This raspberry lemon ricotta cake is super moist, soft, buttery and not too sweet with the right amount of tartness. It’s also super simple to make and only needs a bowl and a spatula! Serve it for breakfast, brunch, tea time or at a party. It is sure to impress!
The best part about this ricotta cake:
This cake doesn't need any fancy equipment or electric mixer. Just a big bowl and a spatula will do the trick. Super quick and easy to make and lesser dishes to clean up, what can be better than that? This cake is perfect to make when you don't want to spend too much time in the kitchen but still want to impress your guests 😊
The ricotta cheese keeps this cake incredibly moist and lends to the buttery flavor. The texture is almost a cross between a cake and cheesecake. It has a tender crumb and the floral aroma of the lemons + the tart raspberries make this so addictive. I should know since I ate one too many a slice right after it was made 😅
How to make your own ricotta cheese at home?
I've used store bought ricotta cheese in this recipe, but it is fairly straightforward to make your own ricotta at home.
You will need about a litre of milk and an acidic agent (like lemon juice or vinegar) to make 1 cup of ricotta cheese. The process is similar to making a lot of different cheeses where you will heat the milk until it is warm and add in an acidic agent so that it curdles. Then you strain the cheese curds to get freshly made ricotta cheese. I have included full instructions in the notes section of the recipe below. Jump to Recipe.
I've kept this ricotta cake recipe less sweet on purpose. I like to enjoy a slice of it with my morning coffee or evening tea and I find that the tartness + slight sweetness pairs perfectly with a warm beverage.
If you like sweet desserts, I would suggest increasing the amount of sugar in both the cake and lemon curd. You could go up to 1 cup in the cake and ½ to ⅔ cup while making the lemon curd, for a more sweet less tart combination.
Incredibly easy lemon curd that comes together in less than 5 minutes!
I like to serve this ricotta cake drizzled with a tangy and smooth lemon curd that is so incredibly easy to make as you will see in the video!
A lot of recipes for lemon curd ask for it to be cooked on a bain marie (bowl placed over a pot of simmering water). This process is to ensure that the eggs in the curd don't get scrambled.
I find this step totally unnecessary! Follow my instructions exactly and you will have perfect lemon curd in about 5 minutes or less. Just remember to keep your heat on the lowest possible and stir continuously with a spatula or whisk. The curd goes from being runny to thick in matter of seconds so don't walk away from it! If you like your lemon curd more sweet and less tart, increase the sugar to anywhere between ½ - ⅔ cup.
Use fresh organic lemons if you can find them. Bottled lemon juice will not work in this recipe. Since you are using the zest and juice, organic lemons will work best here. If you can find Meyer lemons, that would be even better. The sweet and floral aroma of Meyer lemons works so well in this lemon curd.
Tips to make this raspberry lemon ricotta cake:
- Parchment paper: I lined my baking pan with parchment paper for easy cleanup. If you don't have parchment paper, grease your baking pan really well since this cake likes to stick (because of the ricotta cheese and raspberries).
- Sugar: I like my cakes not very sweet. If you like a more sweet less tart cake, increase the amount of sugar to 1 cup in this recipe.
- Raspberries: I love using frozen raspberries in this cake recipe since they seem to stay together better and not melt and ooze. If fresh ones are all you can find then they will still work here.
- Baking time: My ricotta cake took about 50 minutes to be fully cooked but yours might take more or less time depending on your oven. The cake is fully cooked when a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Check on it every 5 minutes starting at the 35 minute mark.
- Cooling: This cake should be cooled completely in the baking pan to prevent it from cracking or breaking because of the heat and steam.
- Lemon curd glaze: While the lemon curd glaze is option, I highly recommend it. It adds a lovely tartness and extra juiciness to the cake!
- Leftovers: This cake will stay well if refrigerated for about 5 days.
Best baking pan to use for this ricotta cake:
I made this cake in a 9 inch baking pan, but if you like a taller cake then it would also work great in a 7 inch baking pan. Just make sure to increase the bake time for a smaller pan. A spring form pan will work the best in this recipe, since you will be able to un-clip the pan even before it is completely cool without fear of breaking it.
More recipes to try out:
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Raspberry Lemon Ricotta Cake
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (softened at room temperature)
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 2 large eggs (at room temperature)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest (from 1 large lemon)
- 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
- 1.5 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1.25 cups frozen raspberries divided
- ½ cup lemon curd
- fresh raspberries (for topping, optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 F/180C. Grease an 9-inch round cake pan with butter and line the bottom with parchment or baking paper.
- In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt until well combined and set aside.
- In another large mixing bowl, add butter and sugar and mix together using a spatula until pale and creamy. Add vanilla extract and ricotta and mix until well combined. Next add in the eggs one at a time and mix well switching to a whisk if needed. Also add in the lemon zest at this stage and mix well.
- Add half of the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and fold the mixture lightly before adding the rest of the flour mixture and mixing until just combined. Finally, Add in 1 cup of frozen/fresh raspberries and fold lightly until everything is well combined.
- Transfer the cake batter into the baking pan and top with another ¼ - ½ cup frozen raspberries.
- Bake the cake until it turns golden brown and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean 45-55 minutes. Let it cool at completely before unmolding onto a cake platter/plate.
- Once the cake has cooled completely, top it with
lemon curdand decorate with fresh raspberries and icing sugar.
- If you like a more sweet less tart cake, increase the amount of sugar to 1 cup in this recipe.
- My ricotta cake took about 50 minutes to be fully cooked but your’s might take more or less time depending on your oven. The cake is fully cooked when a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Check on it every 5 minutes starting at the 35 minute mark. If you are using a smaller cake pan, it will take longer to cook.
- This cake will stay well if refrigerated for about 5 days.
- 1 litre full fat milk
- 2.5 tablespoons lemon juice or white vinegar
- Warm the milk in a tall saucepan until it just starts to steam. Don't let it come up to a boil. (The temperature of the milk should be around 200F/93C).
- Remove the milk from heat. Pour in the lemon juice or vinegar. Stir gently to combine.
- Let the pot of milk sit undisturbed for 10 minutes. After this time, the milk should have separated into clumps of milky white curds and whey.
- Strain the cheese curds over a strainer lined with a cheese cloth. Let the cheese drain for about 20 minutes.