Last Updated on
This beautiful lemon cardamom cake is delicate, light, moist, intensely citrusy and not overly sweet. The ground cardamom adds subtle floral and minty notes and a sprinkle of chopped pistachios adds just the right amount of crunch to this refreshing summer afternoon treat.
I adapted the recipe for this cake from Ina Garten but cut the sugar and lemon zest a bit and added cardamom to the batter because I love the floral and slightly minty notes it adds.
How to make lemon cardamom cake step by step:
The preparation of this recipe is very straight forward, you begin by preparing a loaf pan: line the bottom of the pan with a piece of parchment paper, then grease the pan well, sprinkle flour into it and shake out the excess.
To make the batter you start beating 8 tablespoons softened, unsalted butter and 1 cup granulated sugar until creamy, then beat in 2 eggs and 1.5 tablespoons lemon zest for some intense lemon flavor.
1 teaspoon ground cardamom goes into your dry ingredients along with the usual suspects: 1.5 cups all-purpose flour, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
For the wet ingredients you mix together 1/4 cup and 2 teaspoons plain yogurt, 6 tablespoons lemon juice, 4 teaspoons milk and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract.
With the mixer running, you gradually beat the dry and wet ingredients into the butter mix, alternating between the two, until you have a smooth batter.
The cake needs to bake for 45 to 50 minutes and will make your kitchen smell delicious!
I glazed the loaf with a simple lemon glaze (1 cup powdered sugar and 5 teaspoons lemon juice) and then sprinkled chopped pistachios on, both for their visual appeal but also to add some crunch and a great texture contrast to the delicate, light and airy cake.
More delicious desserts with cardamom:
- Cardamom Donuts with Cinnamon Sugar
- Cardamom Meringue Cookies
- Raspberry Apple Crisp
- Lemon Cardamom Bundt Cakes
Lemon Cardamom Cake
For the cake:
- vegetable shortening to grease the loaf pan
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1.5 tablespoons lemon zest from organic lemons (you need 4 – 5 lemons for that)
- 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 6 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/4 cup + 2 teaspoons plain, whole milk yogurt
- 4 teaspoons milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the glaze:
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 5 teaspoons lemon juice, or more, depending on the humidity in your kitchen
- chopped pistachios
For the cake:
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Cut a piece of parchment paper and fit into the bottom of an 8.5 inch x 4.25 inch x 2.5 inch loaf pan. Secure it to the bottom of the pan with a few dabs of vegetable shortening.
- Grease the pan well with vegetable shortening (including the surface of the parchment bottom), sprinkle flour into the pan and then shake out the excess.
- Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes).
- Add the eggs and continue to beat until well incorporated and smooth.
- Beat in the lemon zest.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and soda, salt and cardamom. Set aside.
- In another bowl, whisk lemon juice, yogurt, milk and vanilla together. Set aside.
- Beat the dry and wet ingredients into the butter mix, little by little, alternating between the two and starting with the dry ingredients. Beat until you have a very smooth and creamy-looking batter.
- Fill the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 45 -50 minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Once the pan is cool enough to handle, run a knife around the edges to to loosen the cake from the sides of the pan. Unmold the cake and then let it cool completely.
For the glaze:
- Whisk the two ingredients together and keep adding lemon juice until you have a slow-moving icing.
- Drizzle the icing on the cake and sprinkle the chopped pistachios on.
Made this recipe? It would be awesome if you could leave a rating. No need to type anything, just tap or click the stars in the recipe card and you’re done. Thanks!
Want to save this recipe idea for later? Pin it: