Lemonade Cake

lemonade cake recipe

We are starting to cross things off of our Summer Bucket List, and I have to say that having a list is proving to be the best thing that we could have done. As a family, we have always been up for an adventure. But when we lived in Kansas, it was so easy to not go anywhere, the kids played outside all day and there were about a million kids to play with. When we would offer up an adventure, they would rather stay home. Now that we have moved, life is different. I think that their sense of adventure is renewed, and we are all forcing ourselves to go out and have some fun. The weather has not been beach weather yet so we decided to head to Philadelphia and check out The Franklin Institute. We bought a membership because there is so much to see and do, that we could not get it all in one day. Now we have a reason to head back into the city and explore some more.

You know that I have a problem saying no to anything lemon. I saw this cake on Pinterest, from BHG, and I knew that it would be something that I would be into. I was truly surprised at how flavorful this simple cake is. Tart, and just sweet enough. Even the kids loved it. This cake is really easy to make, and I often forget that making a cake in a 9×13 is so much easier than a layer cake. I am going to remember to make this cake next winter when I am tired of the cold, and need a little sunshine.

lemonade cake recipeCake

1/3 cup butter, room temperature
3 eggs
2 1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/4 cup frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cup buttermilk


1/3 cup butter, room temperature
3-4 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup plus 2 Tablespoons frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 teaspoon vanilla

lemonade cake recipeBeat butter and sugar together.

lemonade cake recipeAdd eggs one at a time.

lemonade cake recipeAdd lemonade concentrate and vanilla.

lemonade cake recipeMix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl.

lemonade cake recipeAdd 1/3 of the flour mixture.

lemonade cake recipeAdd 1/2 of the buttermilk.

lemonade cake recipeRepeat until all of the buttermilk and flour is incorporated.

lemonade cake recipePour into a 9×13 that has been coated with cooking spray. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool completely.

lemonade cake recipeBeat the butter until smooth. Add 1 cup of sugar. Add in 1/3 cup of the lemonade concentrate and vanilla.

lemonade cake recipeGradually add the rest of the powdered sugar. Add remaining lemonade until you get a nice consistency.

lemonade cake recipeSpread frosting over cooked cake.

lemonade cake recipe

lemonade cake recipe

Lemonade Cake

Yield: serves 12

Lemonade Cake - a light buttermilk cake made with lemonade and topped with lemonade frosting.



  • 1/3 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk


  • 1/3 cup butter, room temperature
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 Tablespoons frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Beat butter and sugar together. Add eggs one at a time. Add lemonade concentrate and vanilla.
  2. Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl.
  3. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture. Add 1/2 of the buttermilk. Repeat until all of the buttermilk and flour is incorporated.
  4. Pour into a 9×13 that has been coated with cooking spray. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes.Cool completely.
  5. Beat the butter until smooth. Add 1 cup of sugar. Add in 1/3 cup of the lemonade concentrate and vanilla. Gradually add the rest of the powdered sugar. Add remaining lemonade until you get a nice consistency.
  6. Spread frosting over cooked cake.
Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0Total Fat: 0g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

This recipe came from Better Homes and Gardens.

Oh hey there!

Well, hello there! I’m Bree Hester, the Boston-based blogger and food photographer here at Baked Bree. Here you can get lots of weeknight meal inspiration, eat more plant-based meals, and still indulge in a decadent sweet treat. Baked Bree is a place where you will find great recipes and inspiration for your next family adventure.

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This Post Has 76 Comments

  1. Jennifer | Mother Thyme

    Lovely cake Bree. I can’t say no to anything lemon as well. I know for a fact I will be baking this delicious looking cake soon. πŸ™‚

    1. bakedbree

      I hope that you do! I wish that I could say no to lemon, but I cannot.

  2. Georgiana

    This looks DELICIOUS! I love the first photo – I think I probably would make anything as long as it were accompanied by that picture! It’s such a pain that you can’t buy lemonade concentrate in England; I really don’t know what I would substitute it with… Oh, well, I’ll just dream of its lemon-y goodness! I’m glad you’re enjoying the summer.

