Pistachio Lemon Strawberry Pound Cake Recipe


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Pistachio Lemon Strawberry Pound Cake Recipe

June 3, 2024
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Pistachio Lemon Strawberry Pound Cake Recipe

You need this Strawberry Pound Cake recipe in your life. We understand if you’ve always stuck to classic Vanilla Pound Cake because it’s so delicious in its simplicity. But here, traditional vanilla pound cake levels up thanks to adding fresh strawberries, lemon zest, and pistachios. It’s packed with the best-quality California-grown ingredients, like a sweet snapshot of the Golden State. 

strawberry pound cake sliced on a platter

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

This pound cake is a pretty perfect dessert. It calls for everyday ingredients, is easy to make ahead of time, and has a great texture and a fresh strawberry flavor. But also, it’s simply gorgeous. Topped with homemade strawberry icing (made without food coloring!) and California pistachios, it is one of those easy-to-make and visually stunning desserts. 

This version of Strawberry Pound Cake has so much flavor because the main ingredients—strawberries and lemon—show up not once, but twice! You’ll use both the lemon zest and lemon juice, fresh strawberries, and the strawberry macerating liquid. The result is every bite full of the flavors of lemon and strawberry. We like making this recipe in the springtime, but all the ingredients are available year-round, so you can make it whenever you please!

Strawberry Pound Cake Recipe Ingredients

The ingredients you’ll need to make this Strawberry Pound Cake recipe are:

  • All-purpose Flour: You can use cake flour or your favorite gluten-free flour blend.
  • Baking Powder and Salt: To provide lift and flavor
ingredients for pistachio lemon strawberry pound cake
  • Unsalted Butter: This is a crucial ingredient so get high-quality butter
  • Unrefined Granulated Sugar: For sweetness, that’s just right. 
  • Vanilla Beans: If you can find whole vanilla beans, use them here. Otherwise, a high-quality pure vanilla extract will work. 
  • Large Eggs: Make sure the butter and the eggs are at room temperature before you make the cake. 
  • Lemons: You’ll use both the zest and lemon juice
  • Pistachios: Roasted unsalted pistachios make for a delightful, crunchy garnish
  • Strawberries: The critical ingredient is farm-fresh California strawberries. Resist the urge to use more than called for or your Strawberry Pound Cake Recipe will be too wet. 
  • Powdered Sugar: Combined with the juice of the macerated berries, this makes for an easy homemade strawberry icing. 

How To Make This Strawberry Pound Cake Recipe

Here is the order in which you’ll make this pound cake: 

  • Bring the butter and eggs to room temperature: Make sure the butter and eggs are at room temperature before you start!
  • Start the Macerated Strawberries: Combine the diced strawberries with the sugar, lemon juice, salt, and lemon zest and let them sit until the berries give off at least two tablespoons of liquid, for about 15 to 20 minutes. 
  • Make the Pound Cake Batter: Cream the butter and sugar, then add the eggs and vanilla, followed by the dry ingredients. Finally, stir in the drained macerated strawberries until they’re just incorporated. 
  • Bake The Pound Cake: Bake the pound cake until golden brown, and a cake tester comes out clean. Let it cool completely before you garnish it. 
  • Make The Homemade Strawberry Icing: Whisk together the reserved juice from the macerated strawberries with the powdered sugar, a pinch of salt, and a dash of vanilla. 
  • Garnish The Strawberry Pound Cake: Use the homemade strawberry icing immediately after made, or it will harden. Top the pound cake with as much or as little of the icing as you’d like, then immediately sprinkle with chopped pistachios. You can also top with freeze-dried strawberries if that’s more your style. 
macerated strawberries for pound cake

Always In Season Ingredients

Did you know this recipe is always in season? Yes, all the primary ingredients — strawberries, lemons, eggs, dairy, and pistachios — are available year-round here in California with always in season ingredients. That means strawberry season (lemon and pistachio season) always happens, so you can make this cake whenever you desire. 

What To Serve With This

Serving a strawberry pound cake with a dollop of homemade whipped cream enhances flavor, adding a light, airy texture that contrasts beautifully with the dense cake. A scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side also pairs nicely, complementing the strawberry’s fruity notes and providing a delightful cold contrast. 

spreading frosting on pound cake with strawberries and pistachios

Frequently Asked Questions

What ingredients do I need for a strawberry pound cake?

A classic strawberry pound cake is typically a traditional pound cake recipe with strawberries added. It requires all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, unsalted butter, eggs, baking powder, salt, vanilla extract, and fresh strawberries. Some recipes may include milk or sour cream for moisture and lemon zest or almond extract for additional flavor. You can use fresh strawberries in the batter and as a garnish on the cake.

How do you incorporate strawberries into the cake?

To incorporate strawberries into the pound cake, chop them into small pieces and fold them into the batter before baking. Alternatively, some recipes mix a strawberry puree into the batter or swirl through it to create a marbled effect.

What is the best way to ensure a moist strawberry pound cake?

To ensure your strawberry pound cake remains moist, avoid overmixing the batter once the flour is added as this can develop the gluten and make the cake tough. 

Using ingredients like sour cream or buttermilk in the recipe can also help maintain moisture. Be sure to bake the cake until a tester comes out clean to avoid drying it out. Keeping the cake covered after cooling can also help retain its moisture.

Can I make this pound cake in advance, and how should I store it?

