Lemon Velvet Cake

Saturday, September 28, 201315comments

Lemon Velvet Cake
Lemon Velvet Cake
It all started with me trying to develop the best Red Velvet Cake recipe I could.  It was such a sucess and I loved the moist, tender texture of that cake so much that I just had to try a White Velvet Cake and then an Orange Velvet Cake. Those turned out to be a couple of the most popular cake recipes ever on Rock Recipes so I couldn't stop there. Keeping the lemon lovers like me in mind, a luscious lemon version was inevitable. The creamy, tangy lemon buttercream frosting goes particularly well with this beautiful lemon cake too.

Am I done with Velvet Cake recipes yet? Maybe not, I have an idea that might work out for yet another version. Here's a clue...think pink. :) 

Lemon Velvet Cake

Recipe by Barry C. Parsons
Developed from an outstanding Red Velvet Cake recipe, this lemon cake is a perfectly moist and tender crumbed cake with a lemony buttercream frosting. An ideal birthday cake for the lemon lover in your life.
Prep time: Approximately 20 minutes
Cook time: 35 minutes
Total time: Approximately 1 hour.
Yield: 12 -16 servings
  • 1 1/4 cups sifted all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup vegetable shortening at room temperature
  • 1 tsp good quality vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp pure lemon extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • zest of two small or one large lemons, grated and finely chopped
  • 8 cups icing sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 2 cups unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp pure lemon extract
  • 1 tsp minced lemon zest (optional) 
  • aprox 4 tbsp milk
  1. Grease and flour 2 nine inch round cake pans and line the bottom with 2 circles of parchment paper. Sift together both flours, baking soda. baking powder, salt and sugar, Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer beat together the vegetable oil, shortening, vanilla and lemon extract. Beat well at high speed with whisk attachment until light and fluffy
  3. Beat the eggs in one at a time.
  4. Fold in the lemon zest.
  5. Fold in the dry ingredients alternately with the buttermilk.
  6. I always add dry ingredients in three divisions and liquid ingredients in 2 divisions. It is very important to begin and end the additions with the dry ingredients. Do not over mix the batter. As soon as it has no lumps in the batter, pour into the two prepared 9 inch cake pans.
  7. Bake at 325 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the pans for 10 minutes before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.
  8. FOR THE FROSTING: mix together the icing sugar, lemon zest and butter until it becomes sort of crumbly.
  9. Add the lemon extract and a little of the milk.
  10. Beat until smooth and fluffy, adding only enough milk to bring the frosting to a creamy spreadable consistency.
  11. Fill and frost the cake. Garnish with candied lemon zest if desired.
  12. To make candied lemon zest, remove the zest with a sharp vegetable peeler in long strips, avoiding as much of the white pith as possible.
  13. Bring one cup of water and one cup of sugar to a slow boil.
  14. Add the pieces of lemon zest and boil for about 15 minutes. Drain the lemon zest on a wire rack.
  15. When cool, cut them in strips and roll in fine sugar. 
For the other recipes in our Velvet Cakes Collection click the photo below.
The Velvet Cake Collection
Lemon Velvet Cake
Lemon Velvet Cake

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+ comments + 15 comments

December 17, 2013 at 11:02 PM

I made the lemon velvet and it stuck to the pan. It did not say in the recipe to grease the 9" cake pans but I did anyway. Do you think that is why it stuck? The cake is very moist and tasty. I would like to make again, but not sure what I did wrong.

December 18, 2013 at 9:06 AM

Sorry, It should have read grease and flour the pans. I always add a circle of parchment paper to the bottom of the pans as well. I've made the instruction more clear at the beginning of the recipe. Glad you liked it.

December 26, 2013 at 1:45 AM

I made this and it was delicious. I did cut the butter and powdered sugar in the icing recipe in half. It just seemed nuts to use a whole pound of butter for a 2 layer. Still worked great.

March 7, 2014 at 6:40 PM

This cake is amazing!!!! It was very easy to make and I didn't have any problems with it. It stays moist and fresh for several days.

Have you ever played around with a dark chocolate cake? I was wondering if I could use your white velvet cake and add melted dark chocolate baking squares?

March 13, 2014 at 9:33 PM

I did this cake and it's did not come out yellow it was a white cake with lemon flavor

March 14, 2014 at 8:00 AM

I'd say the color will vary naturally as it does with the color of the lemons.

March 26, 2014 at 11:32 PM

Barry, I think your answer should've read: The darker your egg yolks, the more yellow your cake.

March 29, 2014 at 9:31 AM

I'm not a baker but want to try this cake. Do you measure the flours before sifting, or sift them first to yield 1 1/2 cups each?

Sounds delicious.

March 29, 2014 at 10:37 AM

Sift then measure.

March 31, 2014 at 5:54 PM

Is that a typo or does it call for 1 full cup of vegetable oil? It is listed twice!

April 1, 2014 at 2:11 PM

I made this cake last night and it was PERFECT. Absolutely perfect. I used parchment circles to line the bottom of my cake pans and the cakes popped right out. THe only thing I did differently was made a lemon cream cheese frosting instead of buttercream. Thank you!

April 1, 2014 at 2:20 PM

That's fantasic. This recipe really has taken off in popularity.

April 2, 2014 at 11:09 AM

Read it again Sibyl, you are misreading. It uses part oil & part shortening.

April 11, 2014 at 12:54 PM

I really want to try out this recipe for all the rave reviews but can I use another substitute for shortening? Many thanks.

April 22, 2014 at 1:23 PM

Try it with butter instead of shortening.

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