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Gooey Lemon Cake

I recently needed a couple of desserts to send to work with my husband. I wanted something that was not chocolate, because I was already sending a chocolate cake for one of the desserts. I decided to make Gooey Lemon Cake, which is also known as gooey lemon bars.

I know Paula Deen has made gooey bars/cake popular, but they have been around for years. I have been making my chocolate version for a long time and I have seen the same basic recipe in several church cookbooks that are twenty to thirty years old.

So, I have no clue where the original idea of gooey bars and cakes came from, but I do know that they are very good. I have yet to try a version of a gooey cake that I did not like.

Today’s version which is lemon is no exception. My husband’s staff loved these and several of them requested the recipe. I think these might have even been more popular than the chocolate cake I sent at the same time.

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. Love, love, love lemon desserts. Thanks for the recipe!

  2. looks awesome!

  3. Tammy M. says:

    OMG!! These bars look and sound amazing!! I always make Paula Deen’s pumpkin gooey bars for Thanksgivings so I must try this lemon version…NOW!!… I can’t WAIT!! yum!!!!! 😛

  4. This looks super amazing and I’d love to try it, but have a question about possible substitutions. First of all, I always use I can’t believe it’s not Butter in place of butter and never had a problem (thus far) with a recipe not turning out. Also, I prefer the Less Fat variety of Cream Cheese, it’s that Neufa…. no idea how to spell it! cheese. Used it in bean dips and such like, never had a problem. Think I would be safe to try it in this recipe? I LOVE experimenting with recipes and changing them up (usually to reduce calories.) If it doesn’t turn out, I assume it’s my subsitution, not the original recipe. So far I’ve been fortunate in my substitutions.

    • @Casey, I have never cooked much with either of those things. I have used some of the low fat cream cheeses, but not usually in baking. I say give it a try and see if it works. I would love to hear how they turn out if you try it.

  5. Karin Goodman says:

    This sounds really good. I’ve been looking for more desert recipes without chocolate. I’m gonna try this with substituting a GF cake mix. It should work. I borrowed “The Gluten Free Cake Doctor” cookbook from a friend and have yet to try some recipes, but am looking forward to it.

    • @Karin Goodman, I have that cookbook and my girls have made a few things from it. So far we have liked what we tried. I think this would work well with a gluten free mix. I have not tried it yet, but I hope to soon.

  6. This was fantastic!

    I did tweak the recipe just a bit. I used a lemon cake mix, then for the cream cheese filling, I omitted the lemon juice and used a bit of vanilla extract. (These changes were just to fit what I had on hand for ingredients). It is awesome, thanks so much for this recipe.

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