Lemon Blueberry Ricotta Pound Cake

Delicious fine crumb pound cake with butter, eggs, ricotta cheese, sugar, flour, lemon zest, and blueberries.

You'll have better success with this cake if the ingredients are at room temperature before baking, specifically the eggs, ricotta, and butter. To quickly bring eggs to room temperature, place them in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes. The leavening in this recipe comes from the eggs (which will rise better if at room temp) and the baking powder. Make sure your baking powder is fresh! Baking powder older than 6 months tends to go flat.

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 1 hour, 5 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 10 to 12.

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups (250 g) all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup (8 ounces, 230 g) ricotta cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar (300 g)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp lemon zest
  • 1 cup (5 ounces, 140 g) blueberries

Method

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1 Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C). Prepare a 9x5-inch loaf pan, smearing the inside with butter. In a medium bowl, vigorously whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.

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2 Use an electric mixer (you can mix by hand but will get better results if you use an electric mixer) to beat together the butter, ricotta, and sugar, on high speed, for 3 minutes, until pale and fluffy.  Add the eggs one at a time, mixing on medium speed for one minute after each addition. Mix in the lemon zest and vanilla extract. Don't worry if the batter looks a little curdled at this point. It isn't curdled, it just looks that way.

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3 Remove the bowl from the mixer and stir in the dry ingredients in 3 or 4 additions, until just incorporated. Do not over mix. Stir in the blueberries.

4 Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, smoothing out the top with a rubber spatula. Place on a baking sheet on the middle oven rack of the oven. (This will help moderate the temperature at the bottom of the pan.) Bake for 65 to 75 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. For the last 10 minutes of baking you may want to put a sheet of aluminum foil over the top of the pan to keep it from browning further.

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5 Remove from oven and let cool for 15 minutes in the pan. Then run a dull knife around the edge of the cake to make sure it is separated from the pan. Gently remove the cake from the pan and let cool completely on a wire rack. Let cook completely before slicing.

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Comments

  1. Pinch Of Lime

    These are three of my favorite ingredients! I’ve made lemon, blueberry and ricotta pancakes before but never thought of a pound cake. I might be in love! Can’t wait to give this a whirl.

    • bill

      Made this tonight and was very disappointed in the results. It had a slight doughy taste and was no where sweet enough. To be fair the only white flour I had was Swans cake flour. Maybe that was part of the problem Any opinions?

  2. Tim

    Looks great, but amazed there’s no lemon juice in the recipe… or am I not seeing it? I love lemon-blueberry combinations, will have to try this one.

    • Elise

      Hi Tim, there is lemon zest in the recipe, not lemon juice. You can add even more lemon zest for a more lemony flavor if you want. As written it is just lightly flavored with the zest.

  3. Susan

    I love blueberry anything with a touch of lemon flavor included. The lemon seems to really punch up the flavor of the blueberries. I made a ricotta pound cake but with only vanilla extract as the flavoring. It was scrumptious, so I can imagine this with the blueberries will be outstanding. Thanks, Elise.

  4. Sarah

    Oh my! This looks amazing, and I bet it would be great for the summer get-together I’m planning with the family. Just one question…do you think this could be made ahead of time and put in the freezer for a couple weeks, without significantly changing the texture/taste?

    • Sarah

      In answer to my own question, yes it does freeze beautifully!!! This cake tastes wonderful, has a nice moist crumb, and even my picky dad loved it. Thank you Elise for posting this recipe!

  5. Leneia

    I made these into decadent little cupcakes with a smidge of lemon icing and a blueberry on top. I took them to a dinner party, and everyone loved them! They disappeared! Awesome recipe!

  6. tammy mae etter

    I just made this pound cake..it is beautiful and very yummy..I LOVE your site…the recipes are the best..have made many things on here!! THANKS

  7. Cheryl

    Hi Elise! You are on my home page and I copy and do sooo many of you recipes and they always work! I found if I toss my blueberries in a little cake flour before adding to any baked recipe, they will not all sink to the bottom. Am making this recipe for Memorial Day! Thanks for always inspiring me.

  8. Laura

    Delicious! If I may, I would like to pass on a tip. Toss the blueberries with a little flour after rinsing before adding them to the batter–it helps suspend them better in the cake as it bakes.

