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Lemon Raspberry Cake

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a slice of cake with raspberries on a plate
Our lemon raspberry cake is an irresistible dessert that combines the vibrant flavors of lemons and juicy raspberries, crowned with a velvety cream cheese frosting.
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Table of Contents
  1. Lemon Raspberry Cake Ingredients
  2. Raspberry Lemon Cake Substitutions and Additions
  3. How To Make This Lemon Raspberry Cake Recipe
  4. How To Serve Lemon and Raspberry Cake
  5. Raspberry and Lemon Cake Storage Tips
  6. Why This is the Best Lemon Raspberry Cake
  7. Frequently Asked Questions
  8. More Recipes You’ll Love
  9. JUMP TO RECIPE
  10. More Recipes to Try

Indulge in the delightful fusion of zesty citrus and succulent raspberries with our lemon raspberry cake recipe. Whether it’s a special celebration or a casual gathering, this dessert will surely steal the show.

a slice of cake with raspberries on a plate

Lemon Raspberry Cake Ingredients

Lemon Raspberry Cake raw ingredients that are labeled
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Lemons infuse the cake with tangy citrus flavor and a refreshing aroma, while fresh raspberries bring vibrant color, subtle tartness, and sweet bursts. 

The cream cheese frosting, with lemon zest and juice, adds a creamy richness that complements the cake’s fruity brightness.

You’ll need:

For The Lemon Raspberry Cake:

  • 2¾ cups + 1 tablespoon of all-purpose flour, divided into 2¾ cups and 1 tablespoon
  • 2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon of baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1½ cups of granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup of whole milk, room temperature
  • ¼ cup of full-fat sour cream, room temperature
  • ¼ cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon zest
  • 2 (6-ounce) containers (approximately 1¼ cups per container) of fresh raspberries, divided in half
  • ½ cup of seedless raspberry preserves

For The Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 1 cup of unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 16 ounces of full-fat block cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 7 cups of powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice (plus more if needed)

Raspberry Lemon Cake Substitutions and Additions

RASPBERRIES: I prefer to use organic raspberries for this cake as I do not like to rinse them before adding them to the batter. I find that the added moisture affects how the cake bakes up. 

If you prefer to rinse your raspberries, I highly suggest you do so in cool water and gently pat them dry.

SOUR CREAM: Greek yogurt can be a suitable substitute if you’re out of sour cream. It offers a similar tangy creaminess that enhances the cake’s texture.

RASPBERRY PRESERVES: Experiment with different fruit preserves like strawberry or blackberry if you want to switch up the berry flavor while maintaining the cake’s fruity essence.

VANILLA EXTRACT: For a twist, try using almond extract instead of vanilla for a subtle, nutty undertone to the cake.

How To Make This Lemon Raspberry Cake Recipe

Let’s walk through the steps for making this lemon raspberry layer cake. We will first bake the cakes and then whip up the cream cheese frosting.

STEP ONE: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray two nine-inch round cake pans with baker’s spray and line each pan with a parchment paper circle. Set aside.

STEP TWO: In a medium bowl, combine the 2¾ cups of all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt combined in a bowl

STEP THREE: Cream the softened butter and granulated sugar in a large mixing bowl using an electric mixer at medium speed.

STEP FOUR: In the large mixing bowl, beat in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla extract. Be sure to beat in each egg until fully incorporated before adding the next.

eggs blended into the batter in the bowl

STEP FIVE: In a separate small bowl, whisk together the whole milk, sour cream, lemon juice, and lemon zest.

STEP SIX: Add one-third of the flour mixture to the large bowl with the butter and sugar mixture and mix on low speed just until incorporated.

STEP SEVEN: Add half the milk mixture and mix again on low speed just until fully incorporated.

STEP EIGHT: Add another third of the flour mixture and mix on low until fully incorporated, followed by the remaining milk mixture and, lastly, the remaining flour mixture. 

Be sure to mix on low just until each addition has been incorporated. 

Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl as needed to ensure all the ingredients are fully incorporated without overmixing the batter. The batter will be thick.

flour mixture combined in a bowl

STEP NINE: Add one of the six-ounce containers of fresh raspberries and the remaining one tablespoon of all-purpose flour to a small bowl. 

