Meyer Lemon Ricotta Cake

This meyer lemon ricotta cake is a bright and lovely! Fresh Meyer lemons are zested and mixed with ricotta cheese making this one unbelievable cake!

What does one do when they see a bag of perfect, adorable, bright and beautiful meyer lemons?

meyer lemon ricotta cake l

Obviously… you buy two bags of them, right?

Meyer lemons have the best of both citrus worlds. They’re like a lemon and mandarin orange melded in one citrus fruit. I love them because they aren’t as acidic as a regular lemon {although my weather-cracked hands would disagree} and they have that subtle orange-y scent. So there I was with not one but TWO bags of meyer lemons and really no idea what I was going to do with them.

Until I cleaned out my fridge.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake ingredients

I always need to completely empty the fridge out and re-organize before I put away any new groceries. That’s when I find and cringe at the fact that I have 6 boxes of butter, 3 opened jars of grainy Dijon and lots {and I  mean LOTS} of stacked leftover containers and I won’t even tell you how many different cheeses I have. Five… okay eight. I’m a food hoarder. I’m certain.

So while I was rearranging my cheese drawer I spotted the tub of ricotta leftover from this recipe. I thought I’d make a cake my favorite way…. in a loaf pan. No layers and zero frosting. So in celebration of it being Friday… I made you a cake.

A cake that’s for you – for me. (the best kind) 🙂

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake measured dry

Start by measuring the 1-1/4 cup of all purpose flour, baking powder and salt into a medium bowl.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake dry whisk

Whisk to combine and set that bowl off to the side.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake zest

Zest four meyer lemons.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake sugar and zest

Add that to a bowl along with a cup of sugar.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake blend

I then used my impeccably clean hands and rubbed the sugar into the zest. It should resemble wet sand… and it should smell amazing because the sugar brings out the moisture of the zest and it’s heavenly.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake juice

Juice all of the lemons over a mesh strainer to catch the seeds. You’ll need 1/4 cup for the cake and 2 to 3 for the glaze later.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake lemon juice

Speaking of juice. Add a quarter cup to the zest/sugar mixture.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake eggs

Crack in two eggs.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake butter

Add 1/3 cup of butter that is melted but has cooled. Trust me you don’t want to scramble those eggs in there.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake vanilla

Add in a teaspoon of vanilla extract.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake whisk

And whisk to combine.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake milk + ricotta

In a measuring cup or bowl combine the 1/2 cup of ricotta cheese and two tablespoons of half and half.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake smooth

Stir until smoooooth.  

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake dry in

To the egg/sugar/zest mixture add about 1/3 of the whisked dry ingredient and stir until just combined.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake ricotta

Add in half of the ricotta mixture and whisk. Repeat with another third of the dry ingredients, then the ricotta and ending with the last third of the dry ingredients. Whisking in between of course.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake whisk to incorporate

You now should have a beautiful cake batter. 

And I always say, you can tell a lot about a cake by how good the batter tastes. Go on… you know you want to.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake pour batter

Pour the batter into a loaf pan that has been lightly sprayed {I used my mister} and then lined with parchment paper.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake smooth the top

Spread the batter so it’s smooth on top and then bake it in a preheated 350 degree oven for 50-55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake cool for 10

Let the cake cool for 10 minutes before running a knife along the edges of the cake and using the parchment paper as “handles” to remove the cake from the loaf pan.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake remove and cool completely

Let the cake cool COMPLETELY before drizzling it with icing, or else you’ll have a huge melted icing mess on your hands-err counter.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake powdered sugar

For the icing you’ll want a cup of powdered sugar. Place that into a mesh strainer that’s sitting over a medium bowl.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake sifted

Carefully sift the powdered sugar into the bowl. Doing this will break up any clumps and make whisking in the meyer lemon juice easy and clump free.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake 2T meyer juice

While whisking, slowly pour in a little of the juice at a time.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake l keep whisking

Stop when it reaches a thick yet pourable consistency. If it gets too thin just add a little more powdered sugar.

