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This old fashioned 7UP Pound Cake recipe is a simple Southern dessert that’s perfect for just about any occasion. The smooth, buttery pound cake is made from scratch with just a hint of lemon. Enjoy the glazed cake on its own, or pair it with fresh fruit and a dollop of whipped cream!

Close front shot of lemon pound cake on a plate with a bite on a fork

How to Make 7UP Pound Cake | 1-Minute Video

7UP Cake Recipe

Every home cook should have a delicious and easy go-to cake recipe that she can always turn to when hosting a party or attending a potluck. This 7UP Pound Cake is a classic favorite — with a crisp exterior and a soft, buttery crumb that’s dense (but not dry or crumbly)! The secret ingredient is the 7UP soda!

7-Up cake tastes like a classic lemon pound cake. You’ll finish the moist cake with a sweet-tart lemon glaze to really emphasize the flavor!

What does 7UP do for cake?

In this particular recipe, the 7UP soda serves a few different purposes. It acts as a leavening agent (instead of baking soda, for instance) to help the cake rise, it adds a hint of lemon-lime flavor, and it serves as the liquid for the batter.

Pound Cakes Versus Regular Cakes

Unlike traditional American layer cakes or sheet cakes, pound cakes have a dense, rich texture and a crisp crust. Made with simple ingredients like butter, flour, sugar and eggs, pound cakes are large, heavy cakes that don’t rise as much as other cakes. Pound cakes are traditionally prepared in Bundt pans or tube pans, but can also be baked in loaf pans. They’re actually a type of quick bread, since the term “quick bread” refers to any dough or batter that’s leavened without yeast. In this case, we use the carbonated 7-up soda to help the batter rise a little bit. While a simple dusting of powdered sugar is a classic finish, some versions also include a glaze on top.

Slice of 7UP Pound Cake on a serving spatula

The Secret to a Moist Pound Cake

Here are a few important tips to ensure a moist 7UP pound cake every time!

  • Room temperature ingredients: starting with room temperature ingredients makes it easier to cream the butter, sugar and eggs. This ensures maximum volume and lift for your cake.
  • Real butter: always use real butter (not margarine or other substitutes) for the proper fat content and texture.
  • Store at room temperature: wrapped tightly, the pound cake will stay fresh at room temperature for 4-5 days. It actually gets better as it sits! While refrigerating the cake will extend its shelf life, this can also alter the texture of the cake.

Ingredients for 7 UP Cake

This is just a quick overview of the simple ingredients that you’ll need for an easy 7up cake recipe from scratch (without shortening). As always, specific measurements and complete cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Butter: use salted butter for flavor. Make sure that you give it time to soften at room temperature so that it mixes smoothly with the sugar.
  • Sugar: for just the right amount of sweetness.
  • Eggs: give the cake structure.
  • All-purpose flour: the base of the cake batter.
  • Lemon zest: for that classic lemon flavor. Be careful that you only scrape off the very outer layer of the lemon peel. The white pith underneath has a bitter taste, so avoid that!
  • 7UP soda: the secret ingredient that makes this case light, tender, and flavorful!
  • Powdered sugar and lemon juice: for the glaze on top.
Zesting lemon on cutting board

How to Make 7UP Pound Cake from Scratch

No matter your baking experience, you can pull off this easy pound cake recipe!

  1. Cream together the butter and sugar in a stand mixer or with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. This can take anywhere from about 12 minutes or up to 20 minutes, so just be patient, and scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally.
  2. Add the eggs (one at a time), and then gradually add the flour and lemon zest.
  3. Fold in the 7-up soda and pour the batter into the prepared pan.
7UP soda in a glass measuring cup for pound cake

What temp should you bake a pound cake?

Bake the cake in a 325°F oven for about 70-80 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Once the cake cools completely on a wire rack, you can transfer it to a serving plate and finish it off with a sweet lemon glaze!

Close up shot of glazed 7UP pound cake on a plate

How to Make 7UP Pound Cake Glaze

Some 7 up cake recipes include the 7UP soda in the glaze as well. I prefer a very basic lemon glaze, which is just a combination of powdered sugar and lemon juice. You can start with 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and then add more to thin the glaze as necessary. The glaze should be thin enough to drizzle over the cake, but not too runny. To thicken the glaze, add more powdered sugar. You really can’t screw it up!

Glaze on a whisk for pound cake

What to Serve with 7 UP Cake

This cake is absolutely delicious served plain, so there’s really no need to fuss with much more. That said, you can make it even fancier with some fresh berries on the side and a dollop of whipped cream! You can never go wrong with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, either…

Slice of 7-Up pound cake on a blue and white plate with whipped cream

Storage

  • The 7UP cake will stay fresh when covered at room temperature for 4-5 days — it does not need to be refrigerated. To extend the life of your cake, wrap it tightly and store it in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • How to Store Pound Cake: For the refrigerator or countertop, you can just wrap the cake tightly with plastic wrap. For the freezer, I recommend a layer of plastic wrap, followed by another layer of aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn.
  • The cake is best when prepared 1 day in advance. The flavors come together and it gets more moist as it rests!

