Lemon Pound Cake

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you’re looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

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This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

Ever since I was a little boy, pound cakes have held a special spot in my heart. I remember coming home from school, dropping my bookbag at the door and heading to the kitchen to grab a slice of pound cake. Things are different now – I’m a bit older and I don’t have a bookbag full of textbooks, but I still drop my keys in the bowl by the door and head off to grab a slice of pound cake. Some things never change!

My wife disagrees with me about pound cake. She feels that they are boring and dense. Well, they are dense. But boring? Nope! The crispy edges are full of flavor, and then the dense cake itself? I like to break off pieces and nibble on it that way.

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

Plus, pound cakes are quite possibly one of the most versatile desserts. Think about it. You can frost ’em with a simple glaze like I did here. You can slice ’em and serve with an assortment of fresh berries. You can turn ’em into a trifle. Heck, you can even grill a slice of pound cake. Yes, that works! A slice of grilled pound cake topped with a dollop of fresh whipped cream just screams summer.

Lemon Pound Cake

I’ve made dozens of pound cakes over the years, and I always enjoy playing with the ingredients and flavors. I recently hit the kitchen with the goal of putting a bright lemony twist on a classic sour cream pound cake. This Lemon Pound Cake turned out quite well! My wife wandered through the kitchen after I took those photos, and she took a little nibble. I think her exact words were, “Now that’s a pound cake that I like!”

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you’re looking for a tasty spring dessert, then put this one on the list. (Of course, this Lemon Pound Cake can be made during any season – I just typically crave lemon desserts on spring days.)

How to Bake the Perfect Pound Cake

Pound cakes have been around since the early 1700’s, and there are many variations out there. Heck, I’ve made 1 or 2 40 or 50 over the years. However, there are a few tips that remain true regardless of the style of pound cake.

  • Scrape down the mixing bowl after each addition. Take a spatula and run it around the edge and the bottom of the mixing bowl. If the batter isn’t fully mixed, it will be noticeable when you slice into the cake.
  • Always grease the bundt or tube pan. I often use nonstick baking spray for various baking projects, but for pound cakes I go the extra step – I grease the bowl with vegetable shortening and then dust the bowl lightly with flour.
    • Several years ago, I had a rough go with pound cakes. Every one of them stuck to the pan and tore apart. Turns out I just needed a new bundt pan. This is the pan I use, and I haven’t had a problem since! (I still grease and flour the pan every time.)
  • Take care not to overbake the pound cake. A pound cake traditionally bakes at a lower temperature for a longer period of time – often up to 90 minutes. I begin checking the cake ~10 minutes before it’s supposed to be done. Just insert a toothpick or wooden skewer into the cake. If it comes back with wet batter on it, the cake needs to bake longer. If it comes back with a few moist crumbs? It’s done. Pull it out of the oven. The pound cake will continue to bake in the pan for a few minutes.
This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

How do you store pound cake?

Pound cakes can be stored in an air-tight container at room temperature for up to three days. Pound cakes can also be refrigerated, although plan on letting them rest at room temperature for 30-45 minutes to warm up before serving.

Can you freeze pound cake?

Absolutely! Pound cakes lend themselves quite well to freezing. I wrap slices in plastic wrap and then put the slices in a gallon-sized ziptop bag. That way, I can pull out just one slice if I’m craving pound cake. (Make sure to label the ziptop bag with the name of the recipe and the date – I speak from experience here!) To thaw, just unwrap the frozen slice of pound cake and let sit at room temperature for about an hour.

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

How do you keep pound cake moist?

There are many, many variations of pound cakes out there. Unfortunately, pound cakes sometimes get a bad rap for being dry and crumbly. I get it. A bad pound cake is quite disappointing. One of my favorite tricks for keeping a pound cake moist is sour cream. This Lemon Pound Cake uses an entire cup of sour cream, and I have to say that the texture is quite nice!

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

All in all, this Lemon Pound Cake turned out quite well. (If you want, you could certainly add several tablespoons of poppy seeds to create a Lemon Poppyseed Pound Cake.) I like serving slices of this cake with an extra slice of lemon and a couple of mint leaves. Fresh berries would be a good addition to the plate, too. I hope you enjoy this cake as much as we did!

Did you make this Lemon Pound Cake at home? Leave a comment, or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog) – I’d love to see your version!

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

Lemon Pound Cake

This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!
4.63 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings: 16 servings
Calories: 387kcal

Ingredients

For the Pound Cake

For the Glaze

  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp milk
  • additional lemon zest for garnishing
  • mint leaves for garnishing

Instructions

For the Pound Cake

  • Preheat oven to 325°F.
  • Spray a 12-cup bundt pan generously with non-stick baking spray; set pan aside.
  • Using a countertop mixer, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy (~3-4 minutes at medium speed).
  • Add eggs, one at a time, mixing fully after each addition.
  • Add vanilla extract, lemon juice and sour cream; mix until well combined.
  • Using a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and lemon zest; stir until well combined. Add this flour mixture to the butter-sugar mixture in 2 additions; mixing fully after each addition.
  • Transfer batter into prepared pan.
  • Bake for 75-80 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out mostly clean.
  • Let cake cool in pan for 10 minutes before inverting cake onto wire rack. Let cake cool completely.