Gently toss the raspberries to coat them in the flour completely. 

This will help to ensure that the raspberries stay suspended in the batter and do not all sink to the bottom of the cake pans when baked.

raspberries coated with flour in a bowl

STEP TEN: Add the flour-coated raspberries to the cake batter and gently fold them into the batter. 

You will need to use a rubber spatula and very carefully fold them so as not to break up the berries too much. This batter will be very thick.

flour-coated raspberries folded into the cake batter

STEP ELEVEN: Divide batter evenly between the prepared cake pans. Spread the batter into an even layer in the pans using a small offset spatula. 

This will ensure that the cake layers bake up evenly.

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

A digital kitchen scale is very helpful to ensure that you have equal amounts (as much as possible) of batter in each of the cake pans.

STEP TWELVE: Bake the cakes for 27-33 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a couple of moist crumbs. You do not want any wet batter left on the toothpick. 

cake baked in a baking pan

Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for 10-15 minutes before transferring them onto a wire rack to cool completely. 

Be careful when flipping your cakes out of the pans as they are delicate due to the added fruit in the batter.

PRO TIP:

Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to keep a close eye on your cake as the suggested baking time approaches.

STEP THIRTEEN: While your lemon raspberry cakes are baking and cooling, you can make the lemon cream cheese frosting. 

Add the unsalted butter and cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. 

Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy with no lumps remaining. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.

PRO TIP:

When making your frosting, make sure that your butter is not too soft, or your frosting will need to be refrigerated to firm up before frosting your cake. 

This can also cause you to add too much powdered sugar, trying to get the frosting to be the desired consistency when making it. 

The butter should just be at room temperature. You should be able to leave a slight dent of fingerprint in the butter but not be able to push your finger all the way through. 

STEP FOURTEEN: Add the sifted powdered sugar to the cream cheese mixture, one cup at a time, and mix in just until all the powdered sugar has been added. 

Be sure to stop and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed between additions.

PRO TIP:

When adding the powdered sugar to your mixer for the frosting, stop the mixer before adding each addition of powdered sugar, then start on low before increasing the speed to avoid getting powdered sugar all over your kitchen. 

powdered sugar added to the cream cheese mixture

STEP FIFTEEN: Add the lemon zest and lemon juice to the cream cheese mixture. Beat on medium-high speed for two to three minutes or until the frosting is light, fluffy, and smooth. 

Your frosting should be thick enough to hold its shape but loose enough to spread onto the cake. 

To loosen the frosting consistency, you can add a little additional lemon juice, starting with one tablespoon.

If it is too thin, you can add a little extra powdered sugar, starting with a half cup, to get the desired consistency.

PRO TIP:

You also need to note that if your kitchen is very warm, you may need to put your frosting into the refrigerator for 30 minutes to one hour to allow the frosting to firm up enough to frost the cake.

STEP SIXTEEN: Once the cake layers have cooled completely, carefully transfer one cake layer to a serving plate. 

Add approximately 1-1½ cups cream cheese frosting to the cake and spread in an even layer to the edges.

STEP SEVENTEEN: Add the seedless raspberry jam to the center of the frosting and carefully spread it out, being sure not to go all the way to the edge. Leave about a one-inch border. Do not mix it into the frosting as much as possible.

strawberry jam added to the center of the frosted cake

Place your single cake layer that has been frosted into the refrigerator to chill for at least 30 minutes to one hour to allow the center layer of frosting to firm up before adding the second cake layer and frosting the entire cake. 

This will help to keep the frosting and raspberry jam in place when stacking the second cake and frosting the cake.

STEP EIGHTEEN: Place the second cake layer onto the raspberry jam layer. Frost the sides and top of the lemon raspberry cake. 

Top the center of the cake with the remaining six ounces (approximately 1¼ cups) of fresh raspberries and dust with a light coating of powdered sugar. 

cake frosted and topped with raspberries and powdered sugar

How To Serve Lemon and Raspberry Cake

Enjoy a slice of our lemon raspberry cake as a delightful dessert after a family dinner or special occasion. 

