Lemon Angel Food Cake

Lemon Angel Food Cake | www.motherthyme.com

I love angel food cake.  It is one of my favorite desserts, especially in the summer.  Topping it with fresh berries and a dollop of whip cream is a sweet dessert with less guilt.

Sure buying a box of angel food cake mix, adding water to it and giving it a quick mix is easy but making it from scratch is just as easy and nothing beats homemade.  
As much as I love using fresh lemons, and I always have lemons on hand, for this recipe I use lemon extract.  Lemon juice can be to watery so you don’t want to substitute lemon juice for extract.   Plus the lemon extract is much stronger and really helps with the true lemon flavor of this heavenly cake.  I do incorporate some lemon zest into the cake and glaze to give little flecks of fresh lemon in the mix.  

If you follow me on Facebook I mentioned last weekend that I was making this for a picnic.  What I also love to do if I am serving this to guests when entertaining is to soak berries in Limoncello.  How about that for a topping?  

For the Limoncello topping what you just need to do is cut up the berries you would like to use.  I typically use a mix of strawberries and blueberries.  Pour some limoncello over the fruit, as much or as little as you want and let the berries take a bath for the day.  The longer they soak, the more they will absorb the Limoncello.  If I am serving this for dessert I will typically make this in the morning for that evening.  It is so good!  

This angel food cake is light but it is bursting with fresh lemon flavor.  There is something about this version I simply love.  It is a refreshing dessert you can sit and enjoy while watching the sunset after a long day.  

Lemon Angel Food Cake | www.motherthyme.com
Lemon Angel Food Cake | www.motherthyme.com

Lemon Angel Food Cake | www.motherthyme.com
Thank you readers for your comments and suggestions! This recipe has been updated 8/15 to reflect not to spray pan.
5.0 from 1 reviews
Lemon Angel Food Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 8
  • 1½ cups egg whites (about 10-12 eggs)
  • 1½ teaspoons pure lemon extract
  • 1½ teaspoons cream of tartar
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon fresh lemon zest
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 1 cup cake flour
Lemon Glaze (optional):
  • ½ cup confectioners sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (use lemon that was used for zest. Be sure to zest first before juicing)
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Using a stand mixer or electric mixer with whisk attachment add to a large bowl egg white, lemon extract, cream of tartar, vanilla extract, salt and lemon zest. Stir on medium high speed until stiff peaks form, about 4-5 minutes.
  3. Reduce speed and gradually add in sugar until just combined.
  4. Gradually sprinkle in cake flour and by hand fold into mixture a little at a time. Don't over mix.
  5. Pour batter into a 9 or 10 inch angel food tube pan and bake for 35- 40 minutes until top is golden brown and springs back when touched.
  6. Cool completely.
Lemon Glaze:
  1. In a small bowl combine confectioners sugar. Add a little lemon juice and stir until consistency is desired. Stir in lemon zest and drizzle over cooled angel food cake.
Note- For best results use fresh egg whites.


  1. says

    Oh my word does that look fabulous!!! I LOVE angel food cake (it’s my birthday cake every year) and can’t wait to try this version!

  2. Anonymous says

    Can you use the carton egg whites? The cake looks heavenly. I love a good angel food cake. Can’t wait to try it. Thanks

  3. says

    I’ve always had a hard time making angel food cake from scratch – but it’s been years since I’ve tried. I totally want to try this recipe!

  4. says

    I’ve never made angel food cake. I actually only had angel food cake once. But it was great, I really think I should make it sometime, yum!

  5. says

    OH MY!! I adore angel food cake! It’s so fluffy, soft and delicious! I’m So glad you posted this Jennifer! Can’t wait to make this!

  6. Bobbe says

    I have a vision in my head of a lemon angel food cake with a bittersweet chocolate ganache glaze. I’ve been digging around the web for just the right angel food cake recipe and this looks like the one. Just reading it, it sounds as if it has enough lemon in it so that it won’t get lost under the chocolate.

  7. says

    My cake seems delicious but stuck to my bunt pan. What did I do wrong? I didn’t see directions where it said to butter your pan. My 1st time making an angel food cake.

    • says

      Hi Kim, My apologizes. You are correct this recipe did not state to grease the pan. It was my mistake when I said it did before. I thought you were commenting on another angel food cake recipe I have which did state this. This one was missing it. I have updated the recipe to reflect the change. So sorry for the error.

    • says

      Hi Jean, So sorry. You are correct, the instructions did not include greasing the pan. The other angel food cake recipe does state to grease and in the previous comment I thought her comment was for that recipe. My apologizes, I have updated the recipe to reflect the change. Thanks so much!

  8. YamiLam says

    Hey Jennifer! The cake looks so delicious and airy! I just have a simple question to ask you. I don’t have lemon extract, so could I substitute it with Lemon juice? Because I think fresh lemons are, you know, better… Thank you!

  9. Vee says

    Hello! I am looking forward to trying this recipe, but wanted to ask if you think a bundt pan would work in place of a traditional tube pan normally used for Angel food cake? Thanks so much! Vee

  10. kelly says

    I just made this cake and it was the most delicious delicate cake I’ve ever made. Thank you. I do agree with the tube pan. I used the bundt pan and I think the presentation is better with the tube. How do you recommend storing this?

  11. Kimberly says

    We’ll see how my cake turns out, but I didn’t realize I needed to sift the flour into the egg white mixture. The picture shows it, but the instructions do not. I “sprinkled” by hand as suggested.

  12. Carolyn says

    The idea of lemon is great but too much zest in angel food is tricky. However the real issue with your recipe is the instruction to grease the pan. I dutifully followed this recipe only to have my beautiful cake collapse after hours of careful work. NEVER EVER GREASE YOUR PAN when making angel food. In fact I learned from my my aunt who is an experienced baker that the tiniest drop of grease anywhere on your pan is a disaster. Also I don’t give this recipe five stars but I can’t fix the star rating on your site.

  13. Lee says

    So the thing is….I knew it was wrong to grease the pan. I knew it from the beginning, however, since the recipe says to I did it. As the person above said. I should not have done it. The cake shrinks down to about 2/3 of its size. I couldn’t invert the pan (not that your recipe said I should but everyone knows you invert the cake once it is done) since the pan was greased and the cake would have fallen out. So the cake shrunk and I was unhappy. I am sure it will taste fine but that isn’t the point. It is not like have have the time, energy, and another dozen egg whites to make another. Never grease the pan for Angel Food Cake. It is as simple as that.

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