Easy Lemon Dump Cake (with cream cheese)

This easy lemon dump cake is super quick to whip up and only requires 5 simple ingredients, a cake mix, lemon pie filling, cream cheese, sugar and butter.

If you’ve never tried a dump cake before, you’re in for a treat. The name just comes from the fact that it’s a ‘dump things into a baking dish and go’ kind of recipe.

It’s very quick and easy to throw together and is a crowd pleaser. It’s got a creamy lemon pie filling on the bottom with pockets of cream cheese, then everything is topped with a crunchy cake mix topping along with melted butter.

Hey there! Before you scroll, there are lots of helpful things in this post…including an FAQ section, which may answer any questions you might have about this recipe. Enjoy!

Table of Contents:

This recipe is perfect for when you’re short on time but still want a delicious lemon dessert. It’s a great dessert to make because it only requires about 5 simple ingredients, so even if you’re not an experienced baker, you can still whip it up in no time.

This lemon cream cheese dump cake is best served warm with cool whip, but it’s also good cold. If you’re a fan of lemon desserts, you won’t want to miss this easy and delicious throw-together dessert cake that is bursting with lemon flavor.

Pinterest image with lemon dump cake on a white plate and a fork and text overlay.

Ingredient Notes:

Now let’s talk about just some of the ingredients in this easy lemon dessert. (The printable list of all ingredients are in the recipe card below.)

Lemon pie filling: This is the star of the show and it’s best to use a large can of this. The lemon pie filling will form the gooey bottom of this dessert.

Lemon cake mix: The cake mix will form the crunch topping for this cake and it’s SO flavorful!

Cream cheese and sugar: This will be blended together and will be like warm pockets of cream cheese goodness inside this cake.

Butter: Pats of butter are added all over the top of the cake mix, which melt into it to make a buttery, crumbly topping.

(Make sure to check out the FAQ section below in this post for ingredient and substitution questions.)

Top down image of an easy lemon cake with cool whip on top.

How to make this cake:

Let’s talk about how to make a lemon and cream cheese dump cake. (The printable instructions are in the recipe card below.)

Step 1:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and spray a 13×9 inch baking dish with non-stick baking spray.

Sprayed baking dish with baking spray.

Step 2:

Add the lemon pie filling to the baking dish and spread it evenly over the bottom.

Lemon filling spread into a baking dish.

Step 3:

Now, sprinkle about 1/4 of the dry cake mix all over the lemon pie filling.

A quarter of the lemon cake mix sprinkled onto the lemon filling.

Step 4:

Now, in a mixing bowl, add the room-temperature cream cheese and sugar and mix on medium-high speed with an electric mixer until smooth.

Cream cheese and sugar mixed in a large mixing bowl.

Step 5:

Drop the cream cheese mixture, using a tablespoon, on top of the lemon filling and cake mix. Just drop it as small globs all over everything.

Cream cheese mixture dropped over lemon filling and cake mix.

Step 6:

Sprinkle the rest of the cake mix all over everything.

Cake mix sprinkled over lemon filling and cream cheese mixture.

Step 7:

Now add thinly sliced butter evenly over the top and make sure you cover as much of the dry cake mix as you can.

Thinly sliced butter layered over lemon cake mix and filling.

Step 8:

Bake the dump cake at 350 degrees F for approximately 35-40 minutes.

Step 9:

Next, remove the cake from the oven and let it cool on a rack for about 20 minutes.

Baked lemon dump cake on a cooling rack.

Step 10:

Enjoy this cake warm either plain, with whipped cream or with ice cream.

Large serving spoon in a baking dish with easy lemon dump cake.

(Remember that the detailed instructions will also be in the recipe card below.)

Tips & FAQs:

Can I use lemon curd instead of lemon pie filling?

I think so, but I have not personally tried that.

Can I use lemon pudding instead of lemon pie filling?

I’m not sure if that would work as lemon pudding is made with milk and I’m not sure how that would actually bake.

Can I use a different flavor filling and/or cake mix?

