Mini Limoncello Lemon Bundt Cakes are not only adorable, but they’re also a decadent, moist, and tangy dessert. You’ll find an array of bright, high-quality ingredients in each one. They’re extra light, fluffy and delectable!
Bright and tangy mini lemon cakes
Packed with bright lemon flavors and warming vanilla, these Mini Limoncello Lemon Bundt Cakes will bring a little bit of sunshine to all kinds of special occasions. Their miniature size makes them perfect for garden parties, baby showers, or any upcoming celebration.
These elegant mini lemon cakes are made with high-end ingredients that truly take each bite to the next level. You’ll find 3 “layers” in each one:
- A light and airy mini lemon bundt cake
- Homemade limoncello icing on top
- And a dollop of cream cheese frosting and a lemon wheel
Feel free to experiment with your decorations to get the limoncello cakes just the way you like - candied lemon slices would be a great way to decorate. You can omit the cream cheese frosting for a true dairy free dessert or swap the limoncello for alcohol-free lemonade.
Looking for more bright and tangy lemon desserts for the garden party? Then you’ll have to try my Lavender Lemon Sandwich Cookies or my Lemon And Mascarpone Cream Tart!
Limoncello cake ingredients
Here's what you'll need to make these perfect size mini lemon bundt cakes:
- Cake flour - Naturally low in gluten, this flour will keep your cakes extra tender and fluffy. No cake flour at home? DIY it with all purpose flour and cornstarch! For every one cup of flour, remove one tablespoon of flour and add one tablespoon of cornstarch.
- Lemons - Using the zest and juice helps to pack in as much citrusy tang as possible.
- Kefir - This tangy, yogurt-like drink is packed with healthy bacteria and yeast. Most of the kefir you can get at the grocery store is made with cow’s milk, so be on the lookout for a dairy-free version if that's your preference!
- Neutral oil - I prefer using canola or grapeseed oil. Coconut, vegetable, or avocado oil can also be used.
- Limoncello glaze - A sweet and boozy mixture of limoncello liqueur and powdered sugar is poured over the baked cakes to give them an extra burst of bright flavors and moisture.
- Whipped cream cheese frosting - This classic carrot cake or cupcake frosting is also exceptionally delicious on a bright and vibrant lemon cake. Plus, it’s very easy to make using unsalted butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. If you’d like to keep the mini cakes 100% dairy-free, you can omit the frosting.
- Garnish - Are you a lemon lover? Add a lemon wheel or candied lemon slices on top of the little cakes an extra bit of flair and bright lemon flavor!
Looking to create delicious and homemade garnishes to elevate your creations? Try adding Sugared Flowers, Candied Rose Petals, Dried Orange Slices or Sugared berries!
How to make mini lemon cakes with limoncello glaze
These mini bundt cakes look so adorable when baked in mini bundt pans, but a cupcake tin may also be used. Get some mixing bowls and your stand mixer ready because you’ll want to enjoy these lemon glaze cakes as quickly as possible:
To make the mini lemon cakes:
Step 1: Mix the dry ingredients. Sift the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a small bowl. Set aside.
Step 2: Mix the wet ingredients. Whisk the eggs, sugar, oil, lemon zest, vanilla paste, kefir, lemon juice, and lemon extract together in a separate medium bowl until well combined.
Step 3: Finish the cake batter. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
Step 4: Bake the cakes. Fill the miniature bunt pans with the cake batter. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the thickest part of a cake comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool on a wire rack.
To make the limoncello glaze and cream cheese frosting
Step 1: Make the limoncello glaze. Whisk the limoncello and powdered sugar together until the mixture is thick and glossy. Set aside.
Step 2: Make the whipped cream cheese frosting. Whip the softened butter and cream cheese together. Slowly add the powdered sugar and vanilla until you have a light and fluffy frosting.
Step 3: Decorate the cakes and serve. Use a toothpick to poke small holes into each of your mini lemon cakes before generously drizzling the top of the cake with limoncello glaze. Pipe a dollop of whipped cream cheese frosting on top, garnish with a thinly sliced lemon round, then serve!
Ingredient Tips for Dairy-Free Mini Lemon Cakes
DIY Cake Flour
No cake flour? No problem! If you don't have cake flour at home, you can make your own substitute using all-purpose flour and cornstarch. Cake flour has a low percentage of protein - therefore we need to "weaken" our all-purpose flour by adding cornstarch and removing some flour.
For every one cup of flour, remove one tablespoon of flour and add one tablespoon of cornstarch. Whisk to combine, and you're all set!
Fresh Lemon Juice
Freshly squeezed lemon juice is key for this limoncello cake recipe! Prefer the bottled juice? I would highly advise taste testing bottled lemon juice next to freshly squeezed. The difference is sure to shock your taste buds! Freshly squeezed lemon juice is more naturally acidic, bright, and flavorful.
The process of making lemon extract is incredibly similar to creating Vanilla Extract. First, gather and peel six lemons and put the peels in a jar. Cover the lemon peels with one cup of vodka and let the extraction process commence! By shaking daily and keeping in a cool, dark place for approximately two months - you'll have lemon extract!
The process of creating homemade lemon extract requires a slow, cold infusion. Alcohol is known to be the most effective way to help extract flavors from ingredients. Extracting flavor from lemon peels can take quite some time - the longer you allow the extract to sit, the flavor will become richer and the color will continue to develop.
