Chelsea Trusted 135 Years SPOT

Lemon Cake

By Holly Bullock
Lemon Cake
12 servings
  • 204 reviews

  • Difficulty Easy
  • Prep time 15 mins
  • Cooking time 20 mins
  • Serves

    120g Tararua Butter, softened
    1 cup Edmonds Standard Grade Flour (150g)
    3 tsp Edmonds Baking Powder
    2/3 cup Chelsea White Sugar (150g)
    2 large eggs
    1/4 cup Meadow Fresh Original Milk (60ml)
    grated rind and juice of 1 lemon

    juice of 1 lemon
    1/2 cup Chelsea White Sugar (113g)
    3-4 Tbsp boiling water (to dissolve sugar)


    Preheat oven to 180˚C bake. Grease and line an 18cm square baking tin.

    Place all cake ingredients together in a food processor, in the order listed above, and process for 15 seconds.

    Pour mixture into prepared tin and bake for 20-25 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

    For topping - mix the lemon juice, Chelsea White Sugar and boiling water together to form a runny syrup. Spoon topping onto cake while hot. Leave to cool in tin.

    *This recipe can also be made with electric hand mixers. Place all cake ingredients in a bowl in the stated order and mix until combined.

    This recipe has not been tested by Chelsea Sugar.

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Average Rating
(204 reviews)

I let this cake cool down and when it was out of the tin it all fell apart. Not sure if it was the syrup on top that may have made it fragile. It seemed to be too much liquid.

Tried for the 1st time easy yummy


it a fast recipe it yum

I nearly made another lemon drizzle cake All the ingredients measured and ready to go then last minute thought i would read the reviews. Goodness reviews were not good!. with that i found this recipe remeasured again What a awesome easy cake to make.

tastes so yummy really really quick yummmmm

It's algood......loved it....and mokos as well...

Always a winner when ever I make it on the weekend

Very yummy moist cake! The whole family enjoyed it

Nice flavour. But the topping ingredients could be halved. Made the cake too soggy. I had to use it as a dessert cake.

Fantastic cake in every way

Wow, what a hit and so easy to prepare.
I’ll definitely be making this again.

Excellent recipe. It's the best lemon cake recipe I've tried and I've made a few in my time. great flavour and texture. I iced the cake with lemon butter icing as well as the topping. Scrumptious!

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Great recipe, always loved by everyone that tries it!

Absolutely love this, except I use this for the icing
It's delicious!

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It was hard to make but it was worth it.

Up here in Canada!
Cant wait to make this with my Grandchildren. Such an easy recipe! We dont have the same brand names :( but the process and the results!
An excellent bake! Love it!
Thank you

This is one of the best lemon cakes I have ever made, a little on the small small side yes but would be great for layering. I creamed the butter and sugar first with a hand mixer then added eggs one at a time mixing well before adding the next. Then added remaining wet with the addition of vanilla extract and mixed with a spoon, then all dry. I did use 3 teaspoons of baking powder even though I thought it was a tad strange. 10/10 cake

A good recipe though I think lemon juice alone with the sugar would be more flavoursome instead of using boiling water. Perhaps Meyer lemons which I grow do not have as much flavour as other varieties but this recipe is simple and very easy giving good results - I gave it slightly longer in the oven however - 8 mins. I will use it again .

Absolutely deee-lish

Excellent quick and easy cake. I used the old thick skinned Meyer lemons which I think made a big difference very juicy and rinds are very zesty.

Great but small!

- This is a great cake. I have made it many times now and it is always a hit, however if you want to serve 12 (as stated in the recipe) they would be very small slices. I would suggest doubling it.


I am 7 years old. I made this cake by myself. I loved how crumbly it was and it was delicious. I would give this cake 100 stars!

Best Lemon Cake recipe I have come across. Definitely saved recipe and have made it twice now in 2 weeks. My new Go-To Lemon cake recipe. Thank you.

So easy and so tasty.

Super easy and delicious lemon cake recipe. Mine sunk in the centre quite a bit after I went to take it out at the 20min mark to check (it wasn’t cooked - bad oven maybe), but other than baking it for an extra 10mins I’d definitely reduce the sugar for the sauce to 1/4C as it was a bit too much.

Never fail with this cake. Everyone loves it. My go to cake as I love lemon.I decorate it with lemon zest

Really easy and quick, turned out great


So quick and easy to make and lasts moist for days. We make it often. We use a very large, ripe lemons in our recipe to make it really juicy.

Just threw all ingredients in a bowl mixed it, baked it turned out brilliant tasted awesome and the family loved it.

