Easy Dessert Recipes: 3 Ingredient Lemon Cake

3 Ingredient Lemon CakeRecipe Highlights:

  1. A fast, easy, super moist, lemon cake recipe.
  2. Simple swaps to reduce the calories and boost the indulgence factor from a cake mix.
  3. Under 160 calories, 4 Weight Watchers Points Plus per serving.

I planned to take a break from making treats. I was going to focus on savory side dishes and warm-your-tummy dinner suggestions. I was going to make a bit more effort in presenting a reflection of how our family eats on a daily basis. Instead I made a cake.

After sitting quietly in the back of my cupboard for months, a box of lemon cake mix began calling to me. A few weeks later I couldn’t shake its siren song, I needed to find a reason to turn it into something. As luck would have it we received an invitation to a casual dinner party and the hostess asked me to bring a simple dessert. Bingo!

I have previously made cupcakes with crushed pineapple and a box of cake mix. They come out light, fluffy, and quite tasty. For this dessert I had in mind something more moist, rich, and nearly gooey in texture. Mixing yogurt into a cake creates an indulgent richness and density. Both of these ingredients help to reduce the calories and fat in your recipe because they allow you to reduce or omit the oil and eggs normally used. Looking at the box of cake mix, I imagined a final result both light in flavor and rich in texture. Then without a second thought I dumped in both the yogurt and the pineapple before popping my concoction into a hot oven.

Lemon Cake mix recipe

Before I washed the dishes I licked the spoon clean. The batter was pretty much amazing. I crossed my fingers and waited to see if the finished cake maintained the bright flavor. The smell from the oven was scrumptious and indeed the fully baked cake was fabulous! Topped with a little squirt of whipped cream it was a smash hit at the dinner party. I’m pretty sure seconds were had by  most, if not all, of our friends.

3 Ingredient Lemon Cake mix hack

Once again I blame the grey midwinter days for my strong desire to eat all things citrus. And really, why not? If the sun isn’t shining outside what better way to brighten up the place than with sunny foods? Lemons have got to be one of the most versatile foods available. They are usually very affordable, they lend fantastic flavor to both sweet and savory dishes, and most of the fruit can be used in some way leaving very little waste. When it comes to turning them into a cake – this lemon cake – well, it pretty much explains itself as far as I’m concerned.

A few words on using a boxed cake mix: There are some who will say, using a mix is not really baking, nor is it faster than preparing a batter from scratch. To them I say, I like to cook from scratch too! I consider this method to be more assembling than baking but starting with a mix is a great way to get from mixing bowl to oven in just a few minutes. If you are not a regular baker, have little time to spend in the kitchen, or find recipes frustrating and confusing – start with a mix. Additionally, a fully stocked baking pantry can be challenging for some who are trying to stick to good eating habits. If you keep your cupboards bare of baking ingredients to prevent accidental chocolate chip cookies, this is a great way to whip up something for a potluck with nothing leftover to temp you. It is also a heck of a lot cheaper than buying all the from scratch ingredients at one time.

Easy 3 Ingredient Lemon CakeRecommended for this Recipe:

When you begin your Amazon shopping here we receive a small affiliate commission. Thank you!


3 Ingredient Lemon Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 16
  • 1 box (18.25 oz.) Pillsbury Moist Supreme Lemon Cake Mix (box contents only)*
  • 1 can (20 oz.) crushed pineapple in 100% pineapple juice
  • 6 oz. (approximately ¾ cup) non-fat Greek yogurt - lemon flavor
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, lightly spray a 13x9 baking pan with non-stick spray, you can also take the extra step to line the bottom with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine all three ingredients making sure to mix throughly eliminating any pockets of dry cake mix. The bater will be thick.
  3. When fully combined, pour the bater into the prepared baking pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 35 - 40 minutes until a tooth pick or cake probe can be inserted and removed cleanly.
  4. Cool completely before serving. Cake will be moist and slightly sticky, clean the knife after each cut to prevent the cake from tearing.
This cake mix box has 18.25 oz of mix and makes 12 servings per the package instructions. If your box contains less mix and makes fewer servings it may work better to withhold a couple tablespoons of yogurt and pineapple so the cake isn't too sticky. This will also affect the nutritional information.

No lemon yogurt? No problem! Add ½ tsp of lemon extract to plain non-fat Greek yogurt. You could also try other flavors like coconut or pineapple.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1/16 Calories: 158 Fat: 2.6 g Carbohydrates: 33 g Sugar: 22 g Sodium: 230 mg Fiber: 1 g Protein: 2 g Weight Watchers Points Plus: 4


Healthy Ideas Made Easier


Sign up for my FREE newsletter and get weekly updates with recipes & motivation.

Your information will never be sold or shared. You may manage your subscription or unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit


  1. Hi,

    I haven’t been able to find the lemon cake mix where I live. Do you have a recipe for this cake, but from scratch? I’ve never used a mix, so not entirely sure what the box contains.


    • Hello Marilyn, thank you for reading! I’m glad the recipe has you excited to make a lemon cake! I enjoy baking from scratch too but, as I explained in the notes preceding the recipe, this particular cake is dependent on the mix. If it helps, I have included a link to a lemon cake mix for sale though Amazon.com above. You may find the ingredients listed in the product description on their website. I know there are many great recipes for lemon cake, however, at this time I do not know of one that will give you the same super moist and gooey texture or similar nutritional values as this recipe. If you find one you love please share it for anyone (including me) who would like a great from scratch recipe to keep on hand. Be Well! 🙂

    • made from scratch
      Moist Lemon Yogurt Cake

      Serves 8
      1 1/2 cups flour
      2 tsp baking powder
      1/2 tsp salt

      1/2 cup greek yogurt
      1 cup sugar
      2 lg. eggs

      1/2 cup oil
      zest from 1 med. lemon
      1/4 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed

      Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
      Lightly oil a round cake pan.
      In a medium or large bowl; sift together flour, baking powder, salt, set aside.
      In a large bowl; whisk together thoroughly, the yogurt, sugar, and eggs.
      Add and whisk till frothy to yogurt mixture; oil, lemon juice, lemon zest.
      Fold the dry ingredients slowly into wet ingredients and form a smooth (lump-free batter).
      Pour the batter into prepared pan.
      Bake for 30-35 minutes, insert a toothpick into the center, when it comes out clean, it’s done.
      Don’t overbake.
      Cool cake on a wire rack for 10 minutes; then turn it upside-down onto the rack till continue cooling.

Leave a Reply

Rate this recipe: