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Italian Triple Lemon Cream Cake

Refreshing and impressive, this show-stopping cake is perfect for Easter, a summer party or even Christmas dinner. In case you haven't guessed, I serve this all year long. —Jessie Grearson-Sapat, Falmouth, Maine
  • Total Time
    Prep: 45 min. Bake: 15 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    12 servings


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup Mascarpone cheese
  • 1/2 cup marshmallow creme
  • 1/2 cup lemon curd
  • 2 tablespoons limoncello
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • GLAZE:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Lemon zest strips and fresh mint leaves


  • In a large bowl, beat the sugar, oil and butter on medium speed for 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the lemon zest and extracts. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with sour cream, beating well after each addition.
  • Transfer to three greased and floured 8-in. round baking pans. Bake at 350° for 14-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  • In a large bowl, beat cream and cheese until soft peaks form. Stir in the marshmallow creme, lemon curd, limoncello and lemon zest until combined.
  • In a small saucepan, combine sugar and lemon juice. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat.
  • Place one cake layer on a serving plate. Brush with 2 tablespoons glaze and spread with half of the filling. Repeat layers. Top with remaining cake layer; brush with remaining glaze. Garnish with lemon zest and mint leaves. Store in the refrigerator.

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  • Andrea
    Jan 1, 2020

    As one of the reviewers mentioned below, the filing is too runny. Not sure what I did wrong? I measured all ingredients precisely. I tried chilling the filling in the fridge for 30 minutes before repeating the layers but it didn’t make a difference. Would like some advice. Other than that the cake is delicious, very lemony without being overwhelming and super moist. Will definitely be making it again.

  • Jessica
    Dec 11, 2019

    Thanks to this marvelous cake I made my friend and coworkers Ooh

  • Janice
    Sep 15, 2019

    I’ve been craving Italian Lemon Cream Cake. If we’re at an Italian Restaurant it’s my favorite dessert. Took a while to find a recipe that looked right - this is it!!! Be sure to make your own Lemon curd, it’s so easy and tastes beyond amazing. Didn’t have 3 8” pans so used 2 and added 3 minutes to bake time and they came out perfect. Out of sour cream so used Greek yogurt which made no difference. Used cream cheese instead of mascarpone and added confectioners sugar to cream as no marshmallow in house. Used extra lemon curd in cream as well - love extra lemon!! Don’t skip the glaze. It adds the perfect touch and density to the cake. The cream is very soft, let it drizzle down the sides. Not meant to be a picture perfect cake, but the most delicious!

  • Diane
    Aug 26, 2019

    A slice of Lemon Heaven! Fresh and delicate in taste. A big hit with family and friends. A must for a summer night. One of my new favorites.

  • Ginger
    Mar 13, 2019

    The taste was fantastic and lemony! I could not get the filling to set up firm enough and tried getting it cold. Finally assembled it and it became a "snow avalanche" cake :-) Do you think I "stirred"(using my mixer) in the ingredients (into the whipped cream mixture) for too long? The filling in the left-overs the next day firmed up. This was a very good cake but would like some advice for next time I make the filling. I don't think it was the recipe's error: I think it was me.