This lemon pound cake recipe is the perfect morning or afternoon treat!

It’s a citrusy delight with a golden, buttery crumb and lots of tangy, refreshing lemon flavor. It’s drizzled with a sweet glaze for the perfect bite.

plated Lemon Pound Cake with a fork

Moist Lemon Pound Cake

  • This recipe uses kitchen staples, so it’s easy to make at a moment’s notice.
  • This pound cake is tender and dense with a moist crumb and a vibrant lemon flavor.
  • Pound cake can be baked in advance and frozen for lunches, dessert, or for last minute guests.
Lemon Pound Cake ingredients with labels

Ingredients for Lemon Pound Cake

The freshest ingredients are best for the most flavorful lemon pound cake!

  • Lemon Zest and Juice: This is the key flavor – be sure to use real lemons for a bright, citrusy flavor.
  • Butter: Use unsalted butter so you can control the salt in this cake. Butter provides richness, flavor, and a perfect moist crumb.
  • Eggs: Use large room temperature eggs for even mixing.
  • Sour cream: Adds a tender and moist texture and a rich flavor to this pound cake recipe.
  • Flour: All-purpose flour is the base and provides structure.
  • Baking powder & soda: Help the cake rise and give it a light texture.

Lemon Glaze: This is a simple glaze (not an icing) that has lots of lemon flavor. Use real fresh lemons here, too.

Optional Add-Ins:

  • Fresh blueberries can be added to the recipe. Toss them in flour before adding them to the batter. This keeps them from sinking to the bottom of the cake pan.
  • Add a spoonful of poppy seeds and add 1/4 teaspoon or so of almond extract.
  • A little bit of lemon extract can be added if you’d like.

How to Make Lemon Pound Cake

  1. Zest and juice lemons as directed in the recipe below.
  2. Cream butter & sugar with an electric mixer until light & fluffy. Mix in lemon juice and eggs.
  3. Add the dry ingredients and sour cream just until combined. Don’t overmix!
  4. Spread batter into a prepared pan & bake until a wooden pick or cake tester comes out clean.
  5. Cool and glaze.

Top with the glaze below or serve with whipped cream and fruit (like fresh raspberries).

Tips for Luscious Lemon Pound Cake

  • Ensure all ingredients are at room temperature.
  • Scrub the lemon to remove any wax that might have been sprayed on it.
  • When zesting a lemon, zest just the yellow part of the skin. The white part underneath (the pith) is bitter. Use a microplane grater or zester to remove the zest.
  • Be sure to measure the flour by scooping it into the measuring cup, not scooping it with the measuring cup.
  • Don’t skimp on the mixing time – it is needed to add air to the butter giving the perfect texture. Use a paddle attachment on a stand mixer if you have one.
  • Do not overbeat the eggs or the batter with the flour. Mix just until combined.
sliced Lemon Pound Cake with lemon garnish

Storing Pound Cake

Wrap leftover lemon pound cake in plastic wrap and keep it at room temperature for up to 1 week. Freeze leftover cake or slices in plastic wrap or an air tight container for up to 3 months.

Did you make this Lemon Pound Cake? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

slice of Lemon Pound Cake on a plate
4.98 from 120 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Lemon Pound Cake

This moist & tangy Lemon Cake with a homemade glaze pairs perfectly with coffee or tea for an afternoon pick-me-up!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 12 slices
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Ingredients  

  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup butter softened
  • 3 eggs room temperature
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup granulated sugar

Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon melted butter
  • 2-3 tablespoons lemon juice

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 325°F and grease/flour an 8"x4" loaf pan.
  • Using a fine grater or a zester, zest the lemon. Juice the lemons in a small bowl.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and lemon zest.
  • Place butter and sugar in a stand mixer and beat on medium speed until light and extra fluffy, about 10 minutes. Scrape the sides as needed.
  • Mix in lemon juice, then add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Turn the mixer to low and gradually alternate adding the flour mixture and sour cream to the batter, mixing just until combined.
  • Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake for 55-65 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • To make the glaze, in a small bowl, combine powdered sugar, melted butter, and 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice or as needed to reach the desired consistency.
  • Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake and let it set for 10 minutes. Slice and serve.

