Classic Pound Cake | An Easy 4 Ingredient Pound Cake Recipe
Classic Pound Cake uses only 4 simple ingredients that all weigh in at 1 pound each to create a traditional, dense, butter cake recipe that is perfect topped with strawberries and whipped cream!
Pound Cake is one of those old fashioned cake recipes that will always have place on my dessert table. I have created all sorts of variations on pound cake like my Million Dollar Pound Cake which includes (among other things) buttermilk to tenderize the crumb, and of course my Kentucky Butter Cake which is a MUST make!
But today we’re talking about traditional CLASSIC Pound Cake. This is a cake recipe that has been around for ages, and I wanted to share my tips and tricks on how to bake a homemade pound cake from scratch…because I feel like we all need to know the classics! Once you know the basic recipes, you can build and adapt them to suit your tastes and creativity, which is when the real magic happens!
BUT don’t be misled…there is magic in the basics too. This pound cake recipe is the building block for a pretty epic strawberry shortcake. Macerated strawberries and whipped cream add extra moisture and sweetness that pairs beautifully with the dense crumb of traditional pound cake. Or imagine how INSANE French Toast would be made out of thin slices of this cake!? But, if you were able to ask my Grandpa, I think he would have taken a slice of this plain with his coffee over just about anything else.
Why Is It Called Pound Cake?
Nope, it’s not because you will gain a pound by eating a slice…and no, not because it weighs a pound. In fact, it weighs about 4 pounds because you use these 4 simple ingredients that weigh a pound each:
- Butter: I use salted butter in this recipe. Since there is no additional salt, using salted butter is a great way to get a little more flavor in the cake!
- Sugar: Just plain old granulated sugar is perfect for this recipe. You could absolutely use light brown sugar as well to jazz it up!
- Eggs: I always recommend using all room temperature ingredients when you are baking, but I will admit that I don’t always adhere to this rule. It’s definitely not something to stress out too much about.
- Flour: In a classic pound cake recipe, you just use all purpose flour. This is a sturdy cake, and all purpose flour works great. You absolutely could use cake flour, but in this recipe it wouldn’t make a huge difference.
The batter is incredibly easy, and I would imagine that you have all of the ingredients in your kitchen at any given time to make a gorgeous pound cake…which is a pretty dangerous prospect if you ask me!
What Variations Can You Make to Pound Cake?
The sky is really the limit with the recipe. Let’s start basic with what you can add IN to the cake before baking:
- Flavored Extracts are a simple way to switch up the flavor. You can go for a simple vanilla extract, almond extract, lemon, coconut, rum…the list goes on. You will need to start with 1 teaspoon and add more if you would like. Vanilla extract is a milder flavor, so you can certainly get away with adding at least 2 teaspoons or up to a tablespoon! Some extracts are a little more powerful, so start with less. You can always add more if you would like!
- Add chocolate chips! Of course you can add chocolate chips to this pound cake. I like to add mini chips!
- Fresh citrus juice and zest! Make this a lemon pound cake by adding 2 tablespoons of lemon zest and no more than 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice.
- Berries. Not only are berries excellent on top of pound cake you can add them to the batter. Use fresh or frozen and thawed!
- Sprinkles! Of course!
- Mashed banana to add extra moisture.
- Add some pecans or walnuts to the batter it nuts are your thing.
Icing or Frosting is a Great Way to Sweeten up this Pound Cake
This is a no brainer! Beyond strawberries and whipped cream, you can easily top this cake with all sorts of sweet glazes!
- Pipe on some buttercream!
- Spread on some chocolate frosting 🙂
- Mix together 2 cups of powdered sugar and 1/4 cup milk and pour this sweet glaze icing on top!
- Mix a little rum with powdered sugar to create a boozy icing!
While all cake is delicious warm out of the oven, this cake, like most pound cake recipes, is actually better in my opinion the next day. It will become moister and more flavorful the longer it sits unsliced.
I hope you give this classic recipe a try! BUT…
If you’re Looking for Other Pound Cake Recipes, here are a few to choose from:
This is classic pound cake recipe with only four ingredients which weigh a pound each, which is where the name originated!
- 2 cups salted butter, room temperature
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 9 eggs
- 3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 10- cup bundt pan liberally with nonstick spray and set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment mix the butter and sugar together for 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until combined, scraping the sides as needed.
- Turn the mixer to low and add in the flour slowly until combined, again scraping the sides to ensure everything is combined evenly.
- Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 70-80 minutes, or until a knife inserted comes out clean. If you notice it is browning too much on the top, tent with foil.
Store airtight for up to 3 days.
I find that this cake is best if it sits overnight before slicing, as it becomes more moist.
Serve with whipped cream and fruit, icing, or ice cream.
Keywords: pound cake, cookies and cups, cake recipe, butter cake, bundt cake