  9. fabiola@notjustbaked

    Blueberry everything, really berry anything is the best. I love this time of year, although we are not quite at berry season up here, it’s close. We have strawberries, and they make a beautiful bread. Your bread has the perfect crumb, it looks so delicious.

  10. Leslie

    This recipe sounds scrumptious, but also uses alot of sugar. Would the recipes come out the same if I cut back on the sugar?

    • Elise

      Pound cake is sweet. I’ve shown slices that are cut rather thick, you can easily cut thinner slices. The sugar helps provide moisture for the cake. I think you could get away with cutting in back to 1 cup (if you do, let us know how it works for you), but I personally wouldn’t cut it back further than that.

      • Leslie

        I’m not much of a dessert person, but on occasion I do enjoy something sweet. I made the following adjustments to your recipe: I used unbleached white whole wheat flour, one cup of sugar, an extra dollop of ricotta and an extra handful of blueberries. The cake was perfect for my taste! Not too sweet and very moist! Thanks for a delicious recipe!

  11. Elizabeth Carmichael

    Just made this batter and put it in the oven. I licked the bowl with the batter and it was delicious. I added more blueberries because mine were rather large, and it looked a bit skimpy in the batter. I also make an orange ricotta pound cake with amaretto liquor that is delicious from Giada de Laurentis.

  12. Judy

    Made this last night (even though a bit early for blueberries in Ontario) – was really delicious! Thanks for a great recipe…

  13. Annie

    Hello Elise! I’ve been married to my high school sweetheart for 3 years now and starting out as both a newlywed and a cook was a little daunting at first but your website has helped me tremendously! Thank you so very much for sharing all of your recipes including this scrumptious one i made today! My husbands favorites are your turkey meatballs with basil and the shrimp with tomatillos. So good!!!

  14. Espahan

    I have made this twice since you posted this recipe. It was heavenly good, with a wonderful tender texture. This is definitely a keeper. The second time I made it I substituted 1 cup of sour cream for the ricotta cheese. I have to say it was excellent both ways. I also forgot to add the blueberries and already had the batter in the pan the first time. No problem. I carefully pushed the blueberries into the batter with a knife and it came out perfect, just like the picture.

  15. Deanne

    I made this cake this afternoon and it came out perfectly delicious. I tell my husband when a recipe is yours and he knows he is in for a treat. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes.

  16. Jill

    This is CRAZY good! My husband and co workers loved it. Tip — Frozen berries work as well as fresh. Toss your berries in a table spoon of flour to keep them from settling on the bottom.

  17. Lesterk

    I have just put the ingredients out to bring to room temperature, so I can bake a little later today. But my husband is requesting a glaze on the finished product. Any suggestions?

  18. Dee

    I made the cake yesterday and it was very tasty. However, it was still a little under done after nearly 75 minutes. I had the oven temperature tested not long ago and it was right so I don’t think my oven is “off”. Did anyone else have this problem? I used a metal loaf pan, ot glass and all ingredients had been out for several hours.

    • Cindy

      Yes! I had the same problem with being underdone, although I followed the directions and have had no other issues with my oven. The flavor is amazing but most of the center was raw after 65 minutes.

  19. giantsfan

    Made this last night to share with work mates…
    Followed the directions as written, and it turned out moist, sweet, lemony and beautiful!
    Rave reviews and smiles from coworkers.
    Thanks Elise!

  20. Faye

    Hi! I tried this recipe and loved the light Summer-y taste. I did cut back the sugar by a cup, and wonder if this had anything to do with the cake being rather crumbly. Taste was great though!! 65 minutes was enough for me. Must be an oven-related issue.

  21. shoshana

    this is AH MAZING!!!! OMG it is taking all my restraint and will power to not devour the entire thing. i made this in a 9in springform pan and it came out beautifully. i would add a 1/2 cup more blueberries next time. i took half of the cake and froze it and am going to thaw it in two weeks when i am moving to my new job!

  22. reader cac

    Long time recipe user and first time contributer. It was the ricotta that grabbed me here – been on my mind for 3 weeks and finally baked it today. What a terrific cake and also a long over due thanks for all the great recipes I’ve enjoyed from your blog. I’ll be back!

  23. Denise

    I tried this for the first time and I loved it. What a wonderful recipe. Thank you so much for these great simple recipes. My family enjoys each and everyone i attempt.

