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Lemon pound cake with two slices cut off on a metal wire rack
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4.32 from 25 votes

Lemon Pound Cake Recipe

This easy classic pound cake makes 2 lemon loaf cakes with lemon glaze - super tart and sweet with the best citrus flavors and bite of lemon cake!
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time50 minutes
Total Time1 hour 20 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 24 servings
Calories: 241kcal
Author: Dorothy Kern
Cost: $8


For the pound cake:

  • ¾ cup (177ml) milk (whole is best, but nonfat is fine)
  • Zest of 1 medium lemons (5g)
  • cup (79ml) fresh lemon juice (about 1 large or 2 small lemons)
  • 3 cups (372g) all-purpose flour plus more for pan
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter softened, plus more for pan
  • 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 large eggs

For the glaze

  • ¼ cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup (59ml) lemon juice

For the drizzle:

  • 1 cup (113g) powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoons (15ml) lemon juice
  • 2-3 tablespoons (30-45ml) heavy whipping cream


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour two 8x4.5-inch loaf pans.
  • In a liquid measuring cup, combine milk with lemon zest and juice.
  • Whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a medium bowl.
  • With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the flour mixture (with the mixer on low) in three parts alternately with the milk mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Beat just until it comes together. Do not overmix and be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl in between mixing.
  • Divide batter evenly between pans; smooth tops. Bake until a toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, 50-60 minutes.
  • While the cakes are baking, make the glaze by heating granulated sugar and lemon juice in a small pan over low heat. Bring to a simmer and stir. Once sugar is dissolved, remove from heat and let sit until cakes are done.
  • Once done, cool cakes 15 minutes in pan. Turn out cakes onto a rack. Use a pastry brush to spread the glaze evenly over the tops and sides of both cakes. Let dry and completely cool, at least 2 hours.
  • Make the drizzle by mixing all ingredients with a whisk. Set rack with cakes over a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Pour drizzle over cooled cakes, letting it run down the sides; let dry, about 30 minutes.



  • Use room temperature ingredients! Room temperature ingredients are easier to mix, which means you’re less likely to overmix the batter.
  • Want a super lemon pound cake? Add one teaspoon of lemon extract when you make the batter.
  • To check the cake for doneness: test the loaves with a toothpick and it should come out with just a few crumbs sticking to it. If there is wet batter on it, the cakes need more time. If it comes out totally clean, the pound cakes are overbaked.
  • Turn the loaves out onto a wired rack before you add the glaze. It’s easier to get them out of the pans.
  • Don't skip the glaze - it keeps the pound cakes moist.
  • You can adjust the icing thickness by adding more lemon juice to make it thinner or more powdered sugar to thicken it. Also, it'll be thinner if you use milk or something with a lower fat content than heavy whipping cream.
  • Wait to ice the lemon pound cakes until they are completely cooled. When they are warm, the icing will get absorbed if you add it.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 241kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 57mg | Sodium: 187mg | Potassium: 59mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 317IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 1mg