Easy Lemon Drizzle Cake Recipe

This is a well-loved recipe: moist lemon sponge drenched with lemon syrup and topped with lemon icing.

Our lemon drizzle cake recipe uses real lemon juice for the ultimate zingy taste, along with ground almonds and poppy seeds for a special touch. No special techniques needed here – just whisk everything together and go!
Serves: 12
  • Cake
  • 225g buttery spread*, softened
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 397g can Carnation Condensed Milk
  • 55g ground almonds
  • finely grated zest and juice of a lemon
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1tbsp poppy seeds
  • Syrup
  • juice of 3 large lemons
  • 100g icing sugar
  • Icing
  • 2tbsp lemon juice
  • 100g icing sugar

You will also need...

20cm spring form cake tin lined with baking parchment
  • Very easy

    A guide to our ratings

    • Ridiculously easy!
    • Very easy
    • Easy
  • Prep time
    25 mins

    Cook time
    55 mins

Each serving typically contains

  • Energy 1755kJ 419kcal 21%
  • Fat 20.9g 30%
  • Saturates 5.4g 27%
  • Sugars 20.1g 22%
  • Salt 0.76g 13%

of an adult's Reference Intake (RI)*
Energy per 100g: 1432kJ/342kcal
*Reference Intake of an average adult (8400kJ/2000kcal).
Portions should be adjusted for children of different ages.

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Here's how easy it is...
  1. 1. Preheat the oven to 180°C, (160°C for fan ovens), Gas Mark 4.
  2. 2. Whisk the ingredients for the easy lemon drizzle cake in a large bowl until pale and creamy (use an electric hand whisk if you have one). Pour into the tin and bake for 55-65 minutes until golden and cooked through (cover with parchment if the top turns too brown).
  3. 3. Make the syrup by warming together the lemon juice and icing sugar then whilst the cake is still warm, make holes all over it with a skewer and gradually spoon over the syrup, allowing it to sink into the cake. Leave to cool in the tin.
  4. 4. Make the icing: add the lemon juice gradually to the icing sugar until you have a thick pouring consistency. When the cake is cool, transfer to a serving plate and drizzle over the lemon icing.
  5. This lemon drizzle cake recipe is a delicious idea for a teatime treat, and for sharing with friends and family. The distinctive sweet lemony flavour is a true classic.

    *recipe based on 70% fat buttery spread

    Have you tried making this delicious recipe yet? Let us know by clicking ‘I made it!’, or give us your tips and tricks on the discussion board.

Discussion Board

  • avi1104
    February 24, 2016
    I need help with Milk Tablet. Tried making last night. ~Followed instructions to the letter but instead of crumbly tablet I have rock hard,treacle-like toffee. I can blitz it and use in cakes etc but is there any way to soften it once made? Can't waste the ingredients!

    Carnation says:
    Hello avril, it sounds like the tablet has cooked for too long and as you've mentioned has become toffee. There are 2 very important stages to get right when making fudge or tablet- the heating and the beating! The tablet mixture needs to get hot enough to set (about 116C) and then you need to beat it until it starts to go grainy and very thick. If your arm gets tired get some hired muscle! Or tip the mixture into a bowl and beat with an electric hand mixer - soak the beaters in boiling water after. Unfortunately there is no way to get the 'toffee' back to tablet but I am sure it will still be delicious as a topping or broken up and added to ice cream.
  • Daisy
    February 22, 2016
    I made this with lime and coconut instead... yummy!
  • bakingmam
    January 25, 2014
    Do you put all the syrup over the cake?

    Carnation says:
    Hi Sarah, you can add as much or as little of the syrup as you like. The more you add the more lemony the end result!
  • Cookie
    September 06, 2013
    What size of tin do you recommend for this cake?

    Carnation says:
    Hi Pamela, we recommend a 20cm spring form cake tin.
  • lottie.
    August 25, 2013
    I find that adding vanilla paste instead of poppy seeds works really well.
  • Domestic Goddess
    February 09, 2013
    I really want to make this recipe but would prefer cupcakes or muffins. would i have to alter the recipe?

    Carnation says:
    Hi K, you can split the same mixture into muffins or cupcake cases - bake for around 20-25 minutes instead. Or try our vanilla cupcake recipe instead and add zest of 1 lemon to the mixture and top with the lemon drizzle and lemony icing from this recipe!
  • Missy
    January 11, 2013
    Thinking of making this. Can you leave out the poppy seeds? Thanks;)

    Carnation says:
    Hi Misbah, yes you can no problem!
  • Julie
    September 09, 2012
    A lovely light, moist texture, sweet and lemony. Couldn't wait until it had cooled, we ate a piece warm, yummy!
  • Lynn
    August 12, 2012
    This is a lovely mist cake. I added the zest of two of the lemons into the mix foe extra tang. I did find that the cooking time needed a bit of adjustment as it turned too brown here the mix touched the tin- even lined with parchment. Def worth a try. Quick and easy to prepare!
  • olimolly
    July 29, 2012
    this cake is a good one its my mummys fraverot and she all she dose is crave it so to get in her good bucks i make it and it helps that it is east !
  • Em
    June 09, 2012
    This cake is my sons favourite he has just requested it for his 5th birthday, I=it is very moreish, moist and sweet with fresh lemon juice and just scrummy! Do give it a go!