Triple Lemon Cake

I have been meaning to post this recipe for Triple Lemon Cake for a while now. However I’ve been busy baking it over and over for my parents’ birthdays. Now that both birthdays are over with and I finally have some time, here is the recipe.

And it’s good. The lemon curd is the best part, so sweet and perfectly tangy. Mmmm. I could bathe in it. And the buttercream is so light and sweet, yet still with just enough tang. The cake is nicely dense and delicious. It’s all a perfect combo.

I made it the first time for my mom’s birthday in July and I was surprised how much of a hit it was.

My family has never really been big on lemon. My grandmother loves lemon and we’ve had lemon cakes for her birthday before. But I can’t say anyone else was ever really into it.

So imagine my surprise when my mom requested it for her birthday. Her cake was two-tiered, so I made the smaller tier the lemon cake because I thought for sure it would be less popular than a chocolate cake.

I was wrong.

My mom was fighting people off it! She finally cut off a big chunk and put it in the freezer (She likes to save cake and stockpile it for when she feels like a piece. My kind of lady.)

And then an even crazier thing happened. My dad requested it for his birthday! Never in my life did I think my dad would request a lemon cake!

The only person that doesn’t knock someone over for a piece of this cake is my husband. Of all people I thought he’d love a lemon cake. Part of the reason I think I like lemon more now is that he got me into using fresh lemon on seafood.

But he would barely even taste this cake. I was blown away. How is it that my family likes a lemon cake and he won’t even touch it? Apparently, he thinks lemon should only go on seafood.

Seriously? He’s missing out.

Oh well, more for the rest of us! :)

Triple Lemon Cake

Yield: one 8-inch cake

Ingredients

Cake
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 eggs
2/3 cup oil
2/3 cup lemon juice
3/4 cup sour cream


Lemon Curd
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 1-2 lemons)
2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1/3 cup sugar
4 egg yolks
3 tbsp butter (I used unsalted)


Lemon Buttercream
1 1/2 cups butter
1 1/2 cups shortening
12 cups (3 lbs) powdered sugar
3 tsp finely grated lemon zest
6 tbsp lemon juice
3/4 tsp vanilla
1-2 tsp water - plus more to the consistency you want

Instructions

Cake
1. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl and whisk together.
2.Add eggs, oil and lemon juice. Beat until smooth.
3. Add sour cream and beat until smooth.
4. Bake at 350 degrees in two 8-inch pans for about 25 minutes or until done.


Lemon Curd
1. Combine all ingredients in a double boiler (or in a metal bowl over a pot of simmering water, like I did).
2. Heat while stirring constantly with a whisk.
3. It is done when it's thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. You will be able to tell it has thickened, but I wouldn't say that it's "thick."
4. Refrigerate until cool and thick.


Lemon Buttercream
1. Beat butter and shortening together until smooth.
2. Add 6 cups of powdered sugar, one at a time, beating to combine.
3. Add lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla and combine.
4. Add the remaining powdered sugar and beat to combine.
5. Add water to get the consistency you want, starting with 1/2 tsp, beat to combine.


To assemble the cake:
1. Divide the cake into four layers by slicing each cake in half.
2. Fill two layers with lemon buttercream and the other two with lemon curd.
3. Frost the outside of the cake.
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Enjoy!

Cake recipe modified from Bakerella. Lemon curd recipe from Glorious Treats.

signature

Want more lemon? This Lemon Icebox Pie should do the trick!

lemon_icebox_pie1


Comments

  1. This is stunning!! And it looks delicious! Your husband is definitely missing out!! More for you though I guess! I will have to try it for an upcoming birthday! Thanks!

  2. This is stunning!! And it looks delicious! Your husband is definitely missing out!! More for you though I guess! I will have to try it for an upcoming birthday! Thanks!

  3. It was sooo yummy and Robert motor boated it. That container I took him to him was gone in no time!

  4. It was sooo yummy and Robert motor boated it. That container I took him to him was gone in no time!

  5. I love lemon desserts. Can’t wait to try this. Thanks!

  6. I love lemon desserts. Can’t wait to try this. Thanks!

  7. I’m going to have to try this cake some time. I’ve loved lemons since I was a little girl and I used to suck the juice out of lemons off the side of my glass at restaurants when my family went out! So this kind of cake sounds just perfect for me!