Recipe Variations

  • For even more flavor, add vanilla and lemon extracts. If you use about 1 teaspoon or up to 2 teaspoons of lemon extract, you can omit the lemon zest. About 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract adds warmth.
  • According to this Southern Living article, you should not try to substitute Sprite or other lemon-lime soda for the 7UP. The 7UP has a higher level of carbonation than Sprite, which helps the cake rise beautifully! That said, some readers have successfully substituted with other beverages.
  • Can I make a Bundt cake in a regular pan? Yes. If you don’t have a Bundt pan or a tube pan, you can typically use 2 loaf pans. The volume of batter should also fit in either two 9-inch round cake pans or in one 9 x 13-inch pan. I haven’t tested this particular recipe in anything other than a Bundt cake pan, though, so try it at your own risk.

Tips for the Best 7UP Pound Cake Recipe

  • When zesting the lemons, you only want to scrape off the very outer peel. This is where all of the essential oils and flavor can be found. You do not want to scrape off the white pith, which has a bitter taste.
  • Make sure that you spray your Bundt pan really well with cooking spray, or grease with butter and sprinkle with flour. This will prevent the cake from sticking to the pan.
  • Properly measure the flour. Weigh the flour on a kitchen scale or spoon the flour into the cup and lightly level with the straight edge of a knife. Packing the measuring cup too tightly and using too much flour will result in a dry cake.
  • Make sure that all of your ingredients are at room temperature so that they blend together smoothly.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 12-13 minutes. Whipping this air into the batter will help the cake rise during baking.
  • Don’t leave the cake in the pan for too long after baking — about 10-15 minutes is plenty. After that, condensation will start to form and the moisture will negatively impact the crust.
Two slices of 7up pound cake on plates with forks

More Pound Cake Recipes to Try

Square side shot of a plate of 7up pound cake

7UP Pound Cake

5 from 22 votes
Prep: 25 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 15 minutes
Cooling Time 2 hours
Total: 3 hours 40 minutes
Servings 16 slices
Calories 408.6 kcal
This old fashioned 7UP Pound Cake recipe is a simple Southern dessert that's perfect for just about any occasion!

Equipment

Ingredients
  

CAKE:

GLAZE:

  • cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (or more, as necessary)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 325°F.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 12-13 minutes). Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each one. Gradually add flour and lemon zest, mixing just until everything is combined. Fold in 7-Up.
  • Pour batter into a well-greased Bundt cake pan.
  • Bake for 70-80 minutes (or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean). Cool in the pan for about 15-20 minutes, and then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Once the cake is cool, prepare the glaze by whisking together the powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth. Add extra lemon juice (1 teaspoon at a time), just until the glaze is thin enough to drizzle over the cake. If the glaze is too thin, add a little bit of powdered sugar until it reaches the desired consistency. Drizzle glaze over cake.

Video

Notes

  • When zesting the lemons, you only want to scrape off the very outer peel. This is where all of the essential oils and flavor can be found. You do not want to scrape off the white pith, which has a bitter taste.
  • Make sure that you spray your Bundt pan really well with cooking spray, or grease with butter and sprinkle with flour. This will prevent the cake from sticking to the pan.
  • Properly measure the flour. Weigh the flour on a kitchen scale or spoon the flour into the cup and lightly level with the straight edge of a knife. Packing the measuring cup too tightly and using too much flour will result in a dry cake.
  • Make sure that all of your ingredients are at room temperature so that they blend together smoothly.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 12-13 minutes. Whipping this air into the batter will help the cake rise during baking.
  • Don’t leave the cake in the pan for too long after baking — about 10-15 minutes is plenty. After that, condensation will start to form and the moisture will negatively impact the crust.
  •  

Nutrition

Serving: 1sliceCalories: 408.6kcalCarbohydrates: 58.6gProtein: 4.4gFat: 18.7gSaturated Fat: 11.4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.9gMonounsaturated Fat: 5.1gCholesterol: 104.5mgSodium: 145.8mgPotassium: 56.8mgFiber: 0.8gSugar: 41.9g
Keyword: 7 up cake recipe, 7UP Cake, 7UP Pound Cake, Lemon Pound Cake
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, Southern
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    You didn’t add any Baking Powder? If you add Lemon Juice or any acid such as Orange Juice,White Vinegar to Baking Powder it will make a cake rise. The Acid will interact with the Baking Powder.Also if you add some sour cream I like using Daisy or Mayo either Miracle Whip or Kraft I don’t like using Hellman’s it will make it moist 1/4 Cup. I haven’t made this yet but it looks good but looks a little dry.

