“Quarter” Pound Cake

A classic pound cake recipe transformed into a “quarter” pound cake! Baked in a small baking dish, this buttery, tender and golden mini cake recipe yields the perfect amount for one or two people.

slices of pound cake on a plate.

A classic pound cake never disappoints. It’s a simple cake, not at all fancy or pretentious.

A pound cake doesn’t need overly sweet icing or frosting to coat its crust. It’s perfect as is, and completely wonderful when paired with a cup of coffee or tea, with perhaps a dusting of powdered sugar or a dollop of whipped cream and fresh fruit.

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Mini Pound Cake

I’ve adjusted the ingredients in my pound cake recipe so that it will serve one or two people.

This delightful cake is baked in a small baking dish or it can be baked in two smaller ramekins. The texture is light and airy, and the flavor is incredible.

One square pound cake in a small baking dish next to a cup of coffee.

What Is Pound Cake?

Traditionally, a pound cake is made with a pound each of butter, sugar, eggs, and flour. The French call it quatre-quarts, which means “four-fourths”.

Using these traditional measurements, the size of the cake made it possible to serve many people and was also very dry and dense.

The pound cake appears to have originated in England in the early 1700’s. By the mid 1800’s, as people began to desire lighter cakes, pound cake recipes began to change.

Today, many pound cakes are made with leaveners such as baking powder and different proportions of the main ingredients to produce a lighter cake.

The pound cake as we know it today is rich, buttery, and velvety in texture. It’s delightful eaten on its own, garnished simply with fruit, or used as a base as in our Caramelized Banana Upside Down Cake.

The tender, buttery pound cake of our times is the one I wanted to recreate as a single serving or mini cake.

dusting powdered sugar over pound cake.

How To Make A Pound Cake

I wanted to create a mini pound cake recipe that was totally reminiscent of the pound cake I love. This cake is about a quarter of the size of a traditional pound cake and I call it a “quarter pound cake”.

See recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

Ingredients

To create a delightful, melt in your mouth quarter pound cake, you will need:

  • butter
  • sugar
  • an egg
  • lemon juice
  • vanilla extract
  • flour
  • baking powder
  • salt
  • milk

Steps

  1. Beat the butter and sugar until well mixed.
  2. Add in egg, lemon juice, and vanilla.
  3. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to butter/sugar mixture and mix to combine.
  4. Stir in the milk.
  5. Pour batter into prepared baking dish and bake for 40-45 minutes or until top is golden.
  6. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before inverting over a plate.

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients left over from this pound cake recipe, you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:

I’m confident that this is the best pound cake and I truly think you’ll love it too.

Two green ramekins filled with pound cake on a flowered napkin.

Tips For Making The Best Pound Cake

  1. Be sure to use real butter, not margarine.
  2. Make sure the butter is soft, not melted. A good way to check to see if your butter is the right consistency is to make an indention in the butter with your finger. If it’s easy to make an indentation and the butter keeps its shape, then it’s the correct temperature.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy for a smooth, velvety texture. Beat for 2-3 minutes depending on the speed of your blender.
  4. Don’t scoop the flour with a measuring cup. Instead, stir the flour first to loosen it and then spoon it into a dry measuring cup and level it off using the flat edge of a knife.
  5. Check to make sure your oven is the proper temperature. It’s common for an oven to not be calibrated properly. Many ovens heat too high or too low compared to what the temperature is set at. I recommend investing on an oven thermometer to test your own oven temperature.
A spoon in cake baked in a ramekin.

How To Store Pound Cake

It’s best to store a pound cake at room temperature with an airtight cover. It will remain fresh for 4-5 days at room temperature.

slices of pound cake on a plate with lemon slices in the corner.

Other Mini Cake Recipes

If you like this pound cake recipe, you might also like to try these mini cake recipes:

The success of this recipe depends on the size of the baking dish you use. I use a 5-inch baking dish which measures 5-inches x 5-inches and is 1 3/4-inches deep. For best results, use a dish of similar size. Two small 8-ounce ramekins or two mini loaf pans would work well with this recipe too.

If you would like additional information on the cooking and baking dishes I use in our “recipes for one”, please visit our FAQ page.

For examples of the dishes used at One Dish Kitchen, please visit our Store page.

Recipe

mini pound cake | one dish kitchen

Mini Pound Cake

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Cool: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, British, French
Keyword: cake
Servings: 4 slices
Calories: 356kcal
Author: Joanie Zisk

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup butter softened, plus 1 tablespoon more for greasing
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup low fat milk

How To Video

Mini Pound Cake
Watch this video on YouTube.

