Introduction: Lemon Pound Cake

Picture of Lemon Pound Cake

Finally decided I'd make an Instructable for my famous Lemon Pound Cake. There are 3 great things about this particular cake that are different from others.

1) You can change the type of extract flavorings to make other types of pound cake. I'll even add the instructions to make it a delicious chocolate pound cake at the end of the Instructable.
2) It's totally addictive and not good for you in large quantities but you won't care because you'll be enjoying the cake too much.
3) Share it with others and you'll make new friends who will love you for your personality and good looks and definitely not because you give them free cake. :)

Lets move on to the ingredients shall we.

Step 1: Ingredients

Picture of Ingredients

So you're gonna need something to cook so here's a list of ingredients.

1 Cup of butter/margarine (2 sticks)
1 Cup of Vegetable Shortening (aka Crisco)
3 Cups of Sugar
6 Large Eggs
1 Cup of Evaporated Milk
3 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon of Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 Tablespoon of Vanilla Extract
3 Tablespoons of Lemon Extract (or whatever extract you're gonna use)

For the Glaze you're gonna need:

2 Cups of Powdered Sugar
2 Fresh Lemons (or 2 Tablespoons of concentrated lemon juice and a bit of water)

On to the next Step -->

Step 2: Prep Work

Picture of Prep Work

So before you get started there's a few things you need to do.

1) Set your butter and eggs out and let them reach room temperature. This will allow the butter to mix easier and the eggs will allow the cake to rise better.

2) Get out your big mixing bowl, electric mixer, measuring spoons and cups, a sifter, a baking sheet, and the most important thing: a large angle food cake pan (mine has a 4.5 inch side). Otherwise you're gonna need another pan to cook the excess cake in, unless you like bubbly lemon flavored cake lava boiling all over your nice clean oven.

Step 3: Let's Start This Thing

Picture of Let's Start This Thing

First things first.

Preheat your oven to 300F with the rack in the middle of the oven.
And no, I will not convert it all to metric. I had to do it myself and you get to too. You'll learn something new for the day.

Once that's done you'll want to grab some Shortening and Flour. Grease up your Cake Pan and dust it with flour.
Now go sweep up that mess you just made.

Step 4: Lets Start Mixing Things Together

Picture of Lets Start Mixing Things Together

Alright lets start by creaming (mixing well) the cup of butter and shortening together in your big mixing bowl with that electric mixer.

If you don't have an electic mixer then do it with a whisk and a fork and a lot of elbow grease. It gets harder to mix when you add all that flour in. I give you my sympathy because I've had to do it before.

If you have a big fancy Cuisinart that can do all the work for you then I forgot to tell you that you're supposed to do it with just a fork and you get no sympathy. >:P

Step 5: Keep Mixing

Picture of Keep Mixing

At this point you want to add

Evaporated Milk
Vanilla Extract
Lemon Extract

to the mixing bowl and mix it all up real well until it's nice and smooth.

*Evaporated Milk usually comes in 12oz cans so you need about 3/4 of a can*

Step 6: Mix That Flour

Picture of Mix That Flour

Get that sifter out and add 1 cup of flour, your baking powder (DO NOT mixup with baking soda), and salt to the liquid mush stuff you just made. Mix well until no lumps.

Continue adding sifted flour 1 cup at a time while mixing well in between until all 3 1/2 cups are used.

Use your spoonula to scrape the edges into the mix and Mix everything on a higher setting to get rid of lumps. This will also add a bit of air making your cake a bit fluffier.

Step 7: Get Ready to Cook

Picture of Get Ready to Cook

Use your spoonula to scrape the creamy gooey lemon batter into your greased and floured cake pan.

Place the cake pan on a baking sheet and put it on the middle rack of the oven.

Set your timer for 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Step 8: Wait

Here's some helpful hints while you wait for your cake to cook.

1) Don't make this cake on a stormy day. It will fall and be mushy.

2) Don't jump or bang around while the cake is cooking. It will fall and be mushy.

3) Don't open the oven door a lot to check on the cake. It will fall and be mushy.

4) Don't let the oven door slam shut when you do check on the cake. It will fall and be mushy.

5) Orange, butter, rum, and other assorted extracts are easy to find and taste great as a substitution for the lemon extract. Heck, you don't even have to add the lemon extract if you just want a plain ol' pound cake.

6) If you want to make a Chocolate Pound cake you will need:
2 Tablespoons of vanilla extract
6 Tablespoons of cocoa
and ONLY 3 Cups of flour

7) Personally, I eyeball some of the measurements. I usually add a bit more shortening and vanilla extract.

8) Watch your cake toward the end. Only you can tell when it is really done. The 1hr 15-30min is a pretty good range though.

Let move time forward ->

Step 9: Lemon Glaze

Picture of Lemon Glaze

Lets make the lemon glaze while we wait.

