A customized print-friendly version of this recipe is available by clicking the "Print Recipe" button on this page.

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake

Author: susan, PJ

Lemon Poppy Seed Cake Recipe

When we're feeling nostalgic, this delicately flavored cake is always at the top of our baking list. A favorite of ours for years, it was previously known as Carpenter Street Poppy Seed Cake, and was inspired by a local restaurant here in Norwich, VT. While the restaurant is no more, the recipe for their lemon cake lives on.

At a glance

Nutrition information


Choose your measure:

  • 2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup poppy seeds
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup milk, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind (zest), or 1/4 teaspoon lemon oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F, and crease a 10-cup Bundt pan, a 6-well Bundlette pan, or a 9" x 5" loaf pan.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir in the poppy seeds.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the oil and sugar together for about a minute, using an electric mixer. Add the eggs and beat at high speed for 3 minutes, until the mixture is very light.
  4. On low speed, mix in the dry ingredients, then the milk, juice, vanilla, and zest or oil. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  5. Bake the cake for 45 minutes (25 to 30 minutes for small cakes), or until it begins to pull away from the sides of the pan, and a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Remove the cake from the oven and cool it in the pan on a rack for 5 to 10 minutes before inverting it onto the rack to cool completely. Top with your favorite lemon or confectioners' sugar glaze.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size 57g
  • Servings Per Batch 16
Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories 190
  • Calories from Fat 90
  • Total Fat 10g
  • Saturated Fat 1g
  • Trans Fat 0g
  • Cholesterol 24mg
  • Sodium 228mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 23g
  • Dietary Fiber 1g
  • Sugars 10g
  • Protein 3g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.