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Lemon pudding cakes are easy to make from scratch. This magic cake bakes into two layers from the same batter. Creamy pudding, underneath a layer of fluffy, moist cake. Lemon lovers will crave this warm and tangy cake.

Spoonful of lemon pudding cake in ramekin.

LEMON PUDDING CAKES

A true lemon lover’s dream, these lemon pudding cakes are bursting with tangy lemon flavor, so pucker up!

THE MAGIC ABOUT MAGIC CAKES

The first magic cake I made was a hot fudge pudding cake. The magic of these kinds of cakes is that the cake separates into two (or three) layers from the same batter.

Magic cakes are made from typical pantry ingredients like:

  • Butter
  • Sugar
  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Flour

Magic cake batter is usually quite thin, allowing the heavier ingredients to settle on the bottom, while the lighter ingredients remain on top. This separation occurs while in the oven during baking.

For these lemon pudding cakes, there are two layers created. A light and fluffy cake on top, and a custard or pudding on bottom.

Spoonful of lemon pudding cake next to ramekin with lemons and powdered sugar on the side.

WHIPPING THE EGG WHITES

Egg whites are whipped separately, then carefully incorporated into the lemon cake batter to create a foamy layer on top — which will become the cake.

The egg whites only need to be whipped to soft peaks. This is where the whipped egg will be just firm enough to hold briefly on the whisk, but will fall over instead of sticking straight up.

TIPS FOR SUCCESSFUL WHIPPING

  • Separate your eggs carefully. Even the smallest amount of yolk in the egg whites will cause them not to whip up well.
  • Use a very clean, dry bowl and whisk. Egg whites will not whip up well if there is any grease or oil residue.
  • Start mixing on low speed until foamy, then increase the speed to medium until soft peaks form. Testing peaks frequently.
Whisk demonstrating egg whites with soft peaks.

FOLDING IN THE EGG WHITES

The whipped egg whites create large, airy lumps in the batter to help form the top layer of cake. Because of the whipped egg whites in this lemon pudding cake recipe, the sponge is very light, and souffle-like.

Once whipped, it’s time to fold the egg whites into the batter, with a spatula.

  • Use the edge of the spatula to cut through the middle of the batter, then twist the spatula sideways, to lift the bottom batter up and over the egg whites floating on top.
  • Repeat by folding and rotating the bowl until the mixture is mostly incorporated. Be sure to not over-mix the batter. It’s ok for the egg whites to be slightly chunky and float at the top.

NOTE: In this recipe, the batter may seem slightly lumpy and semi-separated (foamy on top and more liquid/runny on bottom) before baking. That’s ok.

Egg whites added to cake batter, then fully incorporated after folding with spatula.

WATER BATH BAKING METHOD

For my hot fudge pudding cake, hot water is poured on top of a sugar and cocoa mixture that is sprinkled on top of the cake batter.

The method here is a little different. The lemon pudding cakes are baked in a water bath, much like a cheesecake.

The water bath (or bain marie) regulates the temperature to gently bake the cake. This is so the custard, or pudding, can form on the bottom, without over-cooking, while the cake rises and bakes on the top.

  1. Simply place the prepared cakes in a large roasting pan.
  2. Use a pitcher to carefully pour warm water into the pan to reach 1-inch or halfway up the side of the cakes.
  3. Then place the pan in the oven to bake.
Pouring water into roasting pan around lemon pudding cakes.

CAKE SIZES & BAKE TIMES

I used six 6oz ramekins to create individual servings for these lemon pudding cakes. Lightly spray each ramekin, then ladle the batter equally into each cup.

You can also use one 1.5qt baking dish OR one 8-inch square/round cake pan. Make sure it will fit in a large roasting pan for the hot water bath.

The smaller ramekins will bake for 30-45 minutes, where as one large pudding will bake for 45-55 minutes.

The cake will be done once it starts to lightly brown, and will spring back when touched in the center.

Lemon pudding cakes dusted with powdered sugar.

HOW TO SERVE

These lemon pudding cakes are super delicious eaten warm. Like a cookie.

A light dusting of powdered sugar makes them really pretty, and counterbalances the tart lemon, but is optional. Sweetened whipped cream on top would also be delicious, but will melt if eaten warm.

Of course there isn’t anything wrong with just grabbing a spoon and digging right in!

Lemon pudding cakes with powdered sugar sprinkled on top.

STORING LEMON PUDDING CAKES

Your lemon pudding will last 1-2 days stored in the fridge. Since the bottom is soft, keep the dessert in the container you baked it in and cover it with plastic wrap.

Spoonful of lemon cake and pudding underneath.

REHEATING

A quick 20-30-second nuke in the microwave is fine for reheating individual ramekins.

If baking one large cake, spoon individual servings onto a plate before warming. Keep in mind, re-heating the cake may effect the texture of the pudding.

NOTE: It is perfectly fine to eat leftover lemon pudding cake cold.

LOTS OF LEMONS? TRY THESE RECIPES:

Spoonful of lemon pudding cake in ramekin.

Lemon Pudding Cakes

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Lemon pudding cakes are easy to make from scratch. This magic cake bakes into two layers from the same batter. Creamy pudding, underneath a layer of fluffy, moist cake. Lemon lovers will crave this warm and tangy cake.

Ingredients

  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp lemon zest (about 2 lemons)
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour (stir, spoon & level)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • powdered sugar for serving, optional

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray six 6oz ramekins with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, milk, lemon zest, lemon juice, butter, and salt. Add the flour and sugar and whisk until smooth.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites on low speed until foamy, then increase the speed to medium until soft peaks form. Testing peaks frequently.
  4. Use a spatula to gently fold the egg whites into the cake batter, until mostly combined. Mixture will be slightly lumpy and semi-separated (foamy on top and more liquid/runny on bottom.)
  5. Ladle the batter evenly into the ramekins and place ramekins inside a large roasting pan. Use a pitcher to carefully pour warm tap water into the roasting pan until it reaches 1-inch or halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
  6. Carefully place the pan in the oven and bake for 30-45 minutes, or until the cakes are lightly brown and the cake springs back when touched in the center.
  7. Use tongs to carefully remove the ramekins from the water bath to cool on a wire rack for about 10-20 minutes before consuming. OPTIONAL: To serve, dust with powdered sugar.

Notes

  • STORING: Store leftovers in original dishes covered with plastic wrap in the fridge up to 2 days.
  • LEFTOVERS: May eat leftovers cold or nuke them individually in the microwave for 20-30 seconds each. Alternately warm multiple cakes on a baking sheet in the oven at 350˚F for 10-15 minutes. NOTE: Re-heating may alter the texture of the pudding (making it slightly rubbery).
  • FOR ONE LARGE CAKE: Use a 1.5qt baking dish or 8-inch square/round cake pan. Make sure it will fit inside the roasting pan for the water bath. Bake at 350˚F for 45-55 minutes.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 326Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 106mgSodium: 155mgCarbohydrates: 62gFiber: 0gSugar: 53gProtein: 5g

This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix, and is an estimation only.