Add a cold glass of raspberry lemonade or iced tea to drink with your cake.

Bring out the lemon raspberry cake for birthdays, anniversaries, or any special family gathering. Add our rainbow sherbet punch for a colorful drink.

Elevate your tea party with slices of this cake. The fruity notes complement the tea beautifully, making it a delightful pairing.

Impress guests at bridal showers with this elegant dessert. Its vibrant colors and exquisite taste make it a showstopper. Serve it with a mimosa float to drink.

If you are a fan of lemon desserts, our lemon custard pie, and lemon lasagna are two of our favorites.

Raspberry and Lemon Cake Storage Tips

If you are planning ahead or have leftovers of this yummy cake, here are a few storage tips:

MAKE AHEAD: Prepare the cake layers in advance and store them in the freezer. When needed, thaw them, frost them, and serve as a convenient dessert option.

IN THE FRIDGE: If you have leftovers, store the cake in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three to four days. Ensure it’s covered to retain freshness.

IN THE FREEZER: For longer storage, freeze the cake layers without frosting. Wrap them well and place them in an airtight container for up to two to three months. 

To enjoy, thaw in the fridge and frost as desired.

Why This is the Best Lemon Raspberry Cake

CITRUSY ZEST: We adore the vibrant, zesty burst of lemon that infuses every bite of this moist lemon cake. 

SWEET RASPBERRIES: The sweet, juicy raspberries are a delightful surprise in every slice. Their natural sweetness balances the tartness of the lemon.

CREAMY DECADENCE: The cream cheese frosting adds a luxurious, creamy element to the cake. It’s the perfect complement to the fruity layers, making every bite a heavenly experience.

a cake topped with raspberries and powdered sugar with a slice missing on a cake stand

Our delicious lemon raspberry cake combines the vibrant citrusy kick of lemons with the luscious sweetness of raspberries. Whether you’re hosting a family gathering or simply craving a slice, this cake promises to deliver a memorable dessert experience. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use frozen raspberries instead of fresh?

While fresh raspberries work best for this recipe, you can use frozen ones, but be cautious as they might release more moisture into the batter.

Can I substitute another berry for raspberries?

You can experiment with strawberries, blueberries, or blackberries for a different berry twist.

How do I ensure my cream cheese frosting is smooth and lump-free?

Ensure both the cream cheese and butter are at room temperature and beat them until smooth before adding powdered sugar.

What’s the secret to keeping the raspberries evenly distributed in the cake?

Coating the raspberries in flour before folding them into the batter prevents them from sinking to the bottom.

Can I use store-bought lemon juice instead of fresh?

Fresh lemon juice provides the best flavor, but you can use store-bought lemon juice in a pinch.

Can I make this cake without the cream cheese frosting?

Certainly! The cake is delicious on its own, but the frosting adds a creamy layer of indulgence.

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a slice of cake with raspberries on a plate

Lemon Raspberry Cake

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Our lemon raspberry cake is an irresistible dessert that combines the vibrant flavors of lemons and juicy raspberries, crowned with a velvety cream cheese frosting.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 27 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 17 minutes
Servings 12

Ingredients
  

Lemon Raspberry Cake

  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup whole milk, room temperature
  • ¼ cup full-fat sour cream, room temperature
  • ¼ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 12 ounces fresh raspberries, divided in half (two 6-ounce containers approximately 1¼ cups per container)
  • ½ cup seedless raspberry preserves

Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 16 ounces full-fat block cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 7 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more if needed