Yes, strawberry pound cake can be made in advance. Store it at room temperature for up to two days or in the refrigerator for up to five days, but either way wrap it tightly in plastic wrap to maintain freshness. If you plan to keep it longer, you can freeze the cake for up to three months. Freeze the cake thoroughly in plastic wrap, followed by aluminum foil to protect it from freezer burn

Like to jam while you bake? Check out this California Grown Spotify playlist:

Have you tried this Pistachio Lemon Strawberry Pound Cake recipe? We’d love to see your creations! Share your photos with us by tagging #CAGROWN on social media.

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Pistachio Lemon Strawberry Pound Cake Recipe

Aida Mollenkamp
This pound cake is a pretty perfect dessert. It calls for everyday ingredients, is easy to make ahead of time, and has a great texture and a fresh strawberry flavor. But also? It’s gorgeous. Topped with homemade strawberry icing (made without food coloring!) and California pistachios, it is one of those easy-to-make and visually stunning desserts.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 308 kcal


  • 9x5x3 inch loaf pan or 23x13x8 cm pan
  • Stand mixer


For The Strawberry Pound Cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 9 ounces/ 270g, plus more for coating the pan
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder 1 teaspoon at elevation
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature plus more for coating the pan
  • 1 cup unrefined granulated sugar 6 ounces/170g
  • 2 vanilla beans split lengthwise scraped, and seeds reserved (or 1 TBSP pure vanilla extract)
  • 3 large eggs 6 ounces/170g at room temperature
  • macerated strawberries *see recipe
  • 1 ounce pistachios or 28g, roughly chopped for garnish

For The Macerated Strawberries

  • 12 ounces fresh or 340g, ripe strawberries, cleaned and small dice
  • 1 TBSP fresh lemon juice
  • 1 TBSP granulated sugar
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • Pinch of salt

For The Homemade Strawberry Icing:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted 6 ounces/170g
  • 2 TBSP reserved macerated strawberry juice
  • Pinch of salt
  • Dash of vanilla extract


Prepare The Oven And Pan

  • Heat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and arrange a rack in the middle. Coat a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan (23x13x8 cm) with the extra butter and line it with parchment paper, leaving at least a 1-inch ((2.5 cm) overhang on each side (to make it easier to remove later).
  • Coat the parchment with more butter, add a pinch of flour, turn the pan to coat, and tap out the excess flour. Set the loaf pan in the refrigerator or freezer until ready to use. Combine the measured flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to break up any lumps; set aside.

Start the Macerated Strawberries

  • Combine the chopped strawberries, one TBSP of granulated sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, and a pinch of salt in a medium bowl and stir to combine.
  • Set the berries aside for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring periodically until you have at least 2 TBSP of strawberry liquid. Strain the berries using a fine-mesh sieve, reserving the juice for the icing.

Make The Pound Cake Batter

  • Place the measured butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat at medium speed until creamy and smooth, for about 1 minute.
  • Turn off the mixer, scrape down the inside of the mixing bowl, add the unrefined granulated sugar and the vanilla, and continue mixing over medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes more.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stop the mixer periodically to scrape down the sides of the bowl to make sure all the butter and eggs are combined. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture in two additions, mixing each until just incorporated.
  • Add the strained strawberries and lemon zest mixture and let it mix until it is just incorporated for about 15 to 30 seconds. (Do not overmix, or your cake will be tough.)

Bake The Strawberry Pound Cake

  • Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake until the top of the cake is puffed and golden and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out completely clean, for a total baking time of about 60 to 75 minutes.

Cool The Baked Cake

  • Remove the pound cake from the oven and let it rest on a cooling rack for about 10 minutes.
  • Run a knife around the inside perimeter, invert the cake onto a cooling rack, remove it from the pan, and let it cool completely before serving for at least 2 hours.

For The Homemade Strawberry Icing

  • Once the cake is completely cool, make the strawberry icing. Whisk together two TBSP of the macerated strawberry juice with the powdered sugar until you get a smooth glaze that is just thin enough to pour, yet thick enough to hold its shape (it will look like toothpaste or caulk). Use the icing immediately, as it will be hard to spread after 10 minutes.

Top The Pound Cake

  • Place the pound cake on the cooling rack. Spoon the icing over the top and let it drip down the sides. Top with the roughly chopped pistachios and set aside until the glaze is hardened for at least 15 minutes.
  • Slice and serve. Pound cake will last up to 4 days when stored in an airtight container at room temperature (around 70°F/21°C) or refrigerated.



Serving: 1sliceCalories: 308kcalCarbohydrates: 43gProtein: 5gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 71mgSodium: 273mgPotassium: 274mgFiber: 1gSugar: 28gVitamin A: 2611IUVitamin C: 26mgCalcium: 99mgIron: 3mg
Keyword pound cake, strawberries, strawberry pound cake recipe
Tried this recipe?Mention @cagrownofficial or tag #CAGROWN!

Get to know Aida Mollenkamp

aida mollenkamp enjoying the eats at Full of Life Flatbread

Aida is a food and travel expert, author, chef, Food Network personality, and founder of Salt & Wind Travel. With a career in food travel media and hospitality, she has traveled the globe in search of the best food destinations. Her cookbook, Keys To The Kitchen, is a favorite among home cooks seeking adventure, and her Travel Guides For Food Lovers series is cherished by food travelers.

Influenced by her many adventures and inspired by California’s bountiful produce, Aida’s recipes are fun, fresh, and bursting with flavor. We’re loving her Grilled Artichoke Recipe With Herbed Roasted Garlic Aioli – you will too!

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