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Copycat Olive Garden's Lemon Cream Cake From Cake Mix

recipe at a glance
Rating: 4/5
9 reviews

ready in: 1-2 hrs
serves/makes:   12

recipe id: 101071

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1 package white cake mix, plus ingredients to prepare
1 package lemon cake mix
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 lemon, juiced
1 cup whipping cream
1 package Mascarpone Cheese (Italian sweet cheese, not cream cheese)
1 cup powdered sugar
4 tablespoons melted real butter


Make the white cake according to the directions on the box, adding the sour cream and vanilla. Bake in a 10-inch round baking pan. Cool the cake completely.

For the lemon cream filling, mix the Mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest of half the lemon and whipping cream, mix until creamy and smooth.

For the crumb topping, combine 3/4 cup of the lemon cake mix with the melted butter to make a crumb topping.

To assemble the cake, cut the white cake in half so you can spread the lemon cream filling between the 2 layers of white cake. Frost the top of the cake with a thin layer of cream filling and sprinkle the crumb topping on top.

cook's notes

This cake tastes IDENTICAL to Olive Garden's. The secret is the Mascarpone cheese.

added by



544 calories, 34 grams fat, 55 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams protein per serving.
Show full nutritional data (including Weight Watcher's Points ®, cholesterol, sodium, vitamins, and diabetic exchanges)

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comments & reviews

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Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
My husband and best friend absolutely love this cake. Easy to follow directions. My friend says this cake is even better than the Olive Garden?

Registered Member at
Member since:
Feb 9, 2015

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
Very good. But, use cold butter to cut into the dry lemon cake mix for the crumbs on top.

Guest at

REVIEW: 1 star recipe rating
4 tablespoons of butter will require almost a whole box of lemon cake mix to make it crumble so the topping ends up tasting like very sweet lemon flavored butter. The lemon zest in the cream sours the sweet creamy flavor I'm looking for. Also 8 oz of cheese and 1/2 cup cream is not enough to make a thick middle layer of filling.

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
Absolutely the best lemon cake, ever! I have made this recipe twice, I had the same problem with the crumble top and added more mix as others. Last time though I used crumbled lemon cookies, it was just as good and I didn't have to throw out a box of cake mix.

Guest at

REVIEW: 4 star recipe rating
I agree that the crumb topping instructions aren't right but like the others I just added more of the lemon mix until it got to the right consistency.

Registered Member at
Member since:
Aug 28, 2012

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
Do you whip the whipping cream or pur in a liquid form?

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
CountryGirl- I've only seen 8oz packages of Mascarpone Cheese, and that's what I used and it came out perfect.
Nada- I totally agree about the crumb topping! I ended up using about 1 3/4 lemon cake mix to make it into a proper crumb topping. The other way, it was like mashed potatoes. lol

Guest at


Is the whipping cream whipped or added as just a liquid. How much is a package of marscarpone chees.

Guest at


This recipe looks wonderful, and I'd love to try it, but can someone please tell me the specific amount of mascarpone cheese? The ingredients list just says, "1 package." I don't want to try it until I'm sure of the quantity. Thanks.

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
I received rave reviews when I brought this to a dinner party. It is easy to make because you can make the cake the day before. It was a really big hit. Mascarpone is the key as you said. Thanks for posting it.

Guest at


I used the crumb topping portion of the recipe to crumb top an apple pie. Using 3/4 c. cake mix and 4 T. melted butter, the crumb mix was more like cake batter, so I kept adding cake mix and mixing until it was crumbly. Should the recipe read 1 3/4 c. instead?

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
I made this recipe last weekend and I got one husband ate the rest in less than 24 hours! It is delicious and I can't wait to make it again. I want to increase the amount of lemon juice next time....the lemon taste was very subtle...could have been a little stronger for my taste, but all in all, I was very pleased! Thanks!

Please note:
This is a copy cat recipe submitted to CDKitchen by a third-party. This recipe is not an original recipe unless specifically stated and is considered only to be an acceptable "clone" to the original for the home cook to attempt to duplicate. Please also note that many nationwide restaurant chains vary their menus and ingredients by region so the version provided may not be similar to what you may have tried before. All trademarks referenced are property of their respective owners.

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