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Milk Street Recipe
Milk Street Bowtie Spanish Almond Cake (Tarta de Santiago)

Spanish Almond Cake (Tarta de Santiago)

1 hour, plus cooling 10 minutes active

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Spanish Almond Cake (Tarta de Santiago)

Free

This flourless cake from Galicia, Spain, is traditionally made with separated eggs and flavored with citrus and/or cinnamon. We liked it made more simply, with whole eggs and just a small measure of vanilla and almond extracts. A sprinkling of chopped almonds and coarse raw sugar on top of the batter gives the surface a chewy-crisp crust that contrasts wonderfully with the dense, plush crumb of the cake’s interior. Crème fraîche and fresh berries are perfect accompaniments.

8

Servings

Tip

Don't underbake the cake. Rather than use a skewer or toothpick to test the center for doneness, check the browning and crust development. The cake is ready when the surface is deeply browned and the crust feels firm when gently pressed with a finger. Don't serve the cake warm. Its texture is best when fully cooled.

1 hour, plus cooling

10 minutes active

240 grams (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) white sugar
3 large eggs, plus 3 large egg whites
¼ teaspoon table salt
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
250 grams (2½ cups) blanched almond flour
35 grams (3 tablespoons) turbinado or demerara sugar
37 grams (⅓ cup) sliced almonds, chopped
Ingredients
  • 240

    grams (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) white sugar

  • 3

    large eggs, plus 3 large egg whites

  • ¼

    teaspoon table salt

  • ¼

    teaspoon almond extract

  • ¼
  • 250

    grams (2½ cups) blanched almond flour

  • 35

    grams (3 tablespoons) turbinado or demerara sugar

  • 37

    grams (⅓ cup) sliced almonds, chopped

.
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Reviews
Georgia B.
August 9, 2022
It's in the oven now!
It sure came together easily enough. Thank you! Question: I'm trying to weigh my ingredients rather than just measure, when weights are listed. Which do I follow when an ingredient--like almond flour--weighs what the recipe calls for, but measurement is off by as much as 1/3 cup?
Adrienne E.
July 18, 2022
Simple and delicious!
This recipe has become a go-to for a simple, elegant dessert. It's so easy to make and cleans up quickly. I have a family member who is gluten-free, and this is great for her, but I've made it several times for people with no dietary restrictions just because it's easy and delicious.
Molly J.
June 17, 2022
It delivers
For ease and impact, this recipe delivers. I love to serve it for guests who are always impressed.
Anastasia G.
June 4, 2022
Simple and delicious
I've made this cake 4 times now and everyone loves it.
Jennie O.
May 29, 2022
Moist, easy, delicious!
Easiest recipe ever. The cake was so moist and delicious!
Sheri B.

This cake is amazing! It is super easy to make. I followed the directions exactly. Moist, delicious yet simple. I served with whipped cream and berries for garnish but it is great by itself. This will definitely be a go to recipe.

David W.

Heartily agree. I get complimented every time I make this.

Ashley A.

Have made many times, easy and a true crowd pleaser!

George W.

I love this cake so much and so easy that it has replaced my usual Bundt pan pound cake as my “I feel like a piece of cake” go-to. Welcome, almond flour, to pantry staple status.

Brad P.

The most amazing flavor and texture! We made the cake in a 9" springform pan, which worked very well.

Joseph B.

Made this cake for Easter. Simple, easy and delicious! Definitely one of my new go-to favorites!

Winifred Kelley D.

Can you make this with honey instead of sugar? Would this change the texture?

Janelle C.

Hi Winifred,

Great question! I think you'll find this Q&A post helpful: https://www.177milkstreet.com/discussion/discussion/comment/224#Comment_224

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Clifford V.

AMAZINGLY easy cake to make and INCREDIBLE TASTE!!! Plus my wife is Gluten free, so it is so hard to find cakes that actually taste great.....This one fits the bill!!! This is a KEEPER RECIPE!!!!

Lisa K.

Thank you for your comment! Your comment is currently under moderation and will appear shortly.

Bryon P.

Quick, easy and delicious. Great recipe (I'm actually eating a piece right now).

John D.

Easy and delicious - the crunchy top works beautifully with the soft, moist crumb of the cake.

