Lemon Cake

This lovely Lemon Cake is a family favorite dessert. Made with lemon juice, lemon zest and buttermilk, it’s the perfect cake for lemon lovers!

This lovely Lemon Cake is a family favorite dessert. Made with lemon juice, lemon zest and buttermilk, it's the perfect cake for lemon lovers! | One Dish Kitchen

When it comes to desserts, a lovely lemon cake ranks pretty high on my list.

With my household shrinking as my kids graduate and go on to college and beyond, I find myself hesitating to bake large cakes.

We certainly don’t want to eat the same cake for days. With this smaller lemon cake recipe, we can enjoy a lovely lemon cake fresh out of the oven with not much leftover.

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Lemon Cake Recipe | One Dish Kitchen

This luscious lemon cake is the perfect size. it’s baked in my gorgeous citrus pan that I found at Sur La Table. Any standard sized loaf pan will work. This pan was totally one of those impulse purchases. I saw it and fell in love and imagined all the citrus recipe possibilities.

Truth is, I actually use this pan a lot. The cake comes out of it so easily and I don’t need to add anything to “decorate” the cake. I think this lemon cake is lovely on it’s own.

How to make a lemon cake | One Dish Kitchen

Lemon Cake

I based this lemon cake recipe on my Lemon and Grapefruit Buttermilk Bundt Cake recipe.

It’s one of my favorite recipes on our travel blog, ZagLeft and apparently, our readers seem to agree.

The crumb on this lemon cake is incredibly tender and the crust so perfectly crisp. The buttermilk helps with this. Buttermilk is a magical ingredient that helps transform the texture of baked goods and tends to give them a melt-in-our-mouth texture.

RELATED: 15 Easy Dessert Recipes For One

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Lemon Cake Recipe

Lemon Cake

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Cool: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Dessert
Keyword: cake
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 361kcal
Author: Joanie Zisk


  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 8 tablespoons butter , softened
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest (about 1 medium lemon)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • powdered sugar (optional)


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C).
  • Spray the inside of a loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  • Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • Combine sugar, butter and lemon zest in a large mixing bowl. Beat for about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl and add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.
  • Add the lemon juice and vanilla and mix well.
  • Reduce mixing speed to low and add dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk in two additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.
  • Pour into prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  • Place the pan on a cooling rack and cool, about 30 minutes.
  • Carefully invert cake onto rack; remove pan and let cake cool completely.
  • Dust with powdered sugar, if desired.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 361kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 78mg | Sodium: 280mg | Potassium: 144mg | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 440IU | Vitamin C: 3.1mg | Calcium: 64mg | Iron: 1.4mg
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The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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