Notes

  • You will need about 2 lemons for this recipe.  Scrub the lemon before zesting to remove any wax that might have been sprayed on it. 
  • When zesting lemon, you want just the yellow part of the skin. The white part underneath (the pith) is bitter. Use a microplane grater or zester to remove the zest.
  • Ensure all ingredients are at room temperature.
  • Be sure to measure the flour by scooping it into the measuring cup, not scooping it with the measuring cup.
  • Mixing the butter and sugar for a long time is essential, this adds air into the butter giving the perfect texture. Use a paddle attachment on a stand mixer if you have one.
  • Do not overbeat the eggs or the batter with the flour. Mix just until combined.
4.98 from 120 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 269 | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 68mg | Sodium: 106mg | Potassium: 70mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 368IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Cake, Dessert
Cuisine American
Lemon Pound Cake with writing
slices of Lemon Pound Cake with writing
plated Lemon Pound Cake with a title
Lemon Pound Cake with glaze and a slice on a plate with a title

Recipe Adapted. “Sour Cream Pound Cake.” Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook. East Bridgewater: Meredith Books, 2003. 168. Print.

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Comments

    1. I would start with ¼ to ½ cup to begin depending on how much of a blueberry flavor you want in the pound cake.

  1. Mine turned out a little dry. I’ll try it again & maybe add a little coconut oil for add a bit of moisture.

  2. I didn’t have sour cream so I put blueberry yogurt (that’s all I had) it was delicious. Thank you for this recipe

  3. I’m not a baker so when I find an “easy” recipe and I have the ingredients, I’ll attempt it.
    Wow – yes, easy and it was a success!!
    I’ll keep this for another day.5 stars

  4. I made this for a dinner with friends and it was a hit. Everyone had a piece and everyone said it was delicious. Directions were clear and easy to follow5 stars

  5. this cake is moist and so lemony! made it as cupcakes [18 min at 325°] and added blueberries to half the batter. so tasty! the glaze was perfect!5 stars

    1. Hi Victoria, we have not tried making this in a convection oven so I can’t say for sure. If you do decide to try it, general rule of thumb is to adjust temp to 25° lower than recipe calls for, and it will also take a shorter amount of time. Check it a bit earlier just in case. I hope that helps!

  6. This lemon pound cake was delicious! I read some of the reviews and agreed I only needed 1/2 of the glaze. I also added blueberries and used a larger loaf pan. Perfection!!5 stars

  7. I am planning to make this. Could I sub full-fat Greek yogurt for the sour cream? I love your site and every recipe I have tried has turned into a masterpiece – thanks for sharing.5 stars

  8. I made this pound cake and it was fabulous. The only thing that I did differently was cut the glaze recipe in half. I found that was enough glaze for the top.5 stars

  9. This recipe is wonderful and came out perfectly the first time I made it. The second time, I made it I didn’t get the butter right due to Doberman antics and me forgetting exactly how much was already in the mixer. Sigh. Make it! You will love it!5 stars

  10. Made this today and it was delicious. I added fresh blueberries the only thing I would do differently is if I add blueberries I really should have used a bigger loaf pan. But it is definitely another excellent recipe, Thank you!!!!5 stars

  11. Yet another wonderful recipe!
    Made this Lemon Loaf tonight.It was sooo good, all of it is gone!
    Will make another tomorrow.
    Thanks for sharing.5 stars

  12. Can this recipe be made into cupcakes? If so, temperature and cook time. Looking forward to making them with my Meyer Lemons. Thank you in advance.

    1. I haven’t tried it so I can’t say for sure Nancy, but it should work just fine. If you try it I would love to hear how it turns out!

  13. This recipe just didn’t work for me. I cooked it 20 minutes longer than directed but it still didn’t cook through and fell. It also wasn’t very sweet without the glaze. Pound cakes were called that because they used a pound of butter and this used very little.

    1. I’m sorry to hear you didn’t love this recipe as much as we do Doug. Thank you for trying it.