Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake

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This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream. 

This post has been updated in 2018 to include a video and two options for the recipe. One from scratch and one with a cake mix. 

This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream.

After a few weeks of travel, holidays and bad eating habits, I am officially back at the gym and it hurts. The kind where you don’t want to walk up the stairs and forget putting up my hair. Does anyone really use his or her triceps anyway???

One of the reasons I am back at the gym is because this Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake happened. Of course you know that I looooooove poke cakes, and it’s only been 35 days since I shared a poke cake, so it’s about that time.

This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh tart raspberry sauce and topped with homemade whipped cream. It starts with a vanilla cake mix and a lemon pudding mix. Add some fresh lemon zest to amplify the lemon flavor.

I made this cake right before my dad got into town and of course I had to put aside a couple slices for him before I brought the rest into work. My dad definitely approves! It just so happens one of my coworker went back for thirds on this cake, no joke. She is pregnant, but even if she wasn’t I definitely wouldn’t blame her. There’s no stopping after just one bite. Before you know it, the whole slice is gone.

This is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream and little more lemon zest. I mean, what’s not to love here?

This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh tart raspberry sauce and topped with homemade whipped cream. It starts with a vanilla cake mix and a lemon pudding mix. Add some fresh lemon zest to amplify the lemon flavor.

First, bake your cake. When I updated this recipe, I offered an option for both the original recipe, made with cake mix. However I also remade the recipe with a from-scratch lemon buttermilk cake. The homemade cake is a lot more dense than the cake mix version but it is pretty dang good!

For the cake mix version, I use a combination of a vanilla cake mix and lemon pudding with some fresh lemon zest. You could just use a lemon cake mix, but I like the addition of the pudding mix myself. Definitely do not skip out on the lemon zest though, it elevated the punch of lemon flavor in the cake. Once it’s baked and cooled, poke the holes and pour a can of sweetened condensed milk over top and let it soak in the goodness.

This quick and easy Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake will be your next favorite summer cake. Poke cakes make a great potluck dessert. This poke cake is a lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream. Get the recipe at beyondfrosting.com

The homemade raspberry sauce is quite simple. I used fresh raspberries, a touch of sugar and flour and some lemon juice. This combination is heated on the stove top, until it’s bubbling and thick. I like to let the sauce cool a little bit before I put it on top of the cake, usually I just wait until it’s stops steaming and then I put the whole cake in the fridge.

This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream.

When it comes to adding the topping, you can definitely add the whipped cream ahead of time, but some of the red color from the raspberries might migrate through the whipped cream, leaving it a little red in some spots. So if you are looking for that crystal white whipped cream, you might want to hold off adding it until you are ready to serve. Then add a little bit of lemon zest to the top and call it a day. This cake is about to rule your summer.

This quick and easy Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake will be your next favorite summer cake. Poke cakes make a great potluck dessert. This poke cake is a lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream. Get the recipe at beyondfrosting.com

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This quick and easy Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake will be your next favorite summer cake. Poke cakes make a great potluck dessert. This poke cake is a lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream. Get the recipe at beyondfrosting.com

Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake from Scratch

  • Author: Beyond Frosting
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 12-15 slices

Description

This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is a home lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream.

Ingredients

For the Cake

  • 2 cups (380g) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (118 ml) vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoons (5ml) vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup (59ml) light sour cream
  • 1 large lemon, zested
  • 2 cups (280g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 package (3.4oz) instant lemon pudding
  • 3 teaspoons (11.2 g) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon (5g) salt
  • 1 cup (236ml) buttermilk
  • 1 can (14oz) sweetened condensed milk

For the raspberry sauce:

  • 36 ounces containers fresh raspberries
  • ¼ cup (47.5g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (11.6g) flour or corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon (10ml) lemon juice or water

