Lemon Custard Cake is a quick and easy dessert recipe, perfect for summer. This cake is soft and creamy, with refreshing lemon flavor. It’s melt-in-your-mouth good! If you like light and creamy desserts, try Vanilla Magic Custard Cake or Easy Banana Magic Cake, too.
Lemon Custard Cake
If you are not familiar with magic custard cakes, these are triple-layered cake made from just one batter. During the baking process, batter separates into three different layers. Dense cake layer on the bottom, creamy custard-like filling in the center, and light and fluffy cake layer on top.
I’ve already shared recipes for four different flavors: vanilla, banana, strawberry, and chocolate custard cake. You must try these delicious, triple-layered cakes. These are all so light and refreshing. Custard cake is the perfect dessert after a heavy meal, or delicious snacks during the hot summer days.
After chocolate, strawberry, banana, and vanilla, it was time to try out lemon-flavored custard cake.
It’s summertime, the weather is hot and the lemon flavor seems like a perfect choice. There’s just something so refreshing about the bright citrus flavor. I’m totally in the mood for lemon desserts these days. Last week I made Lemon Cheesecake Brownies, and today I present you my new lemon-infused recipe- delicious Lemon Custard Cake.
How to Make Lemon Custard Cake
First, you separate the eggs. Eggs must be at room temperature so you can beat egg whites really stiff and set them aside. Next, beat the egg yolks and sugar until pale yellow. It will take 2-3 minutes, then add melted butter and vanilla extract. Mix in flour until evenly incorporated.
Next, add lemon juice and lemon zest and mix until combined. Don’t skip the lemon zest. Freshly grated lemon zest gives that wonderful burst of flavor. After lemon juice, slowly beat in the milk until well combined.
Finally, add egg whites and whisk by hand. It will seem hard to incorporate light and airy egg whites foam into the thin and greasy mixture, but you don’t need to fold it in completely. It’s OK to have small lumps from egg whites. In fact, you need to leave small lumps of egg whites. When you pour the mixture in the pan, lumps will float on the surface and create the top layer during the baking.
Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 40-60 minutes, until the cake is barely jiggly in the center, but the top is firm to touch. It’s a bit tricky to tell when the cake is done. Baking time might vary depending on your oven or the pan you use but start checking after 35 minutes. Do not overbake it, or the cake won’t have three layers. it will turn out rubbery and won’t have a custard layer in the center. Cool the cake completely before dusting with powdered sugar.
Lemon Custard Cake
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Category: desserts
- Method: bake
- Cuisine: American
Lemon Custard Cake is a quick and easy dessert recipe, perfect for summer. This cake is soft and creamy, with refreshing lemon flavor.
- 4 eggs (room temperature)-separated
- ¾ cup sugar
- ½ cup unsalted butter-melted and slightly cooled
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- grated zest from 2 large lemons
- 1 ¾ cups milk-lukewarm
- powdered sugar for dusting
- Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line 8×8-inch baking dish with parchment paper leaving overhang the sides, lightly grease with cooking spray, then set aside.
- Whip the egg whites until STIFF peaks form, set aside.
- Beat the egg yolks and sugar until pale yellow.
- Add melted butter and vanilla and mix until evenly combined.
- Mix in flour until evenly incorporated.
- Add lemon juice and lemon zest and mix until combined.
- Slowly beat in the milk until well combined.
- Add egg whites and whisk by hand. You don’t need to fold it in completely. Leave small egg whites lumps. When you pour it into the pan, lumps will float on the surface and create the top layer during the baking. NOTES: The batter is very, very thin!!!
- Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 40-60 minutes (until the cake is barely jiggly in the center, but the top is firm to touch). Baking time might vary depending on your oven or pan you use but start checking after 35 minutes. If the top browns quickly, you can cover the cake with aluminum foil. Do not overbake it, or the cake will turn out rubbery not custardy in the center.
- Cool the cake completely before dusting it with powdered sugar.
