Key Lime Cake!


This pretty "Key Lime Cake" just looks like Spring to me!  I love the taste of key lime and there aren't many good recipes that you use it in.  This cake is a good change of pace from Key Lime Pie!
This is a really moist cake and it great for special occasions, because even though it's really fairly easy to make, it looks like you fussed.   It's prettiest made as a three layer cake, but you can also make it in a 9"x13" pan.  Here is what you will need:

1 box lemon cake mix (make sure you get a full size cake mix and not those they have reduced to 10.5 oz.)
1 pkg. (3oz.) lime gelatin (Jello)
3/4 cup orange juice
2 tsp. vanilla
5 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup key lime juice (fresh squeezed or bottled)
1/4 cup confectioners sugar

Cream Cheese Frosting
12 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
6 cups powdered sugar
*This is basically a recipe and a half of cream cheese frosting, but you need this much for the three layers.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix cake mix with lime gelatin and orange juice.  Add vanilla, eggs. and oil.  Mix until well blended, but do not over mix.  

Prepare three 9" cake pans by placing parchment or wax paper circles cut to fit in the bottoms.  Spray with nonstick spray or butter and flour them.  Divide the batter evenly.  Place in oven for 17 to 20 minutes. Remove to cool.  If you use a 9"x13" pan, bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

Combine the 1/2 cup lime juice with the powdered sugar.  While the cake layers are still warm, poke a few holes in them while still in the pans with a fork or toothpick and pour the lime juice glaze over each one.   Allow them to cool in the pans. 

Prepare the cream cheese frosting by creaming the cream cheese and butter until fluffy.  Add the vanilla and the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time until it is light and fluffy.

Place a layer of the cake on a cake plate and frost the top, repeating with the other two layers. 

Frost the entire cake and if you want to garnish use some lime slices!  Place in the refrigerator and keep chilled until ready to serve.  This is a very moist cake and it gets even moister the next day!


  1. I would put grated limequat peel in it too, for that extra special key-lime flavor. It does look bright and appealing.

  2. I think this might work better as a sheet cake. How do you keep this moist cake from falling apart as you remove it from the pans?

    1. Use wax paper or parchment paper in the bottom of each pan and grease and flour or spray with nonstick baker's spray paper and all. I never have a problem getting them out if I do that.

    2. I use Crisco and flour dust 3 pans, never falls apart. I changed recipe to make it more tart: 1/2 cup orange juice then 1/4 cup lime or lemon juice and no vanilla flavoring. On the icing I use key lime juice not vanilla.

  3. Oh my goodness, this looks so good! I love key lime cake! Thank you for sharing this recipe. I'll have to give it a try.

  4. This is the same cake my aunt Linda Green makes every year for our family reuion and we all fight over it and even lick the is the best.

  5. As a baker you would want to freeze the cakes in the pans then pop out while still frozen cut tops off with serated knife so cakes will sit flat on board or plate, then frost accordingly if you have questions feel free to message me

  6. I use lime juice in icing and not vanilla, which gives it a more tart taste, but trust me, it's still sweet. After my 2nd layer, I put 4-5 toothpicks in it press down and ice, then on third layer put 4-5 more toothpicks in it, ice and it'll stay straight. I do not fridge it and it stays fresh for 4-5 days, but rarely stays in the house that long. GOOD CAKE!

    1. I might of posted this as "Anonymous", because I too use the lime juice and do not put in the fridge at all. In the layers, rather than all OJ, I do 1/2 cup OJ, then 1/4 cup Lime juice, which makes it tart, but still very sweet. A little boy called it an "Incredible Hulk Cake", funny!

  7. Looks delicis and sounds ez...will let y'all know aft my bbq...thx

  8. You can also use a small straw...just push down into the cake and cut off at the top layer. For a three layer cake use two or will keep the cake from moving if you have to travel with it in a car. (use the small straws not the fat ones)

  9. you can not find full size cake mix thery are all reduce now.

    1. Duncan Hines and Pillsbury still do make an 18.25 oz. size cake mix. They are just hard to find. Full size now refers to at least a 15.25 oz. size and those are not as hard to find.

  10. I made this cake for a family dinner, it was a big hit..... thanks Sweet Tea for sharing, I enjoy following your site for new ideas and recipes.... S. Georgia

  11. I just put my second cake in the oven. The only change I made was to zest the limes into the cake mix. The first one I made for Easter was a big hit. Six people took care of it at lunch and supper. Even the teenage boys who don't like cake loved this one. It is now my go to cake.

  12. Is key lime juice the same as lime juice? Where do you find key lime juice?

  13. This looks delicious! Love me some lime!



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