Get a bowl and fork out. Get your powdered sugar and lemons in sight.
Now stick your lemons in the microwave for about 30 seconds. This will help them release more juice. When they are done and cooled use your hand to press and roll them. This will also help them release juice.

Put 2 cups of powdered sugar in the bowl and squeeze 1 1/2 lemons worth of juice into the sugar and mix well. It should be pasteyish but not too thick but also not too thin.
*if you're using conc. lemon extract you may need a little water to get the right consistency*

Ready to move on?

Step 10: Check Your Cake

Picture of Check Your Cake

1 hour and 15 minutes is just about up or is up. Lets check the cake.

Get a toothpick or better yet a broom straw to poke your cake with. Nothing or just a little batter should stick to the pick.
Also, the top of the cake should be browned and cracked. The cake should still be a little jiggly too.

Gas ovens are usually pretty good for this amount of time.
Electric ovens may need another 10 - 15 minutes.

If the cake is done:

Turn off the oven and let the cake sit in the oven for another 10 minutes. This will allow the cake to form a nice crunchy crust.

10 minutes later ->

Step 11: Take It Out

Picture of Take It Out

Take your cake out of the oven and gloat to yourself for such a good job you've done.
Done gloating yet? Too bad there's still work to be done.

Transfer your cake onto a cool plate. One plate on top, flip, another plate, flip.
Continue gloating while you find that lemon sugar mix.

Step 12: Lemony Glaze Goodness

Picture of Lemony Glaze Goodness

While the cake is still hot, use a basting brush or spoon or a pastry bag or a butter knife, I really don't care, to apply lemony sugar goodness all over every inch of the cake.

Make sure to fill the crack with lots of extra goodness.
There will be excess glaze, just brush/scrape it onto the sides of the cake.

*I like to use a butter knife and poke holes in the crack so that the lemon glaze will seep into the cake itself.*

Step 13: You're Done

Picture of You're Done

Congratulations you're done.

Now let the cake cool down for a few hours, preferably overnight since everything is better the second day.

You now know the secret of how to make your cake and eat it too.


T0BY (author)2016-11-26


Thickiechick (author)2016-11-12

I think its finally time i made an account so that i can comment. Ive been making this cake for about 3-4 years now. And i hate it. Every holiday major or minor I'm talking even laborday and what not someone is saying "youre making that lemon cake right?!?!?!" Its that good! My family hounds me for it. Once i tried making a different cake and my mom almost killed me. I had to make both! One day i felt like making a lemon pound cake and googled it and chiose from the one i frlt LOOKED the most authentic looking one. Ive got a good eye, haha!

Parked1213 made it! (author)2015-12-25

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe. It's definitely my "Go To". I've used lemon extract, Rum and more recently, banana extract for my banana pudding pound cake. I add 2 mashed bananas,banana extract & banana flavored pudding and bake as directed. For garnish, I use crushed vanilla wafers. Delicious!

simsnichole (author)2015-12-24

I'm making it now for Christmas made it for Thanksgiving as well. my husband's favorite thanks for the great recipe and even better instructions.

Lovelybrii made it! (author)2015-11-26

it's sooooo good omg .....I had to leave mine in the oven a little longer for the middle to get done so I'd say about 2 hrs total Idk I'd it's my oven or what but other than tht it came out great I can't wait to try it with other extract flavors thanks so much for the recipe!!!

Lovelybrii (author)2015-11-21

I'm making this next week for thanksgiving I can't wait to try it!!!

Awesome! Let us know how it turns out.

Angelwarrior22 (author)2015-03-12

Do you have a good sour cream pound cake recipe? I tried your version as well and every one raved over it. thanks

It's unfortunate that I do not have a sour cream recipe. I'll have to start working on one and post my version one day.
When I try new recipes, my favorite place to start is America's Test Kitchen.

I went wayyyy back into my past on this one! Using only the ingredients portion of this recipe, I was able to lemon cakes that I hadn't made completely from scratch in years! Of course I had to a little "extra" by adding 1/2 tsp cornstarch, a dash of lemon juice (on top of the prescribed amount of lemon extract), 2 Tbsp sweetened condensed milk, canola oil instead of vegetable oil (I don't use veggie oil for anything anymore), and the cake came out AWESOME! Thanks for the recipe! :)

Queenbee2 (author)2015-01-31

I made this a few hours ago. I used a nonstick bundt pan and filled it 3/4 full then made 12 cupcakes this was my very 1st pound cake. It's is very delicious and easy to make. I will use this recipe all the time. 5 Stars!!

ericadjrob (author)2014-12-25

I made this cake yesterday for Christmas and it is fantastic!!! This cake was very easy to make and I had no problem following the instructions. This will definitely be my go to recipe for a lemon pound cake. 5 stars!!!