    1. bakedbree

      Really? Someone above mentioned that they made their own concentrate. I would imagine a really lemon heavy simple syrup would work as a substitute.

  3. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    Everything about this cake sounds delightful. Awesome idea!

    1. bakedbree

      It is delightful! Sweet and tangy!

  4. Jenna Grimes

    The lemonade cake looks awesome. I will have to prepare it sometime using the recipe you have provided.

    1. bakedbree

      Please do!

  5. nat

    Did I miss where you moved to? Are you in PA or NJ ? I am so jealous you can get into the city so quickly. I loved the Franklin Institute as a kid. We will be in Ocean City, NJ for a week in August and your pictures make me want to head out to visit now. Good luck with the move and everything.

    ps. the cake looks delicious.

    1. bakedbree

      We are NJ for the summer, but heading to DC in August.

  6. Dana

    I grew up in the Philly area and we went on yearly trips to the Franklin Institute with school – it never gets old!

    1. bakedbree

      Never, ever! Love it.

  7. Celeste Harris

    I was so excited to see this recipe this morning! I made frozen lemonade concentrate out of my Meyer lemons & it just didn’t have the perfect tartness that regular lemons give it. I was thinking about throwing it all out, and now I have something better to do with it! As always, thanks for sharing!

    1. bakedbree

      Yum! How awesome are you? How do you make your own concentrate?

  8. Becca- cookie jar treats

    I can’t beleive you made that perfect of a cut on the first try in the first photo. If I tried that I wiuld probably masacure the cake, haha xD

    But this looks so delicious, and I love the taste of lemon in the summer. It’s a perfect seasonal flavor πŸ™‚

    1. bakedbree

      I let it sit overnight. It helps make a clean cut.

  9. Maureen, Milwaukee

    I just read your “about” box, and it says you live in KS, but from today’s post, it sounds like you’ve moved. Where to? I have a son in the Navy and have lots of sympathy for all those moves! Btw, the cake looks great, love the lemonade in the frosting to add oomph, and have saved it to try when the grandkids are here – thanks!

    1. bakedbree

      We JUST moved, like a week ago. I need to update my about page. We are in NJ for the summer, but headed to DC.

  10. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious

    What a fun cake! And as Becca had said, your first cut is perfect! It usually takes like 2-3 cuts before I get a decent one.

    1. bakedbree

      Thanks, the key is to let it sit overnight. I did not cut it into until the next day.

  11. kelley {mountain mama cooks}

    Yum! I love anything citrus. The possibilities are endless with this. I can’t wait to try it!

    1. bakedbree

      Another reader had the great idea to make an orange version. Pink lemonade would be fun too.

  12. Carla @ Carla's Confections

    You have such stunning photos!!! I love it. That cake looks fantastic! I love sweet citrus food.

    1. bakedbree

      thank you so much. This ones was hard to shoot for some reason. But I loved the cake so much, I had to share it.

  13. Bewildered Bug

    This looks so spectacular! I can’t wait to try it! Only one thing – I don’t see a temperature that you baked it at – is it 350 F? Thanks πŸ™‚

    1. bakedbree

      Thanks! I fixed it.

  14. Jacqueline @howtobeagourmand

    Really original recipe! Love the food styling props. The lemon colour comes out beautiful in the picture.

    1. bakedbree

      thank you so much Jacqueline!

  15. marcellina

    In Australia we don’t get Lemonade concentrate (not the I know of anyway) but I can just imagine the delicious lemon bite this cake would have! Great recipe!

    1. bakedbree

      Really? It boggles me what you cannot get in Australia.

  16. Minnie(@thelady8home)

    The perfect summer recipe. And this looks so exotic too.

    1. bakedbree

      thank you Minnie!

