This recipe for Lemon Loaf Cake has the perfect amount of lemon and creates a bright and cheerful fresh flavor.
Ideal for spring and summer light desserts or snacks.
This lemony sweet treat is also known as lemon bread, lemon cake, and mostly that really good lemon cake thing you make.
This is perfect with hot coffee and tea.
The bright lemon flavor fits nicely on brunch tables during the spring and the summer.
This cake is light enough that it can be served after a heavy meal when you want something sweet, but not a super sweet or rich dessert.
Pan Size for a Lemon Loaf
I use an 8-inch loaf pan. A 9-inch loaf pan will work, but the lemon cake will be shorter and wider. It will also cook quicker, so check this size pan after about 45 minutes.
The recipe can be doubled and put into 2 8-inch loaf pans or a bundt pan. For bundt pan use, lower the temperature to 325 Degrees F and cook it for 75 to 90 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. If the top of the cake begins to get too dark before the lemon pound is done, place a piece of aluminum foil loosely over the top to slow down the browning.
Why does this recipe use both baking soda and baking powder?
Baking powder and baking soda are both needed in recipes with acidic ingredients. Lemon Cake with the addition of buttermilk makes this recipe especially acidic. If enough baking soda were used to neutralize all these acids, there would be an aftertaste.
Baking powder will assist in neutralizing the acids and will also give the lemon pound cake some lift during baking. Baker Betty has a ton of information in this post.
If adding lemon zest to the top of the cake, add it before the buttermilk glaze has set.
The oil from the zest may seep out and leave some streaks. It will be fine, it’s just the nature of lemon oil.
It is best to use a grater to get evenly sized pieces of lemon zest.
A stronger lemon flavor can be attained by adding a couple of packets of True Lemon. I try my best to never use the lemon juice from a jar or a plastic lemon, it just kind of tastes funny to me.
I think it has enough of a lemon flavor without it, but some folks prefer their lemon desserts to be more tart.
I don’t judge, I had a grandmother that ate lemons with nothing more than salt on them. Just thinking about that makes my mouth water, and not in a good way.
Glazing the Lemon Pound Cake
I think it is less messy if I glaze the lemon loaf after it has been removed from the pan and before it has been plated.
It will not hurt to wait until the cake is plated before glazing. The extra glaze will simply pool on the sides of the cake. It’s purely for aesthetics that I do it first.
Lemon Pound Cake Loaf
- 1/2 cup salted butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest, divided
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 6 tablespoons buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Lemon Buttermilk Glaze
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 1 tablespoons buttermilk
- Lemon Pound Cake LoafPreheat oven to 350 Degrees F
- Prepare an 8-inch loaf pan by coating with baking spray, covering with parchment paper, and spraying parchment paper with baking spray. Set aside.
- Add butter and sugar to a mixing bowl and mix until light in color and fluffy.
- Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well between each addition.
- Add baking powder and baking soda, mix until incorporated.
- Add lemon juice and lemon zest and mix well.
- Add 1/2 cup flour and mix well.
- Add vanilla to buttermilk and stir to combine.
- Add 1/2 cup buttermilk, mix well.
- Add an additional 1/2 cup flour, mix well.
- Add the rest of the buttermilk and mix well.
- Add the remainder of the flour and mix just until the flour is mixed in.
- Pour batter into prepared pan.
- Place into preheated 350 Degree F oven.
- Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Remove loaf cake from the pan and place on a cooling rack.
- Allow cake to completely cool, 60 to 90 minutes.
- Cover with glaze.
- Lemon Buttermilk GlazeAdd all ingredients to a small bowl and stir until no lumps remain.
- Spoon glaze over the top of the cake.
Adapted from Ina Garten
Serving Size:1-inch slice
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 422 Total Fat: 13g Saturated Fat: 7.8g Cholesterol: 72mg Sodium: 191mg Carbohydrates: 74.1g Fiber: 0.8g Sugar: 55.4g Protein: 4.4g
Other Baked Goods Recipes from Pear Tree Kitchen: