Mary Berry’s lemon drizzle cake recipe

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Learn how to make Mary Berry's lemon drizzle cake recipe our easy guide. Mary's classic lemon drizzle will never let you down - see how to make it here.

Mary Berry's lemon drizzle cake recipe
  • Nut-free
  • Vegetarian
  • healthy
Preparation Time20 mins
Cooking Time40 mins
Total Time1 hours
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories395 Kcal20%
Sugar35 g39%
Fat19 g27%
Protein5 g10%
Carbohydrates50 g19%

Mary Berry’s lemon drizzle cake is a classic British bake and one of our most popular recipes.

This delicious lemon drizzle cake takes just 20 minutes to prepare as Mary Berry uses the traditional 'all-in-one method' for her lemon sponge. This means all of the ingredients are mixed together in one go - so you don’t have to cream the butter and sugar beforehand. The light and zesty lemon sponge is glazed with a crunchy lemon drizzle icing, made with a simple sugar and lemon juice mixture. 

This lemon drizzle loaf will keep in an airtight container or cake tin at room temperature for three days and will freeze well for up to two months unsliced and wrapped tightly in clingfilm.


  • 175g caster sugar
  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 175g softened butter
  • 3 eggs
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • ¾ level tsp baking powder

For the lemon drizzle topping:

  • 100g granulated sugar
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Special bakeware / equipment:

  • Electric whisk
  • A traybake or roasting, greased and lined




  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC, gas 4. Beat together the eggs, flour, caster sugar, butter, baking powder and lemon zest until smooth in a large mixing bowl and turn into the prepared tin.
  2. Bake in the pre-heated oven for about 40 mins, or until golden brown, shrinking away from the sides of the tin and springy to the touch.
  3. While the cake is still warm, make the lemon drizzle topping. Mix together the sugar and lemon juice, and pour over the warm cake. Leave to cool a little and loosen the sides of the cake, then lift the cake out of the tin. Slice to serve.

    Watch our step-by-step video for Mary Berry's lemon drizzle cake recipe

Top tips for making Mary Berry's lemon drizzle cake

Mary Berry recommends placing the lemon drizzle cake on the middle shelf of your oven: 'To avoid cakes cracking don’t bake them too high in the oven. If you do the crust forms too soon and cracks as the cake continues to rise.'

And, however tempting it is to check on the progress of your loaf, resist the urge to open the oven door. Mary Berry advises this could cause your cake to sink. To prevent this from happening, you should also ensure the oven is the right temperature before you place your cake inside.

Can I use only granulated sugar in this lemon drizzle cake?

For this recipe, don’t be tempted to just use granulated sugar only - this should only be saved for the lemon drizzle topping. Mary Berry told Woman’s Weekly, ‘Use caster sugar in cakes rather than granulated. Speckled tops on cakes are usually caused by granulated sugar that has not properly dissolved in the mixture.'

If you want to make your lemon drizzle cake a healthier bake you could swap the caster sugar for Stevia or coconut sugar instead. You could also replace the butter in this recipe with soy butter or Quark for a lower-fat lemon drizzle cake.

Can I make lemon drizzle cake without an electric whisk?

It is recommended to use an electric whisk to make this cake. You can however use a wooden spoon and beat the mixture by hand. To make sure the cake mixture has enough air to rise, cream the butter and the sugar separately and then add the egg and beat with a wooden spoon. You can then fold the other ingredients into the mixture until combined.

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Mary Berry CBE is one of the most loved celebrity chefs in the country. In her early 80s, she’s been on our screens showing us how to make the most delicious recipes and sweet treats for over 50 years! Mary is probably most famous for being one of the original judges on The Great British Bake Off, where she put contestants through their paces for nine years before leaving the show when it made its controversial move from the BBC to Channel Four.