An Occasion

Dairy-free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake | La Pêche Fraîche

“In his blue gardens,
men and girls came and went like moths
among the whisperings
and the champagne
and the stars.”

—F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3

Dairy-free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake | La Pêche Fraîche

“Every Friday
five crates of oranges and lemons
arrived from a fruiterer in New York—
every Monday
these same oranges and lemons
left his back door in a pyramid of pulpless halves.”

—F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3

Dairy-free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake | La Pêche Fraîche

Gosh, it seems like ages ago now, but Valentine’s day was only a month ago.
(I know, I know, we’re already gearing up for the next holiday, but this cake is from February, so deal with it.)

It’s warm here, and the shiverings of winter seem far away, now that we’re enjoying balmy 50 degree weather.
50 degrees!  Hallelujah.

You can see (dead) grass and hopeful little snow drops poking their dainty white petals out of the grey brown earth.
I heard a bird the other day singing its heart out, beak wide open and chest puffed up (exactly how I look while singing in the shower).  Shocking how we take birdsong for granted.

My daddy just visited me and brightened the gray skies.
We had dinner at Sunda (amazing! really amazing! those brussels sprouts… omg…) on Friday, Indian takeout from a Nepalese/Indian place on Saturday (having those leftovers for lunch today, yum.  Naan. Naaaan.), and an absolutely exquisite meal on Sunday at the Green Zebra, which is hands down one of Chicago’s best restaurants.  
We agreed that we have never had a bad dish from Green Zebra, in all the times we’ve been.
In fact, the food has only gotten better. (Cannot highly recommend enough! Get there if you can!)

Dairy-free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake | La Pêche Fraîche

In two weeks time, I’ll be in Mexico with my mama.
I am so excited! We’re going to have lots of mother-daughter time on the beach and spa (hint. hint.) and possibly hike a bit!  We are going to read ALL THE BOOKS.

I’m thinking of buying a GoPro for the trip/just to have (read: cute sorority videos!)—I’ve been looking at the (discontinued) Hero 3+ Black edition, but it’s pricy ($300-$400 with a monopod and SD card added).
Have any of you loved your experiences with GoPros?
Have you found them worth the money?
Heeeellllppp. I really really really really want one, but I want to feel like my purchase is justified.

Dairy-free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake | La Pêche Fraîche

So why did I start this post with Great Gatsby and champagne and Valentine’s day?

Because at the end of Valentine’s day, after having split a bottle of very, very nice champagne, N and I fell asleep and I awoke to find I had an oxymoron come true mournfully sitting on my counter—leftover champagne.
I needed to do something delicious with the leftover Veuve other than letting it sadly fizzle out before pouring it down the drain, so I made a cake that N could partake in, too.

Dairy-free lemon and champagne pound cake, with a dense, tight crumb delightfully laced with bright lemon and fruity champagne.
This cake had the best pound cake texture I have ever tasted or seen or cut in my life.  So smooth and dense.
It’s topped with a boozy champagne and lemon glaze, as well as a thick, drippy vanilla glaze that’s sweet and salty all at once.

It’s quick and easy to make, and makes for perfect afternoon slices with tea.  It’s a cake made for noshing—thin slice after thin slice.
The glazes are finger-licking good, and there’s nothing quite like the mouthfeel of a good pound cake, toothsome and dense.

Dairy-free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake | La Pêche Fraîche

Dairy-Free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake
makes 1 10-cup bundt cake

for the cake:
225 grams (16 tablespoons) Earth Balance buttery sticks or other dairy-free margarine
400 grams (2 cups) sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
5 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
zest of 2 lemons
juice of 1 lemon (about 45 mL=3 tablespoons)
360 grams (3 cups) flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup champagne (I used Veuve Cliquot, but the quality is not of great importance here)

for the lemon-champagne glaze:
juice of 1 lemon (45 mL=3 tablespoons)
30 mL (2 tablespoons) champagne
tiny pinch salt
125 grams (1 cup) (or as needed) powdered sugar, sifted

for the vanilla icing:
3-4 tablespoons almond milk or coconut cream (or heavy cream, if not dairy-free)
125 grams (1 cup) (or as needed) powdered sugar, sifted
pinch salt
splash vanilla extract

