This vibrant and delicious Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake is light, refreshing, and full of tangy flavors. There is nothing tastier than biting into a piece of this moist pound cake.
Serve this lemon cake for brunch, holidays, or as a dessert for all the spring and summer gatherings.
Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake Recipe
Zingy lemon poppy seed pound cake bursting with lemony flavor, crunchy poppy seeds, and drizzled with a tasty lemon glaze. This melt in your mouth pound cake is the perfect accompaniment for your morning tea. You can even serve a slice of this pound cake with some thick and creamy lemon curd spooned on top for a wonderful dessert. If you are a fan of a zingy lemon pound cake, this recipe is for you! It has two extra doses of lemon flavor. After it is baked, a lemon syrup is brushed all over the warm loaf.
The syrup soaks into the loaf giving it an intense lemon flavor and helps keep it super moist. But I didn’t stop there!
Once the loaf is completely cool, a simple lemon glaze is drizzled over the top and sides of the loaf. This incredible pound cake makes the perfect gift for family and friends, but it is so delicious, you won’t want to share! Might as well make two loaves! 😉
I can’t lie to you, I am fascinated with lemon desserts, and this pound cake is one of the ultimate best desserts. I know whenever I am struggling to come up with a dessert to give to a friend or for dinner that this lemon pound cake is a perfect choice. Rarely do we have leftovers because everyone eats all of it, and there isn’t a crumb left.
Can I Make this a Lemon Poppy Seed Bundt Cake?
Yes, you can make the lemon poppy seed cake in a bundt pan if you want. The result is going to be a gorgeous bundt cake that everyone devours. There is nothing wrong with that. You may need to adjust the baking time a little bit. In most cases, bundt cakes take a little bit longer to bake than a loaf cake.
The other important detail you need to consider is the size of the bundt pan versus the size of the loaf pan. I have found the easiest way to test how similar they are in size is by adding water to the loaf pan, then pouring it into the bundt pan. Then you can tell if you need more batter or less. You can adjust the recipe based on what you need.
What Icing is Best with Lemon Poppy Seed?
I personally think the best icing is the homemade lemon icing recipe I made. However, if you would rather make something different or buy something that’s already prepared, that is more than fine. The homemade glaze couldn’t be easier and only requires two ingredients. And it tastes excellent. The flavor compliments the cake beautifully.
Can This Cake Be Frozen?
Yes, you can freeze this cake. You’ll need to let it cool down to room temperature and then wrap it with foil fairly tightly. Place it inside of a freezer-safe bag or container. It will last around 2-3 months in the freezer. To serve the pound cake, simply remove it from the freezer and set it on the counter or in the fridge until it’s defrosted.
For the Pound Cake:
- Unsalted butter
- Cake flour (6 ounces)
- Poppy seeds
- Baking powder
- Table salt
- Granulated sugar (8 3/4 ounces)
- Grated lemon zest plus 2 teaspoons juice from 2 medium lemons
- Large eggs
- Vanilla extract
- Freshly squeezed lemon juice
For the Lemon Glaze:
- Confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- Fresh lemon juice
How to Make a Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake
Making this pound cake is so simple, and even someone who is just learning to bake can make it without problems. Take a look.
First Step: Warm the oven to 350 degrees F. Then put grease on the bottom and sides of one 9 x 5-inch loaf pans. Sprinkle a dusting of flour in the pan and tap out any excess.
Second Step: Using a medium bowl, combine together flour, baking powder, and salt using a whisk; set aside.
Third Step: Toss 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture and poppy seeds together in a small bowl, set aside.
Fourth Step: Microwave butter, covered with plastic wrap, at full power until melted, 1 to 2 minutes in a small bowl. Then whisk the melted butter thoroughly to reincorporate any separated milk solids.
