Photo: Randy Mayor
16 servings (serving size: 1 slice)

To create a nutritionally sound layer cake that's moist and tender with luscious frosting, we use a combination of full-fat (butter), reduced-fat (1/3-less-fat cream cheese), and fat-free (egg substitute) ingredients. As with any baked good--especially one that's light--measure all ingredients carefully. Twisted lemon and lime slices are a pretty garnish that indicates the flavor of the dessert.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°.

Step 2

To prepare the cake, coat 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with cooking spray; line bottoms of pans with wax paper. Coat wax paper with cooking spray.

Step 3

Place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 5 minutes). Add egg substitute and the next 3 ingredients (through 1 tablespoon juice); beat well. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, stirring well with a whisk. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Spoon batter into prepared pans; tap pans once on countertop to remove air bubbles.

Step 4

Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on a wire rack 10 minutes; remove cakes from pans. Carefully peel off wax paper. Cool completely on wire racks coated with cooking spray.

Step 5

To prepare icing, place 1 teaspoon lemon rind and next 3 ingredients (through cream cheese) in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth (about 1 minute). Gradually add powdered sugar, beating at low speed just until blended (do not overbeat). Cover and chill for 30 minutes.

Step 6

Place 1 cake layer on a plate; spread with 1/2 cup icing. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining icing over top and sides of cake. Chill 1 hour. Store cake loosely covered in refrigerator.

Ratings & Reviews

3 1/2 stars

May 09, 2016
Nice citrus flavor.  I've made this a few times now.  Today because I didn't need to make anything fancy instead of the 2 layers, I poured the entire batch into a 9x11 pan and baked it at the same temp/same time.  Probably could've gone a few minutes less but it wasn't dry.  Pretty dense cake though, not light and fluffy.  Icing is great.  Would make again.

yvonne1047's Review

July 15, 2014
I'm wondering if the cream cheese is missing in this recipe. At the top of the recipe it states that they combine butter and cream cheese in the cake itself, but there is no cream cheese in the ingredient list except for the icing.

ChelseaMacG's Review

June 06, 2013

jguenthner's Review

February 07, 2013
I've made this cake three times: the first was as written, the second and third times I used meyer lemons (orangy-lemon flavor). Though I have really liked the flavor each time, this is the densest cake I've ever made in my life--every time! I'm an avid baker, and I didn't mess this up the same way three times, for sure. It's not dense like a brownie or a flourless cake. It's just very, very firm. I'll search for a different light cake recipe in the future.

GWC100409's Review

April 22, 2012

cathyk's Review

November 22, 2011
This is fabulous-moist and refreshing. So easy to make. Everyone loved it when I served it for a birthday celebration.

SouthernBella's Review

September 01, 2011
I made this for a retirement party, of which the guest of honor loved citrus flavor! The cake was a total success. Every morsel was eaten. I followed the recipe completely. People could not believe it was a light cake. They loved the light and refreshing taste of the cake and so did I.

wellfed59's Review

July 12, 2011
I chose this for my birthday and had my husband make it (while I hovered). He has naver baked anything in his life. It was wonderful! This is going to be my birthday cake from now on. My husband was so proud of himself!

hawaiikim's Review

May 05, 2011

LauraLeigh8's Review

May 10, 2010
I made this cake for Mother's Day and it was a huge hit with the entire family. So refreshing. A lovely spring or summer cake. I only have one little quibble with this recipe. I think it would be almost impossible to cut the cake into the recommended serving size of 1/16th. I cut it into 12 slices and they were already pretty skinny. With a serving size of 1/12th, it worked out to 428 calories per slice instead of 319.