Lemon Pound Cake 2.0

This moist and dense pound cake is bursting with lemon flavor! It's gluten-free, grain-free, paleo and naturally-sweetened, too.

A great man once said that it takes 10,000 hours to achieve mastery in a field. Granted, there is some controversy surrounding this premise, as I’m sure there is surrounding just about every rule about success that has ever been suggested, but whether or not it is exactly true, the point is that talent is important, but it is nothing without deliberate practice. You didn’t think the Beatles just woke up one day to discover they were The Beatles, right? Bill Gates started the process of becoming Bill Gates in high school. Probably earlier. 

I’m certainly no Bill Gates or Paul McCartney, but I think that applies to mere mortals as well, and that’s what powers me through every exhausted Friday night of baking or Saturday afternoon of photography when I’d rather be lying on the couch. And that’s what keeps me going back into the archives and remaking old recipes to make them better, healthier, and tastier. The more hours I put in, the better the food. And isn’t that what this is all about?

This moist and dense pound cake is bursting with lemon flavor! It's gluten-free, grain-free, paleo and naturally-sweetened, too.

This weekend, I remade two old recipes and brought them to a Memorial Day dinner party. The first was a peanut butter cup recipe that combined the chocolate coating from this recipe stuffed with the peanut butter filling from this recipe (rolled into a ball instead of a football shape and placed in a pool of melted chocolate in 12 mini muffin cups) and boy did those go fast. The second is this pound cake. 

I first made a version of this cake over a year ago and what a difference a year makes in learning how to make grain-free, naturally-sweetened baked goods the best they can be. I’ve remade the original recipe a few times and each time it felt like it was good, but could be better. So, I started over from scratch, and now it is: it’s more moist, lighter (but still dense), sweeter, and – most importantly – lemonier. And I mean bursting with lemon flavor. It’s also topped with a thick layer of frosting, rather than a thin, running glaze, which is my personal preference. 

This moist and dense pound cake is bursting with lemon flavor! It's gluten-free, grain-free, paleo and naturally-sweetened, too.

The verdict: well, I couldn’t get any testimonials from the party guests because their mouths were pretty full (not just on this case; all the food was amazing. Wait until you taste these tacos my mom made, which I’ll share with you in a few weeks) but I can tell you by the rate the cake disappeared that it was a big hit. You should try it for yourself, and see what you think!

This moist and dense pound cake is bursting with lemon flavor! It's gluten-free, grain-free, paleo and naturally-sweetened, too.

Paleo Lemon Pound Cake
Grain-free, Gluten-free, Paleo and Naturally-Sweetened
  1. 2 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
  2. 1/4 cup coconut flour
  3. 2 1/2 Tablespoons granulated sweetener (I used Norbu monk fruit sweetener)
  4. 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  5. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  6. 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  7. 2 Tablespoons unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  8. 1/4 cup honey
  9. Scant 1/2 cup (4 ounces) unsweetened applesauce
  10. 1/2 cup coconut oil or butter (vegan or regular), melted and slightly cooled
  11. 1 cup fresh lemon juice
  12. Zest of 2 large lemons - approx. 2 Tablespoons, lightly packed
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Coat a 8.5" loaf pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours, granulated sweetener, salt and baking soda and set aside.
  3. In another bowl, combine the eggs, milk, honey, applesauce, oil, lemon juice, and lemon zest.
  4. Pour the wet mixture into the dry and stir to combine. Then pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top into an even layer.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes until the top is golden brown, then tent with foil and bake for another 30-35 minutes until a tester comes out clean.
  6. Cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then remove from the pan and cool completely on a wire rack.
  7. If you'd like to glaze it, there are two options: for a traditional frosting or glaze, whisk together 1 cup powdered sugar and 1-2 Tablespoons lemon juice until it reaches your desired consistency. For a paleo-friendly frosting/glaze, pulse 1/2 cup stevia (or Norbu or Natvia) and 1 Tablespoon tapioca flour in a food processor until fine, then add 6-8 Tablespoons of lemon juice and process until it reaches your desired consistency.
  1. Yield: one 9" loaf cake
  2. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the freezer (unfrosted) for up to 3 months.
A Clean Bake http://acleanbake.com/

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  1. says

    UGH YUMM I WANT THIS IN MY MOUTH RIGHT NOW. There is no more elegant way to express my feelings about this luscious looking cake. The memory of your doughnuts are making me want to make this right now!! Your mastery of the gluten-free crumb is impeccable. Ahhhh you goddess!!

  2. says

    Wow – this looks insane. I am a total rookie when it comes to grain-free, gluten-free, and paleo, but this looks pretty fool-proof. I am now going to go look for coconut flour!

    PS – I’m super excited for your mom’s taco recipe – I can only imagine that it’s going to be pretty awesome! 😉

    • says

      Oh this one is SO easy! I mean assuming you have all the ingredients, it’s literally just two bowls, mix stuff up, and then dump one bowl into the other, stir and bake. Actually, come to think of it, most of my recipes are like that these days. Who has time to get out the mixer, blah blah? Not me :)

      I’ll get on those tacos ASAP!!

  3. says

    I love improving older recipes…. it’s so much like life, eh? Getting better, learning, evolving?! And this cake is fabulous, Nora! Just look at that crumb! Love, love love the ingredients, especially that coconut and almond flour! I’ve not baked with coconut flour, but I think you may just have pushed me over the edge with this recipe! You’re tempting me Nora!!

    • says

      Thanks, Traci! Coconut flour is unlike any other baking ingredient. It works in mysterious ways – so absorbent! If you play around with it, I will look forward to seeing what you make with it!

  4. says

    I can see why this went so fast. It looks absolutely divine and I am with you. . .I prefer a nice thick coat of frosting to crown the top of my lemon loaf as well.

    Btw. . .the lemon loaf is the hubby’s personal favorite treat from Starbucks. I love that I can know offer him a healthier alternative.

  5. says

    This looks amazing. So fantastic. If it tastes half as good as it looks, I’m sold. Alas, I am currently between homes so baking is a bit tricky. But I am saving this for later, because I love lemon, and sometimes my go-to lemon poppyseed muffins just are not enough.

  6. sabrina says

    I need to make this!!! Have all the ingredients on hand except the monk sweetener. If I use maple syrup do ya think that would work? Same amount? Thanks so much! Going to check out your other recipes now…. tee hee hee

    • says

      Hi Sabrina! Unfortunately, no, you won’t be able to replace the monk fruit sweetener with maple syrup. Monk fruit sweetener is granulated, so the maple syrup would throw off the moisture content of the recipe. You can probably sub any granulated sweetener you prefer, though you may have to adjust the proportion. For example, use more than is called for if you’re using coconut sugar, since it is less sweet by volume than monk fruit sweetener. If you have granulated stevia available, that would be a 1:1 replacement. Good luck!

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