I LOVE lemons and this was a very yum cake i would make it again. This was very easy to make me and the kids loved it

five star review

Easy great tasting cake recipe. I used maple syrup instead of sugar for the drizzle and used a bit more lemon juice. Great result!

Easy yummy Lemon cake

A firm favourite. Easy to make and absolutely yum.

Namunamuā tēnei tohutaka!! Beautiful lemon flavour, light and fluffy. Keeps well for few days too. Reminds me of a crunchy lemon muffin recipe I used to make in my teens

YUM. Have made this a few times now and has never failed on me. I have experimented using the food processor, stand mixer and hand mixer and find the hand mixer the best because it makes the cake the fluffiest and lightest. I would recommend it to every lemon lover. Also it is not over powering


Just following this recipe, my family think I’m the best baker ever! And I get to eat it too.

I’ve made this 4x now and love it, so easy. I’ve also made it gluten free and turned out fantastic. I’d suggest to double the lemon juice though for that extra zing.

it is okay

Really lovely cake thats easy to make! Worked well even when I substituted flour+baking powder for self-raising and hand-mixed. Not overly sweet and beautifully lemony.

Sooo good, fluffy, sweet and tangy. The perfect treat.

So easy to make and very moist and tasty - will be definitely making this again! Didn’t have any of the problems some people obviously had going by some of the reviews - definitely not a problem with the recipe, must be their baking skills!

Such an easy quick cake that everyone loves. One of my family’s favourites

Loved this zingy lemon cake and so easy to make

Gorgeous cake, so easy to make. I doubled the recipe & just as well I did so we could all have done seconds! Yummo!!

During the first Lockdown, like everyone else, I was cooking and baking more. First time I made lemon cake (from our lemon tree), it was moist, yummy and so very easy to make. Our whole family loved it and I made it again recently when my mother spent a weekend with us and she even loved it. Used lemon sugar juice on top of the cake and found it way too sweet and then when I had my mother over, I used fresh whipped cream, much better lol but hey, everyone's taste buds is different! Have used other cake recipes as well, chocolate and banana cakes, yummy! Thanks Chelsea for the easy and yummy recipes.

I doubled the recipe as per previous reviews, and it turned out great! I ended up cooking it for just over 50mins, but checking with a skewer every now and again so I could be sure not was completely done. I stupidly didn't double the topping as I thought one lemon might be enough, and for other people's tastes, it might be. I love lemon, so I would have happily had more of the lemon zinginess (is that a word?) that we are all making this cake for.

Lovely with custard!

Foaming mess of sugar in you oven, complete waste of time

I really love this recipe.

Such a good cake.

Easiest cake ever to make! Tastes great too!

Works well putting it in all into a bowl and mixing it with a fork or whisk.
Doubled my mix and juggled between bottled lemon juice and lemon flavoured essence.
Lovely mix.

I think that the recipe is simple and easy to follow. I love the flavour and texture of the cake and it’s a go to cake recipe for me.

Easy and yum

I found the order of ingredients and steps to be odd: I used the given amounts of ingredients but first I creamed the butter & sugar, then added the lemon rind & the eggs 1 by 1, then added the dry ingredients & finally the liquids. This made a light fluffy cake. I also only used 2 tsp of baking powder instead of the suggested 3 spoons. I baked it for 30 minutes. It makes quite a small cake.

This recipe is for the lemon lovers. It’s so quick and easy to make you can serve it to your impromptu afternoon visitors.


Looks exciting!

This cake tastes amazing and is so soft and fluffy, almost like a sponge cake. It is a smaller cake so you could double it and make two layers with cream and lemon curd in the middle and it would be divine.

My kids made the cake and they had no problems. Great cake, love it.

I liked the recipe but it was a bit small, I would recommend doubling it.

I never thought I liked lemon cakes until I tried this recipe. This cake is so easy and delicious, one of the best cakes I’ve ever had.

Best cake ever. This is so moist. Love that it's a simple yet delicious. Only a couple of changes, I used 2 and half spoons of baking powder and put it in the oven for around 35 minutes.

Loved this cake true to form as per the contents.

Best lemon cake recipe ever. I have tried it many times and everytime it has turned out to be perfect. It is a family and friends favorite. Thank you for sharing. Cheers.

This worked very well and tasted delicious!!!


This recipe takes years to cook. Extremely crumbly. Instructions are shocking.

VERY syrupy!!!!!! Delicious.

Super fluffy and light!! I whipped up butter and sugar together first so the cake is more spongy. Also added lemon zest and vanilla extract.

