If you like Starbucks Lemon Loaf, you will love this VEGAN copycat lemon loaf! This recipe is easy to make, loaded with lemon flavor and topped with a delicious lemon glaze. 

close up of sliced lemon loaf

If you find yourself standing in the line at Starbucks in front of the pastry case, staring longingly at that glazed lemon loaf, then this recipe is for you! Anyone else wish Starbucks would get some vegan pastries already? I know sometimes they have salads that are vegan, and maybe some snacks, but can I get a vegan scone or muffin with my coffee, PLEASE?

I did several trial runs to perfect this vegan lemon loaf. My first several tries were delicious, but they didn’t have that pound cake quality I was going for. Instead, they were light and fluffy, like a delicate lemon cake. To achieve a pound cake texture, I had to get creative! The secret ingredient? Tofu. Okay, don’t run away! I promise you can’t taste it at all, but it works like magic to achieve pound cake perfection.

sliced lemon loaf cake

How to make Starbucks Copycat Vegan Lemon Loaf:

It’s super easy! You should know by now I like to keep things as simple as possible in the kitchen.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a loaf pan.
  2. Blend all wet ingredients in a blender (SEE RECIPE CARD BELOW)
  3. Whisk dry ingredients in a bowl, then add the wet and mix.
  4. Pour in pan and bake for 35-45 minutes.
  5. Let cool, then glaze.

cooked lemon loaf

Glaze for Lemon Loaf:

The glaze is probably the best part of this whole thing. It’s simple: 1 cup powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon non-dairy milk and 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice. Whisk in a bowl, pour over your loaf, and devour. Well, I do like to let the glaze harden for a little bit before slicing and serving, but it’s not necessary!

close up shot of lemon loaf with glaze

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What kind of tofu should I use and where can I find it?

For this recipe, you want the silken tofu in the vaccum packs. You could use soft, firm or even extra firm. But it should be silken. Try to avoid the tofu packed in water, as it tends to leave a bit of a taste of tofu, while the silken in vaccum packs is pretty much undetectable. It’s in several grocery stores, but you can also order it on Amazon here.

You will only use 1/2 the package for 1 loaf, so maybe consider doubling the recipe and make 2 loaves at once! You can freeze the 2nd.

sliced lemon loaf with glaze and lemons in background

couple of slices of lemon loaf on a plate

Want more vegan baked goods? Try one of these:

stack of lemon loaf slices

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close up of sliced lemon loaf
4.70 stars (56 ratings)

Starbucks Copycat Lemon Loaf (Vegan)

If you like Starbucks Lemon Loaf, you will love this VEGAN copycat lemon loaf! This recipe is easy to make, loaded with lemon flavor and topped with a delicious lemon glaze. 
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 55 minutes
Servings: 8 slices


Wet ingredients:

Dry ingredients:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Lemon glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon non-dairy milk
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease a standard loaf pan.
  • Blend all of the wet ingredients in a blender until smooth.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients. Now pour the wet mixture into the dry and mix with a large spoon until just combined. Do not over mix. 
  • Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 35-45 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then move to a cooling rack.
  • While the loaf cools, add the icing ingredients to a medium sized bowl and whisk until smooth. Once the loaf is cooled, drizzle or pour the glaze on top of the loaf. Let the glaze harden, if desired, before slicing and serving. Enjoy!


  1. Calories estimate is for 1/8th of the loaf.
  2. Look for the silken tofu in a vaccum pack, not packed in water.
  3. May sub coconut oil or melted vegan butter for the canola oil. For oil free, sub non-dairy yogurt or applesauce.
  4. May use any non-dairy milk, such as soy, coconut, almond, hemp or oat. Unsweetened is best; if you only have sweetened milk you may want to reduce the amount of sugar you add.
  5. Make sure to use fresh squeezed lemon juice for the best flavor, and a full zested lemon. I love this grater/zester!
  6. You can try subbing white whole wheat flour/ whole wheat pastry flour for the white, but it will change the flavor. I haven't tried this with gluten free flour.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 360kcal | Carbohydrates: 66g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 198mg | Potassium: 214mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 41g | Vitamin A: 123IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 99mg | Iron: 2mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Nora Taylor
Did you make this recipe?Mention @nora_cooks_vegan_ or tag #noracooks!

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    1. They are entirely different recipes actually. This is one I created years ago, the pound cake is newer and I probably enjoy it more, but they’re both pretty great in my opinion!

  1. Nora, how would you adjust the liquids if I wanted to add frozen blueberries or fresh strawberries to the batter?
    Sooo good! Will definitely be making again.

