Moist, flavorful, and unapologetically lime flavored, this lime yogurt pound cake is a lovely simple dessert. Bake in loaves to give away or freeze, as a bundt cake for a simply stunning presentation, and serve anytime!
There’s nothing like a beautiful bundt cake. As much as I love layer cakes and fussy desserts, bundt cakes hold a special place in my heart. A bundt pan elevates an everyday cake, like a lime yogurt pound cake, to something exquisite. And what other cake is equally acceptable for breakfast, snack, tea, or dessert?
A classic pound cake is traditionally made with a pound each of eggs, flour, sugar, and butter. This is not that cake. While still a pound cake in texture, this is a yogurt pound cake. The addition of Greek yogurt as replacement for part of the butter adds moisture to the cake.
If you’re looking to make the cake slightly lighter, using a low-fat or fat free Greek yogurt will also save you a few calories. The cake turns out best with whole milk yogurt, though.
Choosing the right pan(s)
The cake can be baked in a 12-cup bundt pan, or 3 8×4-inch loaf pans. The bundt pan is perfect if you are baking for a crowd. Loaf pans are a better choice if baking for gifting or freezing.
Pound cakes freeze extremely well! Just wrap the completely cooled pound cake in a double layer of plastic wrap, then a layer of foil. Freeze up to 2 months and thaw a few hours before you need it. Unwrap after thawing.
Flavoring the lime yogurt pound cake
This lime yogurt pound cake gets its flavor from fresh lime zest and lime juice. The amounts in the cake provide a good amount of flavor. But to make sure we really accentuate the lime, we add a lime glaze!
You don’t need to use a lime extract to get a strong flavor. Limes are already pretty bold, so use that natural flavor!
But if you’re wondering, “How do I zest a lime?”, let me explain! Zesting a fruit, usually citrus, means to remove the outer portion of the peel, leaving as much of the white as possible.
The white portion of the citrus peel is known as the pith. The texture isn’t really great, and too much pith can make your baked goods bitter. The flavor is in the outer portion of the peel!
To zest a lime, you have three options. First, use a serrated peeler to carefully remove strips of the zest. If you do this, pulse the strips in a small food processor with the granulated sugar in the recipe to break them down until very fine. You don’t want large chunks of zest!
Second, use the fine side of a box grater. Rub the washed and dried lime over the fine side of your box grater to remove the outer portion of the fruit. Rotate as needed and try to avoid grating too far into the pith.
Finally, use a microplane grater or zester. Place your grater right over your mixing bowl and zest away. This recipe calls for a tablespoon of lime zest, which is about the zest from 1-2 Persian limes or about 3-4 key limes.
Speaking of, you can make this pound cake with either Persian limes (what you usually find at the store) or key limes. The flavor is slightly different with each, but both are fabulous!
A few more tips…
This pound cake is a great recipe to bake up for weekend guests. Baking the cake a day in advance allows the flavors to really come together and blend beautifully.
So I recommend baking the day before you intend to serve. Although, if you plan to serve for dessert after dinner, even baking that morning makes a difference. It’s still phenomenal freshly baked, but the lime flavor is stronger after a rest.
Pound cake can be stored, covered, at room temperature for about 3 days. Refrigerate up to a week, or freeze up to 2 months.
I hope you enjoy this recipe, darlings! Happy baking!
Lime Pound Cake:
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened plus extra for greasing the pan (see notes)
- 1 tablespoon lime zest
- 1/4 cup lime juice
- 6 large eggs
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup plain or vanilla Greek yogurt
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted
- 3-4 tablespoons lime juice
- Preheat the oven to 325 F. If you are using loaf pans, you may grease them here, line with parchment paper, and set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer, cream the butter, sugar, and lime zest on medium speed until light and fluffy.
- Pour in the lime juice and stir until completely incorporated.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping the bowl after each addition.
- In another bowl, sift together the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.
- Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the butter, then half the yogurt. Repeat. End with the final 1/3 of the flour mixture. Stir until just combined.
- Prepare your bundt pan by greasing and flouring, then pour in your batter.
- Bake for 50-55 minutes until a tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Loaf pans will bake in about 25 minutes.
- Remove the cake from the oven. If baking in a bundt pan, cover with a clean cotton towel and allow to rest 10 minutes in the pan. After the resting time, remove the towel. Gently jiggle the pan to help loosen the cake, then top with a cooling rack or your cake platter. Invert the pan to loosen the cake (see notes). Loaves should also rest 10 minutes before removing from the pans.
- While the cake is cooling, prepare your glaze. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the sifted powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of the lime juice. Add additional as needed to get the glaze to a thick pouring consistency. Pour over cooled or just slightly warm pound cake and allow to set.
- If you are baking this in a bundt pan, you'll need extra butter to grease and flour the bundt pan to avoid sticking. A spritz of nonstick spray and a piece of parchment paper works just fine for loaf pans.
- If using the bundt pan, butter and flour just before pouring in your batter to prevent the grease from pooling at the bottom, increasing the risk of sticking. Alternatively, you can grease and flour earlier than place the pan in the freezer while you mix up the batter. The chill should help the grease set along the side of the pan and not drip too far, maintaining an even coating.
- Removing bundt cakes from a pan is scary for every baker! Just remember, the cake tastes delicious no matter what. A glaze covers minor imperfections (as does fresh fruit), And if things get really sticky (i.e. - you forgot to grease the pan... been there!), you now have a great reason to make a trifle!
- Completely cooled cakes can be wrapped well and frozen up to 2 months. This works best with loaves.
- Extra lime yogurt pound cake can be stored at room temperature for 3 days, covered in the refrigerator for a week, or wrapped in chunks and stored in an airtight container frozen up to 2 months.
- If you are familiar with the Nordicware bundt pans, you know the one in the pictures is a 10 cup... I just really wanted to use it for photos! The extra batter was baked in a mini loaf pan.