All my baking is from Chelsea sugar & I absolutely love it! Unfortunately this recipe wasn’t too good! I made it twice doing exactly what it said & like others have said it came out of the oven falling apart & it is also longer than 20/25 mins! My sister tried doing it again because she was sure I left something out & it was same result.

This recipe was really easy and tasted great!

Was a little generous with the lemon for more twang, and it came out excellent. Easy to make.

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Beautiful cake! Zingy and moist. I used 2 tsp of baking powder as recommended by others in the comments and it turned out great. I also found the baking time to be 35 mins rather than 20 mins.

It was really good but I am wonder whether or not you need the syrup because I didn't use it, and my cake ended up tasting quite dry and not very lemony.

I have been using this cake recipe for so long and I absolutely love it!. Definitely the go to lemon cake recipe!

LOVE this recipe. So quick and easy to make.

I forgot to add the baking powder and it still tasted good!

Absolutely delicious, so easy to make, definitely a winner.

Thanks for sharing. This was the first time I tried this recipe I called it a lemon square because I had added a butter creme icing for a point of difference, it was a hit and I received great feedback from several people who tried it. 2 people commented that they thought it was cake shop standard.

Delicious!! Have made it so many times now and is always a success, if it tastes bad them it's your fault and not the recipe's!

good cake

good cake

Great tasting cake with nice texture. Tastes even better the next day.

This is beautiful. Easy to make, light as a sponge even after pouring the lemon syrup over. I'm going to use this all the time.

Great cake, is to make & delicious. Make an excellent dessert with cream/yogurt.

Was a real hit with all who had some.

very good

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This is a great recipe.

Love love love this recipe. So moist and extremely tasty, the whole family loved it

It is a very easy cake and I will make it again - with some adjustments.
It defintely takes more than 20 minutes in the oven, I took it out too early (even after leaving longer than this recipe says) and it collapsed on itself. After reading other comments this may have also been because of the baking powder ratio.
I also prefer zestier cakes so will be doubling the amount of lemon and I found the glaze a bit unnecessary so only put about half on.

A delicous and simple way to enjoy lemons:}

It was delicious! I believe that everyone that left a bad review, did something wrong themselves. It wasn't the recipe!

Just made this cake using fresh lemons from our tree. So delicious. Thank u so much for this recipe.

Seriously easy to make, and seriously easy to eat. A new favourite!

Really eggy and flopped in the middle. Very odd taste and topping g way to sweet. Definitely don't reccomend this.

Need to change cooking time to the usual 30- 40 mins a cake needs. 20 mins is way to short.


Flat mess! Not a good recipe - Measurements not right and cant taste the lemon.

I love this recipe.

Easy and tasty, made with British ingredients in Wales three times without any problems. Lovely to have a no fuss Kiwi recipe to turn to for a good lemon drizzle!

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Wow, this cake is amazing! It was really light and moist

Wow, this cake is amazing! It was really light and moist. One of the family favorites for sure!

Wow, this cake is amazing! It was really light and moist. One of the family favorites for sure!

How much grated lemon rind do i need?
Chelsea Sugar:
Grated rind of one whole lemon.

A little annoyed at how positive these comments are ! This recipe is whack. It came out almost like a fluffy eggy cloud, and the topping is just sooo sweet. Hate to be the bearer of bad news but this should be canned

Super easy to make, has a really light and fluffy texture. Ratios seemed a little off for baking powder to flour and the taste of the baking powder was evident. Overall, if you're looking for a quick and easy yet delicious baking treat, this recipe is your go to!

Love this recipe, so light and tasty, quick and easy recipe the whole family loves, just finished making another...yummy!!

Such an easy recipe to put together. I've always wanted to try baking a lemon cake. Thank you.

It’s soooo good and easy to make!! Highly recommend.

I loved this recipe so much that I'm making it right now haha!

Super easy to make, and turns out great every time

I'm terrible at baking but this recipe worked out great. I didn't have enough butter so substituted it with oil and it was still delicious.

Easy and delicious

I think the double chocolate cupcake was really good.

Thank you

I think the double chocolate cupcake was really good.
Thank you

Great, super quick. Loved it

Love one bowl wonders, so easy to whizz up and delicious! I think we have a family favourite :)

Disappointing recipe. Very eggy, greasy, and not lemony.

I love this recipe and I love the taste!

I have baked this 3 times so far always with self raising flour and 2 cups instead of just the one. And I added more lemon zest. Really good. Thanks

love food lol

Baked this on Sunday for my family, my very first lemon cake and it was delicious ... I added 1 teaspoon on baking soda..

Loved how easy this recipe was!!! Tried it yesterday and made double the batch for two cakes and it’s completely gone! So moist, the whole family loved it! Will be making it again!

