This easy Lemon Bundt Cake is the ultimate dessert for lemon lovers. It's light, full of fresh lemon flavor, and topped with a homemade tart lemon glaze to make this a perfect dessert for every day or a special occasion!
Why This Recipe Tastes Good
If you're a fan of lemon desserts, you are going to fall in love with this bundt cake. The cake is soft and tender and bursting with lemon flavor and has the most amazing lemon icing. The lemon zest is rubbed into the granulated sugar to make lemon sugar and increase the lemon flavor. The sour cream helps make the cake moist and tender and the smooth lemon icing just adds to the lemon flavor.
It’s hands down the best lemon bundt cake recipe you'll ever try! And if you're looking for more lemon cake recipes check out my recipe Meyer Lemon Upside-Down Cake and Meyer Lemon Cardamom Pound Cake.
The Ingredients For This Bundt Cake
Here are the ingredients that you'll need for this delicious lemon cake:
- Cake Flour. Cake flour creates a tender crumb and is able to absorb all the liquid from the lemon juice, sour cream, and eggs.
- Granulated Sugar. Adds sweetness and moisture to the cake and helps caramelize the outside of the cake, creating a nice golden color and a slight crispness to the edges.
- Lemon Zest. Zesting the lemon directly into the sugar captures the lemon oil and making lemon sugar increases the flavor by releasing the oils and distributing
- Fresh Lemon Juice. Adds that punch of lemon flavor.
- Whole Eggs. Eggs add fat, flavor, moisture, color, and structure to the cake.
- Baking Soda. Baking soda helps the cake to rise by enlarging the air bubbles that were created by creaming the butter and sugar.
- Sour Cream. Sour cream adds fat and flavor to the cake. Make sure to use full fat sour cream.
- Kosher Salt. Salt elevates all the other flavors in the cake.
How to Make This Lemon Bundt Cake
This recipe is from my aunt. Whenever we visited her in Texas she would make this amazing lemon bundt cake because we loved it so much. This is the best recipe you'll ever make.
Start by measuring out all your ingredients. Place all the dry ingredients - the cake flour, the baking soda, and the salt in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
Crack the eggs into another bowl. The easiest way to measure out the sour cream is to weigh it into a small bowl.
Place the sugar in a medium bowl. Zest 3-4 lemons directly into the sugar until you have what appears to be three tablespoons. Use your fingers to rub the lemon zest into the sugar. The sugar will be yellow and your whole kitchen will smell like lemons.
Place the lemon sugar and the unsalted butter in the bowl of a stand mixer. With the paddle attachment beat the sugar and butter on medium speed just until the ingredients are combined. Increase the speed to medium-high and cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is lighter in color and looks fluffy, 8 minutes.
The sugar and butter are creamed together for this length of time because we are introducing air into the cake batter. This aeration when combined with the small amount of baking soda will help the cake to rise.
Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and add the eggs one at a time, beating on medium speed after each addition until the egg is incorporated. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl after adding half the eggs.
Add the lemon juice and mix until just combined. Alternate the addition of the flour mixture and the sour cream, mixing on low to incorporate these ingredients.
After mixing in the last of the flour mixture, scrape the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl and beat on low to thoroughly combine the ingredients.
How to Bake the Cake
Add the cake batter to the prepared bundt pan. Add the batter with large spoon fulls going around the pan. After adding all the batter to the bundt pan, use an offset spatula to even out the batter.
Bake the cake for 55-65 minutes until it is done in the center. Start checking for doneness at the 45 minute mark at the center of the cake, which is halfway between the outside edge of the pan and the center hole. The bake time can vary from oven to oven which is why it's important to start checking the cake early.
When the cake is done remove it from the oven and place it on a cooling rack for 20 minutes.
To invert the cake place a large piece of parchment paper on top of the cake. Then place a cooling rack over the parchment paper and invert the cake bundt cake so the cake is on top of the parchment paper.
Let the cake cool completely, about 2-3 hours, before adding the lemon glaze.
How to Make the Lemon Glaze
This simple easy lemon glaze has just two ingredients:
- Powdered Sugar (also known as Confectioner's Sugar)
- Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
Sift the powdered sugar into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add 4 tablespoons of lemon juice and stir until the glaze is smooth and fluid.
This lemon glaze is really thick but still pourable. If you want a thinner glaze, add lemon juice one (1) teaspoon at a time until the desired consistency is achieved.
Place the cake on a plate or cake pan and spoon or pour the glaze over the cake. The glaze on its own will flow down the sides of the cake creating a beautiful pattern.
How to Store the Cake
The cake is good in an airtight container or a covered cake container for up to four (4) days. After four (4) days slice the cake into individual servings and wrap each slice in plastic wrap and refrigerate the slices.
Pro Tips for Making this Recipe
- Use a scale to measure the flour. Weighing the flour will ensure you have the right amount. Too little and the cake will collapse, too much flour and the cake will be dry.
- Cake flour tends to clump. Sift the cake flour after weigh it, to remove the lumps and aerate the flour.
- Make sure the eggs, butter, and sour cream are all at room temperature. Room temperate ingredients will ensure that the ingredients mix well together. In addition, cold eggs will result in a dense cake with a slightly rubbery texture.
- Use fresh lemons with a shiny peel for the lemon zest. If the lemon peel is dull or dark don't use it. You won't get very much zest and it won't have as much lemon flavor.
I truly hope you enjoy this delicious lemon bundt cake. It's a family favorite and the lemon lovers in your life will appreciate the amazing lemon flavor.
