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Magical Lemon Pudding Cakes

As winter comes to a close, and you are longing for warmer days, brighten your day with this recipe for Lemon Pudding Cakes, a sunny lemony dessert.

Bring a burst of sunshine to any occasion with these delightful Lemon Pudding Cakes. They're perfect for individual servings in ramekins, making them an elegant dessert or a fun treat. Craving something more casual? Simply bake the batter in a single pan for a crowd-pleasing dessert.

Individual Lemon Pudding Cakes

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A lemon pudding cake on a glass plate with a fork.

Truth be told, lemon has always been a favorite flavor and these Lemon Pudding Cakes have become a favorite way for me to indulge my love of all things lemon. I think you'll like them, too. 
The bright, fresh lemon flavor in these moist, delicious cakes will delight your family and friends. Imagine these tasty cups of lemony goodness as part of your Easter celebration, or for a more casual dessert, make this magical cake in an 8x8-inch or 9x9-inch pan.

Reasons to Love These Lemon Pudding Cakes

Two Ways to Enjoy: Make individual cakes in ramekins for a special touch, or bake the entire recipe in a single pan for an easier, more relaxed dessert.  I'm a huge fan of little individual cakes, whether cupcakes or chocolate lava cakes. It's fun to make a special cake for each person and I'm always a fan of the forced portion control that results as well.  

Bright Lemon Flavor: The star of the show is the fresh lemon zest and juice, creating a light and tangy flavor that's perfect for spring or summer. There is something special about the bright citrus flavor of a lemon dessert. I love to dig into these cakes while still warm and the consistency is light and delicate.  The flavor is sweet and lemony, just what you want from a spring dessert.

A comparison of a stainless steel citrus juicer to an aluminum citrus juicer.

This citrus juicer will make quick work of juicing your lemons.

Simple Ingredients: This recipe uses pantry staples you likely already have on hand, making it a great option for a last-minute dessert. Flour, salt, egg, lemon, milk, and sugar. Don't you love it when you don't need to run to the grocery store to make something yummy?

Easy to Make: With straightforward instructions and minimal prep work, these cakes are perfect for bakers of all skill levels.

How to Make Lemon Pudding Cakes

You Will Need

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 large lemons)
  • 1⅓ cups milk

Directions and Tips

For a water bath: Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C). Place eight 4-ounce ramekins in a 13x9-inch baking dish filled with 4 cups of hot water. The water level should reach halfway up the outside of the ramekins.
Ramekins for Baking Lemon Pudding Cakes
Ramekins Set in a Water Bath
Beat the eggs and sugar: In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the egg yolks and ½ cup of the sugar together for 3 minutes until the mixture is pale yellow and thick.
Beating the Eggs
Beat the Egg Yolks and Sugar until Light in Color
Soft peaks: In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with ¼ cup of sugar until soft peaks form.
Gently fold: Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the batter in three additions, being careful not to overmix.
Soft Peaks of Egg Whites
Soft Peaks
Even distribution: Use a cookie scoop to distribute the batter evenly among the eight ramekins.
Distribute Batter with an Ice Cream Scoop
Use a Scoop to Distribute the Batter

Bake: Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the cakes are golden brown and puffed. You'll know the pudding cakes are completely cooked when they are browned, puffed up high above the rim of the ramekins and some may be cracked.  Using different types of ramekins may result in your cakes cooking differently.
Puffed Cakes
Can You See the Different Results with Different Ramekins?

Cool: Let the pudding cakes cool. You'll be impatient to taste them because they look delicious and smell even better, but you'll want to cool them in the water bath for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve warm or completely cooled.

After you let the lemon pudding cakes cool to room temperature you'll be able to turn them out onto a plate after running a knife around the edge of the cake and carefully coaxing it free.

This results in a prettier presentation with the pudding covering the top of the cake.  You can either serve them straight from the ramekin or turned out onto a pretty plate.
Cooled Lemon Pudding Cakes
The Cooled Lemon Pudding Cakes

Single-Pan Option:

Choose a pan that will fit inside another pan for a water bath. 

