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Mama's Lemon-Lime Soda Cake

Jocelyn Delk Adams
Cook Time:
1 hr 20 mins
Prep Time:
20 mins

Chef notes

This is a vintage recipe that has been in my family for decades. It was actually the very first cake I ever learned to bake, which I suspect is not only because it is my mother's absolute favorite cake but also because it was an unintimidating induction into the baking world, with results that even a nine-year-old girl could master.

Technique tip: This recipe doesn't have a leavening agent, but it doesn't need one. A significantly longer creaming process adds more air to the batter, giving it the lift it needs.

Swap option: To make a blueberry version, add 1½ cups blueberries and 1 to 2 tablespoons of lemon zest to the cake batter.


  • cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 large eggs, room temperature
  • 3 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1/2 cup lemon-lime soda, preferably 7UP, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon lemon extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon-lime soda, preferably 7 Up
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract


For the cake:


Preheat your oven to 315 F. Prepare a 10-cup Bundt pan with the nonstick method of your choice.


In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the butter for 2 minutes on high speed. Slowly add the sugar and salt. Cream together for an additional 7 minutes, until very pale yellow and fluffy. Add the eggs 1 at a time, combining well after each addition and scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.


Turn your mixer down to its lowest speed and slowly add the flour in 2 batches. Be careful not to overbeat. Pour in the soda and lemon extract. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and mix the batter until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.


Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 75-85 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.


Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then invert onto a serving plate. Let cool to room temperature. Lightly cover the cake with foil or plastic wrap so it does not dry out.

For the glaze:

In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients until the mixture is pourable.

To assemble:

When the cake is completely cool, spoon the glaze over the cake and allow it to harden. Serve at room temperature.