Make the cake: grease and flour a 10-cup bundt pan very well and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Beat margarine on high speed for 3 minutes until very fluffy.
Add the sugar and salt and beat for another full 3 minutes.
Scrape the bowl and add in the eggs one at a time while the mixer is running; after all are added, increase speed and beat for 5 full minutes.
Add in the vanilla, lemon juice and lemon zest and mix slightly.
Dump the flour on top of the batter and the baking powder and baking soda on top of the flour.
Begin to mix slowly; after the flour is halfway worked in, begin adding the champagne in a steady stream.
Increase speed and beat for 30 seconds, or until just homogeneous.
Scrape the bowl and mix for 15 more seconds.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
To make the lemon-champagne glaze, whisk lemon juice, champagne, and salt together, then sift the powdered sugar over while whisking vigorously to prevent lumps.
Add more powdered sugar if the glaze is too thin, then pour over the cake, being sure to cover the entire surface.
To make the vanilla glaze, whisk milk/cream, vanilla, and salt together, then sift the powdered sugar over.
If the glaze is too thin, again add more powdered sugar (and maybe a small pinch of salt).
Spread/pour the vanilla glaze over the lemon/champagne glaze and allow to set before cutting cake.


  1. This looks perfect for any occasion! The flavors… the color… the glaze! It all looks soo yummy!!

    1. Thanks so much! I do love lemon in any season! xx

    2. So I’ve made this cake 3 times. My dairy free son loves it. Has anyone had a hole in the middle of the cake? Has happened every time for me. This time I tapped the pan to get air bubbles out. Hopefully that will work. Its un the oven now. Also, I added blueberries on my sons recommendation. Will also add blueberry to the vanilla glaze. Wish me lyck

      1. Hey Terryl! Great to hear you and your son love the cake. I’m not 100% sure about the hole in the cake, but here are some ideas: maybe it is a jar of slightly less active or older baking powder or baking soda? Perhaps it’s the bubbles—tapping the pan seems brilliant to me. Alternatively, maybe the butter wasn’t fully incorporated into the batter? Always happy to help troubleshoot! xoxoxo

  2. Would it be ok to make this in a loaf pan?

    1. Erin, definitely! You’ll have to halve the recipe or make it in two pans, though. Let me know how it goes! xo

  3. Can’t wait to make this, just wondering if the champagne needs to be flat & room temperature or can it be chilled & fizzy so I can enjoy from the same bottle while I make this!?

    1. Laura, sorry for the delayed response! You can absolutely use chilled and fizzy champagne, maybe just pour what you need for the cake into a measuring cup at the very beginning so that it’s not ice cold when you add it to the batter. Let me know how it goes, have a fabulous time baking! xoxo

  4. I think your my spirit human… using Veuve in a recipe. The best! Xx

    1. You’re definitely my dream spirit human Thalia 🙂 I did feel like a bit of a hedonist pouring it in the batter but the cake was so tasty!! Definitely worth it xxxx

  5. hi

    what type of flour do you use, plain or self raising?

    kind regards

    1. Deanna, I use plain flour! Hope this helps, xoxo

  6. I just made this cake and it came out so much better than I expected. I wanted to test it out and make it for a baby shower next month. I added frozen blueberries to it as the theme is blue and yellow. I have a dairy free friend and she will be so happy!! Next time I will bake the cake a bit first as the blueberries fell to the bottom and stuck a bit when I removed the cake. Once the icing goes on, it’s great. I’m not a big lemon fan, but this is amazing!

  7. I have made this twice now! It is awesome! I’m not dairy free in my lifestyle but needed a dessert for some extended family members coming in for a family wedding who can’t have dairy. I made a test cake and took it to work. It was a hit. I made it again tonight for the festivities this weekend. Truly thankful for this yummy recipe.

    1. Tammie, I’m so happy to hear that! Thank you so much for the feedback. Hope the wedding went swimmingly xx

  8. Hi I am interested in making this cake for a Baptism. Do you think this will be strong enough to hold fondant with flowers?

    1. Kristy, I think it should! Let me know how it goes xx

  9. Hi Everyone!
    I made the cake for my daughters Baptism and had rave reviews!
    Thank you so much for sharing your recipe!

