Irresistible Lemon Ricotta Cake: A Taste of Italian Sunshine

Easy and Delicious Lemon Ricotta Cake Recipe

Transport yourself to the sun-drenched coasts of Italy with this heavenly Lemon Ricotta Cake. Bursting with bright citrus notes and creamy richness, this subtly sweet treat is the perfect way to start your day or indulge in a midday pick-me-up.

A Slice of Italian Tradition

In Italy, breakfast is a simple yet delightful affair. Picture yourself in a quaint café, sipping a velvety cappuccino alongside a slice of moist, lemony cake. This recipe brings that experience right to your kitchen, allowing you to savor the essence of Italian mornings any day of the week.

Our Lemon Ricotta Cake, inspired by the beloved torta ricotta di mandorle e limone, combines the best of Italian baking traditions. The almond flour adds a rustic touch, while the ricotta ensures a tender, moist crumb that stays fresh for days.

Perfecting the Art of Simplicity

Creating the perfect Lemon Ricotta Cake is a delicate balance of flavors and textures. We’ve carefully crafted this recipe to achieve the ideal consistency – light, fluffy, and irresistibly moist. The secret lies in the quality of ingredients and the precise mixing technique.

Choosing the Best Ricotta

The star of this show is undoubtedly the ricotta. Opt for high-quality, whole milk ricotta with soft, creamy curds for the best flavor and texture. If possible, seek out traditional Italian-style ricotta or make your own for an authentic taste experience.

A Versatile Delight

While Italians might raise an eyebrow at the idea of cake for dessert, we won’t judge if you indulge in a slice after dinner. This versatile cake is perfect for any time of day – breakfast, brunch, afternoon tea, or as a sweet ending to your meal.

Lemon Ricotta Cake Recipe


  • 163g (1 1/4 cups) cake flour
  • 25g (1/4 cups) almond flour, sifted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt; for table salt, use half as much by volume
  • 200g (1 cup) granulated sugar
  • 100g (1/2 cup) light brown sugar
  • 170g (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 lightly packed tablespoons lemon zest (from 2 lemons)
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 15 ounces high-quality whole milk ricotta cheese, homemade or store-bought, at room temperature
  • Powdered sugar, for serving


  1. Preheat your oven to 325°F (160°C) and position the rack in the middle. Grease a 9-inch aluminum cake pan with nonstick baking spray and line it with parchment paper for easy removal.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the cake flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set this dry mixture aside.
  3. Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream together the granulated sugar, light brown sugar, butter, and lemon zest. Start on medium speed for about 1 minute, then increase to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, approximately 3 minutes. Remember to scrape down the sides of the bowl halfway through.
  4. Lower the speed to medium-low and add the eggs one at a time, ensuring each is fully incorporated before adding the next. Add the ricotta and mix on medium speed until well combined, about 1 minute. Don’t worry if the mixture looks slightly broken at this stage.
  5. Add all the flour mixture at once and mix on low speed for 15 seconds. Increase to medium speed and beat until the batter is smooth and well combined, about 30 seconds.
  6. Pour the batter into your prepared cake pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake for 65-75 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean with just a few moist crumbs.
  7. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 1 hour. Then, run a knife around the edges to loosen it. Invert onto a plate or wire rack, remove the parchment, and flip the cake right side up. Let it cool completely.
  8. Before serving, dust the cake with powdered sugar using a fine-mesh sieve. Slice and enjoy your homemade Italian delight!

Make-Ahead and Storage

This Lemon Ricotta Cake stays fresh for up to 3 days when stored in an airtight container at room temperature. For the best presentation, dust with a little extra powdered sugar just before serving.

You may also like: