Lemon Tea Cake

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“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”Β  ~C.S. Lewis


Lemon Tea Cake

Makes 2 – 8 inch tea loaves

Preheat oven to 35O degrees. Spray two 8×4 loaf pans with Baker’s Joy.

2 sticks butter at room temperature

2 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar

4 extra large eggs at room temperature

1/3 cup freshly grated lemon zest

3 cups all purpose or cake flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

3/4 cup whole milk at room temperature

1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


2 cups powdered sugar

3 and 1/2 Tablsepoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Cream the butter and 2 cups of the granulated sugar in the bowl of a Kitchen Aid mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed for about 5 minutes, adding lemon zest and eggs during mixing time. Mix until light and fluffy. Add 1/4 cup lemon juice, the milk and vanilla. Mix until just combined.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl. Add to the batter. Mix until just combined. Divide batter evenly between loaf pans, smooth tops. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour, until toothpick comes clean.

Combine 1/2 cup granulated sugar with 1/2 cup lemon juice in a small saucepan until the sugar dissolves.

When the cake is done, allow to cool in pans for 10 minutes before transferring them to cooling racks set over a tray. Carefully poke holes in the tops of tea loaves with a fork (about 10 times per loaf.) Spoon the lemon simple syrup over the cakes. Allow cakes to cool completely.

For the glaze, combine powdered sugar and lemon juice in a bowl and mix with a wire whisk until smooth. Pour over the tea cakes allowing the glaze to drizzle down the sides.

Tea Pairing– a great tea pairing for this cake is Harney & Sons Rosepetal Tea, or Mrs. Kelly’s Earl Blue Ceylon Tea (with lavender blossoms.)

Tip: The lemon ‘simple syrup’ recipe above is fabulous in iced tea! Simple syrups are commonly served in tearooms alongside iced tea instead of sugar cubes because iced tea will not dissolve uncooked sugar.



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  47 comments for “Lemon Tea Cake

  1. Sandy
    June 16, 2010 at 8:34 am

    I think I would like this topped with a touch of some sort of berries over the glaze and this topped with a dab of whipped cream or with homemade vanilla ice cream on the side and all topped with a berry sauce…

  2. June 16, 2010 at 10:55 am

    This is very good with fresh berries and whipped cream. I’ve actually cut it in thin slices and made berry ‘sandwiches’ before. So elegant…or just cut thick and accompanied by a big mug of tea for a more casual dessert πŸ˜‰

  3. June 16, 2010 at 10:02 pm

    just had another piece for dessert. almost out. time to make more! πŸ™‚

  4. November 2, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    it looks gorgeous! i love lemon cake :*
    have a wonderful time

    • Melissa
      November 2, 2011 at 1:38 pm

      Thanks Em πŸ™‚

      • November 2, 2011 at 2:49 pm


  5. May 8, 2012 at 4:05 am

    this looks and sound so devine. Someday I wil visit you and then you have to make me this cake πŸ™‚ hugs and luvs Misbah

    • Melissa
      May 8, 2012 at 7:32 am

      Thanks so much Misbah! I think that sounds like a really good idea πŸ™‚ xoxo

  6. NormaPinto
    May 8, 2012 at 11:39 am

    J’aimerai avoir la recette en franΓ§ais si c’est possible merci

  7. Perri Pender
    September 1, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    This sounds WONDERFUL, I just wish you would get a PRINT button, your recipes are one one of my favorites!!!! If it is here I missed it!!! Perri

    • Melissa
      September 1, 2012 at 6:45 pm

      Thanks sooooo much Perri! enjoy! πŸ™‚

  8. Kim
    September 3, 2012 at 3:56 pm

    Sounds delicious – cannot wait to try! Thanks for sharing!!

    • Melissa
      September 3, 2012 at 7:04 pm

      enjoy! xo

  9. December 20, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    I’m just reading your recipe and was wondering what is the weight of 2 sticks of butter?I’m from New Zealand and butter comes in 500grm packs.

    • Melissa
      December 21, 2012 at 1:55 am

      Hi Chris! The weight of 2 sticks of butter is 1/2 pound. Hope that helps! Happy baking, and thanks for visiting!

  10. Janie
    April 20, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    Oh my goodness this looks so good. I love the poke cakes with syrup and lemon is my favorite…

    • Melissa
      December 28, 2013 at 10:32 pm

      thanks, Janie! πŸ™‚

  11. Ruth Cobb
    September 12, 2013 at 8:49 am

    This is so pretty. Funny thing, I was thinking about a lemon tea bread and the Starbucks recipe I copied recently, and yours popped up on my facebook.

    I think I have everything I need and want to do this today.