    1. Kristy! I am so, so happy to hear that! Congrats to your daughter, I hope she had a beautiful Baptism. Hugs!

  10. Can I use gluten free flour?? If I can is it the same 3 cups??

    1. Sue, I believe it should work! If it’s a gluten free flour that says cup for cup, then it will be 3 cups. Just go with the guidelines on the back of the package. Hope that helps! Let me know how it goes X

  11. The only kind of ‘milk’ my grandson can have is rice milk. It’s really thin. So you know of something I can add to make it thicker for baking? Thanks.

    1. Hmmm, Judy, you could try thickening it with a little tapioca or cornstarch over heat, or just try using rice milk in baking. I use almond milk in many recipes with good success, in spite of its low fat and thin consistency! Let me know how your experiments go. Xx

  12. […] from La Pêche Fraîche. The original recipe is dairy […]

  13. Can I freeze this cake?

    1. Hi Joan! I have not tried to freeze this cake, but I think you could if it was wrapped very well in plastic and foil. It is a dense cake, so I would give it plenty of time to thaw. Best of luck, let me know how it goes!

  14. […] Dairy-Free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake […]

  15. […] Dairy-Free Lemon and Champagne Pound Cake […]

  16. I finally made this today after wanting to do so for ages. It is DELICIOUS!! Super easy and lovely and moist. Thank you!!

    1. I’m so glad to hear that Miriam! xoxo

  17. This cake sounds fabulous! I am vegan, do you think I can use aquafaba instead of eggs?

    1. Hi Susan! I think you could – I would reduce the aquafaba, however, so that it’s a bit thicker than straight out of the can. Let me know how it goes! xoxo

      1. Thank you, your suggestion for reduction is great.

  18. Can I use Moët champagne for this recipe ?

    1. Certainly! Any type will do 🙂 xx

  19. How does the cake freeze?

    1. Hi Renee, I have never frozen it, but I think it would freeze well if well-wrapped in plastic and aluminum foil. Hope that helps!

  20. What recipe did you use for the vanilla icing? I followed yours and mine was not even close to that thick. Doubled the powedered still runny.

    1. I’m sorry to hear that Penny! It could be due to differences in the thickness of our coconut or almond milk. One trick to try is to add the liquid to the powdered sugar, instead of the other way around, so you can stop when it gets to the correct thickness. I usually add powdered sugar to the liquid but that is harder to control. Hope this helps x

  21. So excited to try this cake! When do you add the glaze and the frosting?

    1. Hi Jenny, sorry for my lagging reply. I add them after the cake is 100% cooled. Hope that helps x

  22. I have a lot of food allergies that sprung up in past few months. Tomorrow is my wedding anniversary and I was super bummed when I came to the realization that I would not be able to partake in the tradition of eating my wedding topper we saved for the anniversary.
    Then I came upon your recipe and thought this would make a nice substitution. I was still able to incorporate something special from last year. I used the same champagne we had. I haven’t eaten the cake yet but did try a little piece of crumb and it’s pretty good. Can’t wait to have it tomorrow with our champagne!!
    Thank you

    1. Stephanie, I’m so glad to hear that. I hope you had a lovely time celebrating, and best wishes for your health. xoxo

  23. Can flax eggs be used in this recipe? And would it be the same 5 flax/5 eggs?

    1. Hi Renee! I’m sorry to say I haven’t tried flax eggs in this recipe, but I think it’s worth a shot. If you try it, let me know how it goes! xx

  24. Rachel,

    I love this cake recipe!! I am baking a birthday cake for my mother and was looking for something elegant, delicious, and lactose free (food allergies). This hit all the marks! Huge success! I can’t wait to make it again and explore the rest of your blog! <3

    1. Meg, I’m so glad to hear that! That really warms my heart! Happy birthday to your mom and happy holidays too!

  25. I would like to make this cake the day before serving it. Can I just make it and store in the refrigerator or is there a better way to do it.

  26. Dairy-free is misleading as there are eggs in this recipe. It would be wonderful to either change the name or add a flax or aquafaba conversion for those that are truly dairy-free.

    1. Hi Wendy! This recipe is dairy-free. Eggs are not considered dairy. You may want to search for “vegan” recipes if you don’t eat eggs, that will help find recipes that are appropriate! I’m sure you could try out flax or aquafaba or egg replacer and it would work. Best of luck!

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