Vegan Lemon Loaf

By Jessica Hylton -

This Glazed Vegan Lemon Loaf, aka vegan lemon pound cake, is so moist and flavorful. Packed with tangy lemon zest and topped with a sweet lemon-vanilla glaze, this soft homemade loaf cake is perfect for a decadent breakfast or a rich dessert!

A slice of vegan lemon pound cake.

One of my favorite vegan-ized desserts is this Glazed Lemon Loaf recipe, which is basically a glazed pound cake. It’s just as good as a classic lemon pound cake, and it’s also super easy to make. The cake itself is moist and spongy, and the simple glaze is tangy and sweet. Prepping both components won’t take you more than 15 minutes at most. It’s elegant, yet just casual enough that it works for most occasions! I hope you enjoy this rich lemon loaf cake as much as I do.

Ingredients for vegan lemon loaf.

Notes on Ingredients

Please note that this is important information on the ingredients and instructions and the FULL recipe with amounts and details can be found DOWN BELOW (scroll to it) in the recipe card.

I could talk for a while longer about my love for soft, tender pound cakes, but we’ve got dessert to make. So, let’s get started! Here are the ingredients you’ll need to round up:

For the Lemon Loaf

  • Sugar: I like to use cane sugar in this lemon loaf, but granulated sugar will also work just fine.
  • Oil: This adds great moisture to the cake, and helps to keep the flavour focus on the lemon, which is why I don’t use melted butter here.
  • Lemon Extract: For extra tangy lemon flavour. Don’t skip this – this really gives it that lemon-y flavour.
  • Vanilla Extract: Vanilla bean paste will also work if you prefer to use that instead.
  • Lemon: You’ll need both the zest and the juice from two lemons.
  • Yogurt: Just use regular vegan yogurt, plain and unsweetened.
  • Flour: I always mix in all-purpose flour, but you could try this recipe with gluten-free or cake flour.
  • Baking Powder and Baking Soda: To help your loaf cake rise up tall.
  • Salt: I like to use sea salt. Remember if you’re using table salt to reduce how much you’re using since the granules are smaller than sea salt.

For the Glaze

  • Powdered Sugar: You can also add extra to the top of the cake once it’s done, as a garnish.
  • Milk: Use whatever vegan milk (soy, almond, coconut, etc.) that you like.
  • Lemon Juice: For extra zesty flavor.

*All ingredients should be room temperature.

Two slices of glazed lemon loaf cake.

How to Make Vegan Vanilla Loaf from Scratch (Step by Step Instructions)

Please note that this is important information on the ingredients and instructions and the FULL recipe with amounts and details can be found DOWN BELOW (scroll to it) in the recipe card.

Mix the Wet Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, or bowl of a stand mixer, add the sugar, oil, lemon extract, vanilla extract and lemon zest. Mix together with a whisk for about 3 minutes on low speed or via hand until all fully incorporated.

Combine with Yogurt and Lemon Juice: Add in the vegan yogurt and the lemon juice and whisk for 30 seconds until fully incorporated. Scrape down the sides.

Combine the Dry Ingredients: In a small bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and sea salt. Add to the wet ingredients and mix for about a minute on low speed until just incorporated. Scrape down the sides again. Pour the batter into the loaf pan and use your spatula to smooth down the top.

Bake Your Loaf: Bake the lemon loaf on the middle shelf of your oven for 55-60 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan.

Remove from the Loaf Pan: Transfer the loaf to a wire rack by placing the wire rack on top of the loaf, then holding the sides of the pan and flipping it over and removing the pan. Hold the sides of the loaf to turn it right side up. You can also turn the pan over into your hand, and then flip right side up and place on a wire rack. Allow the bread to cool completely, then drizzle on the glaze.

