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Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake

Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake

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Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake – I baked up this exquisite cake for this month’s Blogger Clue reveal. Four layers of lemon cake were filled with lemon curd and mascarpone cream to create a lemon masterpiece!

Slice of Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake on a white plate garnished with raspberries

Blogger Clue

Besides my maternal grandmother’s Ginger Crisps and Overnight Fruit Salad, the memories of her layered lemon poppy seed cake with a custard filling is a securely etched memory. My mom recreated this Lemon Cake recipe only twice…and my sisters and I were in heaven each time. Our usual dessert was a bowl of vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce, so a real layer cake was definitely a special treat. When I spied this Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake dessert on my blog match for December, I knew my grandmother would approve!

Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake on a decorative cake plate

The Big Reveal!

I was thrilled to be assigned the blog of my dear friend, Alice, of  A Mama, Baby & Shar-pei in the Kitchen for this month’s Blogger C.L.U.E. We met through French Fridays with Dorie and have been cooking together from Around My French Table for years. We’ve also met in person twice which just bonded the friendship even more! And the belly laughs we had at the expense of some drunken Canadians earlier this fall will not soon be forgotten. Alice is the mom to two beautiful daughters and will be moving from California to Japan in just a few weeks. She’s one of the nicest people I know!

Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake viewed from above with a bowl of lemons


Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake

This Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake has four layers of lemon sponge cake, homemade lemon curd, and citrusy whipped cream mascarpone filling combined for the ultimate lemon dessert! My mother-in-law was in town and she joined the rest of the family inhaling our slices after dinner. My only complaint was that my Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake was on the dry side even after soaking with the lemon sugar syrup. I may have overbaked them, but next time, I’d swap out that recipe out for a sponge cake with a little butter added. Or (gasp, don’t tell anyone I said this, but even a boxed butter cake would work nicely. Just add some lemon zest!) Nobody else seemed to mind (or even notice) as they whittled away at this Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake. Another success!

This Month’s Blogger Clue Participants:

More Lemon Recipes:

Lemon Bar Cheesecake

Lemon Bar Cheesecake

Lemon on a Cloud | Luscious Lemon Custard in a Meringue Shell

Lemon on a Cloud

Tart au Citron

Tart au Citron

Meyer Lemon Poppy Seed Tea Cakes | That Skinny Chick Can Bake |

Meyer Lemon Poppy Seed Tea Cakes

Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake

Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake

A lemon layer cake with a delectable mascarpone filling

Prep Time 3 hours
Cook Time 28 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 28 minutes
Yield 12 servings


For the cake:

  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 6 ounces (14 tablespoons) sugar, divided use
  • 6 ounces (1 3/4 cups) sifted cake flour
  • Zest of one lemon

For the lemon syrup:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

For the lemon curd:

  • 5 eggs
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 9 tablespoons (4 1/2 ounces ) cold unsalted butter, cubed

For the mascarpone filling:

  • 2 1/2 cups (20 ounces ) heavy whipping cream
  • 3 ounces (7 tablespoons) granulated sugar
  • 1 pound mascarpone


  1. Preheat the oven to 375º. Line two 9″ cake pans with parchment paper, but do not grease.
  2. Whip the egg yolks with half of the sugar (7 tablespoons) in the bowl of a large stand mixer on high speed for 5 minutes, till very thick and light in color. Transfer the yolks to a separate bowl and wash the mixing bowl and whisk very well (any grease will prevent the whites from whipping properly).
  3. Whip the egg whites till soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 7 tablespoons sugar a on high speed, until the egg whites hold firm peaks.
  4. Fold one-third of the egg whites into the yolks with a spatula, then sift half of the cake flour on top and gently fold it in. Fold a second third of the egg whites into the yolks, sift the remaining cake flour on top, then fold that in. Finally, add the last of the egg whites, and when they’re almost incorporated, add the lemon zest and fold until everything is mixed together.
  5. Divide the batter between the two pans and bake for 18-22 minutes, until the tops are golden, firm, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the cakes to a rack to cool completely.
  6. To make the lemon syrup, heat the sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves and the liquid is clear. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Cool completely.
  7. To make the lemon curd, place the eggs, yolks, and sugar in the top of a double boiler and whisk until blended. Add the lemon juice and mix well. Cook, whisking constantly, until the curd reaches 180º on a candy thermometer (do not let the curd boil).
  8. Strain the curd through a metal strainer into a bowl. Add the cold butter pieces to the curd, and whisk gently until the butter is melted. Press some plastic wrap onto the surface of the lemon curd and chill 3-4 hours or overnight.
  9. To make the mascarpone filling, place the cream and sugar in the large bowl of a stand mixer and whisk just until they form firm peaks.
  10. In a large bowl, combine the mascarpone and 1-1/2 cups of lemon curd, and stir until they’re well-mixed. Gently fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture but don't overmix.
  11. To assemble the cake, use a sharp serrated knife to cut each of the cakes in half, making 4 thin cakes. Place one round on a serving plate, brush it with a quarter of the lemon syrup.
  12. Spoon about ⅓ cup of the mascarpone filling on top of the cake round, and use a spatula to spread it evenly around. Top the mascarpone with about ⅓ cup of lemon curd, and spread it in a thin layer.
  13. Place another cake round on top of the first, and brush with lemon syrup. Repeat the layer of cake rounds, lemon syrup, mascarpone, and lemon curd until you have added the final cake round to the top of the cake. Brush the top with the remaining lemon syrup.
  14. Spread the remaining mascarpone mixture along the top and sides of the cake. You may want to reserve some to pipe decorations on top of the cake.


