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There’s only one lemon sheet cake recipe you need, and it’s this soft Meyer lemon sheet cake! Flavored with fresh lemon zest and topped with swirls of lemon frosting, this easy homemade lemon sheet cake is perfect for lemon lovers.

Meyer Lemon Sheet Cake
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My kind of lemon cake perfection is golden, fluffy, and sweet. With plenty of lemon buttercream frosting swirls and a shower of festive sprinkles, here’s to cake!

Key Ingredients

Here’s what you need to make this light and lemony cake:

  • Cake flour – The secret to a super soft sheet cake!
  • Baking powder and baking soda – Gives the cake a lift.
  • Salt – Enhances the lemon flavor.
  • Unsalted butter – Use room temperature unsalted butter in both the cake and frosting.
  • Sugar – Use granulated sugar in the cake.
  • Fresh lemons – Fresh lemon zest and juice flavor the sheet cake and the lemon frosting.
  • Vanilla extract – Pure vanilla extract enhances the flavor of the cake and frosting.
  • Eggs – The cake batter uses two large eggs.
  • Buttermilk – The acidity helps activate the baking soda and makes the cake fluffy and light.
  • Greek yogurt – Creates a super moist and fluffy crumb.
  • Powdered sugar – For smooth and creamy lemon frosting.
  • Milk – Gives the frosting a creamy, spreadable texture.

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Meyer Lemon Sheet Cake

Tips for the best lemon sheet cake:

  • Meyer lemons – Sweeter and more floral than regular lemons, fresh Meyer lemon zest and juice infuse both the cake and frosting with plenty of lemon flavor. If you don’t have access to Meyer lemons, feel free to substitute regular lemons.
  • Buttermilk and Greek yogurt – Creamy Greek yogurt creates a moist lemon cake that’s tender and flavorful. We also use buttermilk to make each slice springy and light!
  • Cake flour – For a soft and fluffy sheet cake with a fine crumb, cake flour is the secret.

Cake Flour Substitute

If you don’t have cake flour on hand, it’s easy to make your own cake flour substitute with cornstarch (or arrowroot starch) and all-purpose flour: 

  • For every cup of flour called for in a recipe, place 2 tablespoons cornstarch in an empty 1-cup measure.
  • Use a spoon to fill the measuring cup with flour, piling it slightly over the top rim of the measuring cup (do not pack the flour down). Run a straight icing spatula or the back of a knife over the rim of the measuring cup to level the top.
  • Sift the mixture several times to evenly distribute the cornstarch. Use as a substitute for 1 cup cake flour.
Meyer Lemon Sheet Cake

How to Make Meyer Lemon Sheet Cake

Cake Pan – Bake this cake in a 13 x 9-inch rectangular baking pan. To prepare the pan for baking, spray generously with nonstick spray. If you’re concerned about sticking, you can also line the pan with parchment paper.

Make Cake – Whisk together dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Beat butter and sugar in a large mixer bowl at medium speed until light and fluffy; beat in lemon zest and vanilla.

Add eggs one at a time and beat until combined. Combine buttermilk, Greek yogurt and lemon juice in a small bowl. With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk mixture.

Spoon batter into prepared baking pan and smooth with an offset spatula. Tap pan sharply to reduce air bubbles.

Bake Cake – Bake cake for 25 to 27 minutes, or until the top and edges are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean and the edges are pulling slightly away from the pan. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the cake cool completely before frosting.

Lemon Frosting – Beat butter, salt, and lemon zest in a large mixer bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Gradually mix in powdered sugar on low speed until incorporated, scraping down bowl as needed. Add lemon juice and milk and mix in on low speed until smooth. Increase speed to medium-high and beat frosting for 1 minute, until light and airy.

Assemble Cake – Dollop frosting over cooled cake and swirl with an offset spatula. Top with sprinkles, then chill the cake for 20 minutes in the refrigerator before slicing and serving.

Make Ahead – The cake can be baked, cooled, and frosted one day in advance. Cover the frosted cake and chill overnight. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Meyer Lemon Sheet Cake

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Meyer Lemon Sheet Cake

Meyer Lemon Sheet Cake

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 2 reviews
  • Author: Laura Kasavan
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 27 minutes
  • Total Time: 57 minutes
  • Yield: 15-18 slices
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American
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Description

The BEST soft and fluffy Meyer lemon sheet cake topped with swirls of lemon frosting! Flavored with fresh lemon zest and topped with swirls of lemon frosting, you’ll love this homemade lemon sheet cake.


Ingredients

Cake

  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour (see note below)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Meyer lemon zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt, at room temperature
  • 2 Tbsp Meyer lemon juice

Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp Meyer lemon zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Meyer lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 13 x 9” baking pan with nonstick spray.
  2. Make cake: Whisk together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Beat butter and sugar in a large mixer bowl at medium speed until light and fluffy; beat in Meyer lemon zest and vanilla. Add eggs one at a time and beat until combined. Combine buttermilk, Greek yogurt and Meyer lemon juice in a small bowl. Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk mixture (begin and end with flour mixture).
  3. Spoon batter into prepared baking pan and smooth with an offset spatula. Tap pan sharply to reduce air bubbles.
  4. Bake cake for 25 to 27 minutes, until the top and edges are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached. Cool cake completely in pan on a wire rack.
  5. Make lemon frosting: Beat butter, salt, and Meyer lemon zest in a large mixer bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Mix in powdered sugar on low speed 1 cup at a time until incorporated, scraping down bowl as needed. Add Meyer lemon juice and milk and mix in on low speed until smooth. Increase speed to medium-high and beat frosting for 1 minute, until light and airy.
  6. Assemble cake: Dollop frosting over cooled cake and swirl with an offset spatula. Top with sprinkles, then chill cake for 20 minutes in the refrigerator before slicing and serving.


Notes

To make your own cake flour: place 2 tablespoons cornstarch in an empty 1-cup measure, then top up with flour. Sift the mixture several times to evenly distribute the cornstarch.

Meet Laura

Hi, I'm Laura and I'm so happy you're here! Welcome to Tutti Dolci Baking Recipes, a baking blog celebrating all things sweet! I share approachable baking recipes and elevated classic desserts for every home baker. My goal is to inspire you to bake from scratch with kitchen-tested recipes you can count on.

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3 Comments

  1. My daughter loves lemon now. I can’t wait to make this for her. She will be delighted, I know this going to be wonderful. Love Meyer lemon desserts.






  2. This recipe for lemon sheet cake will be just perfect to serve my MM friends this summer. It sounds refreshing and lite. Thank you, Laura