Bundt Cakes/ Cakes/ Dessert/ Fruit Desserts/ Holiday

Lemon Bundt Cake

May 21, 2022

This incredibly easy-to-make, moist and tender lemon Bundt cake recipe is bursting with lemon flavor. Soaked in lemon syrup and topped with sticky lemon glaze, it’s absolutely irresistible!

Perfect lemon bundt cake, great as a morning or afternoon snack.

The best lemon Bundt cake recipe ever

Love doesn’t begin to describe how I feel about lemon cakes. I made this lemon cake a million times, but it’s the first time I’m making it in Bundt form. Because Bundt cakes tend to be dense, I brush the cake with a lemony syrup after baking, and the result is a delicious, tender, and moist cake. There’s so much lemon in this cake – in the cake batter, the syrup, and the glaze, so it’s super lemony. I’ve never had a cake that has more lemon flavor than this one!

Delicious simple and easy to make lemon bundt cake.

How to make lemon Bundt cake

This cake has three components:

  • The cake itself
  • Lemon syrup
  • Lemon glaze

Make the lemon Bundt cake

Tip: For easy pan removal, grease your Bundt pan very well and dust it with flour. Make sure to tap off any excess. This will help the cake slide out of the pan much more easily.

  1. Combine the dry ingredients. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. Mix together the wet ingredients. In a small bowl, mix together buttermilk or sour cream, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. Set bowls aside.
  3. Cream butter, sugar, and lemon zest together. In a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter, sugar, and lemon zest on medium speed for 3-4 minutes until fluffy. Occasionally scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  4. Beat in the eggs. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Add the dry and wet ingredients. On low speed, beat in the flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the lemon juice mixture in 2 additions, starting and ending with the flour. Do not over mix.
  6. Bake. Scrape batter into a prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 45-55 minutes at 350°F/180°C or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  7. Cool and remove from pan. Allow the cake to cool for 10-15 minutes, then remove from pan, carefully inverting it onto a plate. To loosen the cake from the pan, put a large serving plate upside-down on top of the pan. Hold the cake pan (if it’s hot, use a towel) and invert it quickly onto the plate, then lift off the pan. If it doesn’t loosen easily, tip the pan gently, or run a knife along the edges.

Baker’s tip: If the top of the cake is browning too fast, cover the pan loosely with aluminum foil. This will keep it from burning while allowing the cake to continue to bake.

Make the lemon syrup

While the cake is cooling in the pan, make the syrup.

  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and lemon juice.
  2. Heat on medium-low heat until the sugar dissolves and syrup forms.
  3. After inverting the cake onto a plate, brush the top and sides of the warm cake evenly with all of the syrup.
  4. Allow cake to cool to room temperature.

Make the lemon glaze

  1. Combine sugar, lemon juice, and milk and whisk until smooth. You may need add a bit more milk to get a thick yet pourable consistency.
  2. Pour over top of the cooled cake and let drizzle down the sides.
  3. Allow the glaze to set for 15-30 minutes.
Moist and tender lemon cake, simple and easy to make.

Tips for making lemon Bundt cake

  • Don’t overmix the batter. Overmixing can make cakes dense and tough. To avoid this, simply mix mix the ingredients gently and just until they come together to form a batter.
  • Elevate the cake with add-ins: Add 1 and 1/4 cups blueberries or raspberries to the batter tossed with 1 tablespoon flour. Or, for a lemon poppy seed cake, add 1/4 cup of poppy seeds.
  • For easy pan removal: Dust your greased Bundt pan with flour, and be sure to tap off any excess.

More of my favorite lemon recipes

The Best Lemon Muffin Recipe Ever
Lemon Blueberry Cake
Lemon Cake
Lemon Bars
Lemon White Chocolate Cheesecake

4.78 from 22 votes
Moist and tender lemon cake, simple and easy to make.
Lemon Bundt Cake
Prep Time: 45 mins
Cook Time: 1 hr
Total Time: 1 hr 45 mins
YIELD: 1 bundt cake
 

This incredibly moist, delicious lemon Bundt cake is bursting with fresh lemon flavor. Soaked in lemon syrup and topped with sticky lemon glaze, this is the best lemon cake you'll ever have!