  17. leen

    cool recipe .. i have 2 Questions ..

    i didn’t understand what do you mean about ” 1/4 cup frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed ”
    can i use a normal lemon juice ?
    and i don’t have any butter milk can i use the normal milk ?

    sorry > i am shy of asking you all of that >> but i really want to try it

    thank you ()

    1. bakedbree

      No, lemonade concentrate is sold in the freezer section. You add water to make it drinkable.

      You can make buttermilk by adding a teaspoon or so of vinegar and let it sit for a few minutes.

  18. Blanca

    Hi Bree. I am making this cake today for father’s day! I didn’t see the oven temperature setting on the recipe. I am assuming 350, but can you pls confirm? Thanks!

    1. bakedbree

      It is. 350. I’ll fix it.

  19. thyme (sarah)

    Something about that white frosting on top of the cake looks so fantastic to me. I love lemon too and really need to make something simple and sweet like this. We have moved a lot too. We used to life in Basehor, KS (right down the road from Leavenworth). It is so beautiful out there…green and lush hills. We enjoyed Kansas City alot. Now we are in Houston, TX and well…not in love with this megalopolis so much!

    1. bakedbree

      It is always a gamble isn’t it? Moving is not for the weak of heart.

  20. Angie@Angie's Recipes

    A kid-friendly and delicious cake!

    1. bakedbree

      Yes it is!

  21. sarahsaysrun

    Could you make these into cupcakes? I have a bachelorette party/bbq this weekend and they would be a perfect dessert to bring!

    1. bakedbree

      I think that you could, but I have never done it before.

  22. Pat

    I can’t wait to make this! LOVE anything lemon….or really any citrus flavor. I can imagine this with orange too. Thanks so much for sharing!


    1. bakedbree

      Orange would be amazing! You are so smart!

  23. Inna

    That cake is absolutely fantastic! I’m baking it right now and I so much hope it will turn out to be as good as yours! Smells fantastic! Thank you for such a lovely recipe!
    Greetings from Saint-Petersburg, Russia!

    1. bakedbree

      I hope that you love it Inna!

  24. Erin @ Texanerin Baking

    This is the second lemon cake recipe I’ve looked at in 20 minutes and both have used frozen lemonade concentrate, which sadly doesn’t exist over here. Using anything else just wouldn’t be the same! I’ll save it under my “make in the US” list because it sounds amazing.

    1. bakedbree

      Bummer! Isn’t it strange what other countries do not have that we don’t think twice about?

  25. Monique

    Bree! Made this cake yesterday and it was a HUGE hit! Thanks for sharing!

  26. Mary @ mary mary quite contrary

    Anything with lemon and you’ve got me !! I love the fact that you baked it in a ‘sheet cake’ form….great for the family, and so much easier to portion…no arguments over the larger slice !

    1. bakedbree

      You and me both! No kidding, so easy, I don’t know why I don’t do it more often.

  27. Brie

    You had me at buttermilk!! I just popped this in the oven for my 4th of July celebration tomorrow. Shhh….Don’t tell the food police but I tasted the batter and I can already tell this is going to be a new favorite of mine. And I’m thinking pink lemonade will be perfect for a baby shower cake later this summer. From one Brie/Bree to another…. Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

    1. bakedbree

      Yeah! This cake is really good. Tender and tangy.

  28. Kimm

    I made this for my 4th of July party today. I made the cake into cupcakes and used raspberry lemonade concentrate becuz thats what i had in the freezer and added some lemon zest to the batter. The cupcakes were delicious and a huge hit! the frosting was amazing!!!! I wanted to eat all of them! thx for sharing!

    1. bakedbree

      Yum! That sounds good. You are very welcome!

  29. elsie

    Oh, I made this cake yesterday! It got rave reviews :-). The entire pan was gone after the BBQ, even though there were numerous other desserts to be had. My mouth is watering just thinking about it! I used cake flour (because I had it on hand), and I am not sure how this may have changed the consistency, even just a bit, but it had a spongy but denseness to it. DELICIOUS! I will be making this again!

    1. bakedbree

      I bet that it was so light and fluffy with cake flour. I am glad that it was so popular!