Love how easy this is. And delicious. Didn't think the ratio of 3:1 for b.powder seemed right so just used self-raising flour instead and worked a treat. A few holes in the cake when it's out of the oven, to get that syrup bleeding all the way through, was a stroke of genius I'm sure. Also sure normal people probably do that as well- we're all genius'! Well done us!

The ingredients called for 3 teaspoon of baking powder i should have realised it might have been a mistake ..... was a disaster!! Had to throw cake out.

Excellent cake esp considering how easy and affordable it is to make!

I can’t bake at alllll and this one worked out for me, yay!

This recipe sucks! I did everything exactly as the recipe said - I even went back and checked to make sure that I did. The ingredients in proportion to each other are completely wrong, way to much sugar for the recipe and WAY too much baking powder. One of the ingredients (I am guessing the baking powder) had some sort of reaction with the lemon and it overflowed in my oven into a foamy, bubbly mess. More like a science experiment than a cake.

OMG, this cake is soo awesome! Quick, easy and so yummy!! It’s been less than an hour and our family of 3 have already eaten half of it. It’s still slightly warm too which is really nice with a cup of tea for supper. Perfect finish to the evening.

Wonderful cake. Whipped this up as a birthday cake for a friend who really doesn't like cake. Left the topping off and instead poured a mixed berry compote over the top, the lemon set off the berries perfectly. Used the full amount of baking powder and had no problems whatsoever. I will definitely be making this one again.

Absolutely delicious. Easy to make. Didn't last long, too popular.

So yummy loved it . So light and fluffy

Light, tasty cake. Didn't last long in the cupboard - whanau are addicted

Brilliant easy to make and works every time

This is legit the best go-to sponge recipe I use for an apple sponge, fejoa sponge etc.

Very easy to make and quick. If you love lemon this is the cake for you. Yummy!

Not one for the kitchen...but I was dying for a little cake with my latte, plus got given loads of lemons, so after some "net surfing", this recipe caught my eye...and I certainly wasn't at all disappointed.

Just finished baking it.
Cooled down quickly.
Loved it to bits.
Quick & easy to make, easy to find the ingredients, moist and pleasant to eat.
Used brown sugar instead of white and loved it, so must be even better with white.
Thanks for sharing the recipe :)

Mmmmmmmm delicious. Just what I was looking for. Quick, easy, moist and tasty.

So easy... everything in one bowl...pour into lined loaf tin.. cook 20mins.. pour over the topping while loaf is still hot and then impatiently wait for it to cool before indulging, such yummy decadence. A dob of lemon yoghurt is a divine addition.
I have no problems with this recipe, such a lovely light cake.

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So easy, have made a few times now. Just love this recipe.

I've made this recipe four times and I really love it

I use 1.5t of baking powder and it's still quite fluffy. I've not tried it with the full amount because I'm a bit scared departing too far from the ratio of 1t :1c baking powder to flour. I also prefer a denser cake.

I make this as a double to make a 2 layer cake (with lemon & cream cheese icing). Very well received.

Love this cake and so easy to make.

Super quick.. easy & delish!

I used fresh cream instead of milk as I had run out good recipe turned out pretty good

Made this cake is so easy to make and yummy to eat..will be making it again and again..

Have remade this cake with the extra 1/2 cup of flour and 1 less tspn of baking powder, much much better, rose well didn't sink in the middle but still tastes very nice, and not so crumbly..very tasty cake

I'm considered a pretty damn good baker, this cake is more a sponge very crumbly, and not enough flour to hold up the baking powder, another half cup of flour would make a big difference, I will try again but with extra flour. It has a good taste but that is all

This came out so flat - am I missing something here?
CHELSEA: Hi there, this cake does tend to be quite flat (see the recipe photo) but should still taste delicious!

What sized round tin would this recipe work for - has anyone tested this?
Also is it ok without the syrup just as is?
CHELSEA: Hi there, you can use a 20cm round tin. We definitely recommend adding the syrup - it provides a lovely boost of flavour and keeps the cake moist.

This recipe is so simple I love it.
I have a big family so it is perfect.

Delicious! Works every time and is a definite family favorite. Not too moist, not too dense. Only recommendation would be to make more of the syrup, there never seems to be enough!

Turned out Perfect!!!

Yummy... turned out so good and yummy...have only used 2 tsp of baking powder and it was perfect...

This is the best cake recipe! It is a favourite in my family because it is so easy and delicious.
I would 100% recommend this to anyone.

I used whole wheat flour and it's turned out absolutely delicious.
Easy peesy to bake loved it!

