Old Fashioned Butter Pound Cake Recipe

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This old fashioned butter pound cake is easy to make from scratch with just a few simple ingredients you probably already have on hand!

butter pound cake partially sliced

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I love pound cake, I had a friend in middle school who brought a slice to lunch every day in her lunchbox and I remember being so jealous! The perfect old fashioned butter pound cake is dense and sweet with a tender crumb and never, ever dry.

This Southern pound cake recipe is very closely based on the old fashioned 1:1:1: ratio of sugar to flour to eggs but I replaced a third of the white sugar with brown sugar and also added a bit of vanilla to give it a twinge more of a caramel flavoring.

The result is perfection, a cake delicious enough to stand alone with a dusting of powdered sugar or be used as a base for any number of other desserts.

You might also like my peach cobbler pound cake recipe, butter rum cake, or this traditional berry cobbler!


  • butter
  • eggs
  • granulated sugar
  • light brown sugar
  • all purpose flour
  • milk
  • vanilla extract
  • powdered sugar for dusting

Step by step

  1. Cream together butter and sugar.
  2. Add eggs one at a time, mixing for one minute in between.
  3. Add vanilla and mix an additional minute.
  4. Reduce speed to low and slowly add flour, then milk.
  5. Pour batter into the pan and bake for one hour.
  6. Allow to cool on a wire rack completely before removing from the pan and serving.

Too easy, right?

A close up of sliced butter pound cake

Tips for best results

The key to getting this pound cake to work is to have a little patience.

When you’re prepping your ingredients go ahead and set your eggs and butter out beforehand and allow both to come to about room temperature. Also, don’t skimp on the mixing time, it really helps set up this cake for success.


Can I make this with cold butter and eggs?

It is important to use room temperature butter and eggs. The butter at room temperature helps incorporate air into the batter during the creaming step. Using room temperature eggs ensures the mixture doesn’t get too stiff to continue incorporating air as you add more ingredients. Read more about the science of making the perfect pound cake here.

Why do I need to mix for so long in between ingredients?

Because this pound cake doesn’t contain baking soda or baking powder, the longer mixing time is essential to have a longer mixing (creaming) time to allow it to leaven by adding air into the batter.

Can I use margarine for this recipe?

No, you need real butter for this pound cake.

How do I store leftovers?

Store in an airtight container up to 3 days.

Can you freeze pound cake?

Pound cake freezes very well. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag. Freeze up to 4 months. You can also slice and freeze slices individually.

Can I use cake flour for pound cake?

I do not recommend cake flour in this recipe. The ultra-fine texture can make the final cake taste drier than if all purpose flour is used.

Why doesn’t this recipe contain sour cream or cream cheese?

Butter is the star of the show in this old fashioned pound cake recipe so there is not cream cheese or sour cream to overshadow the butter flavor.


  • add a teaspoon of almond or lemon extract
  • substitute butter milk for half or all of the milk
  • bake in a bundt pan or tube pan (cooking time may need to be adjusted so watch it carefully)

If you try this recipe, please comment and rate it below, I love hearing from you!

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slices of butter pound cake

Old Fashioned Southern Pound Cake

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5 from 2 reviews

  • Author: Melissa Riker
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x


This old fashioned butter pound cake is easy to make from scratch with just a few simple ingredients you probably already have on hand! 


Units Scale
  • 1 cup of butter, softened
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • powdered sugar for dusting if desired


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9″ loaf pan with parchment paper or spray thoroughly with nonstick spray.
  2. In a stand mixer (affiliate link) combine butter and sugar and beat at medium high speed 5 minutes until light and fluffy.
  3. Add eggs one at a time continuing to mix one minute in between eggs.
  4. Add vanilla and beat one more additional minute.
  5. Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add flour, then milk. Batter will be quite thick.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pan and tap gently to settle. Bake for 1 hour or until top is a golden brown. Allow to cool completely before removing from pan.


  • you MUST use room temperature butter and eggs
  • do not skip the minute of beating in between adding ingredients
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 60 min
  • Category: dessert
  • Method: baking
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 371
  • Sugar: 34.9 g
  • Sodium: 256.7 mg
  • Fat: 13.7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 56.9 g
  • Protein: 7.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 70.1 mg

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  1. Oh please tell me I can use this recipe to bake in a lightning mcqueen car cake mould! I used a boxed cake mix before and found it way too soft so I’m looking for something dense. Input? I need to prepare it tomorow night for wednesdays party!Thanks!

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