Yes, you can mix and match and probably use any type of filling and cake mix flavor you like.

Can I use a yellow cake mix?

Yes, you can. It may not be quite as lemony though.

Should I add the ingredients called for on the back of the cake mix?

No, you’ll just sprinkle on the cake mix dry. When the butter melts into it, it will make a nice crumble on the top.

Can I use salted butter instead of unsalted?

Probably, although I don’t know if the end result would be too salty or not as I have only made this recipe with unsalted butter.

Should I spread the cream cheese mixture over or just leave it in clumps?

Just drop the cream cheese mixture as clumps and leave them as is. No need to spread the cream cheese mixture out.

How can I tell when this cake is done baking?

The top of the cake will be golden brown.

Can this cake be frozen?

No, I don’t think this cake would work frozen, then defrosted.

How do I store this cake and how long does it last?

This dessert should be stored covered in the refrigerator and can last up to 5 days.

What’s the best way to serve/eat this cake?

This dessert is best served warm, but can also be served cold if that’s your preference.
If chilled, add a serving to a plate and microwave for about 15 seconds or so until warmed. This lemon dump cake is very good topped with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Close up of fork cutting into an easy lemon cake on a white plate.

Supplies used for this recipe:

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. 

Video:

Close-up of lemon dump cake with a fork and cool whip.

Easy Lemon Dump Cake (with cream cheese)

This easy lemon dump cake is super quick to whip up and only requires 5 simple ingredients, a cake mix, lemon pie filling, cream cheese, sugar and butter.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: lemon dump cake
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 277kcal
Author: Kara @ Quick and Easy Baking

Ingredients

  • 1 (22 ounce) can lemon pie filling
  • 1 lemon cake mix (I used Betty Crocker Delights Super Moist Lemon Cake mix)
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, thinly sliced (1 1/2 sticks)
  • whipped cream (optional)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Spray a 13×9 inch baking dish with non-stick baking spray.
  • Add the lemon pie filling to the dish and spread evenly.
  • Sprinkle about 1/4 of the dry cake mix over the lemon pie filling.
  • In a mixing bowl, add the room-temperature cream cheese and sugar and mix on medium-high speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
  • Drop the cream cheese mixture, using a tablespoon, on top of the lemon filling and cake mix. You do not need to spread the cream cheese mixture out evenly. Just leave it as clumps. This will make nice warm pockets of cheesecake taste in this dessert.
  • Sprinkle the rest of the cake mix over everything.
  • Add the thinly sliced butter evenly over the top and try to cover as much of the dry cake mix as you can.
  • Bake at 350 degrees F, on the middle rack, for approximately 35-40 minutes. Most of the top should be golden.
  • Remove from the oven and cool on a rack for about 20 minutes.
  • Serve warm either plain, with whipped cream or with ice cream.
  • See the notes section for best ways to store this, serve it and for more questions.

Notes

*This ‘cake’ is more like a dessert. It’s called a cake, but it’s really not going to come out of the pan sliced in a neat square. This cake is warm and gooey and best served from the baking dish using a large serving spoon.
How to Store: This dessert should be stored covered in the refrigerator and can last up to 5 days.
How to serve: This dessert is best served warm, but can also be served cold if that’s your preference.
If chilled, add a serving to a plate and microwave for about 15 seconds or so until warmed. This lemon dump cake is very good topped with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
For other questions: Make sure to check out the TIPS & FAQs for this recipe in the blog post, which should answer other questions you may have about ingredients, substitutions, etc.
Nutritional values are an estimate.
*This recipe card may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition

Calories: 277kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 316mg | Potassium: 24mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 356IU | Calcium: 94mg | Iron: 1mg
Baking at higher elevation?You’ll need to make adjustments for high elevations. This website does not specialize in that type of baking. Please take time to research high elevation baking websites for adjustments that should be made.
DislaimersTo see food safety, allergy & nutrition disclaimers, go here: Disclaimers!

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Collage with two images of easy lemon cake with cake mix and whipped cream plus text overlay.

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