  24. ChristineA

    Fantastic recipe, came out perfect! I will make this recipe to bring to a birthday next week. Love that its not too sweet, and the lemon, blueberries, and ricotta are delicious additions to this cake.

  25. Carol

    Made it twice in the past couple of days. First time I completely forgot to add sugar, oops! A glaze substitute would have worked but the loaf itself still very yummy. In the oven now for the second time, I did put in 3/4 cup sugar and some lemon juice, can’t wait to see how it turns out.

  26. Linda

    Hi Elise,

    Your website design is phenomenal, a standard of excellence that should be followed by others. And it is so clear you put your heart and soul into your work. Many, many thanks!

    I made this cake for a brunch this weekend. After 55 minutes, a toothpick come out clean so I removed from oven. I let it cool for a while (at least a half hour) and when I removed it from the pan it cracked in two! Disaster averted, however, about two-thirds were sliceable and the remaining third was cut up into bite size chunks that were quite welcomed by my guests who just wanted a taste of this delicious cake!

    I used a metal plan, cut sugar to about 1 1/14 cups, used whole milk, but part-skim ricotta, all at room temperature. I wonder if the part-skim ricotta could have caused it to be crumbly, or perhaps I should have waited until it was completely cool. Or maybe 55 minutes was just too short a baking time even though it passed the toothpick test. Thoughts?

    • Elise

      If you let the cake cool down all the way it will be less crumbly. Also I find it helpful to slice pieces from it with a serrated edge bread knife.

  27. Teresa

    Thanks so much for sharing this recipe. It was very moist, lemony, and delicious. I did have to bake it for the longer time. Next time I will cover it with foil a bit sooner and maybe lower the temperature of the oven just a bit (all my favorite loaf pans are glass). It was definitely challenging to remove from the pan; I ended up with just one large crack. Fortunately it was for family who care much more about the amazing taste than looks.

  28. Arcey

    I haven’t made this yet, but I do often make another cake that I throw blueberries into (a banana cake). So thank you so much to Laura who suggested coating blueberries with a little flour to make them suspend better throughout the cake mixture when baking. Great tip!! I’ve used it now a few times and the berries were beautifully distributed all through the cake. Bravo!

  29. mommy

    I made this twice in the past 24 hrs. I love it when a recipe comes out perfect the first time! It is moist and not overly sweet. So if you like cakes like Tres Leches (way too sweet for my tooth), you might be disappointed about the sweetness, but for the folks that think 95% of the stuff sold in the bakery is too sweet—you will be pleasantly surprised by this cake loaf. Thank you Elise.

  30. Andrea

    was so excited to make this…it’s been in the oven for 30 minutes, and some of the batter poured over the sides.
    any idea what might’ve happened?
    (I ate the baked drippings and they were delicious!)

  31. Vicki in GA

    To die for! I wouldn’t change a thing about this recipe…perfect flavor.
    In this area of Georgia, blueberries are abundant and cheap. The first year I lived here, I froze a lot of berries and wouldn’t use them because I couldn’t believe they were so reasonable. Yes, I was hoarding blueberries! I was use to little packages from Whole Foods that cost a fortune.
    How are things in Carmichael. I miss my old home town. I’m so happy to see you have become one of the Royals of food blogs.
    xxoo

  32. Arcey

    OMG! This cake is amazing. I’m not really a batter licker, but this one smelled so wonderful as I was preparing it, I tasted the batter that was left hugging the spatula. Man, was that good! Almost as good as the baked product.

    A few things I noticed:
    - I also had some side spillage — I think I could have used a slightly larger loaf pan. In fact, I think I’ll try it in a bundt pan next time.
    - The baking time was at least 75 or 80 minutes. I even raised the heat to 350 for the last 10 minutes because I just wasn’t getting done.
    - Twenty minutes prep time doesn’t seem realistic. It took at least half that time just to grate the peel from the lemons. (By the way, I used 6 medium-large lemons for this — gave me two packed tbsps. I’m not a novice, but I think it took more like 40-45 minutes from start to cake in the oven.

    Thanks so much for this fabulous recipe. I’m sure I’ll make it again.