Ingredients
Cake:
  • 3 cups (420g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk or sour cream
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (2 sticks/225g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
  • zest of 4 lemons
  • 4 large eggs
Syrup:
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
Glaze (optional):
  • 1 cup (120g) powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon milk, or more as needed
Instructions
  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350°F/180°C. Grease a 12-cup (10-inch) Bundt pan well and dust generously with flour. Tap off excess flour and set aside.

  2. To make the cake:

    In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a small bowl, mix together buttermilk/sour cream, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. Set bowls aside.

  3. In a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter, sugar, and lemon zest on medium speed for 3-4 minutes until fluffy. Occasionally scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. On low speed, beat in the flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the lemon juice mixture in 2 additions, starting and ending with the flour. Do not over mix.
  4. Scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. If the top is browning too fast while baking, cover pan loosely with aluminum foil. Allow cake to cool for 10-15 minutes, then remove from pan, carefully inverting it onto a plate.
  5. Meanwhile, make the syrup: In a small saucepan, combine sugar and lemon juice. Cook on medium-low heat until sugar dissolves and syrup forms. After inverting the cake to a plate, brush top and sides of the cake evenly with syrup. Use all syrup. Allow cake to cool to room temperature.
  6. To make the glaze: In a small bowl, combine sugar, lemon juice, and milk, and whisk until smooth. Add more milk as necessary until you get a thick yet pourable consistency. Pour over top of cake and let drizzle down the sides. Allow glaze to set, 15-30 minutes.
  7. The cake is best served at room temperature. Store cake in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Leftovers can be frozen for up to 2 months.
Recipe Notes

Add berries or poppy seeds to your cake: For a berry lemon cake, add 1 and 1/4 cups blueberries or raspberries to the batter, tossed with 1 tablespoon flour. For a lemon poppy seed cake, add 1/4 cup of poppy seeds.

The best lemon bundt cake recipe, moist, flavorful, super lemony! Perfect as a snack.

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48 Comments

  • Reply
    Article
    May 31, 2018 at 12:56 am

    This was the best, lightest lemon bundt cake I’ve ever made. I think the best bunt cake. Some commenters have had problems. If it’s any help this is what I did: I followed the suggestions to cut the sugar to 330 g and to zest 3 lemons. Sift the dry ingredients; use really good butter; butter and eggs at room temp; make sure you’ve actually got 1/2 cup lemon juice and 1/2 cup buttermilk. And that’s all I can say. The result was wonderfully light, moist and lemony. The glaze simple and effective.

    • Reply
      Shannon
      June 17, 2019 at 9:13 am

      Hi – at the risk of sounding stupid…..so you decreased the buttermilk to 1/2 cup and increases the lemon juice to 1/2 cup? Making this for a friend’s birthday so want to get it right. Thanks.

    • Reply
      Meg
      March 17, 2021 at 2:39 am

      I’ve been a baker for many years and lots of stress baking in the last year, at times with less than ideal ingredients and temperament. Lol, don’t bake mad! A friend is visiting tomorrow and requested a lemon meringue pie but because of my allergy to eggs and high humidity that won’t work so I spent hours looking for his preference of something lemony. This turned out splendid and appreciate recipes that call for weight rather than cups. I think for adults, using a lemon liquor along with a simple syrup would be great as well. This is picture perfect and can’t wait until tomorrow to glaze and start eating.

  • Reply
    Leya
    August 24, 2018 at 12:48 am

    Hi, I’ve tried this recipe 3x and we loved it every single time. Can I make this as 8 in layer cake? Thanks.

    • Reply
      Shiran
      August 26, 2018 at 12:48 pm

      Thanks Leya! Yes you can. I’m not sure about the amount of batter you’ll need to make a layer cake, but you can definitely use this recipe for an 8-inch cake.

  • Reply
    Brenda K
    December 17, 2018 at 4:54 pm

    This was such a great cake. It was a big hit at our dinner party! I will make this again, for sure!!

  • Reply
    Kelly Sparapane
    March 25, 2019 at 4:04 pm

    Hi, can I make mini bundt s with this recipe?

    • Reply
      Shiran
      March 26, 2019 at 5:17 am

      Yes you can.

  • Reply
    Katie
    April 19, 2019 at 6:40 pm

    What do you think about adding coconut to the cake? I have not made it yet but thinking about trying it with coconut too.

