Favourite cake ever? Maybe. This lemon poppy seed cake was pretty awesome. With every bite, I was reminded of my mom’s famous lemon loaf with all it’s lemony goodness.

The frosting was a touch over the top. Hey, don’t discount the frosting, I said a touch over the top. What I mean is that you could easily make this cake with half the frosting and it’d be wonderful but for those more ostentatious events, the full amount is just right.

I’d really like to make this cake with smaller round cake pans so I’d have four levels instead of two but I was working with what I had. Here’s what I did:

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake

  • 1 cup All Purpose Flour
  • pinch of Salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 cup and 3 tbsp Unsalted Butter, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup Sugar
  • 3 large Eggs
  • 1/4 cup Sour Cream
  • zest and juice of 2 medium Lemons
  • 2 tbsp Poppy Seeds
  1. Preheat the oven to 325’F. Grease the bottom and sides of one 9 inch round or two 5 inch round cake pans with butter. Line the bottom with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk flour, salt, and baking powder together.
  3. Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy with a mixer. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until well incorporated. Add the sour cream, lemon zest and juice.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet in two parts and mix by hand to combine.
  5. Fold in the poppy seeds being careful not to overmix, as the poppy seeds can change the batter color.
  6. Pour the batter into the pan and bake until the top of the cake is slightly golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean, about 40- 45 minutes.
  7. Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature and then carefully flip the cake out and onto a cake platter.
  8. Using a long serrated or carving knife, gently cut the cake in two even layers. If the cakes are wildly unlevel, slice off a 1/4 inch or so off the top to make them level. They will stack better level.
  9. Very carefully flip the top layer over onto a plate. Frost the cake layer on the cake plater with half the frosting. Place the cake layer on the plate back on top of the frosted layer and spread the last half of the frosting on top.

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

Lemon Butter Cream Frosting

  • 1 cup Butter, room temperature
  • 8 oz Cream Cheese, room temperature
  • zest of 1 Lemon
  • 3 cups Icing Sugar
  1. Cream butter, cream cheese and lemon zest together. Add the icing sugar and continue to mix until smooth. The recipe originally called for 5 cups but my frosting was just perfect with only 3 cups.

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese FrostingFinishing as the sun goes downLemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Butter Cream Frosting

14 Responses to Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Lemon Butter Cream Frosting

  1. erin says:

    Oh goodness me, this is JUST the cake for Scott’s postponed until this weekend birthday party! Mwaaah! A huge kiss on the cheek thank you! Just don’t tell him it’s not Paleo, ha-ha!. He’s all but converted, but will make exceptions, he said.

    I love all of the lemon added, and yes, my mom used to make a lemon loaf similarly, so good and i miss it, so this will be fabulous!
    Thank you! xoxoxoxox

  2. Annie says:

    Happy happy birthday to Scott then! He’ll love it. You all will! It’s just the right amount of lemony yumminess.


  3. Justine says:

    Damn, I love anything lemon, and lemon poppy seed cake is right up there. Tell your friend Erin that I make a paleo coconut flour version that is effing great. Would never know it’s not wheat flour.

  4. Ella says:

    oh boy. after trying your cauliflower recipe with mild adaptations i wonder if i can substitute sour cream with yogurt and pull this off today! also i was thinking 1 c of icing sugar. i can’t believe the original recipe says 5!!

  5. Annie says:

    Thanks, Justine! I’ll try your recipe too and post it! It reminds me a lot of the apple cake we’ve been making a lot of these days.

    Ella, I would so love to hear how it was with even less icing sugar if you make this before I do again. I couldn’t believe the 5 cups either!


  6. Bridie says:

    Lemony anything – but especially cake – is a favourite here, too. I MUST try this.

  7. erin says:

    5 cups? i guess i didn’t read that far down, we’ll be reducing way back. i’d love to get the icing sugar powder consistency xylitol and try that…ella, if you read this i’d love to know what you change it to!! xo

  8. Kim says:

    Lemon poppyseed cake is my ULTIMATE favourite cake but it just occurred to me as I’m reading your post that I’ve never made it before! Insanity. I’m so making this tomorrow just because I can, thank you!

  9. Annie says:

    Yay! I hope you all make it and love it! xx

  10. Josie says:

    I’m making this today for a birthday. I’ll let you know how it turned out.

  11. Andi says:

    Made this on the weekend, it was wonderful! I am definitely adding this to our “must make regularly” list of baked goodies! Thanks for such a great recipe!

  12. Annie says:

    I’m so glad, Andi!! xx

  13. anarkissed says:

    Lovely Annie, i just made a gluten free birthday version of this with the same icing. For sugar-free icing i used raw honey instead and it worked beautifully!!! try 2tbsp of it next time. raw is the key for consistency and health benefit. :) Love you. V.

  14. Annie says:

    Thank you so much, Veronika. That sounds great!

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