Classic Pound Cake

This Classic Pound Cake recipe uses only 4 simple ingredients that all weigh in at 1 pound each to create a traditional butter cake that is perfect topped with strawberries and whipped cream!

Slice of pound cake

A Classic Pound Cake Recipe

Pound Cake is one of those old fashioned cake recipes that will always have place on my dessert table. I have created all sorts of variations on pound cake like my Million Dollar Pound Cake which includes (among other things) buttermilk to tenderize the crumb, and of course my Kentucky Butter Cake which is a MUST make!

But today we’re talking about traditional CLASSIC Pound Cake. This is a cake recipe that has been around for ages, and I wanted to share my tips and tricks on how to bake a homemade pound cake from scratch…because I feel like we all need to know the classics! Once you know the basic recipes, you can build and adapt them to suit your tastes and creativity, which is when the real magic happens!

BUT don’t be misled…there is magic in the basics too. This pound cake recipe is the building block for a pretty epic strawberry shortcake. Macerated strawberries and whipped cream add extra moisture and sweetness that pairs beautifully with the dense crumb of traditional pound cake. Or imagine how INSANE French Toast would be made out of thin slices of this cake!? But, if you were able to ask my Grandpa, I think he would have taken a slice of this plain with his coffee over just about anything else.

This Classic Pound Cake Recipe has 4 ingredients!

Why Is It Called Pound Cake?

Nope, it’s not because you will gain a pound by eating a slice…and no, not because it weighs a pound. In fact, it weighs about 4 pounds because you use these 4 simple ingredients that weigh a pound each:

  • Butter: I use salted butter in this recipe. Since there is no additional salt, using salted butter is a great way to get a little more flavor in the cake!
  • Sugar: Just plain old granulated sugar is perfect for this recipe. You could absolutely use light brown sugar as well to jazz it up!
  • Eggs: I always recommend using all room temperature ingredients when you are baking, but I will admit that I don’t always adhere to this rule. It’s definitely not something to stress out too much about.
  • Flour: In a classic pound cake recipe, you just use all purpose flour. This is a sturdy cake, and all purpose flour works great. You absolutely could use cake flour, but in this recipe it wouldn’t make a huge difference.

The batter is incredibly easy, and I would imagine that you have all of the ingredients in your kitchen at any given time to make a gorgeous pound cake…which is a pretty dangerous prospect if you ask me!

How To Make Classic Pound Cake

What Variations Can You Make to Pound Cake?

The sky is really the limit with the recipe. Let’s start basic with what you can add IN to the cake before baking:

  • Flavored Extracts are a simple way to switch up the flavor. You can go for a simple vanilla extract, almond extract, lemon, coconut, rum…the list goes on. You will need to start with 1 teaspoon and add more if you would like. Vanilla extract is a milder flavor, so you can certainly get away with adding at least 2 teaspoons or up to a tablespoon! Some extracts are a little more powerful, so start with less. You can always add more if you would like!
  • Add chocolate chips! Of course you can add chocolate chips to this pound cake. I like to add mini chips!
  • Fresh citrus juice and zest! Make this a lemon pound cake by adding 2 tablespoons of lemon zest and no more than 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice.
  • Berries. Not only are berries excellent on top of pound cake you can add them to the batter. Use fresh or frozen and thawed!
  • Sprinkles! Of course!
  • Mashed banana to add extra moisture.
  • Nuts. Add some pecans or walnuts to the batter it nuts are your thing.

Icing or Frosting is a Great Way to Sweeten up this Pound Cake

This is a no brainer! Beyond strawberries and whipped cream, you can easily top this cake with all sorts of sweet glazes!

  • Pipe on some buttercream!
  • Spread on some chocolate frosting 🙂
  • Mix together 2 cups of powdered sugar and 1/4 cup milk and pour this sweet glaze icing on top!
  • Mix a little rum with powdered sugar to create a boozy icing!

Only 4 ingredients measure in pounds in this classic pound cake recipe

While all cake is delicious warm out of the oven, this cake, like most pound cake recipes, is actually better in my opinion the next day. It will become moister and more flavorful the longer it sits unsliced.

How to Store Pound Cake? Can I Freeze It?

You can store your pound cake in an airtight container for up to three days. You can also wrap your pound cake with saran wrap and foil, then freeze it for up to six months. Let frozen pound cake thaw on the counter before unwrapping for best results.

I hope you give this classic recipe a try! BUT…

If you’re looking for other pound cake recipes, here are a few to choose from:

Print

Classic Pound Cake

  • Author: Shelly
  • Prep Time Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time Cook Time: 80 minutes
  • Total Time Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield Yield: 16 slices 1x
  • Category Category: Cake
  • Method Method: Oven
  • Cuisine Cuisine: Dessert

Description:

This Classic Pound Cake recipe uses only 4 simple ingredients that all weigh in at 1 pound each to create a traditional butter cake that is perfect topped with strawberries and whipped cream!


Ingredients:

  • 2 cups salted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 9 large eggs
  • 3 1/4 cups all purpose flour

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 10- cup bundt pan liberally with nonstick spray and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment mix the butter and sugar together for 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until combined, scraping the sides as needed.
  3. Turn the mixer to low and add in the flour slowly until combined, again scraping the sides to ensure everything is combined evenly.
  4. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 70-80 minutes, or until a knife inserted comes out clean. If you notice it is browning too much on the top, tent with foil.
  5. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 20 minutes and then release onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes:

Store airtight for up to 3 days.

