Individual lemon buttermilk pudding cakes with whipped cream is a graceful endnote to a seasonal meal. “I’ve been making these since I was 16,” says chef  Cindy Pawlcyn.–Cindy Pawlcyn with Pablo Jacinto and Erasto Jacinto

How else can I serve this?

As suggested here, you can bake it in an eight-inch square glass baking dish. However, for individual servings, eight 4-ounce ramekins also work magnificently.

A lemon buttermilk pudding cake in a white bowl on a white plate, topped with whipped cream with a bowl of cream and basket of lemons on the side.

Lemon-Buttermilk Pudding Cake

4.58 / 7 votes
Lemon buttermilk pudding cake is a tangy and creamy pudding layered with lemony cake, then dolloped with cream.
David Leite
Servings6 to 8 servings
Calories547 kcal
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour


For the cake

  • 2/3 cup plus 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk, (either low-fat or full-fat)
  • 4 tablespoons (2 oz) butter, melted
  • 3 large eggs, separated

For the chantilly cream

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 2 pints fresh raspberries or blueberries, mashed (optional)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Cointreau or other liqueur, (optional)


Make the cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
  • In a large bowl, whisk together 2/3 cup of the granulated sugar and the flour. Add the lemon juice, zest, and buttermilk and whisk until smooth.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter and the egg yolks. Stir the egg yolk mixture into the buttermilk mixture.
  • Using the whisk attachment of a mixer, whip the egg whites until frothy. Sprinkle in the remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar and whip until soft peaks form, about 1 minute. Fold the egg whites into the egg yolk and buttermilk mixture. The batter should be smooth and thick.
  • Pour the batter into an 8-inch square baking dish (or see note above if you prefer individual ramekins) and place the dish in a water bath with the water halfway up the sides of the dish. Bake 23 to 30 minutes, until slightly brown and beginning to crack but still jiggly. The smaller the baking dish, the less time will be needed to reach this stage. Cool to room temperature.

Make the chantilly cream

  • Whip together the cream, vanilla, and the 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar in a bowl until fluffy. Keep chilled until needed.

To serve

  • Turn the cake out onto a platter. (Individual ramekins can be left intact or overturned onto low, rimmed soup dishes.) If desired, spoon on the mashed berries, sprinkle with powdered sugar, and drizzle with Cointreau. Finish with a dollop of cream and, if desired, another dusting of powdered sugar. Originally published June 22, 2006.
Big Small Plates by Cindy Pawlcyn

Adapted From

Big Small Plates

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Serving: 1 portionCalories: 547 kcalCarbohydrates: 68 gProtein: 9 gFat: 28 gSaturated Fat: 16 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2 gMonounsaturated Fat: 7 gTrans Fat: 0.3 gCholesterol: 166 mgSodium: 113 mgPotassium: 433 mgFiber: 11 gSugar: 45 gVitamin A: 1118 IUVitamin C: 52 mgCalcium: 157 mgIron: 2 mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2006 Cindy Pawlcyn. Photo © 2006 Nicki Sizemore. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

If you love lemon desserts, you must give this a try. The dessert is part mousse, part soufflé, part angel food cake. It came together very easily and would be wonderful during the summer.

This is a great dessert, as it is impressive but light on the palate and quite easy to make. You could whip it up prior to dinner, then just pop in the pan some time during dinner. The lemon flavor is just tart enough and meshes well with the cream and berries.

An added bonus is that I had leftover buttermilk for some Sunday morning pancakes the next morning. Add this to your collection and you should only need to buy the buttermilk to make it, since all the other ingredients are standard pantry items.

About David Leite

David Leite has received three James Beard Awards for his writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 3 stars
    The flavor of this was wonderful but I baked it over 30 minutes and it still was liquid-y when we cut into it. Disappointing.

    1. I’m so sorry to hear this, Mom24. I’d love to help you figure out what might have gone wrong. Did you make it in an 8-inch square dish or something different? Was it cooled to room temperature before serving?

  2. 5 stars
    My ten year old daughter really enjoyed making this without my oversight. Very nice flavor. We cut down the sugar slightly.

    1. Terrific to hear, JudiAU. And yes, sweetness is always a little adjustable. Glad you made it how you like it.