  8. I’m going to have to try this cake some time. I’ve loved lemons since I was a little girl and I used to suck the juice out of lemons off the side of my glass at restaurants when my family went out! So this kind of cake sounds just perfect for me!

  9. Wow 12 cups of sugars???????

    • Yes, it sounds like a lot doesn’t it! When I was writing it I checked multiple times just to make sure. You could reduce the buttercream recipe by maybe a third if you wanted to, but you wouldn’t really have enough buttercream to do a border around the top or bottom of the cake and the icing layer on the outside of the cake would end up quite thin. Depending on how much icing you like, that may or may not be ok.

  10. This sounds fantastic! Definitely would be my choice for my birthday cake!

  11. This sounds fantastic! Definitely would be my choice for my birthday cake!

  12. This is fabulous! So lemony. I loveee sweets. I too was shocked at the amount of icing sugar. My family don’t love the sweets like I do, so I decided to have the buttercream. It was more than enough.

  13. This is fabulous! So lemony. I loveee sweets. I too was shocked at the amount of icing sugar. My family don’t love the sweets like I do, so I decided to have the buttercream. It was more than enough.

  14. Would it be OK to make this cake a day in advance? Have you ever baked the cake part and then frozen it? I’m considering doing this for a dessert auction, but wouldn’t be able to make it the day of the auction…

    • It’s definitely ok to make the cake a day in advance. In fact, I think most cakes like this are best after sitting for about 24 hours. It seems like once it’s filled and iced and sits for a bit, all the flavors really come together and everything gets even moister. I have not ever frozen the cake layers, but I don’t think that’d be an issue. Just make sure you wrap it lightly in clear wrap and then aluminum foil before freezing it. You may also want to defrost it in the fridge. I’ve heard that can help it retain it’s moisture while thawing. Good luck with the auction!

  15. Would it be OK to make this cake a day in advance? Have you ever baked the cake part and then frozen it? I’m considering doing this for a dessert auction, but wouldn’t be able to make it the day of the auction…

    • It’s definitely ok to make the cake a day in advance. In fact, I think most cakes like this are best after sitting for about 24 hours. It seems like once it’s filled and iced and sits for a bit, all the flavors really come together and everything gets even moister. I have not ever frozen the cake layers, but I don’t think that’d be an issue. Just make sure you wrap it lightly in clear wrap and then aluminum foil before freezing it. You may also want to defrost it in the fridge. I’ve heard that can help it retain it’s moisture while thawing. Good luck with the auction!

  16. Diane Funaro says:

    THis cake was amazing, I used cream instead of water in the frosting, I also reduced the amount of sugar in the frosting

  17. Diane Funaro says:

    THis cake was amazing, I used cream instead of water in the frosting, I also reduced the amount of sugar in the frosting

  18. This is a great recipe, thank you for sharing. I did almost blow my mixer on the frosting but the little guy made it through. I’m saving the frosting recipe and going to use it for cupcakes next.

  19. Haha, thanks Jennifer! I’m glad you liked it! If the frosting is a little thick while mixing next time, just add a little more water (or cream – whichever you prefer) :)

  20. This a beautiful lemon cake!!! Wan’t even in my house for a full day!!!

  21. This a beautiful lemon cake!!! Wan’t even in my house for a full day!!!

  22. What tip did you use for the flower border?

  23. What tip did you use for the flower border?

  24. Thank you so much for sharing this. I made the curd and it is wonderful. I just put the cakes in the oven and even the cake batter looked great. I can’t wait to have the finish product all together. I have no doubt it is going to be great!

  25. Thank you so much for sharing this. I made the curd and it is wonderful. I just put the cakes in the oven and even the cake batter looked great. I can’t wait to have the finish product all together. I have no doubt it is going to be great!