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with baker’s spray and line each pan with a parchment circle. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, combine together the 2¾ cups of all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Cream the unsalted butter and granulated sugar in a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer at medium speed.
  • In the large mixing bowl, beat in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla extract. Be sure to beat in each egg until fully incorporated before adding the next.
  • In a separate small bowl, whisk together the whole milk, sour cream, lemon juice, and lemon zest.
  • Add one-third of the flour mixture to the large bowl with the butter and sugar mixture and mix on low speed just until incorporated.
  • Next, add half the milk mixture and mix again on low speed just until fully incorporated.
  • Add another third of the flour mixture and mix on low until fully incorporated, followed by the remaining milk mixture and lastly, the remaining flour mixture. Be sure to mix on low just until each addition has been incorporated. Scrape down the side and bottom of the bowl as needed to ensure that all the ingredients are being fully incorporated without overmixing the batter. The batter will be thick.
  • Add one of the 6-ounce containers of fresh raspberries and the remaining 1 tablespoon of all-purpose flour to a small bowl. Gently toss the raspberries to coat them in the flour completely. This will help to ensure that the raspberries stay suspended in the batter and do not all sink to the bottom of the cake pans when baked.
  • Add the flour-coated raspberries to the cake batter and gently fold them into the batter. You will need to use a rubber spatula and very carefully fold them so as not to break up the berries too much. This batter will be very thick.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans. Spread the batter into an even layer in the pans using a small offset spatula. This will ensure that the cake layers bake up evenly.
  • Bake the lemon raspberry cakes for 27-33 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a couple of moist crumbs. You do not want any wet batter left on the toothpick. Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for 10-15 minutes before transferring them onto a wire rack to cool completely. Be careful when flipping your cakes out of the pans as they are delicate due to the added fruit in the batter.
  • While your lemon raspberry cakes are baking and cooling, you can make the lemon cream cheese frosting by adding to the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, the unsalted butter, and cream cheese. Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy with no lumps remaining. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  • Add the sifted powdered sugar to the cream cheese mixture, one cup at a time, and mix in just until all the powdered sugar has been added. Be sure to stop and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed between additions.
  • Add the lemon zest and lemon juice to the cream cheese mixture. Beat on medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes or until the frosting is light, fluffy, and smooth. Your frosting should be thick enough to hold its shape but loose enough to spread onto the cake. To loosen the frosting consistency, you can add a little additional lemon juice (start with 1 tablespoon), or if it is too thin, then you can add a little extra powdered sugar (start with ½ cup) to get the desired consistency.
  • Once the cake layers have cooled completely, carefully transfer one cake layer to a serving plate, add approximately 1-1½ cups cream cheese frosting to the cake, and spread in an even layer to the edges.
  • Add the seedless raspberry jam to the center of the frosting and carefully spread it out, being sure not to go all the way to the edge (leave about a 1-inch border) and not to mix it into the frosting as much as possible. Place your single cake layer that has been frosted into the refrigerator to chill for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour to allow the center layer of frosting to firm up before adding the second cake layer and frosting the entire cake. This will help to keep the frosting and raspberry jam to stay in place when stacking the second cake and frosting the cake.
  • Place the second cake layer onto the raspberry jam layer. Frost the sides and top of the lemon raspberry cake. Top the center of the cake with the remaining 6 ounces (approximately 1¼ cups) of fresh raspberries and dust with a light coating of powdered sugar.

Notes

  • A digital kitchen scale is very helpful to ensure that you have equal amounts (as much as possible) of batter in each of the cake pans.
  • Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to keep a close eye on your cake as the suggested baking time approaches.
  • When making your frosting, make sure that your butter is not too soft, or your frosting will need to be refrigerated to firm up before frosting your cake. This can also cause you to add too much powdered sugar, trying to get the frosting to be the desired consistency when making it. The butter should just be at room temperature. You should be able to leave a slight dent of fingerprint in the butter but not be able to push your finger all the way through.
  • When adding the powdered sugar to your mixer for the frosting, stop the mixer before adding each addition of powdered sugar, then start on low before increasing the speed to avoid getting powdered sugar all over your kitchen.
  • You also need to note that if your kitchen is very warm, you may need to put your frosting into the refrigerator for 30 minutes to 1 hour to allow the frosting to firm up enough to frost the cake.

Nutrition

Calories: 931kcal | Carbohydrates: 126g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 46g | Saturated Fat: 28g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 168mg | Sodium: 299mg | Potassium: 266mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 98g | Vitamin A: 1569IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 122mg | Iron: 2mg
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This recipe was developed, tested, cooked and photographed by the Spaceships Kitchen. From our dinner table to yours, we hope you think it's out of this world!

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