Luscious lemon cake

Add a little zest to your baking!
lemon cake
1H 10M

This lemon cake recipe will give you a zesty dessert that’s sure to win over kids and adults alike, with a buttery, lemony base and sweet lemon icing on top. It’s also simple to make, and most of the ingredients are pantry staples you may already have at home.


Lemon icing


Luscious lemon cake with lemon icing


Preheat oven to 180ºC/160ºC fan-forced. Grease and line a deep 20cm (base measurement) round cake pan with baking paper. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar in a bowl until pale and creamy. Add eggs, one by one, beating well after each addition. Sift flour over butter mixture. Add juice and milk; stir to combine.


Spoon mixture into prepared pan; level surface. Bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted at centre comes out clean. Stand cake in pan for 5 minutes, then turnout onto a wire rack to cool completely.


Meanwhile, to make lemon icing; sift icing sugar into a large bowl. Gradually add juice, stirring until smooth.


Spread lemon icing over cooled cake, allowing it to drip down sides. Serve sprinkled with zest.

You’ll need these …

Lemon cake recipe notes and tips

  • This recipe is basically a butter cake flavoured with fresh lemon juice, which means it has a firm or slightly coarse crumb. If you want a more moist cake, you could add a drizzle of lemon syrup – this also adds an extra kick of lemon flavour.
  • When you’re getting the lemon zest to decorate this cake, make sure you avoid the white part (known as pith) which is more bitter to taste. We also have a tips and techniques article on citrus zest, where two of our experts share their insights on zest, rind and more.
  • If you want Australian lemons, the best availability is typically from May to September. But according to industry body Citrus Australia, both lemons and limes are available all year – so you could find them at other times if you look (or ask at the shops).
  • For a lemon that is very firm or only just ripe, heating it in the microwave for 10 seconds helps you get more juice.
The inside of the luscious lemon cake made with this recipe.

The inside of the luscious lemon cake.

Longing for more lemony goodness? Check out our other recipes for lemon cakes and lemon desserts.

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