Meyer Lemon + Ricotta Cake icing


meyer lemon ricotta cake l

Now just pour it all over that cake.

meyer lemon ricotta cake l

Those drips are my favorite. Pssst! check out that side drip! *swoon*

meyer lemon ricotta cake l

Slice and serve! The flavor of this meyer lemon ricotta cake is subtle… but when you get a bite with the frosting it’s like a meyer lemon kick to your taste buds.

meyer lemon ricotta cake l

It took everything I had to not swipe a bite while shooting this piece-o-cake.

It’s that good… and meyer lemon ricotta cake makes me happy.

It also makes me hopeful for all this dang snow to melt and that there actually could be a spring this year.

meyer lemon ricotta cake l

Until then… let’s eat cake.


Enjoy! And if you give this Meyer Lemon Ricotta Cake recipe a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!

meyer lemon ricotta cake l

My cookbook Simply Scratch : 120 Wholesome Homemade Recipes Made Easy is now available! CLICK HERE for details and THANK YOU in advance! 

Yield: 1 loaf

Meyer Lemon Ricotta Cake

Meyer Lemon  Ricotta Cake
This meyer lemon ricotta cake is a bright and lovely! Fresh Meyer lemons are zested and mixed with ricotta cheese making this one unbelievable cake!
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes



  • 1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4 meyer lemons (zest and juice)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 whole large eggs
  • 1/3 cup of melted butter (that has cooled slightly)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons half & half


  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons (reserved) meyer lemon juice, strained


  1. Preheat your oven to 350° and lightly spray and line a loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together the all purpose flour, salt and baking powder. Set it off to the side.
  3. In a large bowl combine a cup of sugar and the zest from 4 meyer lemons. Use your fingers to rub the sugar into the zest.
  4. Add in 1/4 cup of freshly squeezed (and strained to catch seeds) meyer lemon juice. Crack in two eggs, pour in the melted (and cooled) butter, the teaspoon of vanilla and whisk to combine.
  5. In a small bowl combine the 1/2 cup ricotta and the two tablespoons of half and half, stir until smooth.
  6. To the egg/sugar mixture; add one third of the dry ingredients and whisk until just combined. Add in have of the ricotta mixture and whisk some more. Repeat with the dry ingredients and ricotta. Mixing after each addition.
  7. Pour the cake batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50-55 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.
  8. Let the cake cool for 10 minutes before running a knife around the edges and using the parchment paper as handles to lift the cake out of the pan. Allow the cake to cool completely before topping it with the glaze.


  1. Add a cup of powdered sugar to a mesh strainer that is set over a medium bowl. Sift the powdered sugar into the bowl. Slowly whisk in a tablespoon at a time of the reserved meyer lemon juice until you've reached the desired consistency.
  2. Pour the glaze over the cooled cake.
  3. Serve once the glaze has had a chance to harden.

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54 Responses to “Meyer Lemon Ricotta Cake”

  1. #
    Chris — March 7, 2014 at 12:50 am

    Mmmm, this sounds so delicious! Just wondering though, how much salt and baking powder? The amounts are missing.

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 7th, 2014 @ 7:00 am

      Good catch Chris! I’ve added the amounts, thanks!

  2. #
    Kathryn — March 7, 2014 at 4:37 am

    This is gorgeous! We don’t get meyer lemons over here but I bet it would be equally delicious with regular lemons – can’t wait to make it!

  3. #
    Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness — March 7, 2014 at 7:24 am

    This is GORGEOUS! And so moist looking. I need to try these meyer lemons! Totally pinning!

  4. #
    Laura (Blogging Over Thyme) — March 7, 2014 at 8:24 am

    I love ricotta cake! It is so soft and moist–and just delicious. I’ve made in a round cake form, but not in a loaf form yet. Love it Laurie!

  5. #
    Jennie @themessybakerblog — March 7, 2014 at 8:44 am

    This loaf cake is gorgeous. Loaf cakes scream comfort, and I’m all about scarfing down on a piece of comfort. Of course you had to buy two bags; it’s what we do.

  6. #
    John — March 7, 2014 at 9:35 am

    What great timing … I happen to have a big old bag of lemons sitting in the fridge. They’re not meyer lemons, though, so I think I’ll just mix some orange zest in to balance out the lemon.