  30. Leslie

    Bree, I am on vacation, left recipe for Giada’s meatballs at home. Not on Food Network website. Googled and found you. So, first, thank you for posting it as I made them today. While on your website, read this lemonade recipe, so made it too. Delicious – sweet but lemony sour. A great dessert. Thank you!

    1. bakedbree

      You are welcome! Enjoy your vacation, it sounds like you are eating well!

  31. Sarah

    I’m going to try these as pink lemonade for Breast Cancer Awareness month in October. Can’t wait!

    1. bakedbree

      How fun!

      1. Sarah

        Looking at this recipe again. I made the recipe as instructed but as mini cupcakes, with a strawberry lemonade frosting. They were so good. thank you for the recipe!

  32. Claire Lim

    Hello there!

    Was wondering what camera did u use for these photos? They are absolutely GORGEOUS!! πŸ™‚

    1. bakedbree

      Nikon D700.

  33. robyn

    An u use self rising flour instead of other dry ingred.

    1. bakedbree

      I don’t know, I use all-purpose.

  34. Karen

    This lemony cake looks perfect for summer (or anytime!). Do you use sweet or salted butter? Thanks πŸ™‚

    1. bakedbree

      I always use unsalted butter. I like to add my own salt.

  35. Monika

    This cake looks elegant and delicious! can’t wait to bake tomorrow! One thing i would like to know is can i use a normal milk as i can’t buy a butter milk where i live :] any advice? πŸ˜€ thanks for sharing!~

    1. bakedbree

      Sure, add a teaspoon of lemon juice or vinegar to the milk. Let stand for a few minutes. It will turn into buttermilk.

  36. Kathryn Rand

    I cannot wait to make this! My question is if concentrate syrup will work the same as frozen concentrate thawed? I ask because I just won some huckleberry lemonade concentrate that is not frozen, and thought it would make a delicious cake!


    1. bakedbree

      It should.

  37. Tracey Patterson

    Made this today…made in a sheet pan instead of the 13×9 pan….. can’t wait to cut a piece later….y yum????

    1. Bree Hester

      Hope you love it!

  38. LemonLover

    I have never left a comment on a recipe before, but I was so excited with the variations in this cake and how it turned out that I wanted to post a comment. I replaced 3/4 of the buttermilk with freshly squeezed lemon juice, and used the zest from these lemons (about 8 very large lemons) to add to the batter. I added about 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice to the frosting and added 4 oz of cream cheese and a pinch of salt to overcome the taste of the corn starch in the powdered sugar. Then I whipped about 4 cups of heavy cream, added 1 1/2 tsp of real vanilla extract and 3 tsp of powdered sugar to the whipped cream. I made the cake in 2 9 inch cake pans, baked them for 32 minutes. (Line the bottoms with parchment so the cakes come out easily.) Then I put the lemon frosting in between the layers of cake, and secured the layers with toothpicks. I frosted the top, then used fresh raspberries to encircle the top of the cake. (Also, the raspberries hid the toothpicks). I put a dollop of the whipped whipping cream on the top of the cake, & served it with the whipped cream and the fresh raspberries. The flavor was so intensely lemon and wonderful! I was a bit concerned about how the flavor of the lemonade concentrate would affect the flavor of the cake, and this is why I added the fresh lemon juice and lemon zest. I must admit that I was very, very impressed because none of that harsh lemonade concentrate flavor came through, following this method, and the intensity of the lemon in the cake was just incredibly wonderful. Originally, I wanted to frost the cake with a strawberry cream cheese frosting in which the base cream cheese frosting in this recipe would still be used, but instead of lemonade as the flavoring, I would use 6 packages of freeze-dried strawberries, crushed to a powder in the blender. However, the freeze-dried strawberries were not available at the store. Thus, I had to move on to plan B. I also wanted to try adding some chopped strawberries to the middle of the filling of the cake, but I forgot about doing that. The next time, I would like to try that.

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