Moist Pound Cake Recipe

Pound cake is such a lovely, rich, and yet delicately flavored treat that's beloved by many. Sometimes, we find ourselves wondering if it doesn't deserve a more whimsical name than the rather unalluring "pound cake." Yet, once you understand why it's called "pound cake," the name actually begins to come off not merely as whimsical but downright decadent. And who doesn't love a decadent dessert?

As recipe developer Angela Latimer explains it, pound cake got its name because it was originally made with "one pound each of each of four ingredients: flour, sugar, butter, and eggs." Though the recipe has changed somewhat over the years, the name's stuck around.

Latimer brings us this recipe for moist pound cake, which is so easy to prepare that you may find yourself wishing you had more to do. If that's the case, you're in luck because, in addition to delivering results that are practically guaranteed to be glorious, Latimer's recipe offers an opportunity to start learning how to measure your flour the way pros do. That is, you can do so by weight rather than by volume, using a kitchen scale that measures in grams. In no time, you'll be marveling at the level of precision a scale lends to all your baking. Of course, if you don't have a kitchen scale, then you'll be fine measuring the flour by the cup, as Latimer has provided instructions for that as well. 

Gather your ingredients for this moist pound cake recipe

To make Latimer's recipe for moist pound cake, you'll be mixing dry and wet ingredients separately before combining them all together. You'll need 187.5 grams of flour, or its measuring cup equivalent of 1 ½ cups. For the very best possible results, you'll want to weigh your flour as opposed to measuring it by volume. Either way, be sure to fluff your flour during the measuring process so that it doesn't become packed into the measuring cup. If you don't, this could result in a drier, denser bite in the final pound cake. 

You will also need ½ teaspoon of salt and ½ teaspoon of baking powder. For the wet ingredients, gather up one cup of butter at room temperature, one cup of granulated sugar, four large eggs plus an egg yolk (also at room temperature), ½ cup of sour cream, and 2 tablespoons of vanilla extract

Since "the best baking results come from room temperature ingredients," as Latimer maintains, you'll want to remove the sour cream, eggs, and butter from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before starting your prep. "This allows your cake to bake up faster and more evenly — which means that the pound cake is tender and moist throughout, without dried cakey edges or an under-cooked center," Latimer says.

Mix ingredients for moist pound cake

Before you start doing any other prep, be sure to preheat your oven to 350 F. That way, you'll know that it's fully up to heat and ready to go when it's time for the pound cake batter to go into the oven.

While you're waiting for your oven to heat up, generously butter a 9x5-inch loaf pan, and then coat the butter with flour. Don't skip this step, as it will help ensure that your pound cake will release from the pan at the very end. It doesn't take much time anyway, and you will also have plenty of time to start mixing your ingredients — so let's get to that now. In a medium mixing bowl, simply combine the flour, salt, and baking powder and whisk to combine. Set this dry mixture aside. 

Cream the room temperature butter

Now that your dry ingredients are blended together, you'll mix the wet ingredients. In a large mixing bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer) cream the butter until it changes to a "lighter almost white color," in Latimer's words. This means that air has been incorporated into the butter. At that point, add the sugar and whisk until fluffy, incorporating more air into the mixture. 

When you've achieved properly light and fluffy butter and sugar, it's time to add the four whole eggs. Do so one at a time. For best results, use a soft-sided spatula to scrape the bowl down between each addition. Add the egg yolk last and mix to make sure that all of the ingredients are fully incorporated. Since there's no gluten in this mixture just yet (that will come when you add the flour-heavy dry ingredients), you don't have to worry too much about overmixing. That said, stop when all of the wet ingredients are blended.

Finish stirring together the ingredients

Next up, add your room temperature sour cream and vanilla extract to the bowl with the wet ingredients. Combine it all until just incorporated. For best results, use a soft silicone spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl as you go. This helps ensure an even and smooth result, making sure that you don't have any lingering unincorporated bits in the final mixture. 

Now, it's time to add the dry ingredients to the wet. Fold them in gently to combine, this time being sure not to overmix. And again, for best results, periodically stop to scrape the sides using your spatula. Once the dry and wet ingredients are properly mixed, you've got your pound cake batter nearly ready to hit the oven!

Transfer to your loaf pan and bake

Transfer the pound cake batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top of the batter with a spatula. This will ensure a relatively level final surface and an even bake.

Place the loaf pan in the middle of the center oven rack for 35 minutes. At 35 minutes, if the loaf has already developed a buttery golden appearance, cover it with tin foil to keep it from browning further while it finishes cooking. After 45 minutes, insert a cake tester or knife. If it doesn't come out clean, give the baking process another 5 minutes. 

Once the baking is done, remove the pan from the oven. Though the smell may be supremely tempting at this point, practice some patience and let the cake (in its pan) cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Then, clear the sides of the cake with a butter knife or spatula and flip the loaf out of the pan. Allow the cake to finish cooling completely on a wire cooling rack. When it's ready, you can slice it up and enjoy!

Moist Pound Cake Recipe
5 from 23 ratings
This easy, straightforward recipe for moist pound cake is simple but offers up a ton of flavor and an opportunity to learn a valuable new baking skill.
Prep Time
5
minutes
Cook Time
45
minutes
Servings
12
slices
moist pound cake, baked
Total time: 50 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs plus one egg yolk, room temperature
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter and flour a 9x5-inch loaf pan.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking powder and whisk to combine. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl cream the butter until it changes to an almost white color.
  4. Add the sugar into the bow. Mix into the creamed butter until fluffy.
  5. Add the whole eggs one at a time, scraping the bowl down between each addition. Add the yolk last.
  6. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and combine until just incorporated, scraping the bowl down as you mix.
  7. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, folding the batter until it's just combined.
  8. Transfer the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth the top of the batter with a spatula.
  9. Bake in the middle of the center oven rack at 350 F for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a cake tester or knife inserted into the cake comes out clean.
  10. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  11. Clear the sides with a butter knife or spatula and flip the loaf out of the pan.
  12. Allow the cake to finish cooling completely, then serve.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 309
Total Fat 19.3 g
Saturated Fat 11.5 g
Trans Fat 0.6 g
Cholesterol 119.8 mg
Total Carbohydrates 29.4 g
Dietary Fiber 0.4 g
Total Sugars 17.3 g
Sodium 143.5 mg
Protein 4.2 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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