Lemon cake... trial and error

I hate to say this, but one good thing about going to a funeral... is the lunch afterwards. Everyone shows up with their most delicious recipes to share with the family. After my Nannie's funeral I ate the MOST wonderful lemon cake. Ever since that day, I had been wishing that I had the recipe so that I could make it at home. Since I didn't, I decided that I must have my own perfect lemon cake recipe.

I first attempted a Barefoot Contessa lemon pound cake recipe. I have to admit, that I have ADD when trying to follow a recipe. Sometimes I skip a step, sometimes I combine ingredients at the wrong time. These usually turn out to be happy mistakes, but this cake was NOT a happy mistake! Her recipe had too many steps for me to follow. My dad enjoyed it, but I thought that it was gross.

It even looks nasty in the photo! It tasted like a lemony brick.

The next day, I decided to try for round two. This time I went with a recipe with semi-homemade ingredients. I know Sandra Lee takes a lot of criticism with her tablescapes and coordinating cocktails, but I think Aunt Sandy is on to something! Semi-homemade was the way to go for this cake, and using a box mix takes out over half of the ingredients.

I googled lemon cake, and the name Lemon Icebox Cake popped up on the Southern Living message boards. My favorite pie in the whole world is lemon icebox pie and this cake was every bit as good as the pie! To me, it is the perfect amount of lemon, but I also think you can never have too much lemon! The cake was delicious and moist and the frosting was light and flavorful.

My new favorite "go to" cake recipe. Here it is!

Lemon Ice Box Cake
{Adapted from Southern Living message boards}

1 lemon cake mix
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup sour cream
8oz container of cool whip
lemon zest

Mix cake according to directions - you can use a 9x13 pan or two 8 inch rounds.

While cake is baking mix condensed milk, sour cream and lemon juice.
- if you make a 9x13 cake, poke holes after baking and pour half of the lemon mixture over top while the cake is still warm
- if you use two round pans, then wait for the cake to cool and use 1/2 of the lemon mixture as the cake filling.

Gently fold the other 1/2 of lemon mixture with cool whip and frost the cake with it.

** If you don't want that much lemon flavor, you could always substitute the lemon cake mix for vanilla.


  1. so did you use some parts from Sandra too?

  2. I’m with you and think that you can never have too much lemon. This cake sounds fantastic and I have to make it. Thank you for posting this!

  3. delish! this is one cake i have never made!

  4. Definitely trying this recipe out sometime soon. Looks delicious!!! Thanks for posting it!

  5. OMG i love anything with lemon ! I HAVE to try this! TY

  6. That looks so yummy! I want some :)

  7. this sounds DELISH!!! too bad the hubs doesn't like lemon at all...i'd end up eating the whole cake alone =)

  8. this looks delicious--and I happen to have a lemon I need to use. . .

  9. I might have to try that recipe because this looks delicious!


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