Tips for baking with olive oil
Here are a few reasons why you may want to start incorporating more neutral oils into your cake baking rather than butter!
- Dairy Free - For those with allergies and sensitivities this can be an amazing alternative option.
- Ever so Moist - At room temperature, olive oil is a liquid as it is 100% composed of fat. Butter on the other hand is a combination of both water and fat, so when placed in the fridge it solidifies. You may be familiar with cake recipes that remind you to take the cake out of the fridge for an hour or two before serving. This allows the butter in the cake and buttercream to soften, promoting a more tender and moist mouthfeel. By using olive oil instead of butter in cake recipes, you avoid this issue completely.
- Olive Oil Flavor - When picking what olive oil to use, try choosing an Extra Virgin Olive Oil with a mild-flavored variety. Some olive oils have a tendency to be quite spicy and peppery and depending on your baked good, this could be too much of a contrasting and overpowering flavor.
- A "Good Fat" - Olive oil contains a large number of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties and Vitamin E. Ultimately what I'm telling you is.... a slice of cake a day COULD keep the doctor away!?
Frequently asked questions
Limoncello is an Italian-style lemon-flavored liquor. This “adult lemonade” is typically made from lemon zest, sugar, water, and alcohol. This popular drink is sweet, tangy, and packed with an intense lemon flavor.
Absolutely! Simply make and bake your mini lemon cakes as normal and allow them to cool completely. Wrap each cake in plastic and store on the counter for up to 5 days or in the fridge for up to 1 week. When you’re ready to enjoy these cakes, simply garnish and serve!
Yes! If unfrosted and properly wrapped in plastic or placed in an airtight container, these mini lemon cakes should freeze well for up to 3 months. Just be sure to thaw them completely before frosting, garnishing, and serving.
Craving more cake based desserts?
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Mini Limoncello Lemon Bundt Cakes
- Mini Bundt Cake Pan
Lemon Mini Bundt Cakes
- 1 ⅓ cups (160 g) Cake Flour
- 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
- ¼ teaspoon Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 1 cup (200 g) Granulated Sugar
- 2 Eggs
- ⅓ cup (73 g) Neutral Oil, Canola or Grapeseed
- 2 Lemons, zested
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Paste , or vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoon Lemon Extract , optional
- ⅔ cup (160 g) Kefir
- 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
- 2 cups (240 g) Powdered Sugar
- ½ cup (120 g) Limoncello
Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting and Garnish
- 2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, room temperature
- 2 Tablespoons Cream Cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup (120 g) Powdered Sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- 1 Lemon, thinly sliced into lemon wheels
Lemon Mini Bundt Cakes
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Sift the dry ingredients into a medium sized bowl - your flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.1 ⅓ cups Cake Flour, 1 teaspoon Baking Powder, ¼ teaspoon Baking Soda, ½ teaspoon Salt
- Separately, whisk the eggs, sugar, oil, and zest. Then add vanilla paste, kefir, lemon juice, and lemon extract, whisking until combined.1 cup Granulated Sugar, 2 Eggs, ⅓ cup Neutral Oil, 2 Lemons, 1 teaspoon Vanilla Paste, 2 teaspoon Lemon Extract, ⅔ cup Kefir, 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
- And dry ingredients into the bowl of wet ingredients while continuing to mix.
- Pour batter into two well sprayed mini bundt pan until each cavity is halfway to ⅔ full. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until your cakes pass the toothpick test and allow them to cool.
- Combine ingredients in a bowl, whisking until smooth. Once your mini bundt cakes are cool, poke holes into the cake with a toothpick. Then coat the top of each cake with lemon glaze slowly, allowing the glaze to sink into the surface and holes of the cake.2 cups Powdered Sugar, ½ cup Limoncello
Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting and Garnish
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the softened butter and cream cheese on high until light and fluffy, about 5-6 minutes, scraping down the bowl and paddle every couple minutes. Turn the mixer to low and add the powdered sugar, scraping down the bowl while adding the vanilla.2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, 2 Tablespoons Cream Cheese, 1 cup Powdered Sugar, 1 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- Pipe a small round of frosting onto the mini bundt cakes and top with a thin lemon wheel before enjoying!1 Lemon
- What is limoncello? Limoncello is an Italian-style lemon-flavored liquor. This “adult lemonade” is typically made from lemon zest, sugar, water, and alcohol. This popular drink is sweet, tangy, and packed with an intense lemon flavor.
- Can you make lemon cakes ahead of time? Absolutely! Simply make and bake your mini lemon cakes as normal and allow them to cool completely. Wrap each cake in plastic and store on the counter for up to 5 days or in the fridge for up to 1 week. When you’re ready to enjoy these cakes, simply garnish and serve!
- Are mini lemon cakes freezer-friendly? Yes! If unfrosted and properly wrapped in plastic or placed in an airtight container, these mini lemon cakes should freeze well for up to 3 months. Just be sure to thaw them completely before frosting, garnishing, and serving.
May I know where I can buy that particular bunt pan?
Hi there Smitha! It looks like Nordicware now carries a slightly different yet similar option called the "Brilliance Bundlette Pan" I hope that helps!
Can I make this in a regular Bundt pan with the same measurements or is this specifically for mini?
Sadly, I haven't tested this batter in a regular size bundt cake pan - if you were to give it a try I would probably double the recipe, but you may have a bit of batter leftover depending on the size of your Bundt pan!