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Pink Lemonade Cake

Author: Charlotte Bothe

Pink Lemonade Cake Recipe

Pink lemonade is a summertime staple for many, and it inspires this cake. Note: As a result of reader feedback, we've retested this recipe and as of 11/16/18 have tweaked some of the ingredients, to yield better, more foolproof results.

At a glance

one 8" or 9" round layer cake


Choose your measure:


  • 3 cups King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons Cake Enhancer, optional, for freshness and moist texture
  • grated rind (zest) of 1 large or 2 small lemons
  • 3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) soft unsalted butter
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 1 large or 2 small lemons)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 to 5 drops pink or red food gel or coloring


  • 3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) soft unsalted butter
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon meringue powder, optional, for stability
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice fruit powder
  • 4 cups glazing or confectioners' sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons milk
  • *Don't have lemon juice powder? Substitute freshly squeezed lemon juice for the milk.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease two 8" or 9" round cake pans.
  2. To make the cake: Stir together the dry ingredients, including the grated lemon rind (zest).
  3. Work in the butter until the mixture is evenly crumbly.
  4. Beat in the egg whites one at a time followed by the whole egg, beating and scraping the bowl after each addition.
  5. Gently beat in the lemon juice; then the milk, in two additions. Stir in the food coloring. Pour the batter into the pans.
  6. Bake the cakes for 25 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of one comes out clean.
  7. Cool the cakes in the pans for 10 minutes, then transfer them to a rack to cool completely.
  8. To make the frosting: Beat together the butter, salt, and meringue powder.
  9. Add the remaining ingredients and beat until light and fluffy.
  10. Frost the top of one layer, top with the second layer, and frost the whole cake as desired.
  11. Yield: one 8" or 9" round layer cake.