I first created this gorgeous, fluffy Lemon Vanilla Butter Cake when Sugar Salt Magic turned one, way back in 2016. Just recently I remade this and made it even better. While it started as a layer cake, I decided to re-create it in the style of a vanilla bundt cake, filled with lemon curd and topped with a simple lemon icing. You’ll love this Vanilla sponge tray bake too.
- A buttery vanilla bundt cake
- Ribbons of homemade lemon curd running through the middle
- Simple lemon icing drizzled all over the top
The homemade lemon curdHomemade lemon curd is incredibly simple to make – 10 minutes on the stovetop with just a handful of ingredients and it’s done. However, feel free to use store-bought lemon curd if you prefer.
What is butter cake?Butter cake is a version of the British pound cake. It’s easy to make and has a rich, buttery flavour due to a generous amount of butter in the recipe. The texture of butter cake is a fine crumb and a little less dense than pound cake which comes from creaming the butter and sugar together until super light and creamy. The butter keeps the cake very moist and tender.
I use a combination of plain (all-purpose) flour and corn flour (corn starch) in my cake batter. This mixture takes the place of cake flour which I don’t keep in my pantry (space issues 😊). If you have cake flour on hand, you can certainly use it in place of the plain and corn flour.
- Mixing bowls
- Balloon whisk and silicone spatulas
- Handheld mixer or stand mixer
- Silicone pastry brush
- Bundt pan – the cake pictures was made in this fluted bundt pan.
How to make butter cake
- Cream the butter and sugar together until very light and creamy. This will take around 4-5 minutes in a stand mixer with a whisk attachment. This step is very important to ensure you end up with a fluffy cake.
- Add eggs and vanilla beating well after each addition.
- Add the dry ingredients and milk incorporating them in parts with a spatula just until mixed through. Make sure not to overmix or you will end up with a dense cake.
- Layer the cake batter and lemon curd up in the tin – batter, curd, batter, curd, batter – making sure the lemon curd doesn’t touch the sides of the tin. I find it easiest to spoon the batter in then level it out with a spatula.
- Bake the cake for 45-50 minutes until a toothpick comes out with a crumb or two clinging to it (not wet batter).
- To make the simple lemon icing – just mix some melted butter, icing sugar, lemon juice and vanilla together then pour it over the cooled cake.
Best butter cake tips and tricks
- Start with softened butter – just soft enough that when you press it with your finger there will be a slight indentation – it shouldn’t melt between your fingers immediately.
- A stand mixer with a whisk attachment is best but you can use a handheld beater or even beat it by hand if you have more upper body strength than I (which isn’t difficult)
- Grease your bundt tin well with softened butter, margarine or melted butter, making sure to get right into all the nooks and crannies.
- Once greased, flour the tin. Add a quarter cup of flour and roll the tin around between your hands until there is a coating of flour all over then tip the excess flour out. This step will also show any spots you didn’t grease properly.
How to store butter cakeStore this cake in an airtight container in a cool spot for up to 3 days or the fridge for up to a week. This butter cake can be frozen if stored an airtight container for up to 2 months. Let the cake come to room temperature before serving.
Definitely one of my favourites, this Lemon Vanilla Butter Cake is a perfect, simple vanilla bundt cake recipe for any occasion. A touch of luscious lemon curd take it to new heights and a gorgeous lemon icing make it an incredibly pretty cake too.
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FOR THE LEMON VANILLA BUTTER CAKE
- 2 cups plain (all-purp) flour (260g / 9.1oz)
- ¼ cup corn flour (cornstarch) (35g / 1.2oz)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- 226 g unsalted butter, softened (1 cup / 2 sticks)
- 200 g white sugar (1 cup / 7 oz)
- 4 large eggs, room temp
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ cup whole milk, room temp
- ½ cup lemon curd (homemade or store-bought)
SIMPLE LEMON ICING
- 1 ½ cups icing (confectioners / powdered) sugar (210g / 7.4oz)
- 2 teaspoons unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
For best results, always weigh ingredients where a weight is provided
FOR THE LEMON VANILLA BUTTER CAKE
- Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F / 160C fan forced. Grease a bundt tin well (making sure to get into all the groovethen flour it, making sure to turn the tin until fully coated. Tip away any excess flour.
- Add the flour, corn flour, baking powder and salt to a bowl and mix well to combine. Set aside.
- Using a stand mixer with whisk attachment, beat together the butter and sugar until very light and creamy (4-5 minutes). Add the eggs one at a time, adding the vanilla in with the last egg. Beat well after each addition.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then add ⅓ of the flour mixture. Use a spatula to stir it until just combined. Follow with half the milk and stir until just combined. Repeat this process with the remaining flour and milk, each time mixing until just combined - don't overmix.
- Pour ⅓ of the cake batter into the bundt tin and level it out. Spoon over half of the lemon curd just around the centre of the batter so that it doesn't touch the edges of the pan. Repeat with another layer of batter, then curd and then a final layer of cake batter.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes until a toothpick comes out almost clean. Allow to cool in the tin for about 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
FOR THE SIMPLE LEMON ICING
- Once the cake has cooled, sift the icing sugar into a medium bowl then add the melted butter, lemon juice and vanilla. Mix well to combine, then drizzle over the cake.
- You can use store bought or homemade lemon curd using this recipe
- For best results, you should always weigh ingredients like flour and sugar. Kitchen scales are relatively cheap but if you can’t weigh the ingredients, use the spoon and level method (don’t scoop).
- I use corn starch a lot in my baking. Cake flour is a combination of all-purpose and cornstarch but in Australia is not so readily available. I use this combo in my recipes a lot instead of using cake flour.
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