    • Melissa
      September 12, 2013 at 11:06 am

      Hi Ruth! I love when that happens…must be meant to be. Serendipity πŸ˜‰ Enjoy, and thanks for stopping by and commenting. XO

  12. Ruth Cobb
    September 12, 2013 at 8:50 am

    As one of the posters said, slices of this with some berries and whipped cream would be wonderful. A different strawberry shortcake type dessert

    • Melissa
      September 12, 2013 at 11:07 am

      mmmmmm! I’m thinking raspberries! πŸ˜‰

  13. Ann gullberg
    December 21, 2013 at 10:30 pm

    I make a Swedeish sugar cake( rather like this ) and melt lemon curd ( from the grocery store) and pour it over the top…

    • Melissa
      December 27, 2013 at 9:59 am

      That sounds fantastic, Ann! I love lemon curd πŸ™‚ thanks for visiting.

      • Ann
        December 28, 2013 at 10:36 pm

        Visit almost every day…. Love it!

        • Melissa
          December 29, 2013 at 4:28 pm

          yay! I’m so glad, Ann! XO πŸ™‚

  14. Janie
    December 24, 2013 at 10:48 am

    Sounds great, but I am guessing you mean 1/4 cup lemon juice not 3/4 cup. I also like the idea of the syrup in iced tea.

    • Melissa
      December 27, 2013 at 10:01 am

      Hi Janie,
      No, the 3/4 cup measurement is correct.

      • Janie
        December 27, 2013 at 5:24 pm

        Oh, wow! I will have to try that. The more lemon the better…I love lemon….

        • Melissa
          December 28, 2013 at 10:34 pm

          Thanks, Janie! Enjoy πŸ™‚

  15. Janie
    December 30, 2013 at 11:00 am

    Melissa how many lemons will this take? I want to make it and bring to my sisters soon.

    • Melissa
      January 1, 2014 at 8:43 pm

      It totally depends on the size and juiciness of the lemons you’re using. Sorry I can’t be more helpful…maybe buy 8 to 12 and see how many you end up needing πŸ™‚ xo

  16. Janie
    January 2, 2014 at 11:16 am

    Thank you Melissa, ..that’s very helpful. Gives a ball park amount..thanks….can’t wait to try this. (did I mention I love lemon!?)

    • Melissa
      January 2, 2014 at 6:50 pm

      hee hee πŸ˜‰ Enjoy, Janie!

  17. June 3, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Oh dear, this lemon tea cake is just “merveilleux” as I would say in French! So delicate, so lovely… It just makes me smile and feel happy πŸ™‚

    • Melissa
      June 12, 2014 at 2:26 pm

      Hi Del! thanks for the sweet compliment, and thanks for visiting me πŸ™‚ Enjoy the recipe! XO

  18. chrissy
    June 15, 2014 at 5:17 pm

    I just love your site!I remember seeing something about a tea cup kitchen awhile back and I am no longer able to find it.Can you please help me?

  19. Kathrine
    July 16, 2014 at 7:10 am

    I can’t wait to try this. Is the cake dense like a pound cake or more moist like lemon squares?

    • Melissa
      July 26, 2014 at 10:37 am

      Hi Kathrine πŸ™‚

      This is a dense, moist, lemony pound cake πŸ™‚

      Enjoy, and thanks for visiting!


  20. Letitia
    September 2, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    If you use cake flour do you still add the baking soda, baking powder and salt. I like cake flour better since I think it makes a lighter cake.


    • Melissa
      October 4, 2014 at 1:08 pm

      Hi Letitia πŸ™‚

      You certainly can use cake flour in place of the all purpose flour. Don’t change any of the other ingredients. The general rule for using cake flour in place of AP flour is to use 1 cup + 2 Tablespoons of cake flour for every cup of AP. So, in this particular recipe you would use 3 cups + and additional 6 Tablespoons of cake flour instead of the 3 cups of flour that the recipe originally calls for. Hope that helps. ~M

    • Yvonne
      July 28, 2015 at 1:29 pm

      can I make it in one normal size loaf pan?

      • Melissa
        July 28, 2015 at 6:04 pm

        Sure, Yvonne πŸ™‚

  21. Jasmine
    February 7, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    Hi, I can’t seem to find how many eggs you use in the recipe? I didn’t seem how many were listed…thanks!

    • Melissa
      February 7, 2016 at 3:19 pm

      the recipe says 4 πŸ˜‰

      • Jasmine
        February 8, 2016 at 3:59 pm

        Grazie!! I just saw it now πŸ™‚

  22. Priscilla DePetris
    May 12, 2016 at 7:23 pm

    This looks so divine. It is the same ingredients as the Madeleine’s I make, except for the milk. I will have to try this one.

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