Moist lemon cake with fresh raspberries baked inside decorated with a lemony cream cheese frosting and a raspberry jam!
If you like lemon cake this will be your new favorite cake! Buttery lemon cake sprinkled with fresh raspberries creates a great base for this layer cake! Fresh lemon zest makes the frosting so unbelievable tasty!
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
A light and fresh cake like this lemon cake calls for a light frosting like a cream cheese frosting. It is a delicious and light alternative to regular buttercream and so easy to make! All you need to do is whip butter until light and airy. Mix in cream cheese until smooth and add all the flavorings. Add some heavy cream to get the perfect consistency!
Trick for an easier decoration process
I like to freeze my cake layers after they reached room temperature for an easier assembly of the cake! So after baking let the cake layers cool in the cake pan for about 10 minutes then remove the cake pan and let them come to room temperature on top of a wire rack covered with parchment paper. Wrap the cake layers in cling wrap or place them into a plastic container and freeze them preferably overnight or at least 2 hours before assembling the cake. Frozen cake layers will make it so much easier to assemble and decorate the cake. It also helps to faster set the frosting and chill the whole cake in a shorter time.
A 8 inch cake pan is the traditional choice to make most cake recipes. It creates tall cake layers without making a huge cake! This 6 speed KitchenAid hand mixer is the only one with flex edge beaters for a 2 times faster mixing and to protect your mixing bowl from scratches!
Lemon Raspberry Cake
2 1/2 cups (300 g) cake flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cups (300 g) granulated sugar
1/4 cup (50 g) light brown sugar
1/2 cup (120 ml) milk
1 cup (226 g) butter, softened
1/2 cup (120 g) sour cream
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp lemon extract
1 tbsp lemon zest
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 1/2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
2 tbsp flour to coat raspberries
1 tsp salt
For the cream cheese frosting:
12 oz (340 g) cream cheese, cubed
12 oz (340 g) softened butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon extract
4 cup (520 g) powdered sugar
2 tbsp lemon zest
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup (160 g) Raspberry jam for filling
Check out my Lemon Raspberry Cake tutorial while this one is in the making
To make the cake prepare two 8 inch baking pans with parchment paper and grease them with butter or baking oil. Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Into a big mixing bowl combine white and brown sugar, lemon extract, lemon zest, vanilla and softened butter. Mix it until the butter is whipped and lighter in color for at least 5 minutes. Mix in eggs, one at a time. Make sure that it is mixed in completely and there are no lumps of egg left. Add in sour cream, milk and lemon juice. Then fold in all the dry ingredients. You can mix them in a separate bowl first but it is not necessary. So add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix it until it is just combined. Over mixing leads to a dense cake.
Divide the batter between two cake pans. Coat raspberries with flour to avoid them sinking to the bottom of the cake. Divide raspberries between both cake layers and bake them in the preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes. If you are using bake even strips add 10 minutes to the baking time. Check the doneness with a wooden skewer. When the skewer comes out clean of with a few moist crumbs it is done. Let it cool in the cake pans for about 10 minutes. Then remove the cake pan and let the layers cool on a wire rack completely. Freeze if desired (see notes)
For the filling whip softened butter until pale for about 4 minutes. Then add cream cheese and mix it in. Sift in powdered sugar and add lemon zest, lemon juice, extract and vanilla. Mix it until combined. Add some heavy cream to make it softer (optional)
To decorate the cake place one cake layer on a cake plate. If it has a dome cut it even. Then spread 1/2 cup of the frosting on top. Smooth it out with a spatula. Then add 1/2 cup of raspberry jam and smooth it out. Make sure to leave some space to the edges. Top it with the second cake layer and cover the whole cake with a thin layer of frosting that works as a crumb coat. Let it chill in the fridge for 10 minutes. Then add a second layer of frosting and smooth it out. The easiest way to get straight sides is a metal cake scrape. Use an offset spatula to smooth out the top. Let the cake chill in the fridge for 40 minutes or until needed before decorating it.
If you want to pipe swirls on the cake I would recommend to add about 1/2 cup or more of powdered sugar to the frosting used for that. So first cover the cake with frosting and then use left over frosting mixed with more powdered sugar to pipe swirls. If it is too soft still place it in the fridge for about 10 minutes, whip it up and then try again.
I like to place my cake layers in the freezer after they have completely cooled. Freezing them for a few hours or over night makes it so much easier to decorate them as they crumble less and are easier to handle.
Add some gelatin to the jam to make it less runny. I would go with 2 tsp of gelatin for 1/2 cup of jam. Warm it in a sauce pan until melted then let it come to room temperature before using it.