Fifth Step: In a food processor with the metal blade, combine the sugar and zest about five 1-second pulses. Mix in the lemon juice, eggs, and vanilla. Process the ingredients until combined, about 5 seconds. With machine running, pour in the melted butter through the feed tube in a steady stream (this should take about 20 seconds). Transfer cake batter to a large bowl. Slowly sift the flour mixture over egg mixture in three steps, whisking gently after each addition until just combined. Carefully fold the poppy seed mixture into the batter after the flour is incorporated.
Sixth Step: Pour the pound cake batter into prepared pan and put it in the oven to bake for 15 minutes. Turn down the oven temperature to 325 degrees and continue to bake until deep golden brown and skewer inserted in center come out clean. Typically about 35 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking time. Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn onto a wire rack.
Seventh Step: While the loaf is cooling, prepare the lemon syrup in a small saucepan using medium heat. Combiner the lemon juice and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved. After the sugar has dissolved, continue to cook for 3 additional minutes. Remove the syrup from the heat and set aside.
Eighth Step: Using a toothpick begin to poke holes in the tops and sides of the warm loaf. Using a brush, add the lemon syrup to the top and sides of the cake. Allow the syrup soak into the cake and then brush on some more syrup. Let the cake cool completely.
Ninth Step: Next, prepare the lemon glaze, using a small bowl. Combine together the confectioners’ sugar and 2-3 tablespoons of the lemon juice. The glaze should be thick but still pourable. You can add up to another tablespoon of lemon juice if the mixture is too stiff. Slowly pour the lemon glaze over the top of each loaf and let it drip down the sides. Allow the lemon glaze to harden, about 15 minutes before serving.
Now, remember to save this recipe on Pinterest for later 🙂
For the Pound Cake:
- 16 (2 sticks) tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 ½ cups cake flour (6 ounces)
- 1/3 cup poppy seeds
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar (8 3/4 ounces)
- 2 tablespoons grated lemon zest plus 2 teaspoons juice from 2 medium lemons
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Lemon Syrup:
- 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/3 cup sugar
For the Lemon Glaze:
- 1 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease bottom and sides of one 9 x 5-inch loaf pans; dust with flour, tapping out excess.
- In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
- In a small bowl, toss 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture and poppy seeds together, set aside.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, microwave butter, covered with plastic wrap, at full power until melted, 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk melted butter thoroughly to reincorporate any separated milk solids.
- In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, process sugar and zest until combined, about five 1-second pulses. Add lemon juice, eggs, and vanilla; process until combined, about 5 seconds. With machine running, add melted butter through feed tube in steady stream (this should take about 20 seconds). Transfer mixture to large bowl. Sift flour mixture over eggs in three steps, whisking gently after each addition until just combined. Fold poppy seed mixture into batter after flour is incorporated.
- Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and continue to bake until deep golden brown and skewer inserted in center comes out clean, about 35 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking time. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn onto wire rack.
- While the loaf is cooling, make the lemon syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir together the lemon juice and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved. Once dissolved, continue to cook for 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat; set aside.
- Use a toothpick to poke holes in the tops and sides of the warm loaf. Brush the top and sides of the loaf with the lemon syrup. Let the syrup soak into the cake and brush again. Let the cake cool completely.
- To make the lemon glaze, in a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 2-3 tablespoons of the lemon juice. The mixture should be thick but pourable. Add up to another tablespoon of lemon juice if the mixture is too stiff. Pour the lemon glaze over the top of each loaf and let it drip down the sides. Let the lemon glaze harden, about 15 minutes, before serving.
Source: adapted from Cook’s Illustrated, March 2002
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 0mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g
If you are in love with lemon recipes as much as I am, I am certain you will be happy to try these too!
- Lemon Blueberry Coffee Cake – There is nothing more amazing than the combination of blueberries and lemons.
- Lemon Ricotta Cookies – These cookies are fabulous and are perfect for pleasing a crowd. Make a batch or two to see.
- Meyer Lemon Strawberry Muffins – The thought of biting into these muffins makes me so hungry! They are terrific.
- Lemon Poppy Seed Sugar Cookies – Here is another awesome lemon poppy seed recipe you aren’t going to want to miss out on! Trust me!