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Butter Pound Cake (6 Ingredients)

This 6-ingredient Pound Cake recipe boasts a fine, tender crumb. This easy butter pound cake is bursting with vanilla and buttery goodness in every luscious bite.

butter pound cake, pound cake recipe, easy pound cake, vanilla pound cake

6-Ingredient Butter Pound Cake

Ever tried making pound cake from scratch?  I’ve had my share of pound cake tests. Sometimes the flavor was on, but the texture was just a bit off.  Other times the texture worked but the flavor, not so much.  Who knew producing a really good classic pound cake could be so tricky?

When I was a kid, my mom used to just buy pound cake.  We all loved the delicate flavor of butter pound cake, whether for breakfast or dessert.  I eventually felt compelled to try homemade recipes that would rival those bakery ones.  After several “decent” results, I moved on to the likes of Irish Cream Chocolate Cake with Whipped Frosting and forgot about the humble pound cake.

butter pound cake, pound cake recipe, easy pound cake, vanilla pound cake

The big 6 [ingredients] in this easy pound cake recipe

Then one day Hubby reminisced about a from-scratch pound cake that his sweet mom used to make. My gentle mother in law is no longer with us and nobody knows where her recipe is.  That’s when a serious, just-okay-isn’t-enough pound cake recipe obsession was born.

This here is the delightfully golden, tender, flavorful easy pound cake recipe that ended the frenzy. It so happens to require only 6 ingredients:

  • Real butter, but of course. Sliced and chilled so the batter bakes up tender and delicate
  • 3 large eggs + 3 large yolks, all at room temperature. Though it may feel like this recipe calls for more eggs than usual for cakes, it really works perfectly. The eggs provide lift, texture, and wonderful flavor.
  • Be sure to use pure vanilla extract; an entire tablespoon is required for that undeniably aromatic flavor
  • Use cake flour for this pound cake recipe. Cake flour is very fine-textured with a low protein content, which results in a more airy, light, and delicate crumb.
  • Granulated sugar, just the everyday stuff. We use just enough for the best balance of sweetness without being overly sweet.
butter pound cake, pound cake recipe, easy pound cake, vanilla pound cake

Pro tips for your best pound cake results

  • Be sure your butter is cut and chilled prior to adding to stand mixer. You don’t want it to get over 60F, as a warmer butter will create a too-dense cake.
  • You’ll be creaming the butter with salt and again with sugar. Don’t rush this process. The creaming/fluffing of the butter makes all the difference…give the butter its due time in the mixer in order to become light and fluffy.
  • The cake flour and butter mixture will need to be folded in gently and with 3 separate additions. It’s tempting, but avoid dumping it all together at once. By folding the mixture together in 3 separate additions, you’ll ensure the ingredients get gently but thoroughly incorporated, without over-mixing.

Pound Cake Texture

This pound cake recipe results in a classically rich, dense, yet delicate cake.  It is the best tasting pound cake we’ve had, full of melt-in-your mouth buttery goodness and real vanilla. 

Pound cakes are not meant to be fluffy like birthday cakes or layer cakes.   Real pound cakes are tender and plush inside, with a golden and slightly crumbly exterior,  just as it should be.  The wonderful buttery-ness is what brings this cake over the edge… so, so good.

You’re just 6 ingredients away from this delightful breakfast-slash-dessert.  It’s a yummy hostess gift, anyone gift, or self gift – Enjoy!

Yes, a One-Bowl Apple Cake is possible:

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butter pound cake, pound cake recipe, easy pound cake, vanilla pound cake

Butter Pound Cake (6 Ingredients)

4.8 from 12 reviews

This 6-ingredient Pound Cake recipe boasts a fine, tender crumb. This easy butter pound cake is bursting with vanilla and buttery goodness in every luscious bite.

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Yield: 10 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 16 TB unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces, chilled

  • 3 large eggs + 3 large yolks, room temp

  • 1 tablespoon (TB) pure vanilla extract

  • 1 3/4 cups (7 oz) cake flour

  • 1/2 tsp fine salt (table salt)

  • 1 1/4 cups (8 3/4 oz) white sugar

Instructions

  1. Place chilled butter pieces in bowl of stand mixer; let stand at room temp for 20-30 minutes to just slightly soften the butter.  Butter should not get warmer than 60 degrees (if butter is too warm, cake will be too flat and dense.)

