A soft lemon cake with lemon curd filling and an easy raspberry Swiss meringue buttercream. Decorated with pure butter Walkers Shortbread it’s the perfect spring cake.
This is a sponsored post but all opinions are 100% my own.
How I created this Lemon Raspberry Cake recipe
It’s SPRING! The trees are in bloom, the grass is green, tis the season for lemons! As you know, I adore any recipe with the bright tart flavor of a lemon. My sour cream lemon pie gets made monthly at my house, and we love oatmeal lemon bars and of course my lemon meringue cheesecake is always a huge hit!
When Walkers Shortbread asked me to make a cake using their delicious shortbread to celebrate all the moms out there in honor of Mother’s Day, I immediately wanted to bring in fresh flavors to go with the classic buttery shortbread. A fluffy lemon cake with a Raspberry Buttercream filled with Bonne Maman Lemon Curd fits the bill. It screams spring and is perfect for Mother’s Day!!!
Did you know that all Walkers Shortbread cookies are made in Scotland and that they are still using the original recipe created over 120 years ago? As someone who loves sharing my family recipes with all of you, it makes me love this shortbread even more (if that’s possible).
Walkers is a family owned business dedicated to baking the World’s Finest Shortbread and other delicious treats as well. I grew up working for my dad in our family-owned business, and my kids are starting to help me out as well so I love the fact that after all this time there is still a family legacy as part of this company.
So I started with my basic vanilla cake and added both lemon zest and fresh lemon juice for the flavor. You can use extracts and emulsions but I feel that often those fruity extracts have fake aftertastes I don’t like so I am a huge fan of fresh in this case.
For the lemon curd filling you can make your own or try out this Bonne Mama Lemon Curd. It’s bright and delicious!
If you have a favorite buttercream recipe you can add the raspberry puree and ground freeze dried raspberries to that or try out this easy Swiss Meringue Buttercream I’m sharing today!
Just take me to the Lemon Cake with Raspberry Buttercream Recipe already!
If you’d rather skip my tips and tricks for making this cake or super easy (cheaters) Swiss meringue buttercream, along with links to other cake recipes and get straight to this delicious lemon raspberry cake and buttercream recipe – simply scroll to the bottom of the page where you can find the printable recipe card.
Tips to Make the Perfect Lemon Cake
– Use fresh ingredients and have all your ingredients at room temperature. The eggs and butter in particular.
– Use real lemon zest and freshly squeezed lemon juice. If you want a stronger flavor, you can add some lemon emulsion or extract but too much gives the cake a fake taste.
– Make sure the oven is totally preheated and at the right temperature. I use an oven thermometer as most ovens are slightly off – know your own oven.
– High altitude your recipe if you live over 4000 ft. I have notes in the recipe for that. Add a little extra flour, a little less sugar, less rising agent and more liquid. Also bake hotter and shorter.
– I like to use baking strips to keep the outside of the pan cooler so the inside of the cake and outside of the cake can bake more evenly.
– If you’re still getting a large dome consider using a cake heating core as it will help bring the temperature of the middle of the cake up (while the baking strips are bringing the outside of the cake temp down) for more even baking, resulting in flatter cakes.
– If you have hot spots in your oven consider rotating your pans halfway through baking (you don’t want to open the oven if you don’t have to but having one cake over bake while the others aren’t baking as much is worse).
Tips to Make the Perfect, Easiest Raspberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream
– The trick to this easy Swiss meringue buttercream is the pasteurized egg whites!!! Instead of dealing with heating the egg whites and sugar just buy egg whites that have already been heated to the safe temperature and are ready to go!
– Use powdered sugar. I know it looks like a lot, but powdered sugar is lighter and fluffier and you have to use more to get the same amount as less granulated sugar. When you’re doing a classic Swiss Meringue buttercream you use granulated sugar as the heat will dissolve the sugar, but since we aren’t using heat the use of powdered sugar will make it so it easily dissolves and doesn’t leave a grainy texture to the buttercream
– Don’t skimp on the beating times. This needs to beat for quite a while to get the correct texture and fluffiness and strength. When you first start adding the butter it will look a little curdled for a little bit – keep beating and it will smooth out.
– If your kitchen is too warm and it’s not getting stiff enough put the whole bowl in the fridge for 15 mins then beat some more. Add more fridge time as needed.
– If you want to make the frosting ahead of time you can simply refrigerate it, just let it warm up a little bit before you re-beat it (it gets fairly stiff in the fridge). Also, after sitting in the fridge, then warming up as you beat it again, it will look a little broken for a little bit, just keep beating on high and it will come back together again.