Notes:

I find that this cake is best if it sits overnight before slicing, as it becomes more moist.

Storage tip: Carefully flip the cake back into the bundt pan if storing overnight before slicing. You need to remove it from the pan to endure it doesn’t stick, but carefully flipping it back in and covering it tightly to sit is an easy way to store it airtight!

Serve with whipped cream and fruit, icing, or ice cream.

Keywords:: pound cake, cookies and cups, cake recipe, butter cake, bundt cake, how to make pound cake, why is it called pound cake

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Classic Pound Cake

Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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Tina
September 16, 2020 6:08 pm

Ok. I was looking for a short cut and I saw this recipe. Wow only 4 ingredients. I wasn’t a awful recipe, but the crust the part I love the most about a pound cake wasn’t there. This was more like a sponge cake rather than a pound cake. It wasn’t dry at all. The salted butter eww made it a bit too salty for me. I didn’t stray away from the ingredients at all. I told myself if this worked I found a new holy grail. I think it would make for a nice strawberry short cake. Mmm this… Read more »

Elsie P King
September 13, 2020 11:13 am

My pound comes out looking very pretty but when coolimg the top begins to crack, what causes it to crack all up on the top? I have cooked this several times and this has never happened. Did I beat it too long ?

Sam
August 23, 2020 11:34 am

whats the cooking time for pound cupcakes? 20mins?

Cindy McClellan
August 18, 2020 6:10 pm

Can you make in a loaf pan?

Angie
July 19, 2020 5:12 pm

My pound cake was very firm. What do I add to make it moister? Very delicious!

Margaret Holmes
June 28, 2020 7:28 pm

This sounds delicious. I only have Oatley oat milk. Can that be substituted for regular milk?

Onak
August 8, 2020 11:37 pm

LOL

Rosemary
June 17, 2020 2:33 pm

A pound cake is a pound cake … You should beat the eggs and weigh them to the same amount of the other ingredients. The recipe is hundreds of years old.

Solange
June 8, 2020 4:15 pm

Please, I didn’t notice you using baking powder, which quantity of baking powder do I use?

Pearl Nelson
July 31, 2020 12:47 am
Reply to  Shelly

The eggs is going to make it rise so you don’t need baking powder all cakes don’t require baking powder a 7up cake for one

Shane
July 4, 2020 5:35 pm
Reply to  Solange

The eggs are the primary leavening agent – the butter is secondary. Poundcake is by it’s nature more dense than a typical cake thus no chemical leavening is required ( or desired).

Barbara
June 3, 2020 2:06 pm

Getting ready to make this today. Would you ever use the sugar sauce from your Kentucky butter cake on this pound cake.

ThereseJ
May 28, 2020 7:29 pm

I’m starting to think “what’s wrong with my baking?” I thought the oven. It’s not according to a new thermometer. I can be meticulous. I am when baking. All organic ingredients. I didn’t over beat. I added some blueberries and lemon zest/extract. Baked 70 min. No more for was already a bit hard. Cut into “into” and yet parts of middle not quite baked? I expected a luscious, moist cake. Besides the baking not coming out well I also found it a bit bland. O.K. That’s the report.

Dawn
September 9, 2020 6:31 am
Reply to  ThereseJ

The same for me, not done on the inside. I just checked to make sure I measured correctly and now reading reviews. Thank you, I’m going crazy. Lol

Debbie Minter
May 26, 2020 12:34 pm

While I wanted to love this recipe I would caution anyone to check it a LOT earlier than the recipe says. It is way overdone at 70 minutes and completely ruined. I also think it could benefit from some flavoring personally.

ThereseJ
May 28, 2020 7:32 pm
Reply to  Debbie Minter

I just made a posted a comment. I had exactly the same experiences. Though, you expressed it much more concisely!

Gia
May 7, 2020 3:30 pm

Excellent

Anne
May 1, 2020 6:54 pm

Hi! Quick question: I dont own an electric mixer. Can you recommend step 2 how to mix by hand? How many minutes? Thank you! I need to make this cake soon ?

AMERICA RINALDI
April 28, 2020 4:14 pm

I made this and had to force myself not to eat the whole thing. This is like the cakes from the 50’s which were so really “homemade”. Being 67 years old, I haven’t had a cake this good in years.

Cindy
April 21, 2020 6:47 pm

Assume I know nothing about baking a cake. My hubby’s bday is next week, and we’re isolating. Can’t seem to get a cake mix in our grocery delivery. I have no baking powder or shortening, so a yellow cake from scratch is not possible. His aunt used to make a pound cake he loved, and I thought I’d try this recipe, as I have all the ingredients except a proper butter or margarine. We have Earth Balance Soy Free Buttery spread. Can anyone tell me if that would work in place of butter? Also, I have no frosting but figured… Read more »

Sarah
April 22, 2020 2:28 pm
Reply to  Cindy

I’m no expert but I don’t think you can sub a butter spread for butter in any baking recipe.

Linda Erb
May 24, 2020 5:29 pm
Reply to  Cindy

Your hubby will love this pound cake….yesterday my husband took one out of the freezer and ate it for breakfast! I make 2 small ones instead of one big one and it does freeze well (wrap in 2 layers of plastic wrap, then a layer of foil and put it in a ziplock bag). Instapot makes Bundt cake pans that are 6 cup (half the normal recipe size). I wouldn’t substitute anything for the butter because it will change the flavor and texture. And seriously, it won’t need frosting! You can put a dusting of powdered sugar over it for… Read more »

Shelly Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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