Adapted from The Art and Soul of Baking by Cindy Mushet and Alice of of a Mama, Baby & Shar-pei in the Kitchen

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 735Total Fat: 35gSaturated Fat: 19gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 329mgSodium: 240mgCarbohydrates: 91gFiber: 1gSugar: 36gProtein: 15g


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34 comments on “Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake”

  1. Now that’s on luscious looking cake! I wouldn’t mind a slice right now at 6:30am! It was another fun challenge from the club!! ~ Ramona 🙂

  2. Why am I not surprised that you chose a gorgeous lemon dessert, Liz? This cake is so special and doesn’t look dry at all!

  3. Liz, so fun!!! I didn’t know Alice was moving to Japan?! We became friends after IFBC .. anyway, this cake is a DREAM!! gorgeous and doesn’t look dry at all!!

  4. Scrumptious! And, thank you for including a hint for the non-bakers like me. I might even attempt this with box mix yellow cake!!

  5. ohhhhh-my-goodness! I can’t even imagine how wonderful this cake it. I’ve never attempted a layer cake and this recipe is inspiring me to give it a try. Fabulous choice for this month’s party.

  6. I would LOVE that cake! I remember a lemon sponge cake I made several years ago…it’s been my favorite dessert so far. The added mascarpone in this one would probably put yours over the other for me. It’s so cool that you got someone that you’ve met before; it’s a bit like cooking with them in their kitchen.

  7. Love lemony desserts and this one turned out so gorgeous you would almost hate to cut it.

  8. It’s a nice idea make the recipes from our grandmothers ! Your cake is faboulous, I think your grandmum will be happy with and mine as well !

  9. What a delicious (and beautiful) cake to have as part of your memories of your grandmother. I love everything about this cake, especially the lemon flavor!!

  10. Absolutely lovely Lizzy!! I love lemon, look delicious!!

  11. You do such beautiful work Liz – this lemon mascarpone layer cake looks luscious! The meyer lemons are just now coming out – I believe I may have to try this for one of those Christmas potlucks!

  12. I love lemon! One of my favorite flavors. In fact, one can safely say I’m a lemon freak. Or maybe just a freak? 😉 Anyway, this is terrific — thanks.

  13. I am actually looking at this cake and thinking what a great Mother’s Day dessert. (I know my grandmothers would have adored it.) This was a fun round!

  14. This looks wonderful, Liz! It looks like you made an outstanding choice for a recipe. I have soooo got to make this one!

  15. Nothing can take the place of a good layer cake, Liz. Our grandmothers took pride in assembling these desserts for special occasions and they never seem to go out of style. Yours looks utterly lovely and as I pucker up for a taste, I only wish it was not virtual:)

    This sounds like such a fun event. A wonderful way to meet ne bloggers and connect with friends. Thank you so much for sharing, Liz…

  16. This cake is a showstopper, Liz! Absolutely gorgeous and delicious 🙂

  17. This is really lovely, one of your best creations Liz. I’ll try it with a boxed cake 😉 . Do not worry,I will not tell.

  18. What a wonderful cake. My grandmother would approve of this cake too. Lemon curd and mascarpone together would be dreamy.

  19. It looks so good. I can almost taste it. Yum. My poor grandchildren, their only memories of Nana’s cooking will be carry-out from Hollyhock Hill Restaurant. Oh well.

  20. Oh how I wish I had a big ole slice-o-dis right about now:@)

  21. Lemon is my favorite flavor in a dessert. This cake is beautifull! I also appreciate seeing all the other lemon offerings you’ve served up here. I’d be hard pressed to pick a favorite!

  22. What a gorgeous cake! I adore lemon desserts and this cake looks exquisite, the perfect use for my ripe Meyer lemons!

  23. I love lemon desserts so much, they are refreshing and the lemon just cuts through all the sweetness. I wish I had a slice right now!

  24. Liz, I love anything lemon, but this cake looks and sounds amazing and exactly the type of cake that I would love to make and serve!! I have made icing with mascarpone previously, and always make that rather than cream cheese icing! And, your website is fabulous–find myself pinning a lot of your recipes!

  25. That is one gorgeous cake, Lizzy! I love lemon and the mascarpone filling sounds luscious! Very nice, indeed!

  26. This cake is gorgeous! I love making old fashioned desserts.

  27. This is one of the most beautiful cakes I’ve ever seen. Really perfect! I adore lemon and this is calling my name. Bravo!

  28. You have my attention. You had me at lemon. I pinned.


  29. Im glad you enjoyed this one Liz! It was easily the most popular cake I made while living in England. The moisture there was different to the States though and the cake was really tender and moist, so its interesting that you found it dry. Hmm… making it with a box mix is much easier too I think since this recipe has so many steps involved in making it! You could easily buy lemon curd too to cut that long process out. Thanks for all the kind word, dear friend! Hope to see you again soon! Maybe a few less Canadians this time… *wink*!

  30. Oh I may have just found my cake for christmas eve, looks just amazing, Going in the contender’s list.

  31. This cake looks gorgeous, Liz! Your grandmother would definitely approve. Lemon layer cakes are my ultimate weakness and I am smacking my lips just thinking of all that lemon goodness packed in here from the lemon syrup, lemon curd and the mascarpone filling – oh my goodness! I’m in love!

  32. One suggestion, use more like 1/2 cup of the Mascarpone filling between layers. WIth 1/3 cup the layers were very thin and we had oodles left over after frosting the outside (including piping). The instructions for the lemon curd were spot on, it came out PERFECT after a night in the fridge. You might reorder the directions to make the curd first since it has to rest in the fridge at least 3-4 hours.

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