Coffeehouse Lemon Loaf

Coffehouse lemon loaf 2
  • Yield : 1 loaf
  • Servings : 12
  • Prep Time : 15m
  • Cook Time : 60m
  • Ready In : 3:0 h

Fabulous lemon flavor in a buttermilk poundcake. Three bursts of lemon infuse the batter of this coffeehouse classic, lots of fresh lemon zest, lemon juice, and a touch of pure lemon extract. As soon as it comes out of the oven, a fresh lemon glaze is applied.


  • 1-1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup good quality buttermilk
  • 1/2 tsp pure lemon extract
  • 2 TB fresh lemon juice
  • 8 TB (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 TB fresh lemon zest
  • Lemon Glaze:
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 TB water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • Fondant Topping:
  • 3" piece of white fondant (small Wilton box)
  • 3 TB corn syrup


Step 1

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a large loaf pan with non stick spray. Set aside.

Step 2

Prep dry and wet ingredients first. Whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk together buttermilk, lemon extract, and lemon juice.

Step 3

In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, beat together butter, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in each egg one at a time scraping bowl after each addition. Mix in lemon zest.

Step 4

Add dry ingredients alternately with wet ingredients (4 dry/3 wet) just until everything is moistened and batter falls back into bowl in a ribbon.

Step 5

Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes. Insert a toothpick in center. If no batter clings, then loaf is done. Also, if you have an instant read thermometer, the internal temperature will be between 185-190. The crack that forms at the top will be moist so make sure that you are pulling out a little of that and thinking it is batter. Remove cake from oven and immediately apply glaze.

Step 6

While cake is baking, make the glaze by combining juice, water, and sugar in a skillet and bringing to a boil. Boil until sugar is dissolved. As soon as cake is removed from oven, use a pastry brush and slowly apply glaze. The loaf will drink it up.

Step 7

Immediately after applying glaze, prepare the fondant topping if using. Warm the fondant in the microwave. Put it on a piece of parchment and knead in the corn syrup. It will be sticky and look like a mess then suddenly it will all come together. Using two sheets of parchment paper, roll out the softened fondant between them to a thickness of about 1/8-1/16 of an inch. Press the bottom of the loaf pan into the fondant. Using a pizza cutter, cut along the outline. Pull away excess fondant, and discard.

Step 8

Allow the fondant topping to cool long enough so the parchment paper comes away easily, about 3 or 4 minutes. Carefully, pull away the parchment from one side of the fondant. Lay the fondant on top of the loaf centering it as best as possible. Carefully pull away the remaining piece of parchment paper. Gently press down on fondant to adhere it to loaf. You can use your fingers to press the fondant to the pan edges if you'd like.

Step 9

Allow to cool before cutting. Store leftovers at room temperature in a covered container.

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Recipe Comments

Comments (2)

  1. posted by Theresa on May 4, 2018

    Hello Janine, Hope all is well. I am hosting a bridal shower for my daughter. Can I make this Lemon Loaf and freeze it? Searching for breakfast/brunch items I can make ahead to make the day go as smooth as possible. Any ideas:)

    • posted by Janine Washle on May 7, 2018

      Hi, you certainly can make the lemon loaf ahead of time. Double wrap in foil, freeze for up to two months. The day before you need it, place the loaf in the refrigerator and let it unthaw in its wrappings. That way excess moisture won’t accumulate on the top and make it oddly sticky.
      Two things to note though, first do not apply the icing until after the loaf has unthawed. Unthaw, then apply the icing. If applied, then frozen, the icing becomes oddly sticky due to freezing and unthawing.
      Secondly, use a large loaf pan vs a regular or European narrow loaf pan. The baking time is for a large loaf pan. If you make it in a regular size pan, increase the baking time in 5 minute increments until that top center has puffed up and no batter remains on a toothpick. You might see that the brown crumb from the top remains on the toothpick, and that is ok.


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