Easy Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake

Deliciously moist and buttery pound cake with a thick raspberry swirl! Topped with icing and SO EASY to make! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Happy Friday!! We made it to the end of the week and, quite honestly, I couldn’t be more pumped for the weekend. I had a loooooong week of work! I’ll be heading back home tonight after a week of shooting food & promo videos in Scottsdale, AZ. Obviously, I’m most excited to see my pups and definitely my own bed!

Deliciously moist and buttery pound cake with a thick raspberry swirl! Topped with icing and SO EASY to make! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

In the meantime, can we talk about pound cake? More specifically SWIRLY pound cake. Like, the super-moist* and dense raspberry swirl pound cake goodness you get from a coffee shop. I’m actually drooling right now as I type that. (Ew.)

*I can’t even put into words how moist and tender this cake is!

Deliciously moist and buttery pound cake with a thick raspberry swirl! Topped with icing and SO EASY to make! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Do you like pound cake? It’s always been sort of blah to me. There has to be lots of flavor and pizazz UNLESS you have a seriously quality recipe. Flavor and pizazz meaning: nutella swirls, delicious lemon, or brown butter goodness!

I have those couple pound cake recipes on my site, but we haven’t chatted about this dessert in awhile. It’s been over a year since I published that brown butter pound cake recipe– and today’s pound cake is just like it. Have you tried it yet?

Today, we’re not taking the extra step to brown the butter (though you could!) and we are adding sour cream for extra extra moisture. Because of the added moisture, I slightly increased the flour. The rest of the batter is pretty straightforward; you really don’t need many ingredients at all to make pound cake from scratch. Besides the butter, sour cream, and flour, you need eggs + sugar… and that’s basically it!

And you know what would be so tasty? A little almond extract.

But for that raspberry swirl! When I was testing this recipe last month, I tried my hand at a homemade raspberry sauce– but that was an epic failure. It just made the whole pound cake wet. Not deliciously moist. I should have just made a homemade raspberry jam instead! Oh well, next time.

How to make raspberry swirl pound cake on sallysbakingaddiction.com
How to make raspberry swirl pound cake on sallysbakingaddiction.com

So you’ll just need a little raspberry jam/preserves for the swirl– homemade or store bought– but here’s the trick…

The Secret to the Swirl

Instead of just layering or swirling the jam by itself, mix the jam WITH some of the batter and use that for swirling. Using just plain jam, without mixing with batter, sort of made the raspberry swirl disappear. There wasn’t much of a dramatic swirl and you could hardly taste it. So instead, make a raspberry batter. 🙂

Layer plain batter + raspberry batter + more plain batter into the loaf pan, then use a knife to swirl the two together It’s that easy!

How to make raspberry swirl pound cake on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Revealed are the beautiful raspberry red swirls and will you just look at that tight crumb! ↓ ↓ That’s when you know you have a solid pound cake recipe.

Deliciously moist and buttery pound cake with a thick raspberry swirl! Topped with icing and SO EASY to make! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

The icing on top isn’t completely necessary because this is a pretty freakin’ awesome cake as is. But if you want to, definitely add a little lemon, raspberry, or vanilla icing on top. I give you options for both in this recipe. I went with lemon!

And am I allowed to say this is better than Starbucks’ version? Because it totally is!


Raspberry Swirl Pound Cake

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 65 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Yield: serves 8-10
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


This easy raspberry swirl pound cake tastes better than the coffee shop! It’s moist, buttery, and sweet with the most delicious raspberry swirl inside.


  • 1 and 3/4 cups (220g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (230g; 2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (120g) full-fat sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional but recommended!)
  • 1/3 cup (110g) raspberry jam/preserves
  • optional: lemon icing, raspberry icing, or vanilla icing


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C) and grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
  2. Make the cake: Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until creamy, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl as needed. With the mixer running on low speed, add the eggs one at a time, then add the sour cream, vanilla and almond extracts. Beat on medium-high speed until combined. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl as needed. With the mixer running on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients. Beat everything just until incorporated. Do not overmix.
  4. Spoon 1/2 cup of batter tinto a smaller bowl. Stir in raspberry jam.
  5. Spoon most (about 2/3) of the plain batter into the prepared loaf pan, followed by all of the raspberry batter. Then spread the remaining plain batter on top as best you can. Using a knife, swirl the layers together. Bake for 55 minutes to 1 hour, 10 minutes. (I like to loosely cover the loaf with aluminum foil halfway through to prevent heavy browning on top.) Pound cakes are dense and, therefore, take awhile in the oven. Baking times vary so keep an eye on yours. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out *mostly* clean with zero raw batter. Remove the cake from the oven and set on a wire rack. Allow to cool completely before slicing, icing, and serving.
  6. Cover and store leftover cake at room temperature for up to 5 days.


  1. Make Ahead Instructions: You can make the pound cake ahead of time by freezing it. Bake it, cool it, wrap it up in aluminum foil and freeze the loaf as a whole. Allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving. Freezes well up to 3 months.

Here’s to a delicious and relaxing weekend ahead!

Deliciously moist and buttery pound cake with a thick raspberry swirl! Topped with icing and SO EASY to make! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com


  1. Beyond heavenly swirl pound cake right there – I’d add a white chocolate icing 😉  Have a safe trip home-sweet-home and enjoy the weekend! xo

  2. I loved your behind the scenes video on Wednesday, thank you for that! 
    My dad loved pound cakes, so this is for him! 
    Safe trip back! 

  3. Wow, the swirl is so pronounced…that’s an awesome tip to make the raspberry batter as opposed to just swirling the jam 🙂 I’d love this with the lemon icing, but any icing would be wonderful, because icing 😀 I hope you have a restful weekend after your long week!