  26. Just finished making this cake and although I am quite new to baking cakes your recipe was very easy to follow. Had a little problem pulling the cakes from the cake pans so I just used the lemon curd in between the two cake layers instead of cutting them in half. (they wouldn’t have held together otherwise)

    The lemon flavor is fantastic! Very much enjoyed making this. We’ll see how the family likes it. Thanks for sharing!

    • here’s a quick tip c:
      *use Pam(original) and parchment paper

      Before pouring the batter,trace your pan over the parchment paper, cut it out and stick it to the bottom of your pan with a little pam, then coat the sides using pam as well. This is so easy, all my cakes come right out no mess at all! Hope those helped c:

      (i use to have the same trouble)

  27. Great recipe! I made just the cake part and paired it with rasberry filling and vanilla buttercream for a wedding. It was loved by all and people went back for seconds.

  28. Great recipe! I made just the cake part and paired it with rasberry filling and vanilla buttercream for a wedding. It was loved by all and people went back for seconds.

  29. Sharanda says:

    This cake was WONNNNDERFUL! I made it for our Easter luncheon at church and there wasn’t a slice left. Everyone kept talking about how good it was, and I even got a request to make it for our pastor’s birthday celebration in a couple weeks! Thanks SO MUCH for sharing this. This is going into my baking faves! :)

  30. Sharanda says:

    This cake was WONNNNDERFUL! I made it for our Easter luncheon at church and there wasn’t a slice left. Everyone kept talking about how good it was, and I even got a request to make it for our pastor’s birthday celebration in a couple weeks! Thanks SO MUCH for sharing this. This is going into my baking faves! :)

  31. I’m assuming you prepared the pans prior to baking? Do you use spray, grease and flour, some other magic? :-) Thanks!

  32. I’m assuming you prepared the pans prior to baking? Do you use spray, grease and flour, some other magic? :-) Thanks!

  33. I saw your cake on Pinterest and thought I’d try it for my sister’s baby shower. It was a HUGE success…everyone loved it! Thanks for sharing!

  34. Thanks Lynn! I’m glad it was a success!

  35. tabithascobra says:

    My friends and I made this last night. We ended up modifying it tiny bit though. we added about a teaspoon of vanilla to the cake. We also added a full teaspoon of vanilla to the buttercream because we were a bit short on lemon zest. We chose to bypass the shortening completely in the buttercream, using just butter instead. It’s a very tasty cake.

  36. tabithascobra says:

    My friends and I made this last night. We ended up modifying it tiny bit though. we added about a teaspoon of vanilla to the cake. We also added a full teaspoon of vanilla to the buttercream because we were a bit short on lemon zest. We chose to bypass the shortening completely in the buttercream, using just butter instead. It’s a very tasty cake.

  37. This sound absolutely tasty! Will this cake stack well? Was thinking of making a simple 2 tier cake for my sister’s wedding. 10″ bottom, and 6″ top. What do you think?

  38. This sound absolutely tasty! Will this cake stack well? Was thinking of making a simple 2 tier cake for my sister’s wedding. 10″ bottom, and 6″ top. What do you think?

  39. here’s a quick tip c:
    *use Pam(original) and parchment paper

    Before pouring the batter,trace your pan over the parchment paper, cut it out and stick it to the bottom of your pan with a little pam, then coat the sides using pam as well. This is so easy, all my cakes come right out no mess at all! Hope those helped c:

    (i use to have the same trouble)

  40. Cinnamon Flowers says:

    I made this cake tonight It was fantastic!!!!! i did cut the buttercream recipe in half just using the butter since I was not decorating mine all fancy. it still made for a great amount of frosting on the cake. Thank you so much for this recipe!!!! My whole family LOVED it!!!

  41. Cinnamon Flowers says:

    I made this cake tonight It was fantastic!!!!! i did cut the buttercream recipe in half just using the butter since I was not decorating mine all fancy. it still made for a great amount of frosting on the cake. Thank you so much for this recipe!!!! My whole family LOVED it!!!

  42. Made this cake today, smelled awesome however the cake shrunk up a lot while cooling. Was this and issue for anyone else?

