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Glazed Lemon Loaf

This easy recipe for a classic Glazed Lemon Loaf yields a refreshing and moist lemon cake. Top it with an optional tangy lemon glaze for a scrumptious treat!

Top view of an unglazed Lemon Loaf Cake.

If you love lemon desserts as much as I do you will want to try this Glazed Lemon Loaf. Similar in texture to a pound cake, this light lemon cake is moist and buttery. Though I top the cake with a simple lemon glaze, the cake is delicious with or without it.

This cake is a perfect way to celebrate the arrival of springtime. It would also make a wonderful addition to Easter and Mother's Day celebrations.

Top view of a Glazed Lemon Loaf Cake.

This refreshing lemon cake will not disappoint. It's perfect for serving at brunch, for an afternoon snack and even sweet enough for dessert. With only a few easy steps you can enjoy buttery lemon flavour coming from every bite of this moist and tender loaf.

How to Make it

This lemon loaf cake can be made with only basic baking ingredients and fresh lemons.

Ingredients Overview:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder and soda for leavening.
  • A touch of salt.
  • Unsalted butter. If all you have is salted butter, don't add any additional salt to the recipe.
  • Granulated sugar. I have not tried this recipe with any other sweetener or sugar subsitute.
  • Large eggs.
  • About 3 fresh lemons. To get the best lemon flavour and the most out of my lemons, I like to use both the zest and juice in my lemon flavoured baked goods.
  • Sour cream. If you don't have any sour cream around you can use yogourt in its place.
  • Vanilla extract.
  • Powdered sugar and a touch of milk or cream for the glaze.
Top view of a Sliced Glazed Lemon Loaf.

How to Zest and Juice a Lemon

Since we are using both lemon zest and juice in this recipe, it's important to start by removing the zest from the lemons before juicing them. Trying to zest an already juiced lemon is not an easy task!

Also frustrating is not having a good zester to work with. Investing in a good zester will make sure that you get optimal results by getting all the aromatic zest off the lemons.

Remember to only zest the coloured part of the citrus fruit, the white pith underneath is bitter and will impart a bitter taste to your baked goods.

Before juicing the lemons, apply a bit of pressure on them while rolling them back and forth on the counter a few times. This extra step will help you get more juice out of them.

Lemon Loaf Cake with a cut slice on board.

How to Make a Lemon Glaze

The most challenging part of making this Glazed Lemon Loaf is having to wait for it to cool enough to glaze it. The glaze in this recipe is a simple mixture of icing sugar (confectioners' sugar), a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a touch of cream or milk.

To make the lemon glaze, just whisk the ingredients together in a bowl. You can add more lemon juice if you prefer it tangier, and more cream or milk to get a thinner glaze. 

This simple lemon glaze gives the loaf a bit of extra sweetness and an extra hit of tanginess. Instead of topping the entire bread with the glaze (as shown in the pictures) you can simply use a fork or whisk to drizzle the lemon glaze on parts of the loaf.

Top view of a sliced Glazed Lemon Loaf.

How to Freeze this Loaf

This loaf can be made ahead of time and frozen for up to three months. I recommend freezing the loaf without the glaze. You can use a large freezer bag or wrap it in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. Thaw the loaf overnight in the refrigerator. Glaze the loaf once it has thawed and is at room temperature.

If you love lemon flavoured desserts, you'll want to take a look at this decadent Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, it's to die for.


More Must-Try Loaf Recipes

Top view of a Sliced Glazed Lemon Loaf.

Glazed Lemon Loaf

This easy recipe for a classic Glazed Lemon Loaf yields a refreshing and moist lemon cake. Top it with a simple and tangy lemon glaze for a scrumptious treat!
4.93 from 13 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Total Time 1 hr 5 mins
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 318 kcal


Lemon Loaf Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1-¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest from two lemons
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup sour cream I used full-fat sour cream, yogurt will also work, but not the zero fat kind.

Lemon Icing

  • 1 cup icing or confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice more to taste


Lemon Loaf Cake

  • Place a rack in the middle section of your oven and preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Grease and flour a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
  • In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Whisk and set aside.
  • In the bowl of your mixer, beat the butter with the sugar until light and creamy.  Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl, beat again for approximately 30 seconds.
  • Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice and the vanilla extract.
  • With mixer running on low speed, add the flour mixture alternately with the sour cream, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Approximately, ⅓ of the flour mixture, then add ½ the sour cream, add ⅓ of the flour, add the remainder of the sour cream, and then the rest of the flour.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake the loaf for 45 to 55 min. With a toothpick or a cake tester, check to see if the loaf is done at 45 min, if the toothpick comes out clean or with just a couple of crumbs the loaf is done, if not, check again in 5 minutes. Mine took 50 minutes to bake.
  • Place the loaf on a rack to cool for 15 minutes before removing the loaf from pan. Remove loaf and let cool until cake is slightly warm. Pour lemon glaze on loaf.

Lemon Glaze:

  • In a medium bowl, combine the confectioners sugar with lemon juice and cream or milk, whisk until smooth and pour onto the loaf while still slightly warm. Let glaze set for a few minutes before slicing and serving.


Calories: 318kcalCarbohydrates: 48gProtein: 3gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 172mgPotassium: 96mgSugar: 31gVitamin A: 420IUVitamin C: 3.9mgCalcium: 45mgIron: 1.2mg
Keyword Glazed Lemon Loaf, Glazed Lemon Loaf Cake, Lemon Bread, Lemon Loaf
Tried this recipe? Have any questions, comments or suggestions? Leave a comment below!Mention @sweetandsavourypursuits or tag #sweetandsavourypursuits!

This post was originally published by Sweet and Savoury Pursuits on March 26, 2018.

Recipe Rating

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Wednesday 23rd of May 2018

Your glazed lemon loaf cake sounds perfect for this summer served alongside some sliced fresh fruit or berries.

Sweet and Savoury Pursuits

Saturday 26th of May 2018

Hello Karen! You're absolutely right, this would be delicious with some fresh berries. Thanks for stopping by!


Tuesday 17th of April 2018

Looks absolutely delicious! I'll try with yoghurt I guess.

Sweet and Savoury Pursuits

Tuesday 17th of April 2018

Thank you, yogurt will work!


Thursday 5th of April 2018

Looks so tempting to eat :)

Sweet and Savoury Pursuits

Friday 13th of April 2018

Thank you!


Monday 26th of March 2018

Looks so refreshingly delicious

Sweet and Savoury Pursuits

Monday 26th of March 2018

Thanks so much Alex, I hope you’ll give it a try!

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