Delicious and sweet, this mini lemon loaf for two is the perfect indulgent treat to share between friends. It's similar to the one at Starbucks but more budget-friendly.
This lemon pound cake is a sweet and tangy sweet bread that has been a popular item on the Starbucks menu for years. It’s a moist and fluffy lemon cake with lemon icing. Many people love it because of its bright flavor profile, which is perfect for those who want something sweet but not too heavy.
The popularity of the Starbucks lemon loaf cake can be attributed to its unique taste, texture, and versatility. Its refreshing citrus flavor makes it an ideal treat for all seasons— whether you’re looking for something to cool down during summer days or crave some comfort food during colder months. Besides being delicious on its own, the moist lemon cake also pairs well with coffee or tea.
If you love lemon and want to indulge in this classic treat at home, try making our mini copycat version. This smaller size is easy-to-make with just a few ingredients and will satisfy your cravings without breaking the bank or leaving your house.
You'll need a mini loaf pan and some simple ingredients to make this lemon cake recipe.
Here's what you'll need to bake up this mini loaf for two:
- all-purpose flour
- baking powder
- granulated sugar
- heavy whipping cream
- vanilla extract
- lemon extract
- lemon zest
- lemon juice
Scroll down to the recipe card for the amounts used.
You want to use fresh lemon juice and fresh lemon zest to make the best lemon loaf. This will result in the best flavor when you make this recipe.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl.
In a large bowl, mix together the butter and sugar.
Beat in the egg.
Beat in the vanilla extract, lemon extract, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and heavy whipping cream.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir until just combined.
Add the lemon zest and mix it into the batter.
Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake.
Bake until center is no longer wet. Allow the cake to cool.
In small bowl, combine icing ingredients to make lemon glaze.
Remove loaf from pan and brush on icing evenly on top.
Want to change up how you make the lemon dessert? Here are a few ways to vary the recipe.
- Gluten-free flour can be used as a substitute for regular flour in lemon loaf recipes. There are many types of gluten-free flours available, such as rice flour, almond flour, and coconut flour. However, it is important to note that different gluten-free flours have different properties and may require adjustments to the recipe.
- You can make lemon loaf with a touch of lime or orange zest. This will add a hint of complexity and depth to the overall taste profile without overpowering the lemon flavor.
- Sprinkle some chopped nuts like almonds or hazelnuts on top of your loaf before baking them in the oven. The nuts will toast up nicely and add a delicious crunch to each bite.
- Add some poppy seeds to your loaf batter for an extra texture boost. Not only do they provide an interesting contrast against the moist crumb, but they also pair wonderfully with the tangy lemon flavor.
- Only grate the yellow part of the lemon skin. Avoid zesting the bitter white pith underneath, as it can make your loaf bitter
- Adjust the milk as needed in the icing to get a thicker consistency that will stick to the top of the loaf.
- Mix the batter just until combined. Over mixing can result in a tough loaf.
A sweet lemon loaf is perfect for tea time or breakfast. It can be served with different accompaniments to enhance its flavor further.
One suggestion is to serve it warm, straight out of the oven, with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of powdered sugar on top. The creaminess of the whipped cream complements the tangy taste of the lemon.
Another suggestion for this delicious lemon treat is to pair it with fresh fruit such as blueberries or strawberries. You could also serve it alongside a cup of hot matcha tea or cold-brew coffee as an afternoon snack that will satisfy you.
Wrap the loaf tightly in plastic wrap or store it in an airtight container. If you have leftover slices of the mini lemon loaf, you can store them individually by wrapping each slice in plastic wrap or wax paper.
Store the lemon loaf cake in the refrigerator tond moist for longer. It should last up to 5 days when stored properly. For best results, let the loaf come to room temperature before serving for optimal flavor and texture.
To freeze, wrap the loaf (or each slice) tightly in plastic wrap and place it in an airtight container or freezer bag. The cake will stay fresh for up to two months when stored this way. When ready to eat, thaw the frozen mini loaf in the refrigerator overnight and then warm it in the oven or microwave before serving.
The loaf should stay fresh for up to five days if stored in plastic wrap or an airtight container. It can also be frozen for up to two months.
Use lemon extract like Watkins, Nielsen-Massey, or Frontier Co-Op Organic which are high-quality brands..
Simply use a gluten-free flour substitute for all-purpose flour or try using your favorite flour alternative like almond flour.
Want a few more small-batch baking recipes? Check out these delightful treats too.
- Mini banana bread recipe has just the right amount of sweetness.
- Mug cinnamon roll is sure to hit the spot quickly.
- Small-batch cornbread is simple to make and full of flavor.
- Blueberry muffin recipe yields deliciously moist and fluffy muffins.
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Lemon Loaf Starbucks Copycat Mini
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons butter softened
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon lemon extract
- 1 large egg
- ½ tablespoon lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon milk
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon lemon extract
- Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Grease and flour a mini loaf pan.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In a large bowl, mix together the butter and sugar. Beat in the egg then beat in the vanilla extract, lemon extract, and heavy whipping cream.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients alternately with the heavy whipping cream and milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Stir in the lemon zest.
- Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
This loaf was absolutely delish! I love lemon flavor in baking so I knew I would like this lemon loaf. It was the perfect balance of sweet and tangy.
Apart from the citrus flavouring, I love the fast that it is small batch, I don't like making too much at one time as it is only the two of us.
Has anyone tried substituting vanilla Greek yogurt for the heavy whipping cream?
Yogurt or sour cream can be used in place of the heavy cream.
I love that this makes one mini loaf pan - absolutely perfect lemony taste in every bite, and I don't end up eating an entire full-sized loaf!
Lemon loaf is one of my favorite sweet treats at Starbucks. I love being able to make a mini loaf of it at home. Yum!
These Lemon loaf bread was perfect! I look forward to my cup of coffee in the morning along these moist and fluffy cake. Thanks for the recipe.
This went so well with our coffee the other morning. Hot coffee, lemon loaf, and sunshine made the morning perfect.
This is my husband's absolutely FAVORITE Starbucks treat. Whipped it up randomly the other day and it's...gone. I had one piece. Dangerously delicious.
This was a delicious loaf, perfect for spring. I love that is sized for 2. Now that my kids have moved out I don't want too many sweets around the house.
Another stellar recipe! I loved these mini loaves and they turned out perfectly. The glaze was sooo good - it had so much fresh lemon flavor!