  7. #
    Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction — March 7, 2014 at 9:54 am

    I can’t get enough meyer lemon desserts! Love the ricotta!

  8. #
    Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountain — March 7, 2014 at 10:33 am

    Simply stunning! I’m coming over for a slice!

  9. #
    Rachel @ Baked by Rachel — March 7, 2014 at 11:13 am

    I seriously need this in my life. But weird thing… I’ve never in my life seen a meyer lemon (or a blood orange)… my store sucks.

  10. #
    Laura Davoudi — March 7, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    Okay, now I am getting light headed from happiness reading this recipe!!!
    Thank you! Yummm…can’t wait!!!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 9th, 2014 @ 11:07 pm

      Enjoy Laura! 🙂

  11. #
    Liz@Virtually Homemade — March 7, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    That is one beautiful meyer lemon cake! Love meyer lemons.

  12. #
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — March 7, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    Holy goodness, this cake looks lovely!!!

  13. #
    Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) — March 7, 2014 at 4:45 pm

    My nanny has a meyer lemon tree and I’m always looking for ways to use them up. This cake is gorgeous! Photos are outta this world!

  14. #
    Taylor Bowser — March 7, 2014 at 8:15 pm

    The texture of the cake looks great. Looks moist and delicious!

  15. #
    Paula - bell'alimento — March 7, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    I love all things Meyer Lemon!

  16. #
    Meredith in sock monkey slippers — March 7, 2014 at 8:57 pm

    Holy sweetness!!!

  17. #
    Nicole Thomas — March 8, 2014 at 8:52 am

    What a lovely cake.
    Like @Kathryn said above, there’s no meyer lemon near where I live, so I just use regular lemon instead. The cake still came out deliciously yummy! I’m going to see if I could hunt down some meyer lemon and try that too.

  18. #
    Rebecca {foodie with family} — March 8, 2014 at 10:41 am

    Oh man. I want that soooooo badly. Now, I just have to justify driving an hour and a half to the big city to find meyer lemons!

  19. #
    Dorota — March 8, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    Hello, maybe I am an ignorant, but what is that = 2 tablespoons Half & Half. I live in Iceland and I am Polish and I have no idea what does it mean 🙁
    Pls help, the cake looks so delicious, and I have some good baking cheese, and I have no idea what is “2 tablespoons Half & Half”… I was thinking that I can bake any cake I want… surprise, surprise 😀
    I CAN’T… not for long, I hope 🙂 So pls help 🙂

  20. #
    Dorota — March 8, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    fOUND IT OUT!!! 🙂 with a help of friends, so I am going to bake it now

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 9th, 2014 @ 11:07 pm

      I’m so glad Dorota! I just know you will love this cake! Enjoy!

  21. #
    Sally — March 8, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    I was wondering what to do with the extra ricotta I had left over from making your skillet lasagna last week.

  22. #
    Annalise @ Completely Delicious — March 8, 2014 at 11:18 pm

    Gorgeous cake Laurie!

  23. #
    Laura@Baking In Pyjamas — March 9, 2014 at 8:20 am

    I’ve never tried a ricotta cake before. I adore lemons and the type of glaze you’ve used for this cake. Saving and pinning! Beautiful.

  24. #
    David Emanuele — March 9, 2014 at 11:54 am

    There is NO mention of melted butter in the printed recipe but there is in the step by step.

  25. #
    Lindsey Johnson | Cafe Johnsonia — March 9, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    Oh my word that looks amazing! I love the drips. 🙂

  26. #
    Liren — March 9, 2014 at 7:48 pm

    I adore ricotta in cakes, especially when lemon is involved. And glaze! This is just gorgeous 🙂

  27. #
    Megan {Country Cleaver} — March 9, 2014 at 10:49 pm

    Yup – I’ma a loser and have never had meyer lemons. Obviously that is going to change ASAP. I have got to try these!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 11th, 2014 @ 1:27 am

      You my friend are no loser but you should totally rectify that situation. 😉

  28. #
    Maria | Pink Patisserie — March 10, 2014 at 8:11 am

    Love that cake, everything about it! I’m with you on the lemons and the fridge thing! Just cleaned mine out and found all kinds of good things.. No ricotta though.. Need to make this pronto..