    • Hi Sheila, I haven’t heard of anyone having that problem. I’m sorry that you did. I’m not sure why that would happen – maybe check your baking soda and baking powder and make sure they are still good.

  43. Made this cake today, smelled awesome however the cake shrunk up a lot while cooling. Was this and issue for anyone else?

    • Hi Sheila, I haven’t heard of anyone having that problem. I’m sorry that you did. I’m not sure why that would happen – maybe check your baking soda and baking powder and make sure they are still good.

  44. Sherri Johnson says:

    My Dad loves lemon desserts, so I’m making it for Father’s Day on Sunday. Can’t wait to try it!

  45. Now that’s a lemon cake! I LOVE lemon curd so I can only imagine how good this cake is. Thanks for another great post.

  46. Now that’s a lemon cake! I LOVE lemon curd so I can only imagine how good this cake is. Thanks for another great post.

  47. I have been dying to make this!! I love lemon!

  48. I have been dying to make this!! I love lemon!

  49. This sounds wonderful! I’ve been looking for a lemon cake to make for my birthday! I’m going to try it out this weekend!

  50. Blueberry Baker Girl says:

    Thank you for posting this amazing recipe! The cake texture is perfect. I did make a couple changes to the flavor, it’s really quite versatile! This will be my standard base scratch recipe for now on. Again, thank you it’s a wonderful cake recipe!

  51. I made this cake for my friends 60th birthday party. I got my piping bag out and piped roses around the edges and had little orange flowers to add to it, it was beautiful everyone was very impressed and of course everyone loved eating it. I didn’t have a printer at the time and lost this recipe but with a little time and effort I m so happy I found it, so now I’m planning on making it next month for my bosses birthday as he loves lemon. I think I will make 1/2 a batch more of the lemon curd to add to the layers of cake next time

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      That’s awesome Susan! I’m glad it was a hit and that you found it again! I hope you’ll check out some of my other cake recipes as well! :)

  52. My daughter requested a lemon cake for her birthday, so I made this. Delicious!!!! 1/16 of the cake is 978 calories and 50 grams of fat, though! So the 1/8 size slice my husband had was 1,956 calories and 101 grams of fat…….he just won’t be able to eat tomorrow LOL!!!

  53. I just made this cake, and am so so disappointed it basically did not rise at all. Certainly not enough to cut each cake in half. :(

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      I’m sorry about that. I’ve made this cake a number of times and have never had a problem. It really is delicious though if you want to give it another try!

  54. Hi, I don’t know if this is a silly question but what us shortening please? I would live to make this cake this weekend but don’t know where to find shortening from. When I looked it up, it said it is vegetable fat. Is it the veg fat used to make a pudding please

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      Shortening is a fat similar to butter. They can be used in place of one another. I like to use some shortening in my icing with the butter to cut down on the butter flavor, but you can use all butter if you want. Vegetable shortening is usually found on the aisle in the grocery store where vegetable oil is.

  55. Hi I want to make this cake for my mother in laws bday this weekend but I have to be honest I find it hard to understand some of the ingredients in England most recipes are in lbs or ozs but I am going to hope for the best also will be using a deep 9inch round tin so I’m thinking with need to add maybe 50% on the ingredients?

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      You could make a 9 inch without changing anything, you’d just have thinner layers and you’d probably want to cook it a little less. If you increase it by 50%, you might need to bake it longer. As for the ingredient measurements, there are a number of conversion websites that should be able to help with the correct amounts. I hope you love it!

  56. Linda billingsley says:

    If I made the cake ‘in six inch pans, how many cups go in each pan? Also, can you use coconut oil for the oil in the cake? Thank you!

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      Unfortunately, I haven’t tried either of those things so it’s hard for me to say Linda. With 6 inch pans, you’ll either have much taller cake layers, or you’ll want to do more than 2. If you make taller layers (more batter per pan), you’ll need to bake them longer.

  57. Hi,
    This looks wonderful! I love the lemon curd.I’m making the cake tonight for tomorrow. Should I refrigerate it overnight?

    Thanks,
    Michele

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      I don’t refrigerate my cakes usually. I think they stay moister unrefrigerated. But if you prefer to refrigerate, you certainly can.