    1. Hi, Tara! You don’t need any baking powder. The 7UP helps the cake rise. The cake has a classic pound cake texture — dense, but not dry. Hope you’ll give it a try! 🙂

        1. Hi, Catherine! Absolutely! You shouldn’t need much baking powder at all, since pound cake is a really dense cake. I would try about 1/4 teaspoon or 1/2 teaspoon at the most. Hope you enjoy!

        2. Catherine I have made this cake numerous times.you can use sprite if that’s all you have,and the cake will turn out just fine.i don’t use lemon zest, maybe I’ll try it next time. I use pure lemon extract. You don’t need baking powder or baking soda.just what the recipe calls for.I have also used,Pepsi,pineapple crush,and coke using this recipe. Just have to change whatever extract you want to use. They turned out perfect. I’m a baker, and I love to experiment. Hope this helps. Good luck to you

    2. 5 stars
      OMG Amazing cake I made this for my birthday, super moist, tender & delicious. The only difference is I used Diet Coke & Raisins & I added Rum & Rum Extract. So it was a Rum, Raisin & Coke Pound Cake. I didn’t have 7up on hand. My sister whom is pregnant I made another batch as though 1 wasn’t enough leaving the Rum out. Tysvm best Pound cake ever & super easy to put together & make.

      1. Thanks for taking the time to leave a note, Tara! I’m so glad to hear that it was a success — and your version sounds delicious too! 🙂

        1. I have 7 up. But it is flat is it okay to use or should I a dd baking powder or baking soda to the recipe?

          1. 5 stars
            It probably wouldn’t hurt to add the Baking Powder if it was me yes I would do that 1 teaspoon Double Acting or 2 teaspoons regular Baking Powder. Also if you add Lemon Juice 1 Tablespoon it will interact with the Baking Powder to make it light & fluffy. I do this alot with baking muffins,cakes biscuits. Any type of acid like Vinegar either white,apple cider etc.As for another acid Orange Juice,Lime. I hope this helps or just get a new 7up that isn’t flat & you can use any kind of soda that you like,such as Diet or regular Ginger Ale, Diet or Regular Coke even Root Beer. I recently made Corona Beer bread so delicious. I also made tacos with Corona Beer or any beer you like,instead of water. I took 1 pound Ground Chicken got it crumbly & well done in skillet,then sprinkled on the taco seasoning & added 1/4 Cup Beer then Mild taco sauce 1/4 Cup then when I turned the heat off so it had the taste a little of the beer some more about 1/4 Cup.REALLY DELICIOUS.

          2. I would use it, but also add the baking powder with lemon juice like Tara suggests. Enjoy! 🙂

          3. I want to use this in mini bundt pans. What would the time and temperature adjustments.

            Thank you!

          4. Hi, Katrina! I haven’t actually tested the mini bundt pans myself, so my suggestion will merely be an estimate based on other mini bundt cake recipes. You’ll have to keep an eye on it to make sure that it’s not over-cooked or under-baked. 🙂

            I would try 20-25 minutes in a 350 degree F oven. Enjoy!

          5. Hi, Carol! I haven’t tried it myself, but I think that should work fine. You might want to toss the blueberries with a very small amount of flour before adding them to the batter. This will help the berries stay suspended in the cake, rather than sinking to the bottom. Let me know if you give it a try!

      2. Tara you sound just like me,I use Pepsi or whatever soda I have on hand.change up the extract, and cake turns out perfect everytime.i love using the rum flavor extract

        1. 5 stars
          First off thank you. You’re no doubt a life saver. This was easy to follow. I did use lemon extract instead and added the vanilla and it is sooo good and moist. I can cook but I can’t bake to save my life. This was foolproof and a family favourite. Thank you.

        1. Hi, Arlene! It’s best if you don’t chill the soda before adding it to the cake batter, since room temperature ingredients blend together more easily and smoothly. You don’t want a really cold liquid to firm up the eggs and butter.

    3. The carbonation of the 7 up will make the cake rise beautifully. I have made 7 up cakes for years without any problems. A very moist pound cake

    4. 5 stars
      I love this recipe. I use it for other recipes that go well with the lemon flavors. I have no problem with dryness. I use 7up. The option to bake without the milk is a plus for those who have a low tolerance for dairy.

  2. Hello,

    I tried this recipe for the 7up cake and I don’t know what happened. It did not turn out at all, it would not bake. The butter separated and just sat on top of the mix. After letting it cook for 2 hours, i took it out of the oven and it was like caramel. I am not even sure if I can get it out of the pan. The only thing i can think of , is that i used diet 7up.
    Do you have any thoughts on what happened?
    I really want to try it again!

