a sliced sour cream pound cake on a cooling rack

Looking for a classic cake that won’t let you down? This sour cream pound cake is just what you need. Light and fluffy, tender and flavorful, simple and sweet, this easy cake recipe is perfect for basically any occasion that calls for cake (and yes, that includes a night on the couch watching The Bachelor).


overhead shot of sour cream pound cake on a cooling rack

How to Bake a Sour Cream Pound Cake

I’ve been wanting to share this cake recipe with you guys for FOREVER. Sour cream pound cake is one of my absolute favorite cakes for so many reasons: It’s easy (yay!). It tastes incredible (yum!). It’s a classic that will never let you down (yes!). And I’m here today to share the recipe with you so you can have this cake in your life whenever you need it, too (or, like, just really want cake).

Sour cream pound cake is nothing new: It’s a riff on traditional pound cake that incorporates sour cream for extra lightness and fluffiness and a hint of tangy flavor. It’s a seriously hefty batter (hello, butter!) that bakes up in a Bundt pan to something magically tender. And it comes together like any typical cake would: Mixing the dry ingredients, creaming the butter and sugar, stirring everything until combined and then placing in the oven. In just over an hour, your kitchen will smell like a dream and soon thereafter, you’ll be snacking on a slice or five of heavenly sour cream pound cake.

What is Pound Cake?

You might be wondering what exactly makes pound cake, well, pound cake? The most straightforward answer is this: A pound cake gets its name from the original recipe, which calls for a pound each of flour, sugar, butter and eggs. Of course, there are many different varieties of pound cake out in the world these days that do not, in fact, use exactly one pound of each ingredient, but I digress.

The point is, pound cake doesn’t mess around. It takes the most basic cake ingredients and transforms them into a dreamy dessert that tastes great on its own, but can also be flavored or zhuzhed up with toppings or mix-ins.

close-up shot of a slice of sour cream pound cake

Why Use Sour Cream in Baking?

In the case of this sour cream pound cake, we have a pretty equal ratio of flour to butter to eggs to sugar, but the addition of sour cream is what really sets it apart. In baking, sour cream can do so many tricks, but most notably, it:

  • Adds moisture to cake batter without thinning it out too much.
  • Adds fat, which = creaminess, which = deliciousness.
  • Helps to activate baking soda, which leavens the cake.

I highly recommend using full-fat sour cream for this cake recipe. We’re making a cake, after all–might as well go all out here!

slice of sour cream pound cake on a plate with whipped cream and berries

Tips for the Best-Ever Sour Cream Pound Cake

As always, let’s talk about some best-practice baking tips. Here are my top tips for baking the best classic sour cream pound cake of your life:

  • Be sure to follow the recipe’s instructions to use room temperature butter, eggs and sour cream. When the ingredients are all relatively at the same temperature, they will incorporate better into the batter so you don’t end up with those unseemly lumps. I usually take the butter, eggs and sour cream out of the fridge about 2 hours before baking.
  • PLEASE grease and flour your Bundt pan! This is imperative so you end up with a cake that comes completely out of the pan once baked, instead of breaking as you release it from the pan (been there, and it is the worst). Follow my notes in the recipe below to grease and flour a Bundt pan.
  • Store leftover cake covered at room temperature for up to 5 days.

I hope you love this simple and sweet cake as much as I do. If you give it a try, I’d love to know how you serve it (plain? with a snowfall of powdered sugar on top? dolloped with whipped topping and berries? as an ice cream sandwich? with a side of next week’s most dramatic episode of The Bachelor ever? TELL ME). Happy baking!

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a sliced sour cream pound cake on a cooling rack

Sour Cream Pound Cake

  • Author: Stephanie
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 80 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 1 Bundt cake (about 16 servings) 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Light and fluffy, tender and sweet, this sour cream pound cake is the perfect dessert for pretty much any occasion!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 sticks (1 1/2 cups) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 6 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • Powdered sugar, for topping (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 325°F (place top rack on bottom third of oven). Generously grease and flour a Bundt pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking soda and salt until well combined.
  3. In a separate large bowl with an electric hand mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in half of the flour mixture, then the sour cream, then the remaining half of the flour mixture, beating well after each addition and scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla until just combined.
  5. Pour and spread batter evenly into prepared Bundt pan. Bake 80 to 90 minutes until top of cake is deep golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool cake 20 minutes in pan, then carefully invert onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
  6. Dust top of fully cooled cake with powdered sugar just before serving, if desired.

Notes

  • Serve slices of sour cream pound cake with whipped topping and fresh berries, if desired.
  • How to grease and flour a Bundt pan: First, spray bottom and sides of Bundt pan generously with cooking spray. Using a sifter, tap flour lightly into bottom of pan. Turn pan, tapping side of pan, to move excess flour around so it adheres to sides of pan. Continue to sift, tap flour, turn pan, etc. until the entire inside of the pan is floured. Turn the pan upside-down over a sink and tap a few times to remove any excess flour.

Keywords: sour cream bundt cake, vanilla pound cake

Let them eat (more) cake!