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Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake

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Looking for a cake that doesn’t need frosting? Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake is sweet but not too sweet. This delicious cake has soft herbal notes from rosemary paired with orange-like Meyer lemons that will remind you of long, wonderful summer days.

Portrait view of Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake Sliced and Dusted with Powdered Sugar.

There are those cakes you make for major celebrations.  You know the ones I mean?  Covered in decadent frosting or filled with ganache and custard fillings, they are so beautiful and so sinfully delicious.

But sometimes you want a piece of cake, and just cake, as a mid-day treat or to top off a wonderful day and you don’t need a major showstopper.  You want simple.  You want sweet, buttery cake.

My Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake came from that exact desire for a simple cake that can hold you captive without having any frosting, icing, or glaze. The flavor of this cake is both unique and special because the lemon-orange flavor of the Meyer lemon is absolutely delicious when paired with rosemary.

About this recipe…

This recipe is based on both of my basic recipes for a butter cake and a pound cake.  But, as I was developing this recipe, I realized this cake needed to be sweeter than most recipes.  The standard amounts of sugar from either recipe, just wasn’t enough to balance the citrus and herb flavors.

Nearly, all of the ingredients can be found on hand. Only the rosemary, which is fresh and not dried, and the Meyer lemons are a special buy from the nearest grocer or farmer’s market. I was so very happy to find an abundance of Meyer lemons at a nearby grocery store. But, then, I do live in a state known for its citrus!

Sprigs of Rosemary in a Glass Container and Meyer Lemons Scattered on a White Washed Rustic Table
But what if you don’t have any Meyer lemons?

♥ Meyer lemons are a cross between a citron fruit and a mandarin orange.
♥ They are smaller than a Eureka lemon and have a less acidic, smooth orange-lemon flavor.
♥ You can substitute a 50/50 blend of orange and lemon zests and juices.

This cake starts simple and ends simple.  Cream butter and sugar.  Add eggs, rosemary, Meyer lemon zest and juice. Beat in flour sifted with baking powder and salt.  Then spread the thick silky batter into a prepared loaf pan and… Bake!

All that’s left to do is let it cool and dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar! Oh wait! Actually, the last thing to do is… Eat It!

Close View of Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake. A small vase of rosemary is in the background.
Close View of Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake. A small vase of rosemary is in the background.
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4.67 from 3 votes

Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake

Encharted Cook | Jan Nunes
Looking for a cake that doesn’t need frosting? Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Loaf Cake is sweet but not too sweet. It’s soft herbal notes from rosemary paired with orange-like Meyer lemons will remind you of the long, wonderful summer days.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr 15 mins
Total Time1 hr 30 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 10 Servings
(Tap or Hover to Scale Servings)

Ingredients

Cake

  • 2/3 Cup Butter, Softened
  • 2 1/3 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 3 Large Eggs
  • 4 Teaspoons Fresh Rosemary, Finely Snipped or Chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons Meyer Lemon Zest
  • 3 Tablespoons Meyer Lemon Juice
  • 1 3/4 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 3/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt

Garnish

  • 1 Tablespoon Powdered Sugar

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F/177°C. Grease and flour a 25 cm x 11 cm loaf pan (9 4/5 in x 4 1/3 in). If using a dark metal pan, reduce oven temperature to 325°F/163°C.
  • Sift together all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt onto a sheet of parchment paper and set aside for later.
  • In a large mixing bowl beat softened butter and powdered sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. 
  • Reduce speed to low and add eggs one at at time.
  • Add snipped rosemary, Meyer lemon zest, and Meyer lemon juice and continue to beat until all is well incorporated.
  • Beat in half of the sifted flour mixture.  Add remaining flour mixture and continue to beat just until batter is smooth.
  • Spread batter into the prepared pan.
  • Bake 60 to 75 minutes, or until top springs back when lightly touched and cake tester comes out clean.  Do not open oven until at least 55 minutes has passed.  Cake may fall if temperature is not even during the bake.
  • Remove from oven and place cake on a rack to cool.
  • When cool, plate and dust with powdered sugar.  For beautiful slices cake should be thoroughly cooled before cutting.  Wrap any leftover cake in plastic wrap to retain freshness.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 320kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 244mg | Potassium: 90mg | Sugar: 28g | Vitamin A: 450IU | Vitamin C: 1.7mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1.3mg
All nutritional information on this site is an estimate. Your results may vary.
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Looking for a cake that doesn’t need frosting? Meyer Lemon and Rosemary Cake is not too sweet with soft citrus flavors and fresh rosemary.

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