For the topping

  • 1 ½ cups (354 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • ¾ cup (98g) powdered sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed until the eggs and oil are well incorporated and the batter is lighter in color, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl as needed.
  3. Next mix in the sour cream and lemon zest and beat until well combined.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine the remaining dry ingredients. Add half the dry ingredients to the batter and beat on low speed while pouring in half of the buttermilk and mix just until the flour starts to incorporate.
  5. Finally add the remaining dry ingredients, mixing on low speed while pouring in the remaining buttermilk and beating until all of the ingredients are well combined.
  6. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl and stir the batter from the bottom to the top to ensure it’s well mixed.
  7. Pour the batter in a 9-inch by 13-inch pan and bake at 350°F for 28-32 minutes, keeping a careful eye on the baking during the last few minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
  8. Test the cake for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cake is done. Cool for 30 minutes.
  9. While the cake is still warm, take the end of a wooden spoon or another round object and poke holes all over the top of your cake. Pour the jar of sweetened condensed milk over top of the holes as equally as you can. Allow the cake to cool completely, refrigerating if necessary.
  10. For the raspberry sauce: Combine the raspberries, sugar and flour in a medium-sized pot. Gently crush the raspberries and add the lemon juice.  Cook over medium heat while stirring until it starts to bubble slightly.
  11. Once the sauce is bubbling and thick, remove from the stove and allow the raspberry sauce to cool until it is no longer steaming. Pour the raspberry sauce over top of the cake, spreading evenly. Refrigerate the cake until it is completely cooled.
  12. For the topping: Put your mixing bowl and wire whisk in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes until it is completely cold. Beat the heavy cream on medium-high speed for several minutes until it starts to thicken. Add the powdered sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form. Spread over the cake only once the cake is completely cooled.
  13. Zest a lemon over top of the whipped cream
Nutrition Information:
1 slice
485
56.9g
420.8mg
17.2g
11.7g
78.2g
1.1g
7g
78.2mg
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Poke Cake Recipe, Lemon Cake, Lemon Cake Recipe

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This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream.

Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake with Cake Mix

  • Author: Julianne Bayer
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 12-15 slices

Description

This Lemon Raspberry Poke Cake is an easy lemon cake soaked in sweetened condensed milk, with a fresh raspberry sauce and topped with whipped cream.

Ingredients

  • 1 box vanilla cake mix
  • 1 box (3.4 oz) instant lemon pudding mix
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or milk)
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 large egg white
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 can (14oz) sweetened condensed milk
  • For the raspberry sauce
  • 36 ounces containers fresh raspberries
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons flour or corn starch
  • For the topping
  • 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, combine cake mix, dry pudding mix, buttermilk, vegetable oil, eggs & egg white and lemon zest. Beat on medium – high speed until all ingredients are well blended. Use a spatula to mix the batter from the bottom of the bowl to the top.
  3. Pour the batter into a 9-inch by 13-inch pan and bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes until cake is set. Test cake by inserting a toothpick into the center. If the toothpick comes out clean, the cake is done. Allow to cool for 20 minutes.
  4. While the cake is still warm, take the end of a wooden spoon or another round object and poke holes all over the top of your cake. Pour the jar of sweetened condensed milk over top of the holes as equally as you can. Allow the cake to cool completely, refrigerating if necessary.
  5. For the raspberry sauce: Combine the raspberries, sugar and flour in a medium-sized pot. Gently crush the raspberries and add the lemon juice.  Cook over medium heat while stirring until it starts to bubble slightly.
  6. Once the sauce is bubbling and thick, remove from the stove and allow the raspberry sauce to cool until it is no longer steam. Pour the raspberry sauce over top of the cake, spreading evenly. Refrigerate the cake until it is completely cooled.
  7. For the topping: Put your mixing bowl and wire whisk in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes until it is completely cold. Beat the heavy cream on medium-high speed for several minutes until it starts to thicken. Add the powdered sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form. Spread over the cake only once the cake is completely cooled.
  8. Zest a lemon over top of the whipped cream
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61 Responses
  1. Katie E

    Yummy recipe. Made it for my friends bday. She loved it too. I made it from scratch and indeed it was a bit denser in texture but so delicious. I will make it again!