  • Reply
    Kayla
    April 23, 2019 at 4:13 pm

    I made this once and loved it! So I’m making it for my wedding. As such I need to freeze it; do you think I should put the syrup in before or after freezing? I’m already going to glaze it once its defrosted.

  • Reply
    Koreena Malone
    May 8, 2019 at 12:18 am

    By far my favorite lemon bundt cake recipe. No need to look elsewhere.

  • Reply
    Ann-Marie
    May 10, 2019 at 1:15 pm

    I see where it says buttermilk or sour cream. Is one better to use then the other?

    • Reply
      Shannon
      June 17, 2019 at 9:09 am

      I’m wondering the same thing 🙂

  • Reply
    Monica Brenner
    August 13, 2019 at 7:18 pm

    My group loved it. Took a bit longer to bake. Used the sour cream. Will definitely make again and try with poppy seeds.

  • Reply
    Lyn
    August 18, 2019 at 10:06 pm

    This is an amazing recipe. It has a really nice intense but not over powering lemon flavor. I have made it a few times and it has always been wonderful. I think the syrup is what makes this cake really special.

  • Reply
    Hannah
    September 2, 2019 at 3:04 pm

    What size cake tin can I use instead of a bundt tin? Thank u!

  • Reply
    Eliza
    September 6, 2019 at 9:55 pm

    Can you please let us know about the buttermilk vs the sour cream? One is a thick liquid and one a solid; so they would provide a difference in the consistency of the batter and the cooking time.

  • Reply
    Alecio
    October 11, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    It was the best lemon cake I ever made

  • Reply
    Angela
    December 4, 2019 at 9:11 pm

    HELP! I ran out of lemons!! Can i just make the glaze with some vanilla instead of the tablespoon of lemon

    • Reply
      Shiran
      December 9, 2019 at 3:38 am

      You can use milk instead of lemon juice.

  • Reply
    shelby
    December 11, 2019 at 3:58 pm

    can i use a handheld mixer instead?

    • Reply
      Shiran
      December 12, 2019 at 3:54 am

      Yes 🙂

  • Reply
    Janet Wiesner
    December 28, 2019 at 10:15 pm

    After looking at many recipes, I chose this Lemon Bundt cake recipe to make for the family Thanksgiving Dinner. It was a HUGE hit. Everyone was asking for the recipe. I gave you full credit!

    However, for some reason that escapes me, my husband doesn’t like lemon flavor anything. So I was wondering if I could use oranges in this recipe instead of lemons?

  • Reply
    Rebecca Lange
    December 30, 2019 at 8:19 pm

    I recently made this cake for a Christmas get together and it came out very dry. Any suggestions to fix this? I double checked all the ingredients to make sure everything was used and in proper quantities. It was enjoyable and easy to make, but my boxed version came out much more moist! I would love to make this again if it came out less dry.

    • Reply
      Shiran
      January 1, 2020 at 4:37 am

      If it’s very dry it was probably over baked. The boxed version almost always comes out more moist, but cakes from scratch taste better in my opinion 🙂

  • Reply
    Allison
    January 1, 2020 at 8:57 pm

    Best ever. I verified the recipe today for a third time and the result was delicious!

  • Reply
    Amy Simon
    January 4, 2020 at 1:51 am

    Delicious – and beautiful.

  • Reply
    Amy S
    January 5, 2020 at 4:58 pm

    Followed the recipe exactly. It was the best cake ever. Just scrumptious – so much lemon. Everyone loved it.

    • Reply
      Amy S
      January 5, 2020 at 5:00 pm

      Also forgot to say – one thing I guess I did change- I stirred by hand, all of it. So no mixer needed of any kind.

  • Reply
    Laxshmi Hirani
    March 9, 2020 at 3:23 am

    I would love to try this out… but can the eggs be replaced with anything else as we don’t eat eggs.

    • Reply
      neskatan
      May 2, 2020 at 10:41 am

      Have you heard of aquafaba instead of eggs? You drain a can of beans (garbanzo, white, black, pinto, doesn’t matter), put aside the beans and keep the liquid. Substitute 2 tbsp of this liquid for each egg that a recipe calls for. There’s no bean-y taste whatsoever as soon as you mix in the sugar.
      I’m going to try that with this recipe. I’m sure it will be a success.