Instructions

  • Heat oven to 350° F (177° C)
  • Grease a 5-inch baking dish with butter. Place baking dish on top of a baking sheet.
  • In a small bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until well mixed. 
  • Beat in egg, lemon juice, and vanilla.
  • In a separate small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to butter/sugar mixture and mix to combine.
  • Stir in the milk.
  • Pour batter into prepared baking dish and bake for 40-45 minutes or until top is golden.
  • Allow to cool for 10 minutes before inverting over a plate.
  • Best if served warm.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 356kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 84mg | Sodium: 201mg | Potassium: 67mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 460IU | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg
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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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mini pound cake | one dish kitchen
mini pound cake | one dish kitchen
mini pound cake | one dish kitchen

26 thoughts on ““Quarter” Pound Cake”

  1. I made this and it is a very delicious poundcake. Husband loves it! I was just wondering, how would you make this into a chocolate pound cake. Might seem like a silly question to you but I have never done poundcake. Do you just add some Hershey’s Cocoa? Can’t wait to hear from you!
    Karen

    1. Hi Karen,

      I’m so glad you and your husband love the pound cake! I haven’t experimented with making this particular recipe into a chocolate version, but it’s a really good idea! If you’d like to experiment, I would suggest adding in maybe a tablespoon or two of cocoa powder and reducing the amount of flour you use by whatever the amount of cocoa powder you add. We do have a few chocolate cake recipes that you might like to try instead – The batter for these 2 chocolate cupcakes can be poured into a small baking dish and baked as a cake instead of cupcakes. Bake at the same temperature and for the same amount of time as called for in the recipe – https://onedishkitchen.com/chocolate-cupcake-recipe/. Also, 2 Ingredient Chocolate Cake – https://onedishkitchen.com/two-ingredient-chocolate-cake-recipe-for-one/ and Flourless Chocolate Cake – https://onedishkitchen.com/flourless-chocolate-cake-for-one/.

      Joanie

      1. Thank you so much for your thoughts and your timely answer! I will try the suggestions for the chocolate in the pound cake. That’s what I was thinking! I always have those ingredients! I did think about those two chocolate cupcakes. Thank you for telling me I can bake those in the small 5 inch dish that I make the poundcake in and bake for the same time as the cupcakes. I don’t always have cream for a sudden craving but I will definitely try that! I love your one dish kitchen site! I will be trying quite a few of your other desserts soon! It allows us to have different goodies through the week without having to eat all of a big dessert that I have made, with no variety!

        1. Karen,
          The 5-inch baking dish might be too large for the cupcake batter. It would probably be better to use a smaller baking dish or one or two ramekins.

          Have a wonderful Sunday,
          Joanie

          1. I have a springform pan that is 4 1/2 inches across and one that is 4 inches across I might try!

  2. Karrie Maynard

    I love pound cake and I will be trying this tomorrow. One question, does my egg need to be room temp?

  3. 5 stars
    I just made this. I wanted a small, fast pound cake for a quick dessert. This is delicious!! Crusty top, soft buttery cake. Absolutely delicious!!

  4. Just tried this, it was wonderful, I followed your directions fully! Feel like i couldn’t make changes because the basic is so perfect! I used a small spring pan with a bundt shape, 6″, again perfect. Thank you!

  5. 5 stars
    Fabulous recipe!!! I didn’t have lemon juice, so substituted fresh orange juice instead. I also zested half of a small orange and added it with the milk. I also used almond milk. Used the cake for strawberry shortcake. My husband couldn’t stop raving about how good it was. It might not make it to the second serving! Thank you

    1. I’m so happy you and your husband enjoyed the cake. What a great idea to use orange juice – I’m going to have to do that the next time I make it. Thank you for taking the time to let me know you both enjoyed the recipe.

      Joanie

  6. 5 stars
    They were perfect! I put the batter in two small Bundt pans. They ended up being pretty big! I probably could have done three. We had strawberries and cream over the top and it was delicious even though I cut the sugar to 1/2 cup. This is definitely a keeper!

    1. Yes, Julie. The dishes shown are 2 8-ounce ramekins and a 5-inch baking dish. Either will work perfectly.

      Joanie

  7. Question…When you say “low fat” milk is that 2%? Would buttermilk work?My Mom made the BEST Pound Cake. I need to dig out her recipes. It was called 100 Year Old Pound Cake and had the crunchiest crust! My Dad and I both miss it!

    1. Hi Amy,

      I haven’t tested this recipe with buttermilk so I don’t know how it would turn out if you used it. Skim milk, 2%, and whole milk work well and so will almond milk.

      Joanie

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