Little lemon-tons

Prep: 25 mins Cook: 30 mins


Makes 16
Individual lemon sponge cakes with crunchy sugar topping that make a perfect addition to a tea stand

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freeze unassembled cakes only

Nutrition: per square

  • kcal299
  • fat15g
  • saturates8g
  • carbs37g
  • sugars29g
  • fibre1g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.4g
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  • 175g butter, softened



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 140g caster sugar
  • 140g self-raising flour
  • 50g ground almond
  • ½ tsp baking powder
    Baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

  • 2 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • juice 3 lemons, zest of 2



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 200g granulated sugar


  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Line the base and sides of a 20cm square tin with baking parchment (the easiest way is to cross 2 x 20cm strips over the base). Beat the butter, caster sugar, flour, almonds, baking powder, eggs, vanilla and the lemon zest and juice from ½ lemon with an electric whisk until smooth. Scrape into the tin and bake for 25-30 mins until a skewer poked in comes out clean. Let cool.

  2. Turn out onto a wire rack, trim edges and slice into 16 squares. Tip the granulated sugar onto a plate. Pour remaining lemon juice into another shallow dish. Very, very quickly, dip all sides of the cake squares, one-by-one, into the juice, then quickly in the sugar. Sit on a wire rack to set and crisp.

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Comments (29)

oscarisla2912's picture

easy recipe and great cake but agree with the other comments. didn't rise as much as i thought they would and started to fall apart on just dipping the top. It has to be done in a very quick dip dip action. but lovely taste.

Lennybell's picture

The cake itself was delicious but wish I'd read the comments before dipping them in lemon and sugar. Like others mine were almost falling apart and I found it a bit much having sugar on all sides. Will definitely make again but just with the lemon and sugar on the top.

shetlandgirl123's picture

These were delicious and very sweet but were soft and tended to fall apart when dipped in the sugar. Were still very tasty!

natalie_tadeusz's picture

Nice but needed more lemon in the sponge, also they didn't rise very well - they were about 2/3 the height of the ones in the picture . I only dipped the tops in the lemon & sugar though based on other comments....

emmaturner16's picture

These are absolutely gorgeous! Everyone who tastes them says how lovely and moist they are. At one point I was making them 2 to 3 times a week to keep up with the demand! I do find I have to cook for about 45mins - not sure if its just my oven though.

fyoung's picture

These are so easy and so lovely. I used cornstarch instead of almonds for lightness, and dipped half of the little squares in icing sugar for those no so keen on lemon. No need to dip every side in the lemon juice or they will fall apart, just the top will do.

ktcooper's picture

These are completely gorgeous. Just making my second batch and wondering about the optimum time between coating and eating them in order to ensure the best lemony 'crust'. Eat too soon and they're still damp, too late and the crust softens, so making now (afternoon), will coat late this evening for eating tomorrow morning. Any more ideas on this?

skyblueshez's picture

These were lovely, really light and lemony. I am a Coeliac so made them with Gluten Free flour (Doves' SR) and just added an extra egg, cooked them for 35-40 mins (ish - my oven is tempremental!!) and they were delicious!
I also only coated two sides with the lemon + sugar so I had the soft sponge on two sides and two sides of crunchy lemony-ness!

tanya30uk's picture

can these be frozen, does anybody know?

juliebahrain's picture

Although easy to make Ii was a little disappointed with these. I only did the tops with lemon and sugar but found the end taste to be more sharp and acidic than lemony. The sponge was lovely and soft but middle squares were a bit crumbly and one fell apart when I tried to dip it in the lemon juice. I think I would prefer just a lemon drizzle icing; my daughter didn't enjoy the crunch of the sugar.

sophiegray59's picture

Delicious cakes! Though they took 45 minutes in stead of 30, the centre was still slightly undercooked, does anyone have any tips for why it took longer to cook?

bridalzone's picture

oops! I didn't read instructions properly and tipped the juice of all three lemons into the mixture before baking. Dredged the top of the cake with icing sugar. Everybody loved it. It was lemon-tastic! This is the lemon cake I will be baking in future.

karenz's picture

Amazing little cakes! I dipped cakes very very quickly but needed to juice 6 small lemons in total. Will definitely make again!

leebusybee's picture

made these today, they are so lovely and light....will become a family favorite very quickly!
Only covered the top with juice and sugar and felt that was enough!

emmaleo's picture

Whoops! Forgot to rate them

emmaleo's picture

Made these twice this week! My family love them..very light and deliciously lemony! I only put the sugar on the top.

peanut's picture

Anneli and Terri 74

I don't like the taste of almonds either. Since the amount of almonds is only 50g, I would either add another 50g of self raising flour, or substitute the almonds with 50g of cornflour (this is used a lot in American recipes and can 'lighten' the cake) or or 50g of ground rice. Hope this helps

cosyflower's picture

Excellent little cakes. I substituted caster sugar for granulated sugar to decorate and instead of dipping the cakes into the lemon juice, I used a bristle pastry brush, dipped it in the lemon juice and brushed the outside of the cakes and it did not take up so much of the juice.

terrilouise74's picture

I also don't like almonds and would like to know if they can be left out or replaced with something else? thank you (o:

kaz1892's picture

does anyone know how long these will keep if I don't freeze them? - and assuming the other half doesn't eat them today!


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