  33. Megan

    Do you happen to have a link to the exact pan that you used? I used a 10×5 pan and the batter overflowed while it was baking, and it came apart into two pieces when I turned it out of the pan. It was delicious though! I’d love to make it again but I want to use the correct pan. Thanks!

  34. Pattie

    I have made this twice and even people who claim to dislike lemon loved it. We are still in blueberry season here so whenever we go to the market, my husband nods towards the berries and reminds me how much he loves this cake.

    It took longer to bake in my oven than the stated time but that might be my overn. It’s finicky.

    Thank you for all your lovely recipes.

  35. Mish

    Another wonderful recipe. Made it twice this week because I’m so enamored. As per Elise’s feedback, I used part-skim Ricotta and I cut back the sugar to 1 1/4 cup. Tasted fantastic and super moist. I think it would work with just 1 cup of sugar too, but I haven’t tried it yet so I can’t say for sure. I increased the blueberries to about 7 oz and tossed in flour as many others have noted (I also do that with chocolate chips and walnuts when I make banana bread.) I cooked it about 65 minutes and then 10-15 minutes with foil on top. For those who found it undone after that amount of time, maybe the foil helps? Also, because it’s so moist, you should let it fully cool in the pan before attempting to remove it. My first try the bottom stuck to the pan, and my second try was successful after letting it fully cool. My question for Elise is if you know how to adjust the baking time if making these as muffins or if I wanted to try in a springform pan or a rectangular cake pan?

    • Elise

      Hi Mish, thank you for all of your great feedback on the recipe! Your guess is as good as mine on baking times for alternative pans. But if you do experiment, please let us know how it goes!

  36. Fawzi

    Fantastic!. Very nice recipe. Followed it exactly except for pan, I had a square one and it worked too. Everyone loved it.

  37. Brenda Prudhomme

    This is now my favorite cake!! Also my coworkers and family live it. I made sure everything was at room temp. The cake was light moist lemony with a hint of “cheesecake”. Yum

  38. Leann

    This cake is amazing, so light tasty truly decadent!! In fact I have churned out four of these cakes this week and there is nothing left in the cake tin
    Please try it,is sure to indulge your senses!!

  39. steve baker

    I have some Ricotta left over, and fresh blueberries, and was searching for a recipe use them. This looked perfect.

    I have done recipe development and testing for quick breads for several best selling cook books, and can usually tell by reading the list of ingredients how a recipe will work as written. Then I often adjust accordingly.

    Something about this recipe seemed unusual, so I read through the comments to see what experience others might have had. The person who had the batter overflow the pan made me wonder, especially since, judging by the photos of the finished product, I was planning to use a 4×8 inch pan to get a taller loaf.

    Here are my observations on the recipe as written:

    1 3/4 Cups of Flour, by any measure I’ve used, will weigh 210 grams. (perhaps everyone else measured by volume and this person by weight?) More than an extra 1/4 Cup of Flour is a significant difference!

    Be sure to use Large Eggs, not Extra Large or Jumbo. This could easily amount to an extra egg.

    The size of the Blueberries could account for a slight difference. I use 512 grams/5.5 oz per pint as standard measure.

    A few other thoughts/tips:

    I would try baking the loaf at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes

    Varying the amount of Sugar in a recipe affects far more than the final flavor. Sugar affects water absorption, starch gelatinization, caramelization and foam stabilization, among other things. I wouldn’t suggest cutting it by more than one-third. In fact, if you wish to reduce your sugar consumption, cutting the thickness of slices by one-third is a better idea. (Plus, you’ll get half again as many slices!)

    Finally, I always line the bottom of pans for quick breads with parchment or baking paper so loaves release cleanly. (If you don’t have any, the paper wrappers for butter sticks work well. Just cut to fit, plus they’re free, and reusable!) Also, when you grease the pans, (and don’t bother with those spray products, which are expensive and build up on your pans over time), be sure to get the corners and edges well, and try to go only 2/3 way up the sides to about the depth where the raw batter will fill. This give the batter some “grip” to climb, and yields a nicer shaped loaf.

    I’ll let you know my baking experience later. Wish me luck!

  40. Arcey

    Thanks, Steve Baker (what an apropos name!). I was one of the people whose cake overflowed a 9×5 pan. I didn’t vary from the recipe as written, and did have to raise the temp to 350 at some point because it wasn’t anywhere near done at 60 minutes. The end product was absolutely amazing, so there was no harm in there being a bit too much batter for the pan. I just figured I’d use two smaller pans the next time (and maybe do one with blueberries and one with diced peaches), or use a Bundt or other tube pan.

