Lemon pound cake

April 9, 2013 (Last Updated: January 11, 2019)
Lemon pound cake recipe

Lemon pound cake is sweet, light and lovely. Known for its thickness but delicate flavours, this cake has remained a classic for centuries. Complement the zesty lemon with a cup of tea.

Lemon pound cake


  • 335g cake flour
  • 5ml (1 tsp) baking powder
  • 2,5ml (½ tsp) salt
  • 180g soft butter
  • 275g castor sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 5ml (1 tsp) vanilla extract
  • finely grated zest of 2 lemons
  • 125ml (½ cup) milk
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 3 lemons, extra
  • 220g castor sugar
  • 375ml (1½ cups) water



Preheat the oven to 160°C. Grease 2 x 9cm x 19cm loaf tins and line the base with baking paper.


Sift flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla and lemon zest.


Stir in the milk and juice from one lemon, alternating with the flour mixture until just combined. Spoon mixture among tins. Place tins on an oven tray and bake for 40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted. Leave cakes in the tins to cool for 10 minutes before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.


Meanwhile, peel the rind in long strips from the extra lemons. Place rind in a saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 30 minutes. Drain the water and return rind to the same pan. Add sugar and water and simmer over low-medium heat until the rind is translucent and syrup is reduced, about 30 minutes.


Remove the rind and spread out on a wire rack to dry. Measure ½ cup syrup, add juice from second lemon and brush over the tops of the warm cakes.


Serve the cakes scattered with candied lemon rind. Cakes will keep in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

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