Apparently I have a compulsion with lemon loaf cakes.  I see one and then I absolutely must bake one.  Courtney shared this recipe recently and after that, I had a one track mind.  I kept thinking about this cake, kept wanting to make it, until I couldn’t wait any longer, so I did.  Then I discovered two problems.  First, this cake is far too easy to make.  I mean, I could literally go into the kitchen right now and whip one up in a matter of minutes.  Why am I not doing this?

And the second problem?  Its magnetic pull.  So incredibly hard to resist.  The lemon soaking syrup and lemon glaze take the flavor up a notch.  It’s equal parts sweet and sour, and lemony but not in a mouth-puckering way.  I was good most days and waited until after dinner to enjoy my slice for the day.  One Sunday morning I may have enjoyed it as a breakfast treat…maybe.  Here’s to a bit of laid back weekend baking.  Enjoy!

  • Yield 1 9-inch loaf cake


For the cake:

  • ¾ cup cake flour
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 tbsp. grated lemon zest (about 1-2 lemons)
  • 2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 16 tbsp. (1 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

For the syrup:

  • 3 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 3 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice

For the glaze: 

  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2-3 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice


  • 01

    To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Grease and flour a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.  In a medium bowl, combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Whisk to blend and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar, eggs, lemon zest and lemon juice.  With the mixer on low speed, blend in the melted butter.  On low speed, mix in half of the dry ingredients just until incorporated.  Beat in the sour cream and vanilla until combined.  Mix in the remaining dry ingredients, again just until incorporated.

  • 02

    Transfer the batter to the prepared pan.  Bake 20 minutes, then rotate the pan and reduce the oven temperature to 325˚ F.  Continue baking 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let cool in the pan at least 15-20 minutes.

  • 03

    Turn the cake out of the pan and transfer to a wire rack set over a baking sheet.  To make the lemon syrup, combine the sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan over medium heat, cooking just until the sugar is completely dissolved.  Poke the top of the warm cake all over with a toothpick or skewer and pour the lemon syrup over the top.

  • 04

    When the cake is completely cool, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl and whisk to blend until smooth.  Drizzle the glaze over the top of the cake.  Let stand briefly until the glaze sets.  Slice and serve.