    Thanks!

    1. Hi, Kay! I honestly have no idea — I’ve never had that happen with any pound cake recipe. I can’t image that the diet soda would have made that much difference. Baking is an exact science, so it makes me wonder if you accidentally mis-measured one of the ingredients? For instance, not enough flour, not enough eggs, too much butter, or the butter wasn’t at room temperature? It just doesn’t make sense to me that you would have a caramel-like mixture after 2 hours in the oven, so I’m just trying to troubleshoot. Sorry I can’t be more helpful since I wasn’t there in the kitchen with you at the time. 🙁

        1. The cake flour has a lighter crumb, so yes — it can yield a lighter cake. I like to use all-purpose flour when it works in recipes, since I know that cake flour can be hard to find in some places. Either will work, but go with the cake flour if you’ve got it!

          I don’t bake with baking sugar, so I can’t say how that would change the texture of the cake either way. Let me know if you give it a shot!

        2. Recipe for 7up pound cake with drizzle 7up and Karo scratch boil the 7up and Karo syrup pour over the cack while it’s still warm and you swan down cake flour I lost my recipe can you find it please

    2. 5 stars
      Back track & write down exactly what you did. I made this & it turned out great it was super moist & delicious. I’ve made this many times. Here’s my comment OMG Amazing cake I made this for my birthday, super moist, tender & delicious. The only difference is I used Diet Coke & Raisins & I added Rum & Rum Extract. So it was a Rum, Raisin & Coke Pound Cake. I didn’t have 7up on hand. My sister whom is pregnant I made another batch as though 1 wasn’t enough leaving the Rum out. Tysvm best Pound cake ever & super easy to put together & make.

      1. Thanks, Tara! I’m so happy to hear that you’ve made the cake multiple times and that it always works out. The rum raisin and coke version sounds amazing!

    1. Great recipe! I didn’t have the 7-up, so I used Ginger Ale. The cake turned out great. So from what I gather it doesn’t really make a difference what kind of soda you use. The only difference is it wouldn’t have the lemon flavor.

  3. Hello,
    I’m baking this cake as I’m typing. I did not have lemons so I used lemon juice, not sure if I used too much or not enough. Will it turn out ok without the lemon zest?
    Thanks!

    1. Hi, Sandy! The cake will probably be great — it just won’t have as strong of a lemon flavor, since most of the flavor is in the essential oils from the zest. Hope you enjoy!

          1. 5 stars
            In addition to my earlier comment, I took this to my nephew and his family’s house for Thanksgiving and the kids and everyone just loved it! I will make this again, thank you!

      1. Hello.
        I have been making a version of this cake but the only difference is that I alternate when mixing in the flour and 7up. Could that be the reason it is coming out a little dry? I also bake it at 350. I will try 325. Please lmk any other reasons why the cake may be dry.

        1. Hi, Diane! It’s hard for me to know why the cake might be dry. You could be baking it for too long, you could be over-mixing the batter, or there might be something else that I’m just not thinking of. Also, it’s important to remember that a pound is supposed to be much more dense with more of a crumbly texture than a regular cake. It’s not going to be light and fluffy like a layer cake because of the nature of a pound cake.

          1. Thanks so much for the quick response. I am very careful about not over mixing when I add the flour so I’m probably beating the sugar and butter too long or baking it a bit too long. If at first I don’t succeed, try try again! Thanks again. 🙂

    1. Hi, Teresa! I’m not sure! It often takes a couple of hours to harden, but if you waited that long and it was still too soft, I honestly don’t know why that would be. Did you put it on really thick? Sorry I can’t be more helpful!

      1. 5 stars
        Hi Blair,
        My mom used to make this recipe all the time. This was my first attempt at the 7up cake since she passed. I seem to be having the same problem she did many years ago! I baked the cake for 75 minutes but it still has a layer of wetness throughout the cake. Did I bake it long enough? It taste good but has a layer that’s thick and wet! What should I do?

        1. Hi, Shay! That’s strange. I haven’t ever had a cake with the wet layer like that, but I imagine it just needs to bake longer. I’ve had quick breads that are still wet in the middle when they’re underbaked, so I bet that’s what you’re experiencing with the pound cake. Merry Christmas!

  4. 5 stars
    I make this cake all the time. My family ask for it at all events. I use 2tbs lemon extract and no lemon zest along with 7up. I’ve used Sprite also.

  5. Hi Looks like a great recipe- I am thinking of using with a group of kids and was wondering if this would bake okay in an 8″ loaf pan or two? I would line it with parchment. DO you think it would hold up to a drizzle of lemon syrup while warm? Thanks for posting the recipe I will def try it!

    1. Yes, it should work well in two loaf pans. And yes — a drizzle of lemon syrup would be delicious!! Have fun, Cindy!