I have just made the lemon cake, I put a handful of sultanas in it, I didn't ice it as it doesn't need it as it taste so moist without it, and I can truly say that is the best one I have made, I will be making this again for sure. After reading comments below I only put one and a half teaspoons of baking power, also a little bit more flour but every else was the same.

I used two teaspoons of baking powder and put the batter into cupcake cases... turned out lovely and fluffy, I topped wth a lemon buttercream icing.... delicious!

Really good cake. Moist and dense.
I would recommend adding more lemon to the icing though :)

Delicious just how the recipe is.

That is yum

So yum
I love this!!!!

Absolutely delicious!!

A very flat cake - very disappointing.


Great recipe. Nice and simple.

V yummy, when cooled w a dob of whipped cream, mwah.

A beautiful and easy cake but the baking powder leaves a lingering taste. I'd use 1.5tsp in the future or even just 1 and mix by hand

Awesome! Quick and fail proof

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I just made this cake for the first time yesterday, sooooo good it didn't last until the evening.

Delicious, moist & so easy to make! Didn't last a day in our house!

I'm 10 years old and absolutely loved making this cake.
Really good, simple and tasty recipe.
Fully recommend

Disaster - wont be making this one again - waste of ingredients (think it was the 3 tspns of baking powder)

This was delicious and SO easy to make. I followed the suggestions and used only 2 tsp of baking powder. Everyone in the office loved it!

Easy, moist and yummy

Wow that was absolutely delicious. The girls at the high tea loved it. Was the first to go. Cheers Chelsea ya beaut! (Bring back hottest home baker)

I found this recipe very easy to follow (without a processor). I was worried when it was in the oven because it wasn't looking good. Luckily it turned out okay! I would make this cake again.

I've made this recipe twice but the first time the icing didn't work out although the icing on the second cake was delicious!!! best cake ever!!!!!!!

Divine. Used one cup of self raising flour instead of flour & baking powder. Quick, delicious, will make again and again!!

Crumbly and not pretty. Pity I chose this recipe to take to a work meeting first thing tomorrow morning, it's now too late to try another recipe so I have to take an ugly looking crumbled cake with me.

Loved this lemon cake. Baked and took to local Manly Music Morning Tea. Was a great hit with all mums. Thanks Chelsea

Made this as I was craving a lemon cake. Super easy recipe. I reduced the baking powder to 2 tsp also after reading other reviews. I also used gluten free flour. I didn't add the lemon zest as I find my kids sometimes complain it's too bitter, so just added the juice of a very large lemon. The result was great. Tastes delicious. No one knew it was g/f. I'll be making this again soon for a birthday cake. So easy it's ridiculous.

I reduced the baking powder to 2 tsps. It was just right. 3 tsps seems overkill. Yummy and moist.

Absolutely disgusting, everyone spat it out, over dose baking powder, 3 teaspoons to 1 cup of flour is completely out of porportion. Yuk

Loved this lemon cake! Easy recipe to follow!

Omg yum lemon cake!!! Couldn't think of an easy desert and had heaps of lemons. So yummy. Made it with custard and cream family didn't leave a crumb

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Love this lemon cake, I also mix orange rind, it's beautiful and moist.

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super delish yum

Very easy,quick and yum!

This is a really good recipe for all lemon lovers to try.

This is now my fave lemon cake recipe!! I was wondering if this recipe would be a bit drier than my usual favorite lemon cake recipe so was reluctant to try it. But because it's such an easy recipe i thought I'd give it a go as I love the idea of chucking it all in a bowl and mixing rather than flaffing around with creaming butter & sugar etc.
I'm pleased to say this is a fantastic moist and extremely quick, easy cake. I used 2 tablespoons of sour cream & 2 of milk rather than the 4 tablespoons of milk stated in recipe. Delicious!

The cake was very delicious and the icing was fantastic!

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So quick, so easy, so moist and so yum!!

Amaazingggggg recipe

This cake has a beautiful taste but is not the prettiest . It was gone in less then a day!!!because of it's taste I guess

that was yummy

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Made 2 of these, filled them with lemon curd & iced with white chocolate ganache. Only poured syrup over top layer & reduced sugar in syrup by 1/2 to cut some sweetness. Quick easy yum!

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I would cream the butter thoroughly first. And it's a very thin cake if you bake it in an 18cm square tin.

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Easy to make just in bowl by hand. creamed butter and sugar well. I did this and made a dozen cup cakes instead. Worked well Very nice recipe.

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This not the pettiest cake I have ever made but ease and the yummiest makes up for it. So yummy.

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