Julianne B.

Oh my goodness, after watching this recipe on TV, I tried it. It was SO easy and came out WONDERFUL! That's usually not the case for my first time baking a recipe! Ha! I'm super excited about this. A couple women in my bible study group are gluten-free and it's such a struggle for me to find things to make for our dinners (I'm NOT gluten-free). Now I'll have something to surprise them with! Thank you!

Joan W.

This cake was sooooo good-and so easy to put together. I used a 9" pie plate. Delish. Delish.

Christina T.

I am a fan of almond cakes. This cake came recommended when I asked my FB cooking group for an almond cake recipe. I've been hooked ever since. It's hard to believe that a cake without butter can still be delicious buy duh I forgot that I am using almond flour which contains enough natural fat.
Anyway, I do have a baking time question. I just ordered a 4" and 6" paper cake pan and want to bake this cake to give away to friends. Can you give me the approx baking time? I don't want to be opening that oven door too many times to check. Thank you

Janelle C.

Hi Christina,

Thank you for your question. Unfortunately, there is no way we can give you an approximate baking time without testing. You're going to have to bake with your eyes here. Look for deeply browned crust that feels firm when gently pressed with a finger, as the instruction states.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

RoseMarie A.

Don’t know about your oven, but I bake it exactly 38 minutes and it is perfect every time. If I baked it the recommended time, it would be ruined.

Diana L.

It tastes good and easy to make. I only put 1/2 cup of sugar as I wanted to taste the almond and not sugar. I will make it again for sure :)

Katherine M.

This cake was lovely...it comes together quickly, and is super easy to make. I made it exactly per the recipe the first time. The only change I made for subsequent bakings, was to use just a light sprinkle of turbinado sugar on the top (3T was too sweet/crunchy for our tastes as originally written). In my oven, the cake is perfectly done in exactly 42 minutes (9" cake pan). This cake is my husbands new favorite.

Peter G.

We can't stop making this recipe. It's too good.

Rose H.

I’ve made this 3 times in the past month. Wonderful recipe.

Bonnie A.

Probably the best dessert recipe on this site. It is heaven.

Bonnie A.

Probably the best dessert recipe on this site. It is heaven.

Bonnie A.

Probably the best dessert recipe on this site. It is heaven.

Bonnie A.

Probably the best dessert recipe on this site. It is heaven.

Sandra M.

This is a great recipe. I want to bake it all the time. For me. For guests. Simple but so so delicious. Lovely that it happens to be gluten free. So much easier to eat that second and third piece!

RoseMarie A.

I have made this cake in excess of 20 times. It is frequently requested, and I have never served this cake without having to provide the recipe. It is the recipe of the decade!! I will say that I find 38 minutes to be the perfect baking time... it would be ruined if I kept it in the suggested amount of time... and everyone who has made it said they followed my suggestion to cook 38 minutes and would not cook it longer. I love intense almond flavor, so I tend to increase the almond extract a little bit. But this is one amazing recipe. One friend texted me a picture the next day... they went out and got the ingredients and made it because they could not stop thinking about it.

Dag R.

Hi! Delicious recipe absolutely! Wondering about switching out the almond extract for a citrus flavor. How would you recommend going about this?thank you for all the incredible recipes.

Lynn C.

Hi Dag -

You could try adding a couple of tablespoons of zest to the recipe. I'm wondering if you could also add 2-3 tablespoons of juice, but I worry the juice might throw off the liquid in the recipe enough to alter the texture. I think the safer bet would be to start with just the zest and see if that's enough to add the citrus flavor you're looking for. Good luck!

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Rebecca M.

I believe there is a typo with the grams of sugar. Should it be 204 grams?

April D.

Rebecca - the quantity listed is correct. In Milk Street recipes, we consider one cup of white sugar to be 214 grams. So, we start with 214, plus 2 tablespoons (which is 1/8 cup, or 26 grams). 26 + 214 grams makes the total listed of 240. For more about sweeteners by weight, check out this handy article: https://www.177milkstreet.com/2017/12/sugars-measured-up.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Joyce S.

