Tangy Lemon Cake Recipe: A Zesty Delight for Citrus Lovers

Are you craving a dessert that bursts with vibrant flavors and refreshes your taste buds? Look no further than this delightful Tangy Lemon Cake recipe. This citrus-infused treat offers the perfect balance of sweetness and tanginess, making it a favorite among dessert enthusiasts.


  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup milk
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice


1. Preparing the Batter

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour a 9-inch round cake pan.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set it aside.
  3. In another bowl, combine the granulated sugar with the lemon zest. Use your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar until fragrant, releasing the oils from the zest.
  4. In a separate large mixing bowl, cream together the softened butter and lemon-sugar mixture until light and fluffy.
  5. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla extract.

2. Mixing the Batter

  1. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, alternating with the milk. Begin and end with the flour mixture. Mix until just combined; do not overmix.
  2. Gently fold in the freshly squeezed lemon juice. The batter will be smooth and slightly thick.

3. Baking the Cake

  1. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan, spreading it evenly.
  2. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  3. Once baked, remove the cake from the oven and let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes before transferring it to a wire rack to cool completely.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Dust the cooled cake with powdered sugar for a simple and elegant finish.
  • For an extra burst of citrus flavor, consider adding a lemon glaze made from powdered sugar and lemon juice drizzled over the cake.
  • Pair slices of this tangy lemon cake with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a delightful dessert experience.


This Tangy Lemon Cake is a testament to the refreshing and tangy goodness of lemons. Its light and airy texture, coupled with the zesty lemon flavor, make it a perfect choice for any occasion—from a casual afternoon tea to a celebratory dessert. Embrace the citrusy charm of this cake and treat yourself and your loved ones to a delightful burst of lemony goodness!

Customizations and Tips:

  • Lemon Glaze Variation: To create a tangy glaze, combine 1 cup of powdered sugar with 2-3 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Adjust the consistency by adding more sugar or juice as needed. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake for an extra punch of lemony sweetness.
  • Texture Enhancements: For a denser texture, substitute half of the all-purpose flour with almond flour. This alteration introduces a nutty undertone to the cake’s flavor profile.
  • Addition of Poppy Seeds: If you desire a delightful crunch and a slightly nutty flavor, add a tablespoon or two of poppy seeds to the batter. These tiny black seeds not only offer texture but also complement the citrusy notes remarkably well.
  • Lemon Curd Filling: Elevate the cake by spreading a layer of homemade or store-bought lemon curd between the cake layers. This adds an extra burst of tanginess and moisture.

Storing and Serving:

  • Storage: Store the cooled cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. If you’ve added a lemon glaze, be cautious as it might make the cake more susceptible to moisture. Refrigeration can help prolong its freshness for up to a week.
  • Presentation: When serving, garnish with fresh lemon slices, zest, or edible flowers for a visually appealing presentation. Accompany the cake with a hot cup of tea or a refreshing glass of iced lemonade to accentuate its citrusy charm.

Final Thoughts:

This Tangy Lemon Cake is a versatile dessert that captures the essence of lemons in every bite. Its simplicity in preparation makes it accessible to both novice and experienced bakers, while the balance of sweet and tangy flavors ensures it remains a crowd-pleaser.

Whether you’re hosting a gathering or simply craving a slice of zesty goodness, this cake is bound to brighten your day with its citrusy allure. Embrace the vibrant flavors of lemon and indulge in this delectable treat that is sure to become a cherished addition to your repertoire of dessert recipes.

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