Follow the directions for preparing the batter. 

Grease an 8x8 or 9x9-inch baking pan and bake the batter for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
A piece of lemon pudding cake on a white plate with a fork and two slices of fresh lemon.

For all of us lemon lovers, this recipe deserves five out of five stars.  It's a keeper.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a different size ramekin?

You can use different-sized ramekins, but the baking time may vary. Keep an eye on the cakes and adjust the baking time as needed. Also note, I have found differences between different brands of ramekins that have been made of stoneware versus ceramic.

How can I store leftover cake?

Store any leftover cake covered, or in an airtight container, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Can I freeze the cake?

This is not a cake I would bake ahead of time but you can freeze the cake for up to 2 months. Thaw it overnight in the refrigerator before serving.

These Lemon Pudding Cakes are a delightful way to enjoy the sunshine, no matter the season. With their simple ingredients and easy-to-follow instructions, they're a perfect recipe for home bakers. 

Lemon Pudding Cakes Recipe

pudding cakes, lemon cakes, individual dessert cakes
Yield: 8 servings
Author: Donna Urso
Lemon Pudding Cakes

Lemon Pudding Cakes

Sweet and tangy individual desserts for lemon lovers made with simple ingredients.
Prep time: 20 MinCook time: 40 MinInactive time: 20 MinTotal time: 1 H & 20 M



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and place eight half-cup ramekins in a 13x9-inch baking dish filled with four cups of water. The water level will be halfway up the outside of the ramekins. Alternately grease an 8x8 or 9x9-inch pan for the water bath.
  2. Next, beat together the egg yolks with 3/4 cup of granulated sugar, beating for 3 minutes with your electric mixer until the mixture is pale yellow and thick.
  3. While the eggs are beating, mix together the 1/2 cup of flour and the 1/4 teaspoon of salt and set that mixture aside.
  4. Zest one lemon and squeeze 1/3 cup of lemon juice from two lemons.
  5. Stir the flour mixture into the eggs and sugar, making a very thick batter. Beat the batter on medium speed for two minutes. The batter will be very thick and lumpy.
  6. Add the lemon zest, milk, and lemon juice, stirring gently. Using a silicone spatula to do the stirring will help you loosen the thick, lumpy batter from the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl.
  7. Next, in a separate glass bowl, beat the egg whites until thick and foamy and add 1/4 cup of granulated sugar. Continue beating until the whites form soft peaks.
  8. Next, fold the whites into the egg and lemon batter. Using a silicone spatula, fold about 1/4 of the egg whites into the batter to distribute the batter and lighten it a bit. Then fold in the rest of the egg whites, gently, but completely.
  9. Use a scoop to distribute the batter into the eight ramekins evenly. Alternately, spread the batter into the greased 8x8 or 9x9-inch pan. Set into the water bath. Then place your pan on the center rack of the oven to bake for approximately 40-45 minutes.
  10. You'll know the pudding cakes are completely cooked when they are browned, puffed up high above the rim of the ramekins and some may be cracked. Using different types of ramekins may result in your cakes cooking differently.
  11. You'll be impatient to taste them because they look delicious and smell even better, but you'll want to cool them in the water bath for 15 to 20 minutes. You'll see that they will settle as they cool.
  12. Serve warm from the ramekins or cool completely to invert onto a plate.


After you let the lemon pudding cakes cool to room temperature you'll be able to turn them out onto a plate after running a knife around the edge of the cake and carefully coaxing it free.

This results in a prettier presentation with the pudding covering the top of the cake. You can either serve them straight from the ramekin or turned out onto a pretty plate.

You can also make this recipe in a 9x9-inch square ceramic baking dish. Bake as directed.

Nutrition Facts



Fat (grams)

2.69 g

Sat. Fat (grams)

1.11 g

Carbs (grams)

33.77 g

Fiber (grams)

0.27 g

Net carbs

33.51 g

Sugar (grams)

27.36 g

Protein (grams)

4.54 g

Sodium (milligrams)

118.88 mg

Cholesterol (grams)

73.00 mg

Nutritional information is approximate.

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