Preheat oven to 375°. Line bottom and sides of a 13- x 9-inch pan with aluminum foil, allowing 2 to 3 inches to extend over sides of pan. (Do not grease pan or foil.) Sift together first 3 ingredients.
Beat egg whites and cream of tartar at high speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold in sugar mixture, 1/3 cup at a time, folding just until blended after each addition. Fold in vanilla and lemon juice. Spoon batter into prepared pan. (Pan will be very full. The batter will reach almost to the top of the pan.)
Bake at 375° on an oven rack one-third up from bottom of oven 30 to 35 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Invert cake onto a lightly greased wire rack; let cool, with pan over cake, 1 hour or until completely cool. Remove pan; peel foil off cake. Transfer cake to a serving platter. Spread Lemon-Cream Cheese Frosting evenly over top of cake. Garnish, if desired.
You may also bake this in an ungreased angel food cake pan for 30 to 35 minutes or in 3 ungreased (9-inch) round pans for 15 to 18 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Whole egg whites or All Whites Egg Whites, the taste will be the same. Just make sure if you're using egg whites in a carton, make sure you use a brand with nothing but egg whites. There should be absolutely no other ingredients in the carton.
Three years later, I run across this comment. I use Simply All Whites, egg whites. And they whip up beautifully. I use them for Angel Food Cakes all the time and have never had a problem. Making one tonight or in the morning as a matter of fact. The thing is with the egg whites, it has to be PURE egg whites in the carton. NOT, note NOT, Egg Beaters. They won't work. Must be ALL WHITES. There should be NOTHING listed on the ingredient label except "egg whites".
My mother had been baking these since she was nine years old. Her cakes averaged nine inches in height. She used to freeze them and one day a cake was missing, but in its place was a blue ribbon! My father had sneakily taken it to the state fair. I am following her quirky, but productive recipe while still using her old cake pan and egg white incorporator. (Looks like a wire snow shoe)
You can't use egg whites in a carton for anything that calls for it to rise. It will never work. Tried that. You'll be waiting still this time next year. If it tastes "eggy" then you've gotten egg yolk in the whites somewhere along the way. Egg whites never taste "eggy". Don't open the oven. And don't touch it, and it shouldn't "fall". But mainly, and most important *Use real eggs with a shell. Don't use egg whites from a carton.*
Made this recipe with real egg whites. It was terrific. While it did fall a bit in the center, the delicious lemon cream cheese frosting made that disappear! I served it last night at a holiday party (used sugared cranberries to decorate the top of each 2 x 2 inch cake). It was a hit - have had to print out several copies of the recipes. Easy and delicious!
My husband usually dislikes angel food cake, but he really liked this one. I used pasteurized egg whites and a stand mixer and was fortunate that I had no issues - they whipped up nicely. I made this both as a sheet cake and a 3-layer cake (replacing half of the cream cheese with light cream cheese to cut a few calories). We liked it better as a sheet cake since there was more lemon in the frosting. Will definitely make it again.
The cake was very good, my whole family loved it. I like how simple it is to make. I only had one cake pan so I ignored the foil part and I greased the pan I had and it worked out great. The cake was a little too sweet but all in all it was delicious.