Raspberry Lemon Cake, previously seen as Raspberry Lemon Cupcakes, is one of my all-time favorite recipes. I’ve made a few tweaks in the numerous times I’ve made this cake, and I want to share them with you!
It was one of my best friends’ birthday this week, and I was lucky enough to make her cake. When we lived together in college, we were obsessed with these raspberry lemon cupcakes. It spoke to our souls. Don’t want to write a paper*? Let’s make raspberry lemon cupcakes. Had a really tough final? Let’s eat some raspberry lemon cupcakes. It’s a little cloudy outside and Netflix isn’t working? Let’s shove our faces with raspberry lemon cupcakes. Back then, we were addicted. So I thought I’d update our favorite recipe just for her birthday with a raspberry lemon cake.
I upped the citrus flavor in the cake by adding fresh lemon juice as well as zest. The cake is incredibly light and tangy, and it pairs wonderfully with the raspberry frosting. I also cut the shortening from the original recipe, so it’s now a true buttercream. And see that gorgeous pink color? That’s not dye. It’s pureed raspberries. The color is all natural, and the flavor is all delicious.
Both the cake and frosting are easy to pull together. Once the cake had cooled, I filled it with buttercream, fresh raspberries, and then frosted it simply. As for the trimmings, I added a ring of edible pearls and piled on a mountain of raspberries. Simple, pretty and ready to be eaten!
*Personal Admission #22: I used baking as a procrastination device in college. On the nights I had the most reading, writing, and studying to do, I would bake until the night became the morning. Not so great for the sleep schedule, but super great for my roommates.
- 2 1/4 cups cake flour
- 1 Tbs. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 4 egg whites
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp. lemon extract (optional)
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 lemons, zest and juice
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup whole raspberries, plus 1 cup more for filling and decoration
- 10 cups powdered sugar
- 1 Tbs. vanilla extract
- 1 Tbs. milk
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Coat two 9" pans with non-stick spray. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, and salt together.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together buttermilk, whites, lemon juice, and both extracts.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix sugar and lemon zest by hand until the sugar is moist.
- Cream butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Add one third of the dry ingredients, half of the wet, another third of the dry, the last half of the wet, and the final third of dry. Mix on low speed until homogenous.
- Split the batter evenly between the two prepared pans. Bake for 25 min or until the cake starts to pull away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Beat butter until smooth.
- Puree raspberries. Strain the resulting juice through a sieve to remove seeds. Add juice to butter. Mix until incorporated.
- Add powdered sugar in thirds. Once homogenous, add the vanilla and milk, beat on medium speed until airy and smooth. If the frosting is too hard, add more milk. If too soft, add more powdered sugar.
- Decorate to your heart's content.