- Store leftovers in the fridge
When doing the chocolate custard or strawberry what did you use for favoring fresh fruit and melted chocolate want to try them also making the lemon for dinner tonight
My husband is looking forward to this!
The flavor was ok. The lemon “curd” was very thin and a rubbery texture. Didn’t come out like the picture of the finished cake.
So 😋 there a gluten free version?
This looks so delicious….just wondering…I want to make this for the family but was wondering if oranges could be used in place of lemons as my son doesn’t like lemon flavor and eats an orange a day lol…would love to surprise him with a dessert like this just for him….Huggs
Yes, Orange is the one I used instead of Lemon!!!
why do you line the pan with parchment paper then spray with cooking spray? can that step be skipped?
This is the most tasteless, bland cake I’ve ever tasted! Save your time and energy.
Perhaps you needed to add more lemon zest and lemon juice. That is why you taste your batter before ever baking it.
This was a good recipe. The only reason I gave it 3 instead of 4 stars is because it doesn’t have salt. Anyone who bakes knows that a baked good without salt lacks flavor(which is probably why one reviewer said ot was bland). Do yourself a favor and add 1/2 tsp salt with the flour.(which I did)Otherwise it was great.
I was wondering where the salt was too so I came to read the comments. I added the 1/2 tsp salt and I thought this Lemon Custard Cake turned out fantastic!
Love all your recipes
It came out pretty good. But definitely needs more lemon flavor. Next time I will add lemon extract instead of vanilla or just add more lemon juice.
Made for the first time today. Absolutely delicious! It was the perfect balance between lemon and sweet (not very sweet, in fact, but I also haven’t topped with powdered sugar yet) and extremely light–perfect for the hot, hot Summer we are experiencing in Sthrn CA. The cake is still cooling, but I sneaked a taste and while still warm, it reminds me of a souffle, but creamier. Eager to taste it again once cooled.
Followed directions exactly with three exceptions: added:
– pinch of cream of tartar when whipping egg whites to help retain structure
– 1/4 tsp of almond extract because I personally think it brings out the lemon flavor–but important only to use a very small amount otherwise, it becomes an Almond Custard cake (added at same time as vanilla)
– 1/4 tsp salt (whisked in with the flour).
I do see distinct layers in the final product. May bake 3 mins less next time (total of 37 mins.) and move oven shelf up one level to allow for more browning on top. Mine was a bit paler than the image shown on the recipe, but did not impact flavor. It will likely be covered with powdered sugar, so maybe color isn’t important.
I wanted to practice this recipe before taking it along to a CV19-safe small family get together. Glad I did. It is fast, easy and SO good! I’m excited to bring such a unique dessert that I know will be a big hit!
Thank you for sharing your recipes, Vera I just discovered your site and am eager to try some of your other recipes. Next is Lemon Yogurt Bars!
I forgot to ask, do you have any suggestions for how to make a chocolate version of this cake? Also, the Rate This Recipe feature is not working for me. I’m unable to select 5 stars, but would rate it that if I could!
So…..The directions are unclear as to what it looks like when it’s done. So to be safe I cooked it for only 40 minutes..I also blended the sugar and zest for a few minutes as it helps the sugar take on the flavor of the lemon zest, try it.
I added 1/3 lemon juice instead.. I always add more, in my experience every lemon anything recipe is too sweet.. Always add more than it says..All in All the recipe tasted good..and was really easy
I wondered that as well, but could see the reason for using it after making it. Definitely use the parchment paper!
This is probably the best cake I’ve ever made. The only thing I changed was using Meyer lemons instead of regular lemons. Follow everything else as directed, especially the advice to not overbake.
Fake Jo, you have no redeeming qualities, OBVIOUSLY.
Omg this is absolutely one of the best things I’ve ever made and it’s so easy! I’ve made this with almond milk and whole milk – texture seemed to be a little better with whole milk. And as mentioned, very important to make sure you don’t overbake! Mine was ready at 35 mins and my oven has a tendency to underbake usually, so make sure you check on it early! The first time I made it I took it out at 40 mins and it was more like the texture of flan.