  4. Yay for the weekend and end of a busy work week.  I made your lemon pound cake a few weeks ago and it was AMAZING!  I remember one of my favorite cakes I had at a wedding was a vanilla pound cake and I don’t remember what frosting it was, but it sure was memorable.

    1. The ratios would have to be played with– doubling the cake would be too much and the recipe as is would lend a very squat and short bundt. 1.5x the recipe would work, but it may be easier to stick to a loaf.

  5. I have made your brown butter pound cake and oh my goodness, I should never be left alone with it because it is that good!!!! I have all the ingredients sitting out on the counter to make this today because this is going to be breakfast for the weekend (if it lasts that long!!)☺ Have a nice longgggg weekend!!!

  6. oh wow Sally, this looks amazing and bring back fond memories – my Dad and I use to go to our local bakery every Sunday and get a raspberry swirl cake for breakfast. Can’t wait to try it!

  7. Sally, this recipe looks delicious! I will be trying this out soon. I love reading your posts because 1. There’s always something new at least 2-3 times a week. 2. Your posts are usually fool-proof (I’ve tried multiple recipes out). 3. Your food pictures are gorgeous!
    Honestly, I don’t know how you still manage to do this because when I was pregnant last year, I was constantly exhausted. 🙂
    Have a safe trip home!

    1. Thank you so much for the kind comment! It’s certainly a lot of work but I truly love every second of it 🙂 Thank you for always depending on my recipes!

  8. Could you blend up fresh raspberries into a puree and then mix it in with the batter or will that not cut it because it doesn’t have the sugar and thickness like jam?

    1. Hi Carrie – I’m sure Sally will have a better answer – but I would strongly suspect having the pectin in the jam (PLUS the extra structure from the batter) is a structural “insurance policy” that helps keep the raspberry batter yumminess from disappearing. Pectin provides a structure that would keep the raspberry awesomeness from disappearing (it’s usually used as the gelling agent in jams and marmalades). At least – that’s what’s been the case when I’ve made similar cake recipes. 🙂

      But like I said – I’ll bow to Sally’s expert knowledge. Because her stuff is dang good! 😀

    2. Hi Carrie– I don’t recommend that. In the post I chatted briefly about how I tried it that way and it was kind of a disaster. Like Kat mentioned, you really need that thick texture of jam (with the pectin) in order for the raspberry layer to hold its place. Otherwise, that batter would be so thin and sink. It would be more wet than moist. Not a great taste!

      1. Thanks ladies, I figured as much. Sally, when you said you tried it on your own the first time I thought you meant you tried to make your own jam, so something thicker than just the berries. Thanks again!

  9. This looks delicious. Just printed the recipe and hope to make soon. My grandson just loves raspberry jam. Have a safe trip home and a great weekend.

    1. Made it yesterday and, as usual with any of your recipes, there’s nothing left today. It was DELICIOUS!!!!! Thank you for another great recipe.

  10. Hi Sally – Can this recipe be easily doubled?

    This looks so good! Perfect for the summertime 🙂


  11. This pound cake looks gorgeous, Sally. Like something out of a classic coffee shop, only I’m sure much, much tastier. I can’t wait to try it this summer! With lemon icing for sure, it would be such a great tea with some tea to end a perfect summer’s night 😉

  12. Oh come on Sally, I JUST baked one of your breads yesterday and now you come up with this and it looks DELICIOUS. Goddamn. Can’t wait to try it!

  13. Oh yummy, yummy. We are going on a road trip to Mount Rushmore next week, and this looks like the perfect road trip friendly food to take along. I was thinking banana bread . . . maybe both! Thanks, Sally! ~smile~

  14. WOW, WOW, WOW! Sally, raspberry and almond is literally my jam! (Pun totally intended.) This looks so amazing – I am literally drooling!

    I can imagine a lemon glaze would taste wonderful with it too.

    I will sincerely be in mourning when spring and summer flavors pass into the fall cinnamon zone (not a fan…..I know, it’s weird.) On that note, I grabbed a bottle of Ceylon Cinnamon from Penzey’s Spices, and it’s an entirely mellowed flavor than the usual spicy zing. It’s recommended for fruit pies and tarts and such. I use it in my blueberry almond coconut overnight oats, and I like it!

  15. This looks great, I have been looking for a good pound cake recipe. Can I somehow make this with chocolate for the filling? Perfect picnic packing…:)

  16. Ooooh. This looks so yummy. Totally love your idea of swirling some batter with the jam! Genius Sally!! Have a great weekend!! Xoxo

  17. I was going to ask the same question as Rachel…can I replace sour cream for greek yogurt? This looks soo delicious!! I am definitely making this soon!

  18. Ohhhh!!! I made this today because I just couldn’t help myself and I topped it with the lemon glaze. I cut myself a piece just slightly warm and proceeded to inhale it!!! Raspberry and Lemon together are my favorite and this did not disappoint. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe and yes, it is moist(ewww!).☺

  19. I am taking a class this Sunday and am totally making this to take along. The minute I saw the picture I KNEW that was some lemon icing too! 🙂 Swoon! 🙂

  20. I have already made this pound cake twice in in 3 days! Once on Monday and once on Wednesday. It is delicious. My husband asked if it was a “Sally’s Baking Addiction recipe”,  he knows all the recipes I make of your are delicious! 

    1. That makes me so happy! Thank you for making my recipes 🙂 I’m glad you love this raspberry swirl pound cake so much!

  21. Could you replace the raspberry preserves for strawberry? I made this today for a weekend get together (can’t wait to try it!!) but my husband prefers strawberry over raspberry.

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I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally