit Greek yogurt cake

This Grapefruit Greek Yogurt Cake Is:

  • Extra moist
  • Light and refreshing
  • Made with creamy greek yogurt
  • Super flavorful
  • A perfect balance of sweet and tart
  • Delicious for breakfast, a snack, or dessert
  • Prepared without a mixer
  • Really easy to make– only 2 bowls needed
  • Baked in a loaf pan (just like lemon pound cake)
  • Topped with grapefruit glaze
  • A quick recipe– from mixing bowl to oven in 10 minutes!

grapefruit Greek yogurt cake batter in a glass bowl with a whisk

Ingredients in Grapefruit Greek Yogurt Cake

I love recipes that call for simple, flavorful ingredients. Let’s review what you’ll need for this grapefruit cake:

  • Flour: Sturdy all-purpose flour is the base of this cake.
  • Baking Powder: Baking powder helps the cake rise.
  • Salt: Salt adds flavor.
  • Eggs: 3 eggs add structure and richness.
  • Yogurt: Greek yogurt helps create a rich and super moist crumb. I use plain nonfat greek yogurt. You can use low fat or full fat instead. Vanilla, honey, or any citrus flavors would work wonderfully, too!
  • Brown Sugar: We use all brown sugar for sweetness and an added layer of flavor.
  • Oil: Instead of butter, we use oil for moisture. It creates a cake that’s lighter in texture, not quite as dense or heavy. Use vegetable, canola, or even coconut oil. And since we’re not creaming butter, we can skip the mixer!
  • Grapefruit Zest + Juice: You’ll use both grapefruit zest and fresh grapefruit juice in this cake. 1/2 of a grapefruit will give you around 1/4 cup of juice and 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons of zest.
  • Vanilla Extract + Vanilla Bean Seeds: Pure vanilla extract and seeds scraped from 1/2 of a vanilla bean add mega flavor. When paired with grapefruit, it’s exquisite.

Helpful tip: When zesting your grapefruit, make sure you only grate the pretty rosy yellow part as the white pith is very bitter. Since we’re using both the juice and the zest, zest the grapefruit first, then cut the grapefruit in half and juice it. Expose that bright ruby red center!

grapefruit Greek yogurt cake in a loaf pan after baking

Grapefruit Glaze

Without glaze, this would just be a moist bread. And cake sounds so much better– and looks prettier, too! While this sweet and tangy grapefruit cake doesn’t really need a glaze, we’ve never turned down a little something extra.

This simple grapefruit glaze adds even more grapefruit flavor. It comes together quickly and easily with 3 ingredients: confectioners’ sugar, pure vanilla extract, and fresh grapefruit juice (use the remaining grapefruit half).

The glaze hardens after several minutes– the bites with hardened glaze are my favorite!

overhead image of grapefruit Greek yogurt cake

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overhead image of grapefruit Greek yogurt cake

Grapefruit Greek Yogurt Cake

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Yield: 1 loaf
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Unbelievably moist grapefruit loaf made with Greek yogurt and fresh grapefruit juice. The flavor and texture are both incredible!


  • 1 and 1/2 cups (190g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup (180g) Greek yogurt*
  • 1 cup (200g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable or canola oil (melted + slightly cooled coconut oil works too)
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, strained
  • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons grapefruit zest
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • seeds scraped from 1/2 of a vanilla bean

Grapefruit Glaze

  • 1 cup (120g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 2 Tablespoons (30ml) freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, strained
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C) and grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
  2. Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs. Once combined, whisk in the yogurt, brown sugar, oil, grapefruit juice, zest, vanilla extract, and seeds. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a large wooden spoon or rubber spatula until combined. Avoid overmixing.
  3. Spread batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes. Baking times vary, so keep an eye on yours. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If you find the top of the cake is browning too quickly in the oven, loosely cover it with aluminum foil.
  4. Remove the cake from the oven and set on a wire rack. Allow to cool before drizzling with glaze.
  5. For the glaze, simply whisk the ingredients together and drizzle over cake. Slice and serve. Cover and store leftover cake at room temperature for up to 5 days. I love it cold, so you can store it in the refrigerator too!


