The Best Lemon Cake Recipes

This recipe is one of my all time favorites. The cake is the 1-2-3-4 cake. With a few additions... •Lemon zest is added to the batter. •The cake is sprinkled with a sugary lemon syrup for added flavor and moistness. •The cake is filled with fresh home made English lemon curd from Martha Stewart's recipe collection. •And the buttercream used to ice the cake is flavored with lemon zest and or English lemon curd.

The Best Lemon Cake Recipes

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  • Prep Time


  • Total Time


  • Servings



  • Ingredients

  • 3

    cups sifted all-purpose flour

  • 1

    Tablespoon baking powder

  • ½

    teaspoon salt

  • grated zest of two lemons

  • 1

    cup unsalted butter (2 sticks at room temperature)

  • 2

    cups granulated sugar

  • 4

    eggs (separated)

  • 1

    cup milk

  • 1

    teaspoon vanilla extract


Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside In the large bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter until soft and smooth. Add the sugar and beat until light and smooth. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating after each addition. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl and the beaters several times. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and milk, beginning and ending with flour. Stir in the vanilla. At this point you may add flavoring touches if desired. In another bowl, with a clean beater, beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry. Stir about 1/2 cup of whites into the batter to lighten it, then fold in remaining whites in several additions. Divide the batter evenly between the pans. Smooth the batter level, then spread it slightly from the center to the edges. Bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, or just until the tops are springy or a cake tester comes out clean. Cool the cakes in their pans on a rack for 10 minutes. Invert them onto racks. Lemon Syrup - 1/4 cup of sugar mixed with the juice and rind of 1 lemon (you may have to double or triple this depending on what size cakes you are making.) After the cakes have cooled use a pastry brush to paint it on to the cakes. I use it inside the layers and around the entire cake, tops and sides. Lemon buttercream - simply add English lemon curd to taste to your buttercream for an aamzingly delightful frosting.


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