  2. Kristin

    I think this is the best cake I’ve ever had. I made it for a dinner party and everyone loved it and wanted the recipe. I’m going to make it again next week for my coworkers!

  3. Donna

    Hello! I bake every Thursday for my co workers and this cake has been a HUGE hit! It is the prefect combination of tart, sweet..light and refreshing..it is perfect. Thanks for such a great recipe and keep ’em coming!!
    Many thanks,

    Donna RN

  4. Kathleen Carlson

    Tiffany, could you have your pretty serving platter ready and cut pieces of this beautiful cake and arrange them attractively upon the platter. Perhaps wait until just ready to serve then sprinkle with lemon zest?

  5. Jacquelyn

    Hi this looks delicious and I can’t wait to try it. Can this cake be made the day before its served or does it do better making it the day of?

  6. Tiffany

    Hi, When serving this cake do you keep it in the baking dish? I was hoping to put it on a serving tray, but with the condensed milk part I’m thinking it will have to stay in the baking pan

    1. Beyond Frosting

      Hi Tiffany- yes, I don’t recommend taking it out of the dish after you add the sweetened condensed milk. Perhaps you can transfer the cake to your serving dish prior to adding the toppings?

  7. Amy McKinstry

    I made this for a family birthday party and it was a big hit! I was reading the recipe on my phone and scrolling up and down between the measurements and instructions so I mistakenly added the condensed milk into the cake mix!! All was fine it just took a bit longer to bake. It made the cake really moist and more like a brownie consistency. It was still delicious so that’s all that matters to me! My partner ate three pieces 🙂

  8. Erin M.

    What a delicious recipe! I made it for a friend’s barbecue last weekend, and they all loved it. My husband said it was the best cake I ever made and asked if you had any chocolate poke cake recipes. 🙂 I see that you do, so he’ll be happy to hear that. Thanks!

    1. Beyond Frosting

      Hi Whitney, yes I don’t see why not but as it get thickened as it cools, it might be a little harder to spread. Hope you like it!

  9. Alyson

    It didn’t have enough lemon to my taste, so I added the juice from the lemon and a 1 1/2 of lemon extract. Also, I ran out of milk so I substituted 1/2 c water and 1/2 cup creek yogurt; and excluded the sweetened condensed milk. And lastly I had rhubarb so I made a rhubarb raspberry sauce to fill in the holes

    1. Beyond Frosting

      Hi Melissa, I use a wooden spoon, just something wide enough for the pudding to soak down in as opposed to a toothpick that won’t make a very big hole.

    1. Beyond Frosting

      Hi Rose, it’s the 3.4 oz size as listed in the recipe. If you purchased the larger one, just measure out 1/2 cup of the powder. That is just about equivalent to the smaller sizes.

  10. Susan

    I am in the midst of making this delicious looking cake but right now the cake has been in the oven for an hour and it still is not baked completely. I will let you know of the outcome.

    1. Beyond Frosting

      Hi Susan. That sees odd, it should not need nearly that might time. Are you using a glass pan? I know those baking times are longer but an hour it a lot! It is possible your oven temperature is off? I hope it turns out ok!

      1. Susan

        It was a glass pan but the time was 40 minutes (not an hour like I mistakenly wrote). Everything else is going great. I am making it for a friend’s birthday tomorrow so I will be adding the whip topping then.

          1. Crystal

            Mine has been in the oven for 30mins and still not baked through. I hope it doesn’t over bake – eager to put it all together and taste!!

          2. Beyond Frosting

            Hi Crystal- It could depend on the type of pan or true oven temperature, but normally a 9-x13 inch cake shouldn’t bake much longer than 30 minutes. I hope it turns out well for you!

  11. Maya

    OMG the cake looks delicious and I just want to make a bite right now.
    Thanks for your recipe. I will try to make one but the percentage of success might be more than zero a little bit.

  12. Maria @ kitchenathoskins

    Apart from tres leches, am new to the world of poke cakes !! This looks so beautiful and incredibly easy

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