– When adding the raspberries you can use fresh puree, or ground freeze dried raspberries or both. I recommend adding a little at a time and tasting it to get the desired flavor and color.
To make this cake and buttercream you’ll need
- A mixer – I use a Bosch Universal Mixer
- Fresh lemons and raspberries
- Freeze dried raspberries
- Oven thermometer
- Four 7 inch round cake pans
- Baking strips
- Cake heating core
- Food processor or blender (I use this handblender/mini processor)
- Squeeze bottle
- Ateco 849 piping tip
- Walkers Shortbread Fingers and Rounds
- Bonne Maman Lemon Curd
Lemon cake with easy Raspberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream and Shortbread
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Check out these other Cake Recipes I’m sure you’ll also love!
To watch me make this Lemon Raspberry cake with shortbread play the video in the recipe card (if you’re on desktop, it should be auto playing for you). You can find all my cooking show style recipe videos on YouTube, or my short recipe videos on Facebook Watch, or my Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.
Lemon Raspberry Cake
- 5 1/4 C cake flour add 5 Tbsp for high altitude
- 1 ½ Tbsp baking powder minus ½ tsp for high altitude
- 1 ½ tsp baking soda minus ¼ tsp for high altitude
- 1 ½ teaspoon salt
- 3 C sugar minus 3 Tbsp for high altitude
- 4 tbsp Lemon zest
- 3/4 C butter softened
- 6 large eggs room temperature
- 1 C greek yogurt
- 3/4 C mayo
- ¼ C lemon juice
- 3 Tbsp vanilla
- 2 C whole milk add 2 Tbsp for high altitude
Raspberry Swiss meringue buttercream
- 1 C pasteurized liquid egg whites
- 8 C powdered sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 C butter room temperature
- 2 Tbsp vanilla
- 6 oz Fresh raspberries
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 oz Freeze dried raspberries
White chocolate lemon ganache
- 4 oz white chocolate chopped
- ½ C heavy whipping cream
- 3-5 Tbsp lemon curd
- 12 oz lemon curd
- 2 box Walkers Shortbread fingers
- 1 box Walkers Shortbread rounds
- Preheat oven to 350 F (385 for high altitude)
- prepare your pans - I used four 7x3 inch round pans, parchment on the bottom and bakers joy non stick spray on the sides
- In a medium-sized mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, mix together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar and lemon zest and mix until well combined.
- Add butter and beat on medium-low speed until you end up with a fine crumb
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, yogurt, mayo, lemon juice and vanilla until smooth.
- Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and beat on medium speed until smooth.
- Slowly add milk and mix on low speed until just combined. The batter will be wet
- Bake for 35-40 mins until the cake springs back when touched or a cake tester comes out with just a few crumbs (30-35 mins for high altitude)
Raspberry Swiss meringue buttercream
- In a large mixer with whisks or large bowl with a hand mixer beat the egg whites, sugar and salt for 5 mins until you get a thick white meringue
- while beating on medium add the butter 1-2 Tbsp at a time
- once all the butter is mixed in add the vanilla and beat on medium high another 10 mins
- Puree the raspberries and lemon juice together in a food processor or blender
- Then add to the frosting, I added ½ then tasted then added the other half
- Grind up the freeze dried raspberries in a food processor
White chocolate lemon ganache
- Boil the cream (this can be done on the stove or in the microwave) and pour over the white chocolate
- Let sit for 5 mins to soften the chocolate then stir until smooth
- Add the lemon curd, start with 3 Tbsp and taste and go from there
- Level the cakes top and bottom. Leveling the top gives you nice even layers and trimming the bottom makes it so you don’t have brown cake crust in your cake slices
- Add a thin layer of buttercream to the cake then pipe a cake “dam” around the outside of the cake with a large round tip.
- Fill that area with a thin layer of lemon curd (don’t add too much, it will squish out as you stack the cake if you do.
- Then repeat with the next 2 cake layers and top off with the final cake layer.
- Frost the top and sides of the cake and smooth
- Add the Walkers Shortbread all along the bottom of the cake
- Drizzle the white chocolate cake all around the top edge, I like to use a squeeze bottle but you can always just use a spoon too
- Fill in the rest of the top of the cake with more ganache.
- Use a large star tip (I used ateco 842) top pipe large swirls across the top of the cake then add the Walkers Shortbread rounds between the frosting swirls and you're done!