This recipe…as with all of your recipes…is fantastic..
Dear Maybe you could bleep out ‘Joe’ Shmoe and his uncalled for remark
My family really likes lemon so I was excited to try this, but there was hardly any lemon flavor in it. I used fresh non-Meyer lemons but there was not a hint of that nice tartness I was hoping for.
I have a picky family. Several of them are lactic acid sensitive or allergic. I substituted avocado butter and almond milk and there wasn’t a single complaint. I would give 5 stars for just that. BUT this recipe came out with a pleasant lemon flavor that wasn’t over puckery or over sweet. The perfect combination of the two flavors blended perfectly. Follow the recipe, it doesn’t need any help.
Thanks so much Aine!
What if all I have is a 9 X 9 pyrex pan?
You can bake it in 9×9 pyrex, just make sure to start checking earlier, it will be thinner and bake faster.
What would be the high altitude adjustment for the Mile High City Denver?
Looks delicious! Is it possible to provide nutritional information with calorie content? Thank you!
Hello! Thank you for this delicious recipe. Do you think it’s possible to freeze some of the leftovers for later?
Can you double the recipe and bake in a 9×13 pan?
A couple questions actually. Did you use a metal or glass baking dish? Center rack in oven?
I used a glass baking dish and baked in the lower third of the oven.
The recipe I have been looking for
The recipe does not say what to do after the cake is done. Do you flip it out of the pan onto a plate and peel the parchment off and then flip it rightside up again?
Hi Karen, lift the cake using the paper overhangs, slice nad transfer the slices on a serving plate.
How many grams is the eqivalent ofcups in this recipe?
Wanted to use almond milk, almond flour and monk fruit sweetener for my keto family, what do you think?
i was thinking same thing since im newly diagnosed with diabetes and looking at a lot of foods to eat or convert….did you ever try it? let me know thanks
Wondering if you ever tried with almond flour or a sugar replacement sweetener? Am having a rise in blood sugar and trying to avoid diabetes myself.
I had one of your banana cake i liked .
Mine didn’t end up as high as the picture, followed directions
It’s a shame when a recipe is relegated to “Christmas” or “holidays” or some other special occasion. Lemon custard cake, lovely as it is, is something that should be made year-round and not reserved for December.
Maybe people who think this is bland don’t realize that custard is usually silky and not too sweet. This is a very easy, perfect recipe,! I love all things lemon and all things custard so it was delicious to me and my whole family!
This was an epic fail! I think I must have overbaked it. I had a slice while it was still warm and it was pretty good. But, when it cooled it was the consistency of gummy glue. So, I am going to try again!
I don’t think it was over baking. Mine also came out the same way and I checked mine every 15 minutes, without opening oven door. I think it’s just a bad recipe. I won’t bother trying it again.
Easy and very tasty
This cake is a fave in our home! Sometimes I make it in a springform when guests are coming over – presentation! Can it be made in 8oz ramekins for individual servings? Thanks!
my oven is fan forced so baked the cake for 30 mins at 160c which was just right. my cake pan is 8 inches across and round. I think the milk needs to be full fat regular milk not a substitute, I made the cake a long time ago using low fat milk and it didn,t turn out.
this time it was superb, definitely a favorite with my family.
Looks delicious but I would like to read the reviews before making
I would be curious to try it with lime.
Is love to try it without using normal flour… So you think almond flour would be too heavy for the cake to retain its 3 layers shape? Thank you
This was delicious! I dont understand the negative comments.
I mixed everything by hand except the egg whites. Put the egg whites in the stand mixer while I completed the other steps. I baked mine in a spring foam pan. I started monitoring the cake at around 30 min….waited another 8-10 min and it came out perfect. Literally looks like the picture she has posted above. I would def make this again! Do not over mix and do not over bake. I am so happy I decided to try it. Even my finicky children devoured it! Next time I will add more lemon zest. Thank you again!