  1. Freezing Instructions: Cake freezes well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before serving.
  2. Muffins/Cupcakes: Prepare batter as instructed. Grease a 12-count muffin pan or use liners. Fill with batter all the way to the top. Bake at 350°F (177°C) for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before serving. Top with glaze. Makes about 12 muffins.
  3. Square or Round Cake: This batter will fit into a 9×9 inch square baking pan or a 9-inch springform pan (it will be too tall for a regular 9-inch round cake pan). Bake at 350°F (177°C) for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool and top with glaze.
  4. Greek Yogurt: I use plain nonfat Greek yogurt. You can use low fat or full fat instead. Vanilla, honey, or any citrus flavors would work wonderfully here!

Keywords: grapefruit greek yogurt cake, grapefruit cake

grapefruit Greek yogurt loaf cake with a few slices


  1. Hi Sally! I made this for my sisters bridal brunch and it turned out beautiful and moist but lacking in grapefruit flavor. I followed the recipe to a tee so i find it odd after reading other reviewers who said it had great citrus flavor. Could it have been the grapefruit I used? Is there a grapefruit extract or oil i could try adding next time? Loved the texture and presentation of this bread but need more grapefruit flavor!

    1. I’d say it was the particular grapefruit because this bread should be extremely flavorful. So sorry about that Holly! I believe there is grapefruit extract out there that you could use or even an orange extract for extra citrus flavor.

    2. Loved it! Best cake of this kind i ever made! It was super juicy! I mixed lime juice with the grapfruit and also used its zest. Probably a bit more quantity than You recommended. Really like the fact that coconut oil replaces butter. Thank you!

    3. Had extra grapefruit so needed a recipe
      Did not disappoint. So good. Just enough flavor. My husband said he could eat the whole thing. The glaze was a little thick but then realized that I didn’t sift the powered suger

  2. Hi Sally,

    Love your recipes. Have tried quiet a few and totally a fan of every one.

    Want to try this one too, just one quick question, if I use dark brown sugar instead of light , will it change the flavor? I have two big packets of dark one but no light.



    1. You can use dark brown sugar. The flavor will be wonderful, though it won’t change much.

      1. Thanks Sally for the reply,

        I made it yesterday (sorry can’t resist making it so could not wait for your reply). MINDBLOWING!!! it is, so yummy, moist and little dense……just what I wanted it to be. You cannot avoid the glaze, I ate it with and without the glaze….glaze took its taste to yet another level.

        Thanks for the wonderful recipe.

  3. Hi Sally, I have made this cake twice and although I loved the taste, both times it rose in the oven and collapsed after taking it out. I even had all my ingredients at room temperature. Any idea what could have gone wrong?

    1. Typically that could mean the bread/cake is underbaked. Perhaps a little longer in the oven?

  4. Can you make this as a full bundt?

    1. Hi Tanya, you can. The bundt would be a little short unless you made 2 batters and poured them into the pan, though. I would’t double the recipe; sometimes I get better results making 2 separate batters. I’m unsure of the bake time.

  5. Has anyone tried GF flours? Maybe part Almond Flour?

    1. Yes, I replaced a half cup of AP flour for Almond meal, this was good to the expletive power. BTW, I did not have powdered sugar for the glaze so I boiled down some grapefruit plus white sugar to make a syrup then poured it on the hot cake.

  6. I have a friend who loves grapefruit (she always orders a Ruby Red Tonic when we go out to eat) and I always wanted to make this for her. It was finally her birthday and this was perfect for our low-key celebration. She is also not a huge fan of frosting so this was even more perfect! She and her boyfriend were very impressed with the flavor, as was I, even though I don’t usually eat grapefruit. I’m definitely keeping this in my back pocket as something to make and surprise people with again! Thank you for a great recipe! 🙂

    1. Sounds like this was a very fitting cake for her! I’m glad it was a hit!

  7. Hi Sally
    I just happen to have grapefruit by hand and I really want to make this!
    Can I halve this recipe? If I could, how should I bake it? In the same loaf pan or 6-inch cake pan?
    Beautiful pictures btw!