  2. In a separate bowl, use a fork to beat room-temp eggs, egg yolks, and vanilla.  Set aside at room temp.

    Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and preheat to 325F.  Grease and flour a 9×5 loaf pan. Set aside.

  3. Using the paddle of stand mixer, beat butter and salt at medium high speed until it’s shiny, smooth and creamy, 2-3 minutes.  Reduce speed to medium and very gradually pour in sugar, about 1 min.  Once all sugar is added, increase speed to medium high and beat until mixture is light and fully, 5-8 minutes, scraping down bowl as needed. 

  4. Reduce speed to medium and gradually add egg mixture in a slow steady stream, about 1 min.  Scrape down bowl and beat at medium high until light and fluffy, 3-4 min.  Remove bowl from mixer and scrape down.

  5. Sift cake flour over the butter-egg mixture in 3 separate additions.  Fold gently with rubber spatula until combined after each addition.  Be sure to scrape bottom of bowl to ensure all batter is combined.

  6. Use rubber spatula to transfer batter into prepared pan and smooth top.  Bake cake until golden brown and toothpick comes out clean.  Start checking at 1 hour; do not over-bake.  Let cool on wire rack for 15 minutes, invert onto rack and let cake cool completely before serving.  Dust with powdered sugar on top, if desired. Keeps well in airtight container at room temp for a couple of days.

Notes

Baked cake freezes well for a couple of weeks. Seal airtight prior to freezing. 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 188
  • Sugar: 0.2 g
  • Sodium: 23.9 mg
  • Fat: 19.9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 0.3 g
  • Protein: 2.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 104.6 mg
  • Category: dessert
  • Method: bake
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: butter pound cake recipe, easy pound cake recipe

Did you make this?

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Adapted from Cooks Illustrated



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Recipe rating

58 comments

    • BC

    what happens if I use all purpose flour?

    • Tatiana

    Very easy recipe, I love baking this pound cake every other week

      • Amy Dong

      Thanks, Tatiana!

    • CD

    This is SO good!

      • Amy Dong

      Agreed 😉

    • Ramona

    This is a brilliant recipe. I totally agree that there is absolutely no need for any raising agent – the egg white does the work. My mum does this all the time and it’s beautiful.

      • Amy Dong

      So happy you loved it!

    • Marcellina

    Such a simple and delicious recipe!

      • Amy Dong

      Thank you!

    • Andrea

    so sweet and delicious! love it!

      • Amy Dong

      So glad to hear it!

    • Lilly

    So delish!

      • Amy Dong

      Yay!

    • Debra

    Delicious and so easy to make too.

      • Amy Dong

      Glad you enjoyed it!

    • Swathi

    Pound cake looks delicious my favorite.

      • Amy Dong

      Thank you!

    • amanda

    This pound cake was sooo good. Maybe a little too good… I almost ate the entire thing myself LOL

      • Amy Dong

      Oh, I get it! 😉

    • Jamie

    This was perfect for my sweet tooth! Delicious!

      • Amy Dong

      Thank you 🙂

    • dee

    you don’t use any baking powder or baking soda in your recipe?

      • chewoutloud

      Nope, none is needed. Enjoy, and Happy Holidays! 🙂

    • Carol

    I made this cake and it is the best I’ve found. I lost my old lemon pound cake recipe so I’ve been trying many recipes without success and this one is the best.

    I tried your lemon pound cake but it didn’t bake up as well as this one. How would you suggest I make a lemon poundcake from this recipe?

    Thank you for this recipe!

      • chewoutloud

      Yay, so glad you like it, Carol! To ensure similar results for a lemon version of this exact recipe, you can add the zest of 1 lemon into the batter and try a lemon glaze on top 🙂 If you have any lemon extract, you can try 1/2 – 1 tsp added to batter. I may have to do that myself soon 🙂

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