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Luscious Lemon Cake Roll

A co-worker shared the recipe for this elegant cake roll. It's perfect for rounding out a special meal.—Darlene Brenden, Salem, Oregon
  • Total Time
    Prep: 1 hour Bake: 10 min. + chilling
  • Makes
    10 servings


  • 4 large eggs, separated, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 2/3 cup cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Confectioners' sugar
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 7 drops yellow liquid food coloring, divided
  • 1-1/2 cups whipped topping
  • 1/2 teaspoon water
  • 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut


  • Line a greased 15x10x1-in. baking pan with waxed paper and grease the paper; set aside. In a large bowl, beat egg yolks until lemon-colored. Gradually beat in 1/4 cup sugar. Stir in oil and lemon extract; set aside.
  • In another large bowl, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating until stiff glossy peaks form and sugar is dissolved. Fold into egg yolk mixture. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; fold into egg mixture.
  • Transfer to prepared pan. Bake at 375° for 10-12 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool for 5 minutes. Turn cake onto a kitchen towel dusted with confectioners' sugar. Gently peel off waxed paper. Roll up cake in towel, starting with a short side. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  • For filling, in a small bowl, combine the milk, lemon juice, lemon zest and 5 drops of food coloring. Fold in whipped topping. Unroll cake; spread half of the filling over cake to within 1 in. of edges. Roll up again. Place seam side down on a platter. Spread remaining filling over cake.
  • In a large resealable plastic bag, combine water and remaining food coloring; add coconut. Seal bag and shake to tint. Sprinkle the coconut over cake. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. Refrigerate leftovers.
Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 318 calories, 10g fat (6g saturated fat), 98mg cholesterol, 187mg sodium, 49g carbohydrate (40g sugars, 0 fiber), 7g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • DeAnne
    Mar 9, 2020

    LOVE this roll cake, I made the lemon version and then I changed it up a little and instead of lemon, I used a 1/4 cup of strawberry puree which turned out equally as good. Great recipe, easy to follow and is delicious!

  • jennyjoy
    Jan 28, 2016

    This was my first time making a roll cake and I was nervous about the rolling part just because I'd never done it before. It was actually very easy to do and didn't fall apart like I was nervous about it doing. The cake was fluffy and moist, and it balanced out the tartness of the filling perfectly. I accidentally made the filling too thin but that's because I used whipped topping that I made a few days ago. I made it fresh and then it thickened up. I'll be making this cake again in a couple days for my sisters birthday, lemon cake is her favorite. I'll definitely use fresh whipped topping. Oh, and I didn't put the coconut and filling on top, instead I made a quick icing out of milk and powder sugar and drizzled it. When I make it again I will put the filling on top. I was really impressed by how good this was. I highly recommend making it.

  • janeldv
    Jan 4, 2015

    Great lemon flavor! I left off the coconut, since my family is not a fan of coconut. Everyone raved about this cake.

  • BarbaraJohnson
    Dec 4, 2014

    I made this for my husbands work thanksgiving lunch. It was easy.tasted good and presentation was nice. My husband does not like coconut,so I left that off i added lemon balm leaves for presentation.. Next time I will add white chocolate curls.Barbara J.

  • msm93
    Nov 6, 2011

    The cake part was great. The filling was way to watery... I had to scrape it off and just used canned lemon icing. And then it was great...

  • hahymen
    Apr 24, 2011

    The taste was great! The only thing I did different (after the first try and was not impressed with the size) was DOUBLE the cake part of the recipe...I like my rolled cakes to have some body to it. But it was very tasty!! Will be making again....

  • thecharredchef
    Jul 19, 2010

    Not only would I make this cake again, I've already made it multiple times. It has a light feel to it, so it's perfect after a stressful day. Wonderful flavor, especially for how easy it is to make. The texture of the light cream filling compliments the airy texture of the cake perfectly. I made it without the coconut, since my husband doesn't like it, and it was delicious.

  • mrstefer
    Apr 16, 2010

    This was a big hit at my house. Loved it.