Pink Lemonade Cake takes your favorite summer drink from the glass to the cake plate with this citrusy, sweet dessert.
Fluffy frosting covers cake layered with pink lemon curd. Oh my! Kind of the perfect dessert ever created.
Pink Lemonade Curd
For the filling of this tasty cake I made a traditional lemon curd but added some cranberry juice for a pink punch. Just like your favorite summer drink!
Make your favorite white or lemon cake for the dessert. You can make it ahead, wrap and chill the cake until you use it.
The frosting is my lemony version of 7-minute icing (a fluffy, quick-meringue type frosting). I added lemon juice to give it a little zing of course.
You'll want to frost the cake right after you make the icing. This type of icing stiffens quickly and loses its smooth spread. Once you get your perfect swirls and peaks on the cake though, it will hold its beautiful form for quite a while!
I candied some lemon zest to put on top. It's a fancy feature you're welcome to do as well! However no one will complain if there's none, or some fun sprinkles instead.
Pink Lemonade Cake
For the Cake:
- ¾ cup sugar
- 3 tbsp cornstarch
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ cup cranberry juice cocktail
- 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 large egg plus 2 large egg yolks
- 3 drops red food coloring
- 2 Layers (8-inch) white lemon cake layers
For the frosting:
- 1 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1 tbsp light corn syrup
- 4 large egg whites
- 3 drops red food coloring
- Candied lemon zest
- To make the lemon curd filling, combine sugar, cornstarch, salt, cranberry juice, lemon juice, egg and yolks in a medium heavy saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture becomes very thick, 5 to 7 min. Continue to cook and stir until the mixture boils, then stir for 30 sec more. Transfer to a bowl over an ice bath to cool; add food coloring. Stir occasionally until completely cool, then cover with plastic wrap, pressing it onto the surface to prevent a skin from forming, and store in the fridge for up to a day.
- Trim domed tops from cakes and place one on a serving platter; spread cold lemon filling over the surface ½ inch from the edge. Top with second cake layer and place in the fridge while preparing frosting.
- To make the frosting, combine 1 cup sugar, lemon juice and corn syrup in a small heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until sugar dissolves; remove spoon. Brush insides of pan with a wet pastry brush to remove any sugar crystals and place a candy thermometer into the mixture. Boil (do not stir) until the syrup registers 230°F about 2 min. While the syrup cooks, whisk the egg whites and remaining 2 tbsp sugar with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. With the mixer on low speed, pour the sugar mixture into the egg whites in a slow, steady stream. Increase speed to high and beat until the mixture is thick and glossy, 5 min. Tint frosting with food coloring, then frost cake immediately. Garnish with candied lemon zest.