For the Glaze

  • Using a medium bowl, whisk together the confectioner’s sugar, lemon juice and milk.
  • Drizzle glaze on top of cooled cake. Garnish with lemon zest and mint leaves, if desired.
This Lemon Pound Cake is buttery, delicious and packed with lemon flavor. If you're looking for a tasty dessert, then put this one on the list!

Looking for more tasty pound cake recipes? Check out these other favorites, too:

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25 Comments

  1. Cant wait to make this soon for me for the cake can i use vegan butter and coconut cream and glaze can i use almond milk i never had lemon pound cake before perfect for my after office snacks love your recipes as always brightens up my day everyday after work

    1. Yes! I think vegan options would work here, Ramya. I haven’t tried them myself, but they should be fine. Let me know if you bake this pound cake – it’s delicious!

  2. 5 stars
    Such a delicious classic! Lemon is the perfect flavor for Spring and Easter 🙂 Great tip using sour cream to keep the pound cake nice and moist!

    1. I always crave lemon desserts around this time of the year! And I’ve gotta tell ya, Michelle – this lemon pound cake was fantastic! I just wish I had more of it around this morning with my cup of coffee. 🙂

    1. I hear ya, Mimi. Pound cakes aren’t exactly “exciting,” but just take a bite and then let’s have this conversation again. 🙂

    1. I’m a sucker for pound cake! I have to be careful keeping it around the kitchen as I can’t walk by without taking a nibble. 🙂 Thanks, Marissa!

  3. 5 stars
    I know that many people consider lemons to be winter flavour (and I get it – I also enjoy them throughout the winter). But just like you – most of the times, I associate desserts with lemons with spring. What can be better than a slice of lemon cake (pie, cookie, etc.) in April and May? Well, maybe only a dessert with dulce de leche 🙂
    Loving this pound cake for its richness coming from butter, eggs, and sour cream yet freshness and lightness from lemon. Perfect spring cake, if you ask me!

    1. Haha – you make a good point about dulce de leche there, Ben. Then again, dulce de leche goes well with every month of the year, right? 🙂 This lemon pound cake really is delicious! It’s definitely perfect for spring. 🙂

  4. I’m an absolute sucker for the lemon loaf at Starbucks. I have to keep telling myself that I don’t have to drive through and get a piece every single time I pass by a Starbucks! Solution? Make one myself. But not just any. Yours, of course. If I made this in a loaf pan, do you think the timing would differ much? I might use a glass pan, and that’d probably make a difference.

    1. Ah – this is definitely your solution, Jeff! No need to waste money at Starbucks. Just bake this cake, slice it up and wrap each slice individually in plastic wrap. (Bonus: this cake freezes well!)

      So for a loaf pan, it will definitely change the timing. A bundt pan holds 10-12 cups, and a loaf pan holds 4-8 cups (depending on the size of the loaf pan). That means you’ll need at least 2 loaf pans (3 if your loaf pans are smaller – like 8″x4″). But it can be done! This cake won’t rise too much while baking, so you can fill your loaf pans at least 3/4 or more full of batter.

      You definitely want to shorten the time in the oven, too. I’d start checking the cake at ~40 minutes. It’ll probably take closer to 50-60, but it’s better to check often than overbake the cake, right? 🙂 Good luck and let me know how it turns out!

  5. I love that a pound cake is literally named from the fact you have equal amounts of everything i.e. 4 oz butter, 4 oz flour and so on … I do like a lemon-flavoured anything!

    1. I’ve always laughed at that name, too, Sherry. These days, pound cakes aren’t quite a pound of everything…can you imagine how heavy that cake would’ve been back in the day!? Add in the fact that it was baked over an open flame, too. Crazy!

  6. 5 stars
    I love the versatility of pound cakes, and this one sounds like it’s packed with lemon flavor. Your tips for baking the perfect pound cake are very helpful, especially the one about not overbaking it. I’m definitely going to give this recipe a try, and I might even freeze some slices for later. Thanks for sharing!

    1. I hear ya on pound cakes, Raymund – there are so many different variations on flavors as well as ingredients. And I’m pretty sure I love them all! 🙂 Plus, they freeze really well!

    1. Thanks so much, Marija! I do love this cake, and I’m really glad you do, too. Top it with ice cream and fresh berries for a great treat! 🙂

  7. 2 stars
    Made exactly according to instructions- but came out very dry. Perhaps my bundt pan is shot, or my oven too hot but it was a disaster. Stuck to the pan and was not very lemon-y tasting.

    1. I’m sorry this cake didn’t work for you, Donna. Several years ago, I had the same problem as you where all of my pound cakes would stick to the pan. I ended up getting a new Bundt pan and switching to vegetable shortening + flour (instead of baking spray) for greasing the pan. Haven’t had a problem since! I’d also check the temp of your oven as this cake certainly shouldn’t come out dry.

  8. 5 stars
    Great recipe loved the outcome. Wish I could leave a photo. My guest loved it! I was worried about it coming out dry due to not using buttermilk but it was perfect. I just reduced the amount time baking. I started checking the cake at an hour and it was done.

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed this cake, Tiffany – it really is a good one! We make this every spring in our house…and sometimes we make it a couple of times. Happy baking!

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