    I did finally make this again this week and tried it in a fancy Bundt pan that looks like rose petals on top. I use that pan all the time for a banana cake I make, and that on just slides right out. This one stuck a little in the many grooves of the pan, but still looked pretty good, though not perfect. It tasted almost as good as the first time — the difference was that the first time, I had no idea how fabulous it was going to be, and this time I anticipated it being fabulous, so it had a lot to live up to. :)

    But the next day, it was fabulous all over again. I still want to try it sometime with diced peaches as well as blueberries. Sounds like it would be a nice combination of flavors, although the peaches might let off too much juice. Will let you know if I ever get around to that.

  41. Khadija

    I am yet experimenting baking on my own, motivated by my 5 year old daughter who loves baking,when did that happen:
    no clue. I had some left over blueberries and ricotta cheese so I goggled for desserts with these two ingredients and found this recipe. It was very easy to make and tasted splendid. My only problem was and likely because I am new to baking, the case did not come out of the pan in one piece!! it was sticking to the walls and so it fell apart when I took it out. Regardless, it tasted exceptionally good.

  42. citra

    i love this cake! it turned out very well.
    however i wonder – mine turned out that the top of the cake was almost burnt while the rest of the sides were not as brown it’s supposed to be (it’s quite pale). i followed the recipe/ingredients exactly.
    i have been using my tin for different type of cakes but only with this recipe it gave me a different colour. any idea/comment? many thanks for the great recipe and website!

  43. Jock From California

    Elise,
    Like everyone else, “Thank You For Your Very Special Blog” What an amazing amount of effort you expend for the benefit of others.
    Here at our Home: For Thanksgiving, we had a great deal of Ricotta Cheese left over from a Veggie Lasagna dish I created and thereafter I went searching for a sweetened use and I found your Blueberry recipe. I tweaked your recipe, as I do all recipes, and, if you don’t mind, I thought I’d share what I did.
    Accidently, I used the full amount of white sugar, 300 grams, and added 1/2 Cup of Light Brown Sugar. I meant to reduce the white sugar but forgot to alter/reduce the gram measurement, which I try and use in all my baking.
    On Purpose, I doubled the amount of blue berries. Mixed 1 cup with the “wet” batter. Added the dry ingredients, mixed well and then filled the pan half full of batter.
    Next, I cut six or seven large strawberries in half and placed them, face down, on top of the batter, then, I poured the next cup of berries on top of the strawberries and added the last half of the batter.
    Atop a cookie sheet, the loaf had to cook for almost two hours.
    This morning we sliced our first piece and discovered the strawberries had completely disappeared, however, in their absence, they left behind a delightfully unrecognizable sweetness and a flavor that none of us had ever experienced or knew. Oh! Because the loaf had a much darker exterior we were hesitate to try it, however, following the first bite, we are all hooked on the taste, texture and moisture content.
    LASTLY, having created many special dishes for our family and then attempting to transcribe them to paper, I can, with great clarity and admiration, applaud your talents as a cook and recipe writer. Reading a recipe is so much easier than writing a recipe for others to follow. Three Cheers for you Elise.
    Again, Thank You for sharing your many talents.
    Jock

  44. Kat

    Made this on a “snow day” last week. Had a ton of leftover ricotta but no lemons or blueberries. Subbed orange zest and frozen blackberries plus used orange extract instead of vanilla. Baked in a silicon loaf pan for slightly less time than stated in my convection oven. Delicious! Getting ready to give it another go (again with the blackberries because they’re what I have) with a Limoncello glaze. Thanks for the inspiration!

  45. Judy

    Yummy! I made this just as the recipe is written – except I used 2 xlarge eggs (that’s what I had and I misread the 3 for 2). The cake is wonderful and we love the light lemon flavor.

  46. Meg

    This was wonderful! My 9 yr old son wanted to pick out something to bake and I directed him to your blog, because everything I have made has been delicious and added to my recipe binder. He made it all by himself, followed the recipe exactly, and it was outstanding. He has now bookmarked your site and wants to try more recipes. Love your blog! Great variety. Keep up the great work!