Making and Adding the Glaze

Once you’ve got the loaf cooling, you can get started on the glaze! It takes less than 5 minutes to whip together:

Mix Everything Together: Mix together the powdered sugar, vegan milk and lemon juice until fully combined. Feel free to thicken if desired with more powdered sugar, or thin out with more milk or lemon juice (depending on which flavor you prefer).

Tips for Success with Your Lemon Loaf

Another reason why I love this lemon loaf is that it’s kind of a mix between a quick bread and a cake. You can serve it as a sweet breakfast, a midday snack, a dessert, etc. (Or you could do all 3… just an idea!)

  • Do I Need a Stand Mixer? Nope! You can do everything by hand if you like, it just takes longer. But, at the same time, it’s a good workout!
  • How to Tell When Your Loaf is Done: Bake your loaf cake until a toothpick comes out clean, or with barely any crumbs on it.
  • Let the Loaf Cool Before Icing: If the lemon loaf is too warm, the icing will become runny and thus messy. If you let the cake cool completely, though, you’ll have more control over how the glaze settles.
  • Can I Make the Glaze Ahead? Sure! You can store it in your fridge up to 2 days ahead of time, if needed.
Sliced loaf of vegan lemon quick bread.

How to Store Glazed Quick Breads

The best way to store this glazed quick bread is in an airtight container in the fridge. It should save for 3-4 days, and tastes great cold, or at room temperature. This helps also to soften it up beautifully.

Can I Freeze This?

Absolutely! Freeze this lemon loaf cake in an airtight container, and it will keep for 1-2 months. I would recommend freezing your cake without icing, though, because it tastes better if you add fresh glaze once it’s thawed.

Enjoy friends! If you make this Glazed Vegan Lemon Loaf, please snap a photo and tag #jessicainthekitchen on Instagram! We’d also love it if you would leave a comment below, and give the recipe a rating! Thanks so much!

A slice of vegan lemon pound cake.

Glazed Vegan Lemon Loaf

This Glazed Vegan Lemon Loaf, aka vegan lemon pound cake, is so moist and flavorful. Packed with tangy lemon zest and topped with a sweet lemon-vanilla glaze, this soft homemade loaf cake is perfect for a decadent breakfast or a rich dessert!
by: Jessica in the Kitchen
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 10
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Ingredients

For the Loaf Cake**

  • 1 cup cane sugar (200g) or any granulated sugar
  • ½ cup oil (100g, if using coconut oil ensure it’s melted)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest (from two lemons)
  • 1 cup regular vegan yogurt (plain and unsweetened)
  • cup lemon juice (from two lemons)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (240g, sifted)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon sea salt

For the Lemon Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vegan milk
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Instructions

Instructions

For the Loaf Cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C. Spray a 9×5 loaf pan with an oil spray to prepare it. Set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, add the sugar, oil, lemon extract, vanilla extract and lemon zest. Mix together with a whisk for about 3 minutes on low speed or via hand until all fully incorporated.
  • Add in the vegan yogurt and the lemon juice and whisk for 30 seconds until fully incorporated. Scrape down the sides.
  • In a small bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and sea salt. Add to the wet ingredients and mix for about a minute on low speed until just incorporated. Scrape down the sides again. Pour the batter into the loaf pan and use your spatula to smooth down the top.
  • Bake the lemon loaf on the middle shelf of your oven for 55-60 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean or with barely any crumbs.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan. Transfer the bread to a wire rack by placing the wire rack on top of the bread, then holding the sides of the pan and flipping it over and removing the pan. Hold the sides of the bread to turn right side up. You can also turn the pan over into your hand, and then flip right side up and place on a wire rack.
  • Allow the bread to cool completely. Drizzle on the lemon glaze, ensuring to spread it down the sides too. Slice as desired. Enjoy!

