Lemon curd cake is made easily with store-bought lemon curd. The lemon-flavored cake is moist and fluffy. Perfectly sweet cream cheese frosting finishes this delicious cake. It is lemon perfection in every bite!
When it comes to lemon desserts, lemon curd cake with cream cheese frosting is at the top of the list. Tart lemon curd filling coats the top of a fluffy lemon cake. Luscious cream cheese frosting covers the lemon curd layer for a creamy finish.
The homemade lemon cake is moist and fluffy from buttermilk and melted butter. The lemon flavor comes from the zest of real lemons in the batter. Like my no-bake lemon curd pie, store-bought lemon curd makes this cake recipe quick and easy. The cream cheese frosting compliments the tangy lemon curd and lemon cake.
This lemony cake recipe is reserved for lemon lovers and anyone who enjoys a delicious slice of cake. This simple, old-fashioned style cake is perfect for the citrus season, spring, and summertime. Try this vanilla buttermilk pound cake or triple berry cake for other classic cake recipes.
Lemon Curd Cake Recipe
The lemon flavor shines in this simple cake recipe. The lemon-zested cake is soft and tender, making it the perfect base for the sweet, tart lemon curd topping. Classic cream cheese frosting balances the flavor profile and completes this delectable recipe.
- Homemade Lemon Cake - This easy lemon cake recipe uses classic ingredients and is small-batch. The cake batter is hand-mixed and comes together quickly.
- Store-bought Lemon Curd - Utilizing premade lemon curd saves time, dishes, and stress. The sweet, tart topping makes a great lemon filling for cake.
- Cream Cheese Frosting - Sweet and tangy cream cheese frosting pairs fantastically with lemon. The thick layer of frosting is the finishing touch to this delicious cake.
- All-Purpose Flour - This cake recipe uses plain flour.
- Granulated Sugar - Sugar sweetens the cake and tenderizes the crumb.
- Baking Soda & Baking Powder
- Lemon Zest - Fresh lemon zest provides all of the lemon flavors in the cake.
- Large Eggs (room temperature)
- Unsalted Butter - You'll need melted butter for the cake and room-temperature butter for the frosting.
- Buttermilk - Buttermilk balances flavor, assists in leavening, and tenderizes the crumb for a soft, moist cake. Make your own buttermilk by mixing one tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar in one cup of whole milk. Let the mixture sit for at least five minutes before using.
- Vanilla Bean Paste - The slightly enhanced vanilla flavor from vanilla bean paste dramatically impacts the taste of this cake.
- Powdered Sugar (sifted)
- Lemon Curd - This recipe uses store-bought lemon curd to save time and dishes. My favorite lemon curd is from Trader Joe's. Feel free to use homemade lemon curd if desired.
- Cream Cheese (softened) - Softened cream cheese adds tang and body to the frosting.
- Pure Vanilla Extract - Use extract for the frosting.
See the recipe card for the ingredient quantities.
STEP 1 (PREP) - Preheat the oven to 350℉. Grease an 8-inch square cake pan and line it with parchment paper.
STEP 2 (DRY INGREDIENTS) - Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest in a large bowl.
STEP 3 (WET INGREDIENTS) - Whisk the buttermilk, eggs, cooled melted butter, and vanilla bean paste in a medium bowl.
STEP 4 (FORM THE BATTER) - Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour the wet ingredients inside the well. Whisk the batter until smooth and combined.
STEP 5 (BAKE) - Pour the cake batter into the prepared cake pan. Tap the cake pan gently on the counter to remove any air bubbles. Bake the cake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
STEP 6 (LEMON CURD) - Let the cake cool completely. Spread the 10oz jar of lemon curd over the cooled cake.
STEP 7 (CREAM CHEESE FROSTING) - Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add the sifted powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed until incorporated and smooth. Bring the speed to high and whip the frosting until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Transfer the frosting to a piping bag. Pipe the frosting over the lemon curd. Using an offset spatula, carefully smooth the frosting to cover the cake.
- Melted Unsalted Butter - Canola Oil, Coconut Oil, Avocado Oil
- Vanilla Bean Paste - Pure Vanilla Extract
- Buttermilk - Whole Milk
- Swap vanilla buttercream for the cream cheese frosting.
- Omit the lemon zest in the cake for a simple vanilla cake base.
- For lemon cream cheese frosting, stir 2 to 3 tablespoons of lemon curd into the frosting.
- Pyrex Prepware 4-Quart Rimmed Glass Mixing Bowl - You will need a large mixing bowl to make the cake. I like this one because you can visually see that the cake batter has been adequately mixed.
- OXO Good Grips 11-Inch Balloon Whisk
- DI ORO Silicone Spatula
- KitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Qt. Stand Mixer or KitchenAid Cordless 7 Speed Hand Mixer - You will need an electric mixer to make the cream cheese frosting. It can be a stand mixer (using the paddle attachment) or a handheld mixer.
Store leftover cake in an airtight container or wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
To freeze, wrap cake slices in wax paper and then plastic wrap or foil. Transfer the cake slices to a freezer bag. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw the cake slices completely in the refrigerator before eating.
Delicious Cake Recipes
- Triple Berry Cake with Buttercream Frosting
- Cinnamon Roll Coffee Cake
- Cherry Almond Snack Cake
- Lemon Blueberry Pound Cake
- Pumpkin Snack Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
- Triple Chocolate Crumb Cake
- Measure the ingredients accurately.
- Use room temperature ingredients for even incorporation in the cake batter and frosting.
- Sift the powdered sugar to avoid clumps of sugar in the frosting.
- Pipe the frosting before spreading it over the lemon-curd-topped cake to avoid pulling up lemon curd or cake as you spread it.
Frequently Asked Questions
You will find lemon curd in the baking aisle or near the jams at some grocery stores. My favorite store-bought lemon curd is from Trader Joe's. It tastes fantastic and uses real ingredients.
Lemon curd is a delicious cake filling or topping.
Yes, cake with lemon curd does need to be refrigerated.
Yes, you can freeze this lemon cake. See storage for details.
The lemon cake can be made in an 8-inch or 9-inch square pan or a 9-inch round pan. Baking times may vary depending on the pan you choose. If using a 9-inch pan, baking time will be shorter, so keep a close eye towards the end of cooking.
Lemon Curd Cake
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoon lemon zest
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- ½ cup unsalted butter melted and cooled
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
- 10 oz lemon curd store-bought or homemade
Cream Cheese Frosting
- ½ cup unsalted butter softened
- 6 tablespoon cream cheese softened
- 1½ cups powdered sugar sifted
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350℉. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan and line it with parchment paper. Set it aside.
- Whisk the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest in a large bowl.
- Whisk the buttermilk, eggs, cooled melted butter, and vanilla bean paste in a medium bowl. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients inside the well. Whisk the batter until smooth and combined.
- Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Smooth out the batter into an even layer. Tap the cake pan gently on the counter to remove any air bubbles. Bake the cake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool completely. Spread the 10oz jar of lemon curd over the cooled cake.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add the sifted powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed until incorporated and smooth. Bring the speed to high and whip the frosting until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Transfer the frosting to a piping bag. Pipe the frosting over the lemon curd. Using an offset spatula, carefully smooth out the frosting to cover the cake.
- Enjoy a slice of cake cold or at room temperature. Store the cake in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.