Skip to content

Get 5 Secrets to Make Homemade Taste Food Better + New Recipes Weekly!

    Homemade Lemon Polenta Cake Recipe

    Published April 23, 2021. This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

    You will love these few ingredients and the simple-to-make Italian Homemade Lemon Polenta Cake recipe with lemon glaze.

    There is nothing like a delicious dessert to finish off an epic meal with.  We have a serious sweet tooth in our house and love our sweets all day long, especially after dinner.  If you’re just like us then you absolutely check out how to make my Blackberry Cobbler and Chocolate Mousse.

    a lemon polenta cake with lemons and berries

    Polenta Cake

    A polenta cake is an Italian sweet cake that is made from cornmeal and almond flour and classically served with powdered sugar or a lemon glaze that goes over the top.  It is very easy to make and only requires 10 ingredients.  In Italy, it is a very simple humble cake that is made using leftover corn grits.     

    When making this recipe you can use either coarse corn grits or finely ground corn grits as both are acceptable but will provide different textures.    

    What is Polenta

    Polenta is a “starch” side dish, or at times the main entrée, in Italy that is made from chicken stock and corn grits that is cooked in a pot together until the grits are cooked and softened.  It will kind of remind you of mashed potatoes.  These same corn grits are used to make this polenta cake.   

    How to Make Polenta Cake

    Follow along with these simple instructions for making a homemade polenta cake:

    Start by creaming together some butter and sugar together in a stand mixer using the paddle attachment on medium-high speed for 5-7 minutes or until light and fluffy.

    whipping together butter and sugar in a stand mixer

    In a large bowl mix together all of the dry ingredients until they are completely combined and set aside.

    mixing together cornmeal and almond meal

    Add the vanilla and lemon zest to the creamed butter mixture until mixed in.

    adding lemon zest to a stand mixer

    Alternating dry ingredients and eggs add each of them in, in batches until it is completely mixed together.

    adding dry ingredients to whipped butter in a stand mixer

    Transfer to a springform pan and smooth out the batter using a spatula.

    adding batter to a springform pan

    Bake in the oven at 350° for 45-55 minutes or until lightly browned on top and firm in the center.  Cool completely at room temperature before running a knife around the outside and releasing the buckle.

    baked polenta cake in a springform pan

    Whisk together the lemon juice and sifted powdered sugar until combined and then add to the top of the cake and serve.

    pouring glaze onto a lemon polenta cake

    How to Serve It

    This cake classically would be served with a little powdered sugar or a lemon glaze, which is what I made.  Here are a few other things you can serve it with:

    Make-Ahead and Storage

    Make-Ahead: You can make this cake up to 2 days ahead of time.

    How to Store: Keep covered at room temperature for up to 4 days.  Cover and refrigerate for up to 6 days.  You can freeze covered for up to 3 months.  Thaw in the refrigerator for 1 day before serving.

    Chef Billy Parisi

    chef notes + tips

    • You can use any grind of cornmeal in this recipe.
    • If you do not have a stand mixer you can substitute it with a hand mixer.
    • I prefer to use the finely ground almond meal in this polenta cake.
    • Run a knife on the outside of the springform pan before undoing the buckle.
    sliced of lemon polenta cake with berries

    More Dessert Recipes

    Be sure to follow me on FacebookYouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest, and if you’ve had a chance to make this, then definitely drop me a comment and a rating below!

    Let's Cook - Chef Billy Parisi

    Video

    Homemade Lemon Polenta Cake Recipe

    5 from 3 votes
    You will absolutely love this few ingredient and simple to make Italian Homemade Lemon Polenta Cake recipe with lemon glaze
    Servings: 12
    Prep Time: 15 minutes
    Cook Time: 55 minutes
    Cooling Time: 1 hour

    Ingredients 

    For the Cake:

    • 2 ¼ cups cornmeal
    • 2 ¼ cups almond flour
    • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
    • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
    • 1 ½ cups softened unsalted butter
    • 1 ½ cups sugar
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla
    • zest of 2 lemons
    • 5 eggs

    For the Glaze:

    • Juice of 2 lemons
    • 1 3/4 cups powdered sugar

    Instructions

    • Preheat the oven to 350°.
    • In a large bowl whisk together the cornmeal, almond flour, salt, and baking powder until combined. Set aside.
    • Next add the butter and sugar to a stand mixer with the paddle attachment and mix on medium-high speed for 5-7 minutes or until light and fluffy.
    • Add in the vanilla and lemon zest to the creamed butter and mix until it is mixed in about 10 seconds.
    • Now alternate adding in the cornmeal mixture dry ingredients and the eggs into the creamed butter mixture until each is mixed in before adding in the other, about 3-4 minutes total.
    • Once everything is mixed in, transfer the batter to a 9” springform pan and smooth the batter on the top using a rubber spatula.
    • Bake the cake at 350° for 45-55 minutes or until lightly browned on top and has a mostly firm center.
    • Cool the cake completely on a rack at room temperature before removing it from the springform pan.
    • In a small bowl whisk together the lemon juice and powdered sugar until completely combined and then spread it over top of the cake, slice, and serve.

    Notes

    Chef Notes:
    Make-Ahead: You can make this cake up to 2 days ahead of time.
    How to Store: Keep covered at room temperature for up to 4 days. Cover and refrigerate for up to 6 days. You can freeze covered for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for 1 day before serving.
    You can use any grind of cornmeal in this recipe.
    If you do not have a stand mixer you can substitute it with a hand mixer.
    I prefer to use the finely ground almond meal in this polenta cake.
    Run a knife on the outside of the springform pan before undoing the buckle.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 630kcalCarbohydrates: 69gProtein: 10gFat: 37gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 129mgSodium: 280mgPotassium: 214mgFiber: 5gSugar: 43gVitamin A: 808IUCalcium: 100mgIron: 2mg
    Course: Dessert
    Cuisine: Italian
    “/>