    1. Hi Julie! You can halve the recipe, but I’m unsure of the best size baking pan to use.

    2. Hi Sally,
      I’m quite a fan of your recipes (I do all my baking from your blog ). I tried this one and loved it! I made a few changes though. I didn’t have the vanilla beans so I missed that, and my grapefruit gave me very very little zest (not even ¼ of a teaspoon), so I compensated with about 2 tablespoons more of grapefruit juice. I also had a lot of apples, so I finely diced two apples and added them to the mix. The result was fantastic!

  8. Hi Sally, I’ve made this cake before and it’s awesome! I want to make it again but only have regular yogurt on hand, not Greek. What adjustments should I make? less liquid?

    1. No adjustments necessary! Regular plain yogurt works wonderfully.

  9. This was soooooo good!! I didn’t make the glaze and still thought this tasted incredibly decadent – and definitely breakfast food, right??

    1. I eat it for breakfast so YES! 🙂

  10. I just made this delicious bread..omg…….soooooo good! I skipped the vanilla and added extra grapefruit zest to the batter and the glaze cause I wanted the pure grapefruit flavors. This recipe is a keeper

    1. I’m so glad you tried it, Ida!

  11. Hi Sally! First of all let me tell you how much of a fan I am of all your recipes! Your page is a go-to for me whenever I wanna whip something up!

    I tried baking this yesterday and it tasted wonderful and really spongey! However there were no crumbs when I sliced the cake. What could be the reason for it?

    Also I when I pour the wet ingredients onto the dry ones, the dry ingredients clumped up despite how much I mixed the batter. How do I prevent the flour from clumping when mixing?

    Would really like your thoughts on this. Thank you!

    1. Hi Restria! I’m so sorry you had trouble with this grapefruit greek yogurt cake. Let me try to help– first, make sure your ingredients are at room temperature. This is so important when baking cakes and cupcake recipes. That should help the batter mixed together easier. If the cake tastes spongey and almost too wet, it could be underbaked. Try baking for a few extra minutes if you decide to try the cake again. Hope this helps!

  12. Oooo.. this was DELISH!! I couldn’t find grapefruit that said Ruby Red in my grocery store so I just bought what they had. Don’t know if it’s suppose to say Ruby Red?!? Followed the directions exactly and LOVED THIS cake! I had a lot of glaze so I poked a few holes in the top and poured it over the entire cake. Not too sweet and was a nice addition. If you like lemon bread then you’ll love this!

    1. Ruby Red grapefruits have a slightly different flavor but regular grapefruits work also! I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  13. Great recipe, thank you Sally. I cut the sugar down by a third, and got a more pronounced grapefruit flavour. The cake is wonderfully soft, I’ll never go back to having cereal for breakfast again

  14. Hi Sally. Baked this cake first time today. It’s done by 40 minutes. Tastes really good!!! even though I only used vanilla extract and not that much zest. I think I only used 2 grapefruits. I just added extra juice for my glaze which I shouldn’t have done. Just because I thought that the glaze was too sticky. The trick for that would be to give it enough time to mix with everything else so that it would become more spreadable over the cake.
    My critics, my kids loved it. The flavour is not overwhelming, I ate a whole slice.
    Thanks for the recipe. Cheers !!!!

    1. Thrilled this recipe was a hit with your family, Aileen! 🙂

  15. I made this for a girls night and everyone loved it. Super easy to make and turned out perfectly. I used vanilla lactose free yoghurt, therefore only used the vanilla seeds (no extract). Will be making it again very soon as I bought way too many grapefruits. Couldn’t resist, they just smell amazing.

    Thanks again for yet another fabulous recipe (I also recommend the best ever banana cake 😉

    1. You are welcome! I’m thrilled it was such a hit with your friends!

  16. Hi,
    I tried the recipe and bake the same cake twice yesterday. At first I thought it was my mistake when the cake rose in oven but it sink very quickly when out from oven. Then I tried the same recipe for second time, it happened to be the same. Any idea why? And the bottom part of the cake is still wet/heavy and looks uncooked. But the top part of the cake is spongy.

