Copycat Starbucks lemon loaf pound cake is a wonderfully zesty dessert topped with delicious lemon glaze and perfect for all those lemon lovers.
With a pronounced lemony flavor and a sweet pound cake texture, the easy recipe creates the perfect balance of flavor and a moist cake that you will want to make over and over again.
Fresh Lemon Cake Recipe
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve bought a slice of the lemon loaf at Starbucks. It’s a refreshing treat right out of the bag or toasted and warm.
Copycat Starbucks lemon loaf is also a super easy recipe to make. And, you can eat a lot of lemon loaf with this recipe, instead of just one slice.
The lemon cake, made with real lemons, is a delightful dessert any time of year and for any occasion.
Lemon Pound Cake Ingredients
Full printable recipe with measurements and instructions listed at the bottom of the post in the recipe card.
- Baking powder
- Powdered sugar (for icing)
- Sour cream
- Vegetable oil
- Lemon zest
- Lemon juice (for loaf and icing)
- Lemon extract
How To Make The Starbucks Copycat Lemon Loaf Recipe
- Add the sugar, eggs, sour cream, oil, lemon zest, lemon extract, and lemon juice to a large bowl and mix well.
- Next, sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into the wet ingredients and mix well.
- Pour the cake batter into a greased loaf pan and bake for 50-55 minutes.
- While the pound cake cools, make the icing by adding the powdered sugar and lemon juice to a medium bowl. Mix the two ingredients and pour over the cake.
Step-By-Step Instructions For Lemon Loaf Pound Cake
Start the recipe by adding the sugar to a large bowl.
Next, add the eggs.
Add the sour cream to the bowl.
The sour cream is going to help give the pound cake moisture and a nice soft texture. If you don’t like sour cream, see below for substitutes.
Pour the oil into the bowl.
The vegetable oil is another ingredient that is going to help keep the cake moist.
Add the lemon zest to the bowl.
The lemon zest is going to add a zing of lemon to the pound cake.
I used about three lemons to get two tablespoons of zest. You can also use the same lemons for the juice.
Pour the lemon juice into the bowl.
You can either use freshly squeezed lemons or bottled lemon juice from the store. Either one will work great.
Add a teaspoon of lemon extract to the bowl and mix the ingredients.
The extract is just going to give the dessert a little bit more of a bright lemon flavor.
For this recipe, I used an electric mixer.
Combine the all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Sift the three ingredients and add the flour mixture to the bowl and mix.
Don’t over mix the cake batter, but mix enough to incorporate the ingredients together.
Pour the cake batter into a prepared loaf pan. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
If you don’t have a cake tester, you can also use a skinny knife to test the cake.
You can also use an inserted toothpick to check and if it comes out clean, it’s done. If it doesn’t, cook it for a few more minutes and check again.
I always test the center of the cake because that will be the last place that finishes baking.
I sprayed the loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray and then added some parchment paper.
The parchment paper makes it so much easier to just lift the cake out of the pan when it cools.
Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 15-20 minutes. Then remove it and cool on a wire rack, if you have one.
I’ve made several recipes to try and get the perfect lemon loaf, but many of them sank in the middle after they cooled. This recipe stays nice and fluffy.
Sweet Lemon Glaze
For the lemon icing, add the powdered sugar and lemon juice to a small bowl and mix.
Use a hand mixer to mix the two ingredients, as that will help get the lumps out.
I used two cups of powdered sugar and three tablespoons of lemon juice. If you want a thicker icing, only use two tablespoons of lemon juice.
TIP: If the icing is thicker than you’d like, add a teaspoon of lemon juice at a time, until you reach the desired thickness.
If the icing is too thin, add about one tablespoon of powdered sugar until you get it to the desired thickness.
Pour the icing over the top of the lemon cake.
You can see that I had some run over the side, so I spooned it back up and drizzled it over the top again. Mine was a little thinner, so that’s why it ran over the sides.
If you’ve taken the cake out of the pan, place it on top of some parchment paper to keep the icing from running all over the place.
You can also leave the cake in the pan and pour the icing over the top of the cake.
I like to pull it out and pour the icing over the top because it’s a little tough to get the bread out without leaving all kinds of fork or knife marks in it (not that it would stop me from eating it, hee hee).
What can I use instead of sour cream?
If you’re not a fan of sour cream, you can use yogurt instead. You will use the same amount of yogurt as you would sour cream.
Can lemon loaf be frozen?
Yes, you can freeze the lemon loaf for up to six months. Be sure to store it in an airtight container.
Can I make a lemon bundt cake?
Yes, but you will need to double the recipe for a 10-inch bundt pan. Check the cake at 55 minutes to see if it’s done baking. If not, bake the cake a little longer. Be sure to grease and flour the bundt pan well.
Delicious lemon desserts
- Lemon meringue pie with sweetened condensed milk
- Easy lemon bars
- Lemon cream pie
- Luscious lemon chess squares
- Lemon blueberry cake
- Lemon lush dessert
- Lemon pound cake
- Lemon Rice Krispie Treats from Kelsey over at Dance Around The Kitchen
Copycat Starbucks Lemon Loaf Recipe
Check out the delicious lemon cake recipe card below, grab those ingredients, and start baking! This is pure comfort food with such a delicious lemon flavor. It’s a great addition to any occasion, and I think everyone will love it.
Then, share your comments below and share a picture of your lemon loaf recipe on the Pinterest Pin! If you made any changes or added something different, be sure to share with us so we can try it, too!
- 1 cup of sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 2 to 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350-degrees. Grease a 5-inch by 9-inch loaf pan and line the sides and bottom with one piece of parchment paper.
- Add the sugar, eggs, sour cream, vegetable oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, and lemon extract to a large bowl and mix well.
- Sift the flour, salt, and baking powder and add to the wet ingredients. Mix well and pour the cake batter into the 5-inch loaf pan.
- Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool for about 30 minutes.
- Add the powdered sugar and lemon juice to a small bowl and mix well.
- Pour over the cooled lemon loaf cake. Slice and serve.
It's not necessary to use parchment paper, but the cake will lift out of the pan much easier when cooled.
If the icing is too thick, add a teaspoon of lemon juice at a time until the icing thins out. If it is too thin, add a tablespoon of powdered sugar until it reaches the desired consistency.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 470Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 70mgSodium: 346mgCarbohydrates: 78gFiber: 1gSugar: 52gProtein: 6g
Nutrition is approximate.
Hi there! I’m Julie Pollitt from ‘Back To My Southern Roots.’ My love for cooking started way back on my grandparents’ farm in Tennessee. Those sunny days, the smell of biscuits in the oven, and all the family fun really sparked my passion for cooking. On my blog, I share more than just recipes – they’re like stories from my life, full of Southern warmth and homey goodness. The best part? Whether you’re just starting out or you’re a kitchen pro, you’ll find my recipes super easy to whip up. So, come on, pull up a chair, and let’s make some delicious memories!