For the Lemon Glaze

  • Mix together the powdered sugar, vegan milk and lemon juice until fully combined. Feel free to thicken if desired with more powdered sugar or thin out with more milk or lemon juice depending on which flavor you prefer. You can store this in your fridge for 2 days.
NOTES
  • Do I Need a Stand Mixer? Nope! You can do everything by hand if you like, it just takes longer. But, at the same time, it’s a good workout!
  • How to Tell When Your Loaf is Done: Bake your loaf cake until a toothpick comes out clean, or with barely any crumbs on it.
  • Let the Loaf Cool Before Icing: If the lemon loaf is too warm, the icing will become runny and thus messy. If you let the cake cool completely, though, you’ll have more control over how the glaze settles.
  • Can I Make the Glaze Ahead? Sure! You can store it in your fridge up to 2 days ahead of time, if needed.
  • Weighing Out – I highly recommend as usual if you’re baking to use a scale instead of just scooping (it can be highly inaccurate and lead to a dough that’s too dry or too wet)! You’ll get far better results every time. This is my favourite scale (affiliate link) and it ranges $10-$11: GreaterGoods Scale
It isn’t necessary, but you can add a few drops of yellow food colouring/gel to give this that quintessential yellow(er) colour too.
**bring all ingredients to room temperature.

Nutrition

Calories: 328kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 293mg | Potassium: 39mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 84mg | Iron: 1mg
by Jessica

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Recipe Rating




20 comments

  1. Catalina Arjona says:

    Hi! Is the lemon extract a must? They don’t sell it where I live!

    • Gavin | Jessica in the Kitchen says:

      Hi Catalina! I’m sorry about that. It is a pretty integral part of the recipe. If you have lemon flavouring that can work if in a bind add extra lemon zest about 1 table spoon to every half table spoon of extract. I hope this helps.

  2. Adrienne says:

    Can you sub anything for the yogurt?

    • Gavin | Jessica in the Kitchen says:

      We haven’t tested it yet but you should be able to sub coconut cream. I hope this helps!

  3. Elizabeth says:

    5 stars
    This recipe is a keeper! I made it for guests for dessert served with berries and whipped coconut topping on the side and got rave reviews from vegan and nonvegan guests alike. I managed to have a leftover slice which I enjoyed with a cup of tea for a decadent breakfast. So good! This recipe was easy to follow and I love that I could just use a bowl and whisk without having to lug out my kitchen aid mixer. Thanks Jessica. I think I need to make two next time!

    • Gavin | Jessica in the Kitchen says:

      Thank you so much Elizabeth! We’re so happy you like it!

  4. Valeria says:

    5 stars
    This was so lemony and moist omg you cannot go wrong with this recipe and it’s SO EASY! My boyfriend and I devoured it instantly and I plan on making 2 more today so I can share it with my friends.

    • Gavin | Jessica in the Kitchen says:

      So happy that you and your boyfriend enjoyed it! Thanks so much.

  5. Laura Tanner says:

    5 stars
    I loved this recipe! I used forager vanilla bean yogurt because that is what I had on hand and it turned out fabulous! Thank you so much 🍋 has my heart and this one was so quick to throw together! I sent the recipe to my MIL and she is so excited to make it!

    • Gavin | Jessica in the Kitchen says:

      Awesome! We’re so happy you made it and liked it Laura.

  6. Sher says:

    5 stars
    An awesome recipe that I will repeat again. Easy and delicious. You definitely don’t need to eat a certain type of diet to appreciate this lemon loaf but BONUS for those of us who choose plant based diets… Delish.

  7. Yvonne says:

    5 stars
    So yummy and easy to make!! Saving this in my favorite recipes board to make it again in the future! Thank you!

  8. Daisy says:

    5 stars
    Super tasty! Really love the texture and it was so easy to make! Definitely a quick favourite of the family, will be making again soon 🙂

    • Gavin | Jessica in the Kitchen says:

      Awesome Daisy! We’re so happy that you like it !

  9. Janelle says:

    1 star
    Hi, I will be making this cake for my daughters birthday tomorrow. What type of oil did you use?

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