    1. It could be many different things. Cakes usually sink when the cake batter is not completely cooked. You can cover the top of the cake with aluminum foil about half way through the bake time if the top is cooking faster than the inside. Also I suggest testing the temperature of your oven with an inexpensive oven thermometer – if it runs very hot the outside of the cake will be done before the inside.

  17. Excellent! As described, this cake is unbelievably moist. The crumb is loose and tender. I usually follow the recipe the first time I make something, but did make a few minor changes to this one. Because of the yogurt I added 1/4 tsp baking soda. I used a combination of brown and white sugars and rubbed the grapefruit zest into the sugars. I also added 1/2 tsp rosewater which adds something pleasant and unique to the flavor. I subbed a light olive oil for the vegetable oil. None of these changes should have had a noticeable effect on the end result. 5 star!

  18. Can sour cream be used instead of yogurt?

    1. Yes, that should work!

  19. One more question: would this be good with chopped walnuts added?

    1. Yes, you can add them! I recommend 3/4 cup (100g) chopped nuts.

      1. I am a big fan of your website and have it saved on my phone tab. I want to make this tomorrow as an extra side for my daughter’s bday. However I love the crumb from coffee cakes and want to know if I can add it to this recipe? Thank you

  20. So I really want to make a grapefruit cake for my birthday… I’m torn between this recipe, (in a round pan with cream cheese frosting and blackberry swirl) or adapting your lemon blueberry cake recipe (my favorite thing ever, made it for my own baby shower and it was an enormous hit!) for a grapefruit blackberry version… what do you think would be best? Thanks! I love and swear by all your recipes!

    1. Hi Anna, Both would be delicious! If you have a 9 inch springform pan and only need one layer of cake then this would be easy to add a swirl and frosting. If you need a larger layer cake and feel comfortable adapting the lemon cake then go for it! Let me know what you decide and how it turns out – and have a fantastic birthday!

  21. Mary oftedahl says:

    So good! Could you substitute lemon for the grapefruit juice. I have sooo many lemons

    1. Sure can!

  22. I made this in a 9.5 springform pan and it was fabulous. I topped it with homemade grapefruit curd. I will be making this super moist cake again. Thanks!

  23. I had to modify slightly due to social distancing. I used segmented grapefruit in light syrup and oatmilk yogurt. Since I didn’t have zest or fresh juice, I used about 1/2 cup of crushed grapefruit segments. I also arranged several segments on the top of the cake. YUM! This dairy free, modification was awesome! Thank you!

  24. I am a huge fan of cakes that have more icing than cake BUT I LOVED THIS CAKE!!!! I could not wait to taste it so I didn’t make the glaze. If I could give it more than 5 stars, I would.
    I didn’t have any yogurt so I used sour cream and it still turned out delicious!!! Thank you sooooooo much for this recipe!

  25. I don’t have vanilla bean. Can I use vanilla extract, and if so, how much?

    1. Hi Lisa, You can just use a little more vanilla extract instead. I’d add an extra 1 teaspoon of it.

  26. With the last of this season’s grapefruit from our trees, I want to try this grapefruit yogurt cake. I don’t like using olive oil or vegetable oil in baking — don’t like the taste that it gives — I prefer butter. What would be the conversion from oil to butter, please? Thank you.

    1. Hi Maryann, while the cake won’t be as moist, you can use melted butter instead of the oil. Feel free to add 2 extra Tbsp of yogurt to make up for the loss of moisture.

  27. I made this tonight with lime instead of grapefruit, as it was what I had on hand. It turned out delicious! My husband is already asking for me to make it again. I can’t wait to try it with grapefruit and other citrus…blood orange or yuzu!

  28. Can’t wait to bake this! I don’t have a vanilla bean. Would vanilla paste work well here? Or should I just add more vanilla extract

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Meaghan, You can use vanilla paste instead!

  29. I don’t have fresh grapefruit. Can I use bottled grapefruit juice?

  30. I am an experienced baker and had great hopes for this recipe because my neighbor gave me a huge bag of fresh grapefruit off of her tree. I followed the recipe exactly using your suggestion to add two tablespoons of yogurt if using butter instead of oil. It came out dense and as heavy as a brick. It ended up in the trash.

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