Lemon Crinkle Cake

This Lemon Crinkle Cake is a delicious dessert that combines golden, flaky phyllo dough with rich, lemon custard and and easy lemon drizzle to create a dessert full of buttery, lemony flavor that everyone will love.

slice of lemon crinkle cake on a small plate.

We love phyllo dough because it’s so flaky and buttery. We also love how creative you can be with it. Take this lemon crinkle cake recipe, for example. We crinkle the dough and stuff it (gently) into a cake pan, bake it until it’s golden and flaky, add a healthy dose of lemon custard, and bake it again. It’s a unique way to enjoy custard and phyllo, and everyone always comes back for more.

uncut lemon crinkle cake on a large plate.

❤️ Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • The phyllo dough is flaky and buttery, and it’s perfect with the rich lemon custard.
  • It’s an easy recipe that looks much fancier than it is.
  • It’s perfect for both a family dessert and a sweet addition to any party.
  • It uses simple ingredients you can find at any grocery store.


bowls of butter, lemon, sugar, eggs, lemon extract, salt, powdered sugar, milk, salt, and phyllo dough.

It only takes a few basic ingredients to make this recipe, and outside of the phyllo dough, you probably already have all of them in your kitchen right now.

For the Lemon Crinkle Cake

  • Phyllo dough
  • Melted butter
  • Eggs
  • Whole milk
  • Sugar
  • Lemon zest
  • Vanilla extract
  • Lemon extract
  • Salt

For the Glaze

  • Powdered sugar
  • Lemon extract
  • Lemon juice

See the recipe card at the end of the post for exact quantities.

🔪 How to Make Lemon Crinkle Cake

While this cake looks fancy, it’s actually very easy to make. It only takes a few basic steps to make, and even beginners will have no trouble with it.

Step 1: Prep

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Unroll the phyllo dough and lay it on a damp towel to keep it moist and prevent tearing.

phyllo dough being crinkled in a cake pan.

Step 2: Crinkle the Phyllo Dough

Using 1 piece of dough at a time, crinkle it accordion-style and place it in a circular pattern around the outside edge of a 9-inch cake pan. Work toward the center in smaller circles, crinkling more dough in the same way.

butter being brushed on top of pastry.

Step 3: Brush and Bake

Brush the crinkled phyllo dough with butter, getting it all over the top and in the crevices. Then, bake the dough for 10 to 15 minutes until golden.

custard being mixed in a glass mixing bowl with a whisk.

Step 4: Make the Custard

While the dough is baking, whisk the eggs in a large bowl. Then, add the milk and sugar and whisk until smooth. Add lemon zest, vanilla extract, lemon extract, and salt and whisk again.

lemon crinkle cake baked in a round cake pan.

Step 5: Pour and Bake

Pour the custard evenly over the baked dough and bake the entire thing again for 20 to 25 minutes until golden and set.

Step 6: Cool

Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool.

glaze being drizzled on top of the dessert with a spoon.

Step 7: Make the Drizzle

Whisk the powdered sugar, lemon extract, and fresh lemon juice together until smooth. Drizzle over the cooled cake and enjoy!


  • Omit the lemon component to make a simple vanilla version of this recipe.
  • For an extra-rich custard, use half and half or cream.
  • If you don’t have fresh lemon juice, you can use RealLemon and omit the lemon zest.

If you think this lemon crinkle cake looks good, then check out our other crinkle cake recipe.

🥄 Equipment

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Paper towels
  • 9″ cake pan
  • Mixing bowls

🥫 Storage

Refrigerate this lemon crinkle cake in an air-tight container for up to 2 days. It won’t be as crunchy as the first day, but it will still be delicious.

Serve With

Serve this lemon crinkle cake with a glass of milk or a cup of coffee or tea. You can serve it topped with fresh whipped cream or ice cream or pair it with fresh fruit.

💭 Tips

  • Be gentle when crinkling the phyllo dough. You want it to make an accordion shape without flattening or breaking.
  • To reduce the chances of the dough tearing, place it on a damp paper towel to keep it moist.
  • If any pieces do tear off, use them for the center.

⁉️ FAQ

Do you have questions about this recipe? Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions.

What is crinkle cake?

Crinkle cake is a pastry dessert made with crinkled, baked phyllo dough topped with custard.

Is crinkle cake a dessert?

Crinkle cake is a dessert, brunch item, or sweet afternoon snack. You can even serve it with coffee for a sweet breakfast.

Can I use puff pastry instead of phyllo dough?

You can, but you won’t get the same result. Phyllo dough will make a crispier product, and won’t rise as much as puff pastry.

🍽 More Recipes

Do you enjoy lemon desserts? Then these delicious recipes:

🧾Recipe Card

Want to make this recipe? Print the recipe card below, or pin this recipe so that you can find it later.

slice of lemon crinkle cake on a small plate.

Lemon Crinkle Cake

Lemon crinkle cake combines layers of phyllo dough with lemon custard to create a golden, flaky dessert with bright lemon flavor.
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 8 Servings
Calories: 314kcal


  • Paper towels
  • 9″ cake pan
  • Pastry brush
  • small bowl
  • medium bowl
  • Whisk


  • 1 roll phyllo dough 9” x 14”
  • ½ cup melted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

For the glaze:

  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Unroll the phyllo dough and lay it on a damp paper towel to make it easier to keep damp and prevent tearing.
  • Using 1 piece of dough at a time, crinkle it accordion style and place it in a circular pattern around the perimeter of a 9” cake pan, working towards the center in smaller circles. **If any pieces tear, they work great for the center!
  • Do not crush the pieces of dough together as you work, but try to have a gentle touch when working them into the pattern.
  • Brush the melted butter over the tops and into the crevices of the folds of dough.
  • Place in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes until it’s golden.
  • While the dough is baking, whisk the eggs in a large bowl.
  • Add the milk and sugar and whisk until smooth.
  • Zest the lemon and add it to the egg mixture. Add the vanilla and lemon extracts, and salt and whisk.
  • Once the dough has baked, pour the custard in an even layer over all the cake and return to the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, until it’s golden brown and set.
  • Remove and allow to cool.
  • To make the glaze, whisk the powdered sugar with the lemon extract and fresh lemon juice until smooth. Drizzle over the top of the cake and serve!


Any nutritional data I provide is an approximation and actual dietary information can vary based on ingredients and proportion sizes.


Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 314kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 77mg | Sodium: 395mg | Potassium: 54mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 462IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 1mg

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