  • Reply
    Victoria McFarland
    April 28, 2020 at 1:40 pm

    This was my first Bundt cake and it turned out great! I too mixed by hand….the only change I made was to drizzle on top, used 1 cup confectioners sugar mixed on stove with 1 tsp vanilla and 2 Tbsp lemon juice, after it cooled I drizzled it on top. …wish I could post a photo. It’s beautiful!

  • Reply
    maggie
    May 23, 2020 at 9:11 am

    Hi can you make this gluten free? I just have a measure by measure GF flour and was wondering if that would work. Or would it do something weird?

    • Reply
      Shiran
      May 24, 2020 at 12:46 pm

      It should work. If you have gluten free flour that you’ve used before and love its texture and flavor then you can use it.

  • Reply
    Seema
    July 9, 2020 at 3:59 pm

    Hi, can I substitute Flax egg for an eggless version

  • Reply
    Aleks
    July 12, 2020 at 12:20 am

    Thank you, Shiran! This Bundt cake is absolutely amazing! Next time, however, I will leave out lemon juice either from syrup or glaze – too sour for my taste when using both 🙂

  • Reply
    Laura Salej
    August 24, 2020 at 10:26 pm

    Can I add blueberries to this cake?

    • Reply
      Shiran
      August 30, 2020 at 5:24 am

      Yes you can!

  • Reply
    Becky Hilliard
    February 22, 2021 at 1:02 pm

    Best Lemon dessert ever! Just the right amount of Tart not overly sweet. The syrup that is brushed on the top of warm cake is fabulous! I love the addition of weight for measuring. I find it so much easier to use a food scale and poor my ingredients into a bowl then using measuring cups. Thank you for sharing your recipes and techniques on making them.

  • Reply
    Rachael
    February 28, 2021 at 11:55 pm

    The cake turned out wonderfully! This is the lightest and fluffiest cake I think I’ve ever made. I used sour cream and only used three instead of four lemons (I was short a lemon or else I would have followed the recipe). Perfect cake! The batter looked almost like whipped cream or frosting before I baked it. So, so good. Wish I could post a photo!

  • Reply
    Jo
    April 8, 2021 at 1:54 am

    Wonderful cake. Made it for a morning tea at work and everyone loved it.

  • Reply
    Abram Abram
    September 2, 2021 at 2:44 pm

    I have thought so many times of entering the blogging world as I love reading them. I think I finally have the courage to give it a try. Thank you so much for all of the ideas!

  • Reply
    Holly PDX
    September 13, 2021 at 11:32 pm

    This is a tasty cake! It’s very very firm (bordering on a little too hard) but that helps it keep its shape. Make sure you do both the syrup and the lemon glaze icing as those both help it avoid dryness and give it a nice tart flavor.

  • Reply
    Brittany
    February 19, 2022 at 11:48 am

    I take this up a notch and make a lemon curd glaze. I take a few tablespoons of my homemade curd and mix with a few tbsp of powdered sugar and a splash of milk. It is the ultimate topping on this fabulous cake. 😁

  • Reply
    Melanie
    March 28, 2022 at 3:37 pm

    Really liked the cake, texture and moisture was great; however, it was too tart. (Maybe the glaze helps? But my family doesn’t like glaze) I’ve made various lemon cakes in the past (sponge, coffee cake, muffins, cheesecake) and my instinct said 4 lemons was too many. I should’ve listened to it. Next time I would cut one or 2 lemons out, and I possibly I will also try without the syrup. Maybe just dust lightly with powdered sugar.

  • Reply
    Tanisha
    August 25, 2022 at 3:06 am

    How I love this one. Perfect bundt with perfect flavours each time. Thank you 🙂

    I want to check if we can make muffins too out of this recipe??? Looking to make for a birthday get together.

  • Reply
    DB
    February 3, 2023 at 3:05 pm

    The zest of 4 lemons measurement is too vague as lemons can be small, medium or large. How many tablespoons of lemon zest does the recipe call for? Thank you!

    • Reply
      Talia @ Pretty. Simple. Sweet.
      February 4, 2023 at 7:17 am

      Hi DB, 3-4 tablespoons of lemon zest should be sufficient.

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