My favorite, but really the only cake I make. Easy, always have the ingredients on hand with the exception of the almonds. So I use coarsely chopped salted roasted macadamia nuts. Sometimes I'll glaze the hot cake right out of the oven with a light lemon or lime confectioners sugar glaze (made with freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice and some zest). Sometimes I'll add a little lemon extract along with the vanilla and almond to the cake. Can't go wrong with this one and gluten free to boot. Did I mention easy? Leftover cake keeps well, but try slicing thick slices and toasting them. Crispy crumb and delicious.

margaret K.

Has anyone tried this with pecans? I have gluten and almond allergies. Thanks!

Dawn-Renée W.

Thank you for your comment! Your comment is currently under moderation and will appear shortly.

Susan H.

Wonderful recipe and a huge hit with my guests. I live at high altitude (6200) and didn’t make any adjustments. It came out perfect. I may have put more almonds on top than the recipe calls for because I didn’t measure and just sprinkled until it looked good to me. My guests both wanted the recipe, always a good sign of gastronomic pleasure!

Shannon R.

I appreciate your high altitude note! That’s a concern for me, as well. Thanks for sharing:)

Kim W.

Wondering what the best way to store any leftover cake? Tightly wrapped or just covered with waxed paper?

Lynn C.

Hi Kim -

We would either put it in an airtight container or wrap in plastic.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Susan H.

Wonderful cake. Simply delicious and so easy to make. I made a raspberry sauce that I poured over the center of each slice then scattered a few raspberries around the plate. The almond/raspberry combo is hard to beat and my dinner guests loved it!

Leftovers are a great breakfast treat, too.

Kate T.

This cake is currently in the oven! My mom love everything with almond. So I am surprising her and my parent with this cake for Mother’s Day tomorrow!

Sean C.

I made this today, but the batter was super thick and sticky, wouldn’t pour like it has in the past. I used almond flour that had been frozen, and it was still cold when I mixed it in. Would that have affected the texture?

Lynn C.

Hi Sean -

Yes, it's probably because the flour was still frozen and/or still cold. We always recommend bringing flour that has been stored in the freezer to room temperature before using it. Very cold or frozen flour will yield denser, chewier baked goods. You can spread it on a sheet tray and let it sit at room temperature. It should thaw and warm up within about 30 minutes.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Debra M.

We loved this cake! It literally came together in 10 minutes. Not too sweet, moist and packed with flavor. The almond and sugar topping provided a wonderful textural crunch. I accidently used the yolks instead of the egg whites, realizing it after I mixed it together. The cake did not suffer at all. I will make this again with the egg whites to compare the difference. Another winner from Milk Street!!!

Nancy J.

Great cake! It really is best the day it's made, but since it's so quick to put together, that isn't a problem.

Katherine S.

Perfection! My husband and I went to Santiago de Compostela, Spain on our honeymoon-- where this cake originates. We had way too many slices of Tarta de Santiago while there, so I can say with a lot of certainty that this recipe is the REAL DEAL. Make it just once, and you will start getting frequent requests from friends and family to bring "that amazing almond cake" to the next gathering... :)

Sandra S.

If I made this in an 8in. pan would it just be a taller cake or would it change the whole dynamic? It is delicious!

Lynn C.

Hi Sandra -

Conversions always involve guesswork, but here are a few guiding principles. First, baking in a smaller pan means the depth of the batter will be greater and thus will usually take longer to bake. Second, make sure to only fill the cake pan about 2/3 to 3/4 full so it doesn't overflow during baking. Lastly, make sure to follow the visual clues here rather than the timing. The cake should be baked until it is deeply browned and the center feels firm when gently pressed with your finger. Good luck!

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Laura H.

Would liquid egg whites work in this recipe?

Lynn C.

Hi Laura -

We haven't tested this with liquid egg whites so we can't say for sure. If you decide to try it, let us know how it goes!

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Laura H.

Does your expertise with baking suggest that liquid egg whites most likely will, or won't work?

Lynn C.

Hi Laura -

This should probably work but you will likely have to whisk the whites longer than the 30-45 seconds called for in the recipe to get them frothy.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Lynn C.

Hi Laura -

This should probably work but you will likely have to whisk the whites longer than the 30-45 seconds called for in the recipe to get them frothy.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Laura H.

