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German Butter Pound Cake

Cardamom and lemon peel mix with almond and vanilla flavors to add zip to a classic butter pound cake. — Kristine M. Chayes, Smithtown, New York
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. Bake: 1 hour
  • Makes
    16 servings


  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 6 tablespoons 2% milk
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar


  • Place egg whites in a large bowl; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Generously grease and flour a 10-in. tube pan.
  • In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in lemon zest and extracts. In another bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, salt and cardamom; add to the creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition.
  • With clean beaters, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Fold into batter.
  • Transfer to prepared pan. Bake at 350° for 60-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool. Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar.
Editor's Note: For easier removal of cake, use solid shortening when greasing a fluted or plain tube pan.
Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 275 calories, 13g fat (8g saturated fat), 110mg cholesterol, 234mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate (27g sugars, 0 fiber), 4g protein.

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  • Ginny
    Nov 3, 2020

    A question....I have made a similar cake which specifically directs to not preheat oven. Since I didn’t see mention of preheating oven, should oven be preheated or not for this recipe?

  • Annah
    Nov 3, 2020

    No comment left

  • dublinlab
    Mar 16, 2020

    Delicious. This is wonderful by itself or I used it to make the April Fools egg on toast desert. It froze beautifully. This will be a go to recipe. Janet. VFE

  • Sandy
    Sep 28, 2019

    I have made this delicious cake at least a dozen times. It has never fallen on me. I think it is best served after it has cooled from the oven. Next day I put a slice in the micro and set for reheat for 10 - 15 seconds and it's wonderful. It is my go to cake and everyone I have served it to has raved how wonderful it is. I've been asked for this recipe over and over. I'd never used cardamon before making this cake the first time and WOW do I love it, especially with the lemon zest. Toss some of your favorite berries in a bowl with powered sugar and serve along with cake slices with some fresh whipped cream. My guests loved it.

  • KristineChayes
    Jul 1, 2019

    Thank you, Herb, glad you like the cake! I always use regular milk or cream, which is what the original recipe calls for; Taste of Home changed that to 2% milk, perhaps to reduce the fat content. I’ve never had any problems with the recipe, it is pretty straight forward. Enjoy!

  • Herb
    Nov 21, 2018

    What an amazing cake. Found the directions easy. I wasn’t sure if I should have placed in a cold oven, so I did and it turned out great. The only substitution made was cream...instead of milk. Delicioso!!

  • Judithdewald
    Sep 16, 2016

    I just bake this cake I went to look at it through the window of the oven and it has fallen what does that mean what happened what did I do wrong helpThe batter tasted wonderful I am so disappointed please get back to me as soon as possible

  • Irascible_Baker
    Mar 9, 2016

    This is a great recipe. It is very easy to make and the cardamom lends a very unique, lemony sort of flavor. Have made it a couple times for our weekly teatime!

  • mominthekitchen
    Oct 29, 2014

    I've made this cake many times since it first appeared in the magazine, and it always turns out perfectly. It taste fantastic, and everyone devours it. I make it just as written and as far as I can recall, I have always used a fairly dark, fluted bundt pan. Thank you for sharing the recipe!

  • cthecow
    Jan 7, 2014

    Help?! The first time I made this cake I used my fluted bundt pan and it turned out perfect. I made it exactly as written and did not substitute any ingredients. I did not fold in ? of the egg whites first as one reviewer suggested, but simply folded them all in at once, gently. It was absolutely delicious and became my all-time favorite cake. Today I made it again, and the only thing I did differently was to use my 10-inch tube pan instead of my bundt pan. It fell! I too am no baking beginner and am a loss as to what happened. I followed the recipe just as carefully as I did the first time. Does anybody have any other clues or suggestions? I would love to hear and learn more from Kristine Chayes about her recipe!PS-Since writing this review, I found this comment online on another site: "Shiny metals WILL reduce the temperature of the cake (signficantly) as the radiant heat from the oven is reflected. A cake cooked in a glass or dark tin will cook 20% faster than one in a shiny tin." My tube pan is very shiny, and my bundt pan is very dark. I'm inclined to think the pan was my problem today. Perhaps this tip will help others.PPS-Today (several days later) I made the recipe again, this time using my dark bundt cake pan like I did the first time. It turned out perfect! I'm convinced that the shiny metal pan was the reason it fell the other day. I believe the recipe should be adjusted by its author to state a different baking time and/or temp for a shiny tube pan vs. a dark metal bundt pan.