Starbucks Lemon Loaf Cake

(Last Updated On: August 3, 2020)

Starbucks Lemon Loaf Cake: Rich pound cake bursting with lemon flavor. Your favorite coffee house treat, easily made at home!

Starbucks Lemon Loaf
Few people can say they haven’t visited  Starbucks for a quick caffeinated pick-me-up, a new travel mug, or a delicious bakery treat. In my case it’s usually a baked treat. Is it weird to go and just order a cake pop? Seriously someone tell me it’s normal. The Starbucks lemon loaf cake is a favorite for many customers(myself included), and today you’ll learn how to make your very own copycat Starbucks lemon loaf from scratch! It is tender, sweet, and has the perfect amount of lemon flavor.

Love lemon?

Lemon Ice Cream

Starbucks Lemon Loaf Recipe: How To Make Starbucks Lemon Loaf

This lemon loaf is actually a lemon pound cake with a tangy lemon glaze drizzled over the top. To make the Starbucks lemon pound cake recipe, whisk together three eggs, sour cream, sugar, and oil until combined, then stir in lemon zest and lemon extract. Then add the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, and salt, and stir.

Pour into a greased and floured loaf pan and bake in a 350 degree oven for approximately 50 minutes. You can tell the cake is ready when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. It is okay if you see a few crumbs, but we don’t want any batter on the toothpick.


If you discover your starbucks lemon pound cake is getting too brown around the edges  ,loosely cover the pan with foil.  It will do the trick every time! The cake will need to cool in the pan for about 25-30 minutes. We don’t want to add the glaze while the cake is still too hot,or it will melt. I know it is tempting as you’ll want to dig in right away, but it is really worth the wait. I like the place my cake pan on a wire rack to help it cool faster.


How To Make Starbucks Lemon Loaf Icing

Iced lemon pound cake? Yes please!While the cake is cooling, you can make the glaze. I like to use lemon glaze to really drive home that lemon flavor. However, you can always use regular vanilla glaze if you’d prefer. It also tastes amazing without glaze at all. Growing up my Grandma always put butter on her pound cake. (Can you tell we are related? Nomnomnom). For the glaze, you’ll need to combine powdered sugar and lemon juice in a bowl until it becomes smooth. If the glaze is too thick, you can always add more lemon juice or even a bit of milk. If it is too thin, you can always stir in a little more powdered sugar until you reach your desired consistency.

After the lemon loaf cake cools, spread the glaze evenly over the cake. You can also drizzle it if you’d prefer.More on that below! 🙂

starbucks lemon loaf recipe

How To Drizzle Glaze on a Lemon Pound Cake

We don’t have to do anything fancy here. You can:

a. Spread glaze evenly using a rubber spatula. Easy and no fuss!

c. Spoon (What I used for this recipe): Spoon glaze over cake and let it drip down the sides. Also very easy, but looks a bit nicer. You can also use a fork if you’d prefer.

d. Piping Bag:Another option is our piping bag (without tip) or a plastic baggie (with the corner cut off). This is the most time consuming option. However, it gives you a more controlled drizzle which makes for a prettier presentation.

How Many Calories In Starbucks Lemon Loaf Cake?

The Starbucks lemon loaf actual recipe contains about 470 calories. If you’d like to see other substitutions that can be made, see the section below on Starbucks lemon loaf substitutions.

copycat starbucks lemon loaf
Starbucks Lemon Loaf Substitutions

If you don’t want to use sour cream in your Starbucks lemon cake recipe, you can try adding Greek yogurt instead.It makes for a super moist cake.

In addition, you can use lemon extract in place of the lemon juice in the glaze for a more pronounced lemon flavor. This is great in a pinch, but I prefer both zest and extract for a true lemon flavor. Lemon oil is not recommended here due to its tendency to make the flavor too intense.

For the glaze, feel free to spread or drizzle.  Is there such a thing as too much glaze? Not in my book! Also, you can wait until right before you’re going to serve the cake before drizzling the glaze.

If you’re short on time, some people also like to leave out the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Then you can use a boxed yellow cake mix or lemon cake mix and lemon pudding mix.

Finally, for those who don’t own a loaf pan, a Bundt pan can also be used.

starbucks lemon loaf actual recipe
Storing a Lemon Pound Cake

This copycat Starbucks lemon loaf should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature. A tupperware dish, cake plate, or pan tightly covered with foil will work just fine. When stored properly it will last for up to five days.

Can You Freeze Lemon Pound Cake?

If you need the Starbucks Lemon Loaf Cake to last longer, you can certainly freeze it. It lasts well for up to six months. This is wonderful to have on hand, and pull out for surprise guests.

Keeping it in the refrigerator is not recommended because it often causes cake to dry out.

Why Is My Starbucks Lemon Loaf Cake Too Dense?

A common problem with pound cakes is they come out of the oven very dense. No bueno! This most often happens during the mixing process if the flour’s gluten becomes over-developed. This can cause the cake to sink when pulled out of the oven. Pound cakes are not meant to be dense! You can take the following steps to make sure this doesn’t happen to you: Beat the batter by hand like I do, or on medium speed with a mixer. When you add flour, mix gently until just blended. Don’t over mix.

You should also try to add all your ingredients when they’re at room temperature for best results.

What To Serve With Lemon Pound Cake

Lemon pound cake goes great with a hot or cold beverage of your choice. Consider my:

Chai Tea Latte

Caramel Frappuccino

Vanilla Frappuccino

Copycat Starbucks Cinnamon Dolce Latte Recipe My fave pairing so good!)

Brunch foods like french toast muffins,quiche, or avocado toast are also a lovely pairing.

starbucks lemon loaf cake recipe


Starbucks Lemon Loaf

Starbucks Lemon Loaf: Rich pound cake bursting with lemon flavor. Your favorite coffee house treat, easily made at home!
Course Cake
Cuisine American
Keyword Best, copycat
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6 Large Slices
Calories 613kcal
Follow On Pinterest For More Recipe IdeasFollow @bakingbeautyblog or #bakingbeautyblog
Pin Recipe


For the Loaf Cake

  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 Cup White Sugar
  • 1 Cup Sour Cream
  • 1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Zest
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Extract
  • 1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt

For the Glaze

  • 1 Cup Powdered Confectioners Sugar
  • 2-3 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice


For the Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease and flour a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
  • In a large bowl whisk egg, sour cream, sugar, and oil until well combined. Stir in lemon zest, and lemon extract.
  • Add flour, baking powder, and salt, then stir until just combined.
  • Bake for 50-52 minutes, or until a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • If needed: Loosely cover the pan with foil during the last 10-15 minutes of baking to prevent excess browning around the edges.
  • Cool in pan for 25-30 minutes.

For the Glaze

  • In a medium bowl, combine powdered sugar, and lemon juice until smooth. Add more lemon juice or a bit of milk if needed to reach your desired consistency.
  • Evenly spread or drizzle over cake.


Calories: 613kcal | Carbohydrates: 67g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Cholesterol: 122mg | Sodium: 337mg | Potassium: 536mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 555IU | Vitamin C: 6.7mg | Calcium: 314mg | Iron: 2.1mg
Tried this recipe? I wanna see!Mention @bakingbeautyblog on Instagram #bakingbeautyblog

Starbucks Lemon Loaf Cake adapted via The Country Cook

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What do you think of this copycat lemon starbucks loaf? What is your favorite Starbucks baked good?