This lemon victoria sponge cake is the perfect twist on a traditional victoria sponge cake. The cake itself is extra moist and tangy with tons of delicious lemon flavor. The tender cakes are then filled with raspberry jam and freshly whipped cream! It’s so delicious, I’d even eat it for breakfast with a cup of hot herbal tea!
Here’s why you should make this lemon cake recipe:
This lemon victoria sponge cake is technically a layer cake, but not a traditional one. Most layer cake recipes require you to ice and decorate which can become a little daunting, but this cake is the opposite! The outside is left plain and the top is just dusted with powdered sugar! How easy is that?!
Tips for success!
- Make sure to cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy! This creates pockets of air that puffs up the cake as it bakes.
- Rub the lemon zest and sugar together with your finger tips before adding in other ingredients. Doing this releases all those essential oils from the zest, resulting in big lemon flavor!
- It’s easy to end up with some lemon seeds in the batter. Try to make sure you fish all of them out before baking!
- Make sure to whip the cream to stiff peaks! You’ll know the cream is whipped enough when it’s clinging to the whisk. Careful to not over-do-it though, it’ll curdle easily!
- Prep your cake pans. I like cutting out rounds of parchment paper to cover the bottoms of my cake pans. This ensures the cakes won’t stick to the pans. You can also grease the pans with butter or non-stick cooking spray to prevent sticking. Make sure you grease the sides!
- Let the cakes cool before turning them out of the pan! Room temperature cakes are much less prone to breaking.
- Stick to thicker fillings for the cake. If you opt to make a homemade jam or lemon curd, make sure it’s thick enough that it doesn’t run and seep out onto the sides of the cake.
Ingredients you’ll need for easy lemon victoria sandwich cake:
For the cake layers:
- Granulated sugar
- Grated lemon zest
- Softened butter
- Fresh lemon juice
- Vanilla extract
- Large eggs
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Heavy whipping cream
- Powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Raspberry jam or preserves
Other filling options:
I think this victoria sponge cake really benefits from whipped cream, but you can switch the raspberry jam for so many other things!
- Store-bought jar of lemon curd: stick with the lemon theme and use tangy lemon curd!
- Another flavor of jam: Store-bought or homemade blueberry jam would be delicious with this lemon sponge cake!
- Chocolate ganache: If you’re a chocolate fan, chocolate ganache is probably already your best friend, and for a good reason! It’s delicious!
How to make the best lemon victoria sponge cake:
- Work the lemon zest and sugar together to release the lemons essential oils.
- Cream the butter into the lemon sugar.
- Add the rest of the wet ingredients.
- Sprinkle in the dry ingredients.
- Mix until no flour is remaining and you’re left with a smooth batter.
- Transfer the batter to prepared cake pans and bake.
- For best results. MAKE SURE YOU LET THE CAKE LAYERS COOL.
- In the meantime, whip the cream to stiff peaks.
- Layer up the cake and top with powdered sugar!
If your batter breaks and looks curdled after combining all the wet ingredients, DON’T FREAK OUT! Chances are some of your ingredients were much colder than others and are having a hard time trying to emulsify. Once you add the dry ingredients, they will soak right into your batter and everything will be good as new!
Lemon Victoria Sponge Cake
- 1 rubber spatula
- (2) 8 or 9 inch cake pans
- 1 cooling rack
- 1 stand mixer or electric mixer
- 1 sifter
For the cake layers:
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 lemon zested and juiced
- 1 cup butter softened at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 3 tbsp powdered sugar plus more for dusting on top
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup raspberry jam or preserves
For the cake layers:
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the granulated sugar and lemon zest. Rub the zest into the sugar with your finger tips to release its essential oils.
- Add in the softened butter and cream the mixture together until light and fluffy.
- Add the lemon juice, vanilla extract and eggs to the creamed butter mixture. Mix until everything is combined to form a pale yellow batter and there are no streaks of egg left behind.
- Sprinkle in the flour and baking powder. Fold together until there is no remaining flour.
- Prepare two 9 inch cake pans. I add parchment paper rounds as well as cooking spray to mine to prevent sticking.
- Evenly separate the batter between the two cake pans, then smooth out the tops using the back of a spoon or an offset spatula.
- Bake the cakes for 18-20 minutes or until they're golden brown and a toothpick (or cake tester) inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let the cakes cool in their pans for at least 15 minutes before running a knife around the sides of each cake and flipping them onto a wire rack.
- Once the cakes have been flipped, let them cool fully before layering.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or using a handheld electric mixer, whip the heavy cream, powdered sugar and vanilla extract to stiff peaks.
- Put the jam in a microwave safe bowl and nuke in the microwave for 10 to 15 seconds so that it's easier to spread.
- Place one layer on your serving plate, then spread the jam on top. Try to make sure the jam reaches the edges of the cake, but doesn't run over.
- Dollop the homemade whipped cream on top of the jam, then spread to reach the edges as well.
- Place the other layer of cake on top and dust the top of the cake generously with powdered sugar.
- If you're feeling fancy, lay a few lemon slices on top for an extra appeal!
- Use a sharp knife for slicing. A blunt knife will result in the cream oozing out the sides of the cakes.