Does your expertise with baking suggest that liquid egg whites most likely will, or won't work?

Lynn C.

Hi Laura -

This should probably work but you will likely have to whisk the whites longer than the 30-45 seconds called for in the recipe to get them frothy.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Lynn C.

Hi Laura -

This should probably work but you will likely have to whisk the whites longer than the 30-45 seconds called for in the recipe to get them frothy.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Beth M.

I have made this cake over a dozen times. I mix it in a bowl on the scale and it is so quick and easy. The cake is ready by the time the oven preheats. Sometimes I add 1/2 tsp. Cardamom to the batter. Other times, I top it with thinly sliced or chopped seasonal fruit (peaches, nectarines, plums, apples) and bake it an extra five to ten minutes. This recipe is a treasure and, gluten-free too!
five to ten minutes.

Bethany S.

Oh awesome - I've made this quite a bit and was wondering if I could put fruit on top. I am hoping to do cranberries on top with orange zest in the batter. I'm going to try this for thanksgiving. Crossing my fingers!

Nancy W.

Have you ever tried to freeze this cake after baking if there are leftovers?
After tasting not sure why there would be any leftovers - it is that delish but I'm interested if it could be frozen.

Lynn C.

Hi Nancy -

We haven't tested freezing but it should definitely work - this cake is super moist!

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Elizabeth M.

Delicious as it is written. Very moist but also perhaps a tad too sweet for our tastes. I will scale back on the sugar by 20g next time to see if it becomes the perfect afternoon cake. Nevertheless, it couldn't be easier and it doesn't require anything more than a whisk and a bowl to through together. I think this cake could easily adjust to the addition of cardamom and some orange zest and maybe a few pine nuts thrown on top for good measure.

David M.

Super easy cake to make. I've made it four times already and it is a family favorite. Pro tip- sprinkle the turbinado sugar first, then top with the sliced almonds, otherwise you'll get a 'glass shard-like' texture with the turbinado. Made that mistake on my last one...

Anastasia G.

Made it for the first time today, pretty easy and delicious!

Jenette E.

Just made the Spanish Almond Cake! OMG this is an easy delicious moist cake!! So easy to
prepare wow! I will make this one again.


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Spanish Almond Cake (Tarta de Santiago)

Get Ready to Cook

8

Servings

1 hour, plus cooling

10 minutes active

Tip

Don't underbake the cake. Rather than use a skewer or toothpick to test the center for doneness, check the browning and crust development. The cake is ready when the surface is deeply browned and the crust feels firm when gently pressed with a finger. Don't serve the cake warm. Its texture is best when fully cooled.

Ingredients
  • 240

    grams (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) white sugar

  • 3

    large eggs, plus 3 large egg whites

  • ¼

    teaspoon table salt

  • ¼

    teaspoon almond extract

  • ¼
  • 250

    grams (2½ cups) blanched almond flour

  • 35

    grams (3 tablespoons) turbinado or demerara sugar

  • 37

    grams (⅓ cup) sliced almonds, chopped

Step 1 of 3

Preheat the oven

Heat the oven to 350°F with a rack in the middle position. Mist the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray, line the bottom with a round of kitchen parchment, then mist the parchment.

Step 2 of 3

Combine the ingredients, then bake

240
grams (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) white sugar
3
large eggs, plus 3 large egg whites
¼
teaspoon table salt
¼
teaspoon vanilla extract
¼
teaspoon almond extract
250
grams (2½ cups) blanched almond flour
35
grams (3 tablespoons) turbinado or demerara sugar
37
grams (⅓ cup) sliced almonds, chopped

In a large bowl, combine the white sugar, whole eggs and egg whites, salt and both extracts. Whisk vigorously until well combined, 30 to 45 seconds; the mixture will be slightly frothy and the sugar will not be fully dissolved. Add the almond flour and whisk until incorporated.


Pour the batter into the prepared pan, then sprinkle evenly with the turbinado sugar and chopped almonds. Bake until deeply browned and the crust feels firm when gently pressed with a finger, 45 to 55 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.

Step 3 of 3

Cool before serving

Run a knife around the edges of the cake, then invert onto a plate. Remove the pan and parchment then re-invert the cake onto a serving plate. Let cool completely before serving.

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