If You Love This Recipe Try These Lemon Recipes
Did you make this amazing lemon bundt cake? If so, please rate the recipe below. And subscribe to my newsletter if you'd like to get notified of my latest recipes.
Lemon Bundt Cake
Cake Pan Release
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
Lemon Bundt Cake
- 3 cups (342 grams) cake flour sifted
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2-3/4 cups (550 grams) granulated sugar
- 1 cup (227 grams) unsalted butter room temperature
- 3 tablespoons lemon zest about 4-5 lemons
- 6 (300 grams) large eggs room temperature
- 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1 cup (230 grams) sour cream room temperature
- 2-3/4 cups (308 grams) powdered sugar sifted
- 2-3 tbsp fresh squeezes lemon juice
For the Cake Pan Release
- In a small bowl stir the melted butter and the flour together until it forms a paste. With a pastry brush thoroughly coat the sides and bottoms of the bundt pan.
For the Lemon Bundt Cake
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F
- Crack the eggs into a separate bowl. Put the sifted flour, baking soda and salt together in a another bowl and combine with a whisk.
- Place the sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and zest the lemons on top of the sugar. Use your fingers to mix the lemon zest with the sugar. Juice the lemons until you have at least 1/4 cup of lemon juice.
- Add the butter to the bowl and beat the butter, sugar and lemon zest on medium-high speed until the butter and sugar are fluffy about 5 minutes.
- Scrape down the bowl. Add eggs one at time on low speed and then increase to medium until each egg is well incorporated. Stop the mixer after adding the first 3 eggs and scrape the bowl from the bottom to ensure the ingredients are well mixed. Add the remaining 3 eggs and scrape the down the after adding the last egg.
- Add the lemon juice and mix on medium until well combined.
- Add one-third of the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until well combined, but do not over mix. Add one-half of the sour cream and mix on medium speed until well combined. Add half of the remaining dry ingredients, then the rest of the sour cream. Add the remaining the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Scrape the bottom of the bowl and mix on low speed for about 30 seconds.
- Scoop the batter into the prepared bundt pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, which means there is no batter clinging to the skewer and no more than a couple of crumbs clinging to the skewer. Or check the internal temperature with a Thermapen instant thermometer. The temperature should be about 203°F when the probe is inserted in the center.
- Remove the cake from the oven and place it on a cake rack to cool. Cool the cake in the pan for 15-20 minutes and then invert it onto a cake rack covered with a piece of parchment paper. Allow it to cool completely before adding the lemon glaze.
For the Lemon Glaze
- Sift the powdered sugar to remove the lumps and measure out 2-3/4 cups and put it into another bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and stir until the glaze is smooth. At this point you can decide if you want a really thick glaze. If you want it a little thinner, add the remaining lemon juice 1 teaspoon at a time until it is the desired consistency.
- Place the cake on a wire cake rack or plate. Use a large spoon to slowly pour the glaze over the top of the cake. The glaze will run down the sides the cake. Put as a little or as much of the glaze as you like. Allow the glaze to set, about 10 minutes and then move the cake to a platter or cake holder.
Amanda Nguyen says
The crumb on this cake looks so perfect. You can just tell it’s packed with lemon, one of my favorite flavors.
Cheryl Norris says
Hey Amanda, thanks for the compliment. Who doesn't love lemon. I think one of the reasons I like this cake so much is that it comes from my aunt.
Sallie Doeg says
Sallie in Memphis posts: Love the lemons !!! I got really lucky with your recipe for the Meyer lemon cakes. I think I went to 3or 4? different market chains and got lucky. I bought two bags of lemons, paid for them and ran to the car! I made the lemon pound cakes and wrapped them up in foil, then put them in zip-lock bags and into the freezer they went. I just pulled the first one out to defrost and it is as good as the first one we ate back in mid January. Yes, I put a piece of paper tape in the foil with the date on them. My first introduction to Meyer Lemons ! Thank you, thank you, thank you. P.S. I add my lemon zest to the sugar after I measure it in the measuring spoon. Stay safe and be well.
Cheryl Norris says
Good to hear from you. Yes, Meyer lemons can be so hard to find depending on where you live. When I first learned of them they were only around for a couple of months, now I can get them for 4 or 5 months of the year.
I'm so glad you enjoyed the Meyer Lemon Poppy Seed cake and it's good to hear that it still tastes great after freezing. Thank you for that information. It's a great note that I can add to the recipe for people who like to plan ahead. These types of notes are great to get so thanks for taking the time to update me.
Maire Kushner says
I'm looking forward to making this Lemon Bundt on the weekend. Have you ever made it with the addition of blueberries?
Cheryl Norris says
I have not made it with blueberries and that sounds like it would taste wonderful. If you add blueberries reserve about 3 tablespoons of the flour and toss it with the blueberries right before you add them to the batter.
Maire Kushner says
Thank you Cheryl! I made the cake without fruit last Sunday and it was glorious! Another stellar recipe!
Cheryl Norris says
Thank you so much for that compliment. I'm glad you all liked the cake. Your question has inspired me to make a lemon-blueberry version, so I'll be recipe testing and hopefully posting a new recipe soon.
Hilda Thrriot says
This recipe is almost identical to my almond pound
Only difference us mine uses 3 sticks butter , all purpose flour and 2 2/3 cups of sugar. Also pure almond extract.
I am 80 yrs old and do not bake as much as I used to but your Lemon Pound Cake looks wonderful.
Am going to try making it for my daughter's birthday.
Does cake flour make a big difference?
You are so talented maybe you should open a bakery
and retire from engineering.
Looking forward to my baking newsletter.
Blessings for you and your family😇❤