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Lemon Dump Cake

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close up shot of a plate of lemon dump cake
This amazing lemon dump cake brings a lovely citrusy flavor to the dessert for a simple recipe to make for any occasion.
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Table of Contents
  1. Lemon Dump Cake Ingredients
  2. How To Make This Lemon Dump Cake Recipe
  3. How To Serve
  4. Storage
  5. More Recipes You’ll Love
  6. JUMP TO RECIPE

This bright and sunny lemon dump cake will become one of your favorite lemon desserts. It is filled with the tangy freshness of lemon, featuring lemon curd that is baked with cake mix and velvety cream cheese filling for a cake that is hard to resist.

close up shot of a plate of lemon dump cake

Lemon Dump Cake Ingredients

lemon dump cake raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

  • 2 (12-ounce) jars of lemon curd
  • 8 ounces of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 (15.25-ounce) box of vanilla, lemon, yellow or white cake mix (we used white)
  • ½ cup salted butter, cold

PRO TIP:

When buying the cake mix at the grocery store, it is best to pick one that doesn’t have pudding mix in it; check the label to make sure.

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

LEMON ZEST: Add lemon zest to the cream cheese or on top of the cake for a more tangy lemon flavor.

CAKE MIX: Lemon cake mix will take the citrus up a level in this tasty cake but white or yellow cake works just fine.

How To Make This Lemon Dump Cake Recipe

STEP ONE: Preheat the oven to 350°F.

STEP TWO: Spread the lemon curd into the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

You’ll want to use a 9×13-inch cake pan so that the texture and consistency are right. I’ve used an 11x 7-inch pan before, and it turned out a little too thick, which changed the delicious texture of the dump cake.

lemon curd spread at the bottom of the pan

STEP THREE: In a medium bowl, use a hand mixer to combine cream cheese, egg, and granulated sugar until smooth.

cream cheese, egg, and sugar blended together in a bowl

STEP FOUR: Drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture over the lemon curd.

spoonfuls of cheese cream mixture placed on top of the lemon curd in the baking dish

STEP FIVE: Sprinkle the cake mix evenly over the first two layers.

cake mix sprinkled on top of the cream cheese mixture in the baking dish

STEP SIX: Slice very thin pats of butter and spread over the entire top of the dry cake mix. Cover as much of the cake mix as possible.

PRO TIP:

Using cold butter makes it easier to get the slices very thin. When the dump cake cooks, the butter melts and blends with the dry cake mix, but it won’t spread, so if parts of the cake mix are left uncovered, they may come out of the oven still dry and powdery.  

slices of butter placed on top of the cake mixture in a baking dish

STEP SEVEN: Bake for 40 minutes or until the topping is browned and the filling is bubbling around the edges.

PRO TIP:

You may end up with some dry cake mix spots on the top of the dump cake. This is normal and is where the butter did not saturate into the cake mix.

If you prefer, you can add additional pats of butter over the dry area – check the dump cake after about 30 minutes to determine if the melting pats of butter missed any areas.

lemon dump cake after being baked in a baking dish

STEP EIGHT: Allow dump cake to rest for 15 minutes before serving.

PRO TIP:

Allowing the dump cake to rest for a bit before serving will give the lemon curd time to cool just a bit so that it is not super runny when you scoop into it.

How To Serve

Serve this yummy lemon cream cheese dump cake warm or cold with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream and homemade whipped cream or Cool Whip. Add fresh blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries on top of the cake for a pop of color.

If you want another amazing citrus-flavored dump cake to serve with this lemon dump cake, try our peach dump cake.

If you are a lemon lover, try our lemon lasagna or lemon lava cake for more easy lemon dessert recipes.

Storage

IN THE FRIDGE: Store this delicious dessert in the refrigerator, covered with plastic wrap or a lid, for 5-7 days.

IN THE FREEZER: Store this lemon dump cake in an airtight container for up to 1 month in the freezer. Let it thaw in the fridge overnight when you are ready to serve it.

A dump cake makes baking easy, just dump all your ingredients in a single pan and bake. This means no clean-up afterward and a tasty cake to enjoy.

The tart lemon flavor from the delicious lemon curd makes this lemon cream cheese dump cake a refreshing choice for a quick dessert anytime.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is a dump cake?

A dump cake is an easy and super moist cake in which the ingredients are simply dumped into the pan and baked. Usually, they use a boxed cake mix and a handful of additional ingredients.

Can you make lemon dump cake ahead of time?

This is a great recipe to make ahead. You can make lemon dump cake up to 2 days ahead of time. Just store it in the fridge until you are ready to serve.

Can I use a lemon cake mix instead of white?

You can substitute lemon or yellow cake mix for the white cake mix. It will give you a more intense lemon flavor but will work fine in the recipe.

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close up shot of a plate of lemon dump cake

Lemon Dump Cake

5 from 4 votes
This amazing lemon dump cake brings a lovely citrusy flavor to the dessert for a simple recipe to make for any occasion.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 12

Ingredients
  

  • 2 (12-ounce) jars lemon curd
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 (15.25-ounce) box vanilla, lemon, yellow or white cake mix (we used white)
  • ½ cup salted butter, cold

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Spread the lemon curd into the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish.
  • In a medium bowl, use a hand mixer to combine cream cheese, egg, and granulated sugar until smooth and combined.
  • Drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture over the lemon curd.
  • Sprinkle the cake mix evenly over the first two layers.
  • Slice very thin pats of butter and spread over the entire top of the dry cake mix. Cover as much of the cake mix as possible.
  • Bake for 40 minutes or until the topping is browned and the lemon filling is bubbling around the edges.
  • Allow dump cake to rest for 15 minutes before serving.

Notes

  • When buying the cake mix at the grocery store, it is best to pick one that doesn’t have pudding mix in it; check the label to make sure.
  • You’ll want to use a 9×13-inch cake pan so that the texture and consistency are right. I’ve used an 11x 7-inch pan before, and it turned out a little too thick, which changed the delicious texture of the dump cake.
  • Using cold butter makes it easier to get the slices very thin. When the dump cake cooks, the butter melts and blends with the dry cake mix, but it won’t spread, so if parts of the cake mix are left uncovered, they may come out of the oven still dry and powdery.  
  • You may end up with some dry cake mix spots on the top of the dump cake. This is normal and is where the butter did not saturate into the cake mix. If you prefer, you can add additional pats of butter over the dry area – check the dump cake after about 30 minutes to determine if the melting pats of butter missed any areas. 
  • Allowing the dump cake to rest for a bit before serving will give the lemon curd time to cool just a bit so that it is not super runny when you scoop into it.

Nutrition

Sodium: 127mg | Calcium: 23mg | Vitamin A: 513IU | Sugar: 5g | Fiber: 1g | Potassium: 33mg | Cholesterol: 55mg | Calories: 157kcal | Trans Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Fat: 15g | Protein: 2g | Carbohydrates: 5g | Iron: 1mg
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      • Katen says

        Where can I find lemon curd at the grocery store?
        Could I use a vegetable peeler get the butter in thin slices, or would it be too thin?

      • Layne Kangas says

        Hi, Katen – you’ll find lemon curd in the jam/jelly section usually. It may be by the baking/pie fillings in some stores. I think that would work for the butter. Enjoy!

  1. Allie says

    5 stars
    I am really trying to watch my calories and fat. I was wondering if I can substitute low fat cream cheese, egg whites and stevia in place of the other ones.

    • Layne Kangas says

      Hi, Allie – we haven’t tested it with those substitutions so I’m not sure. The stevia should be fine but using low-fat cream cheese and only egg white may impact the end result.

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