    1. Hi Madison. I haven’t tried adding berries to this cake, so I’m not totally sure about the adjustments you would need to make. You could start with only 3/4 cup milk and only using up to 3/4 cup of berries. I also like to toss the berries in some flour to prevent them from sinking to the bottom of the cake, as I do in my lemon blueberry bread. Hope this helps!

    1. You could try using soft tofu instead. Another commenter used vegan yogurt and only 1/4 cup of non-dairy milk in place of the tofu and had good results!

    1. I’m so glad you and your sister loved the lemon loaf, Nancy! It must have tasted amazingly fresh with lemons right from the tree. Happy cooking!

  2. Made this recipe many times now and love it! Not surprising, I’ve loved every one of the recipes I’ve tried from this site! Nora Cooks is my go-to when looking for a recipe.

    Do you think this would freeze well? I was thinking about making two loaves in order to use up the whole package of tofu, but there’s only two of us, so I don’t think we could go through two of them while they’d still be good.

    1. You are so kind, thank you! I’m happy you’re enjoying the recipes here. Yes, it freezes very well, just let it cool completely before freezing and wrap it well, or freeze in slices for quick treats. 🙂

  3. Overall it turned out good! As other comments mentioned, not as acidic as I would have liked- added extra lemon juice and lemon zest to the icing. I baked it at 350 for 50 min and it could have used a little more time. I used extra firm tofu (which definitely breaks down when you blend it like the recipe calls for) but the batter was more dense than I would’ve liked. It almost felt a little eggy even though there aren’t eggs? Silken tofu may lead to a lighter pound cake. Will use that and more lemon juice in the batter next time. 

  4. Recipe fail. Anyone had issues with the tofu. Recipe says extra firm could be used which I tried but the tofu did not breakdown so if resulted in chunks of tofu through the batter. Thought it would melt in with the heat from the oven but when sliced I had bits of white tofu and dark marks on the outer crust. I did mash the tofu before plus I beat the wet ingredients hoping it could breakdown. I would say don’t user extra firm like the recipe notes. 

    1. You need to use silken tofu. Extra film silken tofu is completely different than regular extra firm tofu. She specifies in the recipe to use silken…

  5. Delicious recipe! I doubled the quantities and used Mori-Nu Yuzu Flavored Silken Tofu for extra citrus flavor. I also changed the vanilla extra quantity to 1 tsp and added a tsp of lemon extract. Came out scrumptious! I didn’t use the full icing amount since it was already so good on it’s own. I did have to bake it longer since my center wasn’t cooking. 

  6. Could not find silken tofu so I swapped it for soy yogurt and only used 1/4 of the plant milk – turned out wonderful!

    Your recipes are such an inspiration!

    1. Oh my god, thank you for this reply–I wanted to try this but also my store was out of silken tofu. Going to try the yogurt swap, and using 1/4 the plant milk!

  7. Love this loaf, we are lucky if it lasts 24 hours in our house. Sometimes I add some poppy seeds to it too. 

    1. Adding poppy seeds sounds so good! I’m glad you are loving the bread! Thank you for sharing your wonderful feedback!

    1. Hmm, this could mean that the cake is slightly underbaked. Try leaving it in the oven for an extra 5 to 15 minutes and see how that helps!

    2. Probably a bit underbaked like she said. But also make sure that you don’t open the oven door until it’s fully done, or until it’s like the last 5-10 minutes of baking. If you open the oven to check on it (especially if you do it more than once), it’ll collapse like that.

  8. Thx so much! Finally a good lemon cake! Yes needs more lemon flavor, easy fix!
    Oven time might vary, it took mine 1 hour at 360°F (new oven, might need adjustments)
    What plant based milk will get the lightest, spongiest (lol) texture? I used soy, perhaps almond will be better or it lacks enough protein to give structure? I know tofu is in charge but… would love to know your preferred milk for this recipe. Thanks so much!

  9. Thank you for this lovely recipe. It’s so simple and easy to make with vegan pantry staples.

    As Starbucks Lemon Loaf copycat recipe, I did expect a brighter, zippier lemon flavor. While some have commented they’ll add more lemon juice, zest or even extract, I might suggest decreasing the amount of vanilla extract instead/in addition.

    Vanilla softens most flavors, especially bright, acidic ones, and it may dull what otherwise would be a sublimely lemony loaf cake.

    My loaf also turned out a bit rubbery, but I may have overmixed the batter a titch.

    I’m looking forward to trying this recipe again with slight adjustments.

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