Colomba Cake Recipe – A Delicious Twist on Easter Desserts

Welcome, fellow food enthusiasts! Today, I’m excited to share with you a delightful recipe for Colomba Cake.

This traditional Italian Easter dessert is shaped like a dove (colomba means dove in Italian) and is a symbol of peace and celebration.

With its soft and airy texture, combined with hints of citrus and a sweet almond glaze, Colomba Cake is sure to be a hit on your dessert table.

Let’s dive into the recipe!

How To Prepare Colomba Cake Recipe?

  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
  • Rising Time: 4-6 hours
  • Baking Time: 35-40 minutes
  • Yield: One 9-inch Colomba Cake


  • Large mixing bowl
  • Stand mixer or hand mixer
  • Dough hook attachment (if using a stand mixer)
  • Parchment paper
  • Baking sheet
  • Pastry brush
  • Mixing spoon
  • Wire rack

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Ingredients For Colomba Cake Recipe:

To create this delicious Colomba Cake, gather the following ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup lukewarm milk
  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 4 large eggs
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped candied orange peel
  • 1/2 cup chopped candied lemon peel
  • 1/2 cup blanched almonds, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup pearl sugar or granulated sugar
  • Sliced almonds for decoration

Step-by-Step Instructions:

Now that we have all our ingredients ready, let’s dive into the step-by-step instructions to make the perfect Colomba Cake:

Step 1: In a small bowl, combine the lukewarm milk and active dry yeast. Stir gently and let it sit for about 5 minutes until the yeast becomes frothy.

Step 2: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, and salt.

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Step 3: Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the softened butter, eggs, orange zest, lemon zest, and vanilla extract.

Step 4: Pour the yeast mixture into the well and gradually incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.

Step 5: Once the dough starts to come together, transfer it to a floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.

Step 6: Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover it with a clean kitchen towel, and let it rise in a warm place for 2-3 hours or until it doubles in size.

Step 7: After the first rise, punch down the dough to release any air bubbles. Add the chopped candied orange and lemon peels, as well as the chopped almonds. Gently fold in the additions until they are evenly distributed.

Step 8: Shape the dough into a dove shape by forming two round sections (one larger for the body and one smaller for the head) and elongating the dough to create wings. Place the shaped dough on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

Step 9: Cover the shaped dough with a clean kitchen towel and let it rise for another 1-2 hours until it puffs up.

Step 10: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) while the dough is rising. Once the dough has risen, brush the surface with beaten egg and sprinkle pearl sugar or granulated sugar over the top. Add sliced almonds to decorate the wings.

Step 11: Bake the Colomba Cake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes or until it turns golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

Step 12: Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool on a wire rack before serving.

Nutrition Facts Of Colomba Cake Recipe

Fat20 g
Saturated Fat13 g
Sodium342 mg
Potassium154 mg
Carbohydrates40 g
Protein7 g
Colomba Cake Recipe
Colomba Cake Recipe

How Can I Store Colomba Cake Recipe?

Store this dessert in an airtight container in the refrigerator for more than 5 days.

Although it’s a dessert made with basic ingredients, the lemon juice can make it go not good or lose its taste, so always keep it covered.

How Can I Freeze Colomba Cake Recipe?

1. You can freeze this dessert as soon as you finish making it.

2. You can make a Colomba cake recipe in advance and store it in the freezer. If you do that, thaw it for about 15-20 minutes before serving. Otherwise, the ice cream will melt quickly, and your dessert will become liquid again.

3. For a frozen Colomba cake recipe, I recommend that you defrost it overnight in the fridge before eating.

4. If you don’t want to use a thermal oven, you can set it in the freezer for about 3 hours and then enjoy it in the oven at a low temperature.

How To Serve Of Colomba Cake Recipe?

1. You can have the Colomba cake recipe as ice cream, but it’s good served with fresh fruit or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

2. You can enjoy the Colomba cake recipe as a dessert by serving it warm, but it’s also good at room temperature.

If you’re serving this dessert cold, place it in the fridge for 30 minutes before eating so that the ice cream isn’t too hard to eat and is softer.

3. You can serve this dessert in slices or squares.

4. You can dust your Colomba cake recipe with powdered sugar or cocoa powder.

5. You can serve the Colomba cake recipe on a pretty plate to impress your guests.


This dessert is very popular in Italian cuisine, but it’s also easy to make.

If you’re looking for a delicious and healthy dessert, I recommend you give it a try because you’ll be surprised how well it tastes and how great it’s for your health.

Check the colomba cake recipe, the ingredients, and nutritional values, prepare it, and have a delicious dessert.

If you’re going to use it as a protein source, make sure you consume only 3 grams of protein per serving.

Can I substitute the candied orange and lemon peels?

Absolutely! You can replace them with other candied fruits or omit them altogether if you prefer.

Can I use instant yeast instead of active dry yeast?

Yes, you can substitute instant yeast for active dry yeast. Use the same amount, and there’s no need to activate it in lukewarm milk. Simply add it to the dry ingredients.

Can I make Colomba Cake ahead of time?

Yes, Colomba Cake can be made a day in advance. Store it in an airtight container at room temperature.

Can I make mini Colomba Cakes instead of one large cake?

Absolutely! Divide the dough into smaller portions and shape them into individual dove shapes. Adjust the baking time accordingly.