  58. Hi,
    My cakes also came out small, as though they didn’t rise much. My baking soda was unopened and tje baking powder was a month or 2 old. When you say “beat until smooth,” how long are you beating it for? I didn’t beat it very long, thinking that smooth meant just until incorporated but I may jave not beat them enough.
    Thanks, Michele

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      My guess is you probably mixed it fine. Until smooth is just more than incorporated – everything mixed together well and not lumpy. It’s really hard for me to say what exactly happened. I’ve heard that the acidity levels of lemons can sometimes be off – it’s possible that that could have been a factor. I’m not enough of an expert in cake chemistry to know for sure, I’m sorry.

  59. Triple Lemon – Sign me up!
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  60. Hi! I’m about to assemble the cake and my cakes seem so thin. I used all new ingredients, but in 9 inch pans. anyhow! was I supposed to make two batches of the cake mix for each pan? Oh well. Guess it will be a thin cake :-(

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      I’m sorry, it seems like a few people are having that problem while others aren’t. I’m really not sure what’s causing it. I hope it still tasted great though!

  61. Stumbled upon this cake recipe and it is amazing!! The cake is so moist and I just added a few fresh blackberries on top of the lemon curd and wowzer!!

  62. Tiffani says:

    I made this cake today and was extremely disappointed. The cake did not rise at all. I threw the first cake out because I thought that I accidentally left out an ingredient. The same thing happened the second time . It came out very gummy. I baked with all new ingredients so that was not the problem. I wasted a lot of time and ingredients on a bad recipe.

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      I’m sorry you didn’t have a good experience with the recipe. I know a lot of other have enjoyed it. I’m not sure what went wrong, but I hope you try out some of the other recipes on the site. Thanks!

  63. Alicia Jenkins says:

    I just made this and it is absolutely delicious! For those wondering about thin cakes if you’re using 9″ pans… I used 2- 9″ pans and doubled the cake recipe and it turned out great. I had to cook it for around 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees. I also doubled the lemon curd, but probably could’ve gone with just 1.5 recipes. I’ve never had lemon curd before until now and I am in love! Thanks for such a delicious recipe!

  64. Stephanie says:

    Because I hate how blogs don’t have ratings for anyone else who is looking for a rating I give this 5 Stars! I just made this cake this past weekend for a family event and my only regret is that I didn’t double the recipe! Everyone loved the cake, even my Dad who doesn’t like Lemons wanted seconds. It is a great balance of tart and sweet. I used my own Lemon Cream Cheese Recipe instead of the Buttercream recipe here. Because I needed to get my frosting nice and smooth and it was incredibly hot in my house I placed the cake in the freezer unwrapped, several times (for several hours) and it still was very moist for the event. This was the first recipe I’ve tried from here but now it will definitely not be my last. Thank you!!

    BTW I plan to try and alter the Lemon curd into a Passion Fruit Curd when I get the chance! Have you tried this before? If so how was it? If not, I’ll let you know how my experimentation goes

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      I’m so glad everyone liked it Stephanie! I haven’t tried a passion fruit curd before, but it sounds delicious! I’d love to know how it turns out!

  65. Yes, it sounds like a lot doesn’t it! When I was writing it I checked multiple times just to make sure. You could reduce the buttercream recipe by maybe a third if you wanted to, but you wouldn’t really have enough buttercream to do a border around the top or bottom of the cake and the icing layer on the outside of the cake would end up quite thin. Depending on how much icing you like, that may or may not be ok.

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  1. [...] requested a lemon cake for his birthday, so I turned to Pinterest and found one to make from scratch.  I tackled this in the morning and it was challenging keeping sick little kiddos out of my cake [...]

  2. [...] requested a lemon cake for his birthday, so I turned to Pinterest and found one to make from scratch.  I tackled this in the morning and it was challenging keeping sick little kiddos out of my cake [...]

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  6. […] by Raynaud. Cheers! Sources: Style Me Pretty, A Swoonful of Sugar, Life, Love and Sugar, Martha Stewart share the […]

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