kenda.pickard (author)2014-11-15

I made this yesterday for my moms bday and it turned out fabulous! Everyone enjoyed it. They were eating the crumbs off the plate! I'm making it again for Thanksgiving! I used pre-sifted flour so I was able to skip that step. Other than that I followed to recipe to a t.

love4labs (author)2014-10-28

So, Walmart has this sour cream pound cake that is cracked on top and it has like sugar crumbs (is not lemmon) omg and is delicious. Im hoping your recipe will make it as close as possible. But how do i make the crack and the sugar crumbs?

edna.alvaradoespada (author)2014-10-26

Hello was just wondering can I make this in my bundt pan from Nordic ware? I would love to try this but it don't have a tube pan and afraid it might overflow in my bundt pan....

I have a smaller pan I use from time to time. If there's not enough room I put the rest in a bread pan and make a small cake with that.

Thanks! So about how much should I fill that pan? About 3/4 of the way?

cmorton-jackson (author)2014-05-27

Made this cake for Memorial Day cookout my guest and family enjoyed it very much, as did I, DELICIOUS, moist, lemony goodness. This just may become my signature cake one of the best. Great recipe!!!

derekel (author)2014-04-17

I made this cake today and WOW!!....this will be my new way of making a "Southern Lemon Pound Cake"!! It is simply FABULOUS!! I think next time I will substitute one of the 3 tablespoons of lemon extract with butter flavoring...just to add more "depth" of flavor! :-) You def. get 5/5 stars from me! I will continue to follow you and try more of your recipes! Thanks for sharing! :-)

bigwhitebear18 (author)derekel2014-04-17

I'm glad you enjoyed it. Please let us know how your lemon butter cake comes out. I've also made this recipe with a mix of orange extract and vanilla extract for a Creamsicle pound cake. It was very good.

cul8trni (author)2014-03-04

This has become my go to lemon pound cake. My husband devours it every time. I took it to my Mom's when we visited, and caught her sneaking mini pieces more than once!

simsnichole (author)2014-02-13

I used this recipe for Thanksgiving dessert 2013...I followed the Instructions to the T it is the best lemon cake ever ????? my husband actually hav me n the kitchen as I'm writing this post making another one for one ofhis Valentines day gift lol .. ThankQ soooo much for this recipe!!!

Rahkitty (author)2013-08-19

What's the rules with the evaporated milk? Why was that used instead if real milk? Can I use real milk, and if so what do I change/how much do I use? And how is the cake different with either option?

bigwhitebear18 (author)Rahkitty2013-08-19

Evaporated milk gives a more concentrated flavor because it has had 60% of the water removed. You can use regular milk in the same proportions, I'm just not sure how it will come out.

Rahkitty (author)bigwhitebear182013-08-19

Oh, I didn't know that. Thanks! :)

jboyne (author)2013-03-25

I use an oven thermometer whenever I bake. I had the temp a little above 300 F (312). After 1 hour and 15 minutes, the cake tester came out with liquid coating it. I turned up the temperature to 350 F and 15 minutes later the cake tester came out clean. It already had a brown crust so I took it out of the oven immediately and could see it right away starting to fall. I stuck it back in the oven (turned off) but my hopes are not high. Also, btw, the top never cracked. Next time I'm going to try 350F for an hour and hope things go more as planned!

shuntib (author)2013-01-18

Hey, this is the recipe i have been using, awesome, but have you tried it with all butter and no shortening?

bigwhitebear18 (author)shuntib2013-01-18

I remember doing this once. Somehow it didn't rise as well but tasted just as good. Let us know how it turns out.

dnutts (author)2009-02-19

Will it work with all butter and shortening?

bigwhitebear18 (author)dnutts2009-02-19

That's what it calls for. Although I may be misinterpreting your question.

mdeblasi1 (author)bigwhitebear182009-02-19

What if one were to take 2 sticks of butter and use them as prescribed, then take 2 1/3 sticks of butter melt them and pour off the water and solids, and use that instead of Crisco. Because of those hydrogenated fats, alot of people have an aversion to using Crisco. Myself, I'd rather use lard than vegetable shortening---but just try finding real lard if you don't have a personal butcher. Yep, I think it's worth trying with the butter; but you've got to clarify it, there's just so much water in butter that your cake might not raise properly if you don't.

kissiltur (author)mdeblasi12009-06-30

I'm quite intrigued by your observation that lard is better for you than vegetable shortening. Veg shortening is a manufactured product, but lard is pure saturated fat which I thought meant it has broadly the same properties vis a vis cholesterol, digestion, and so on. I'm not saying you're wrong, I just haven't encountered this idea before and I want to know more.