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 11th, 2014 @ 1:26 am

      Thanks Maria! 🙂

  29. #
    Kingston Carpet cleaners — March 11, 2014 at 5:28 am

    Looking absollutely delicious! Thanks for the recipe!

  30. #
    Carol at Wild Goose Tea — March 11, 2014 at 6:43 pm

    Boy Howdy that looks like one moist, tender delicious cake.
    Betty Crocker should be stealing that picture to advertise. It would sell
    more product! I hope you are getting the tongue in check humor
    with a cake mix and your from scratch recipes. I love my own jokes, so of course I am smiling——

  31. #
    Risa — March 19, 2014 at 11:01 am

    This is really quite beautiful. Not to sound as though I’ve been living under a rock, but I’ve never cooked with Meyer lemons. This may just be the recipe to push me!!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 19th, 2014 @ 2:04 pm

      Sometimes meyer lemons are hard to find… so if you run into problems finding them, go for a lemon and orange combo! 🙂

  32. #
    Ashley — March 23, 2014 at 10:05 am

    I made this yesterday!! It’s FANTASTIC and a real crowd pleaser!! Thank you for posting!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 23rd, 2014 @ 2:30 pm

      I’m so glad Ashley! ☺️

  33. #
    Anne Groves — March 23, 2014 at 2:27 pm

    HI I would love to make this cake but like Dorota I have no idea what 2 tablespoons of half and half means so could you please help We live in the United Kingdom. Thank You

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 23rd, 2014 @ 2:29 pm

      Hi Anne! You can substitute with whole milk or heavy cream if you’d like 🙂 enjoy!

  34. #
    Mary Payne — March 26, 2014 at 4:55 am

    Lucky me, I have a Meyer lemon tree in my backyard! So I made this cake and actually missed the vanilla, but it still tasted wonderful. Now, mine didn’t rise as high as yours; could that be because of old baking powder? I just used what was in my cupboard and it’s probably a couple of years old. What do you think?

    P.S. Thanks for all the great recipes, I’ll be making more soon!

  35. #
    Shirley McGee — April 4, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    I’m not giving up. I tried the cake going by the directions exactly. Mine was not fluffly and did not rise but about an inch and one quarter. I will try it one more time. The taste was good, just dense.
    I made the chicken pot pie recipe this week and it was the BEST!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — April 9th, 2014 @ 9:35 pm

      Hi Shirley! It’s hard to say what went wrong where, but I’d check ingredients {baking soda vs baking powder}, ingredient expiration dates and try not to over mix. That’s all I can think of to suggest… I hope round two worked out better for you! 🙂

  36. #
    Darius — April 27, 2014 at 11:39 pm

    So for the swcond step on how to make the icing it says to sift flour into a bowl but i dont know if that was a mistake or if its actually a ingredient to the glaze haha.

  37. #
    Joyce Poggi Hager — June 3, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Yum. Can’t wait to bake this. Thanks for the recipe.

  38. #
    Elisa Rossetti — July 7, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    This cake is delicious. I used a 9″ Springform pan, and added about a cup of fresh raspberries gently pressed into the top sprinkled with a little sugar before baking. Omitted the glaze as the raspberries added extra fruity moistness. Yum! Thanks for sharing your recipe.

  39. #
    Muqadas — September 20, 2014 at 3:39 am

    Can i replace ricotta with something else?

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — September 20th, 2014 @ 12:24 pm

      Sure, you could try sour cream or Greek yogurt.

  40. #
    Wendy — May 30, 2016 at 12:54 am

    My cake turned out exactly as pictured. I used regular lemons. The cake was not too tart.

    I would recommend stirring in the dry ingredients and ricotta mixture with a wooden spoon or, ideally, a Spurtle. A whisk tends to lead to overbeating.

    I used an 8.5″x4.5″ loaf pan and baked for 60 minutes. I’m at 6500 feet but didn’t make any adjustments to the recipe.

  41. #
    Marsha — August 25, 2017 at 11:14 am

    What size pan did you use?

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — September 8th, 2017 @ 8:03 am

      I use a standard loaf pan. 🙂

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