Lemon yogurt cake

Lemon yogurt cake

Our lemon tree ripens in May every year, we have the meyer lemons, so sweet and delicious.

When it's time to start using up my supply I make lemon butter. It's so good in this lemon yogurt cake. I've decorated mine with meringue kisses and flowers, but you could keep it simple and sprinkle lemon zest over the top. 

spreading lemon butter on a cake

Table set for tea, with lemon cake
Table set with slices of lemon cake
Lemon cake and tea

Lemon Yogurt Cake

A light and fluffy cake. With the perfect balance of sweet and tart lemon filling and topped with cream cheese icing.

Servings: 12 slices
Prep Time: 30 mins | Cook Time: 45 mins | Total Time: 1 hour 15 mins


For the cake

  • 1 ½ cups self-raising flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 ⅓ cups caster sugar
  • ¾ cup sunflower oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • juice from half a lemon
  • 1 cup natural yogurt, greek style
  • lemon butter
  • 4 eggs
  • ¾ cup caster sugar
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
  • 125 grams butter

For the icing

  • 1 packet philadelphia cream cheese
  • ½ cup icing sugar
  • 1 cup thickened cream

To decorate

  • Edible flowers
  • Meringue kisses (I used store bought)


To make the lemon butter

  1. Place eggs and sugar into a heatproof bowl, place the bowl over a saucepan with gently simmering water.
  2. Stir until the sugar dissolves.
  3. Add lemon juice, lemon zest and butter. Stir continuously until the butter has melted. Keep an eye on it, if it boils it will curdle.
  4. It’s ready when it coats the back of a spoon. Cool it in the fridge and it will thicken more.

To make the cake

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 25cm cake tin and line with baking paper.
  2. In another bowl combine the dry ingredients (sugar, baking powder, flour, salt).
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk the oil, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice, yoghurt and sugar.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk until smooth.
  5. Pour into the tin and bake for 45 – 50 minutes. It’s ready when you poke a skewer in and it comes out clean. Allow it to cool in the tin for 5 minutes and transfer to a wire rack.

To decorate the cake

  1. When the cake is cooled, slice it in half so you have two even sized layers.
  2. Top one layer with 3/4 of the lemon butter and place the top layer of the cake back on.
  3. In a bowl, combine the cream cheese and the icing sugar, mix it with a fork until it’s smooth.
  4. Spoon the remaining lemon butter over the top of the cake in a thin layer.
  5. Add a few big dollops of the cream cheese icing on over the lemon butter layer, and spread it out with a palette knife or the back of a spoon.
  6. Top with a final layer of thickened cream.
  7. As an optional extra, you can decorate the cake with edible flowers and mini meringue kisses. Otherwise, a sprinkling of lemon zest looks lovely too.

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