mdeblasi1 (author)kissiltur2009-06-30

If lard were pure, saturated fat it would be rock hard at room temperature. Suet, beef fat, is more saturated than lard (pork fat) and is like wax room temperature. Chicken fat, the least saturated of the three is almost liquid.
(I know I read an article explaining the physiology of these things in the New York times, but I couldn't find a link.)
The next piece of the puzzle is that vegetable shortening, in order to be made sold at room temperature, is partially hydrogenated. Hydrogen atoms are added to stabilize the carbon chains so that they are not fluid at higher temperatures. When this is done industrially, the fat chains develop kinks in them, called trans fats, that literally become stuck in ones arteries. Trans fats are found only rarely in nature, so that an artificially saturated fat is more dangerous than a naturally saturated fat.
Finally, if we are to use animal product, the more we can glean and the less waste the better off we are. Rather than putting tons of pork fat in industrial land fills, it would be better to make delicious pastry, and have the Unilever people figure out how they are going to meet share holder demand.

5kittens (author)mdeblasi12011-04-17

Excellent answer! A growing number of people are finding that they are soy sensitive/allergic, like myself. This makes a shortening alternative a must.

kissiltur (author)mdeblasi12009-07-01

Thank you. That is a splendid and comprehensive answer. As it happens, I don't eat meat so I'd be very unhappy if pastry everywhere suddenly started to be made with lard, but I am glad to know more about how things fit in. Thank you again.

mamasboi (author)2010-10-31

Looks yummy, can't wait to try it!!!! Do you think it would change the texture of the cake if I added some sour cream to the recipe? Would it be too heavy? I'm gonna try it and let you know how it turns out.

Oh, the last time I try to make a pound cake, the cake came out kinda congealed in the middle, like it was under cooked. Not sure why. I have an electric oven and I even bought an oven temp. gauge. What did i do wrong??

bigwhitebear18 (author)mamasboi2010-11-01

Please tell us how the sour cream comes out.
As for the coagulated middle; more than likely it wasn't cooked long enough. This has happened to me before. I learned that every oven is a little different, so add some cook time to yours. I too use an electric oven.

mamasboi (author)bigwhitebear182010-11-02

Thanks so much. I'll be sure to post my results and a pic

happymami (author)2010-09-13

this looks awesome. i can't wait to taste it but i don't have lemon extract. will fresh lemon juice work?

Also, I found a vegan non-hydrogenated shortening at whole foods for those cocerned about the hydrogenated fat. not sure it it will work the same but worth looking into if you are really concerned about that.

bigwhitebear18 (author)happymami2010-09-13

I'm pretty sure the fresh lemon juice will turn out fine, you might even add a little zest for extra flavor just in case.

bigwhitebear18 (author)2010-04-25

I posted a new cake Instructable:
Triple Chocolate Brownie Cake

Xandergust (author)2010-02-24

The recipe looks awesome!! A local bakery here in Philadelphia makes pound cake cupcakes and I was thinking about using this recipe for that purpose.  Have you ever heard of this being done? Do you think I'd have to change the recipe at all?

I almost hate to gamble with a recipe that seems a sure thing!

Lemon Pound Cupcakes do sound delicious. I've never tried it that way.
With this recipe you'll be making a lot of cupcakes. The cooking time will be the biggest factor to play with.

autumn2793 (author)2010-02-18

I am making it right now, hopefully it turns out fantastic. Which based on how the batter tastes it will be :]. Awesome recipe :] :]

anamarie81 (author)2009-09-08 i tried to hurry the process up of bringing the butter to room temperature and stuck it in the microwave (i know i know, i shouldn't have tried to cut corners)...but now the butter is melted...can i put it in the fridge and still use it for the recipe? help please?

If you use melted butter your cake won't rise as well. I have used cold butter/margarine but I beat the crud out of it when creaming it and adding the sugar in order to provide maximum air bubbles. A great explanation I found on Yahoo! Answers: TNGal: "Butter adds flavor and texture to your baking and helps to keep it fresh. The temperature of the butter is very important in baking. When room temperature butter is used in your recipe this means your butter should be between 65 degrees F (18 degrees C) and 70 degrees F (21 degrees C). This temperature allows the maximum amount of air to be beaten into your batter. This creaming or beating of your butter or butter and sugar creates air bubbles that your leavener (baking powder or baking soda) will enlarge during baking. Most experts recommend 4 to 5 minutes of creaming the butter for maximum aeration."

thanks! good to's baking now, so we'll see how it turns out!

Mr. Brownie (author)2009-08-16

I made this for my B-Day(yesterday), and It was AWESOME!

watermelonhead (author)2009-07-29

om nom nom....

knexfan100 (author)2009-07-27

that looks good the problem is that I have to ride my bike to the nearest store (a total of 8 miles) so its hard to make it

About This Instructable




More by bigwhitebear18:How to Peel Garlic QuicklyFresh Apple Cake with Caramel GlazeTriple Chocolate Brownie Cake
Add instructable to: