I’ve always been a fan of pound cake. It’s a fairly rich cake that you can prepare with very simple ingredients.
While pound cakes are delicious on their own, I always feel that adding some elements to this versatile cake can massively improve its flavor and overall experience, and that’s where this guide comes in handy!
Today, I’ll walk you through some of my favorite ideas for toppings and delicious ingredients to serve with pound cake, so you can pick the ones that suit your taste the most!
There’s a good reason why the unique mix of whipped cream and strawberries works for almost everyone.
The rich whipped cream perfectly complements the density of the pound cake, making it softer and moist, especially if you accidentally add too much flour.
Meanwhile, the strawberries give a subtle tart flavor that balances the excessive sweetness of the classic pound cake recipe.
Moreover, whipped cream is easy to apply and has a nostalgic appearance that makes it easily recognizable. You can also use a wide range of strawberry-slicing techniques to style your cake freely.
If you’re looking for a refreshing combination that works perfectly well on hot summer days, you shouldn’t miss out on ice cream.
One of the best things about using ice cream with pound cake is that you can use a multitude of flavors to get a completely new experience every time. However, you should always start with vanilla ice cream before venturing into new flavors.
Not only that, but you can use either softened ice cream or heavily frozen varieties with plenty of fruits and nuts.
Speaking of frozen varieties, you can also sprinkle a variety of frozen fruits over your pound cake to give it a unique flavor and impressive aesthetic.
Among the most popular types of fruits to consider here are berries of all types, such as raspberries, blueberries, and cherries. You can also use small pieces of mango, banana, peaches, or a mixture of them.
I also like adding frozen fruits because they’re a much healthier alternative when compared to canned candies, besides tasting much better!
Another classic pairing that always works for pound cakes is topping it with a layer of crème fraiche.
This one gives the pound cake a nice texture similar to whipped cream but with a slightly tangy twist that brightens the flavor and makes it even more delicious.
Crème fraiche is also richer and thicker than regular sour cream, but not as acidic, which works extremely well for sweet desserts like pound cake.
If you like the idea of crème fraiche but are looking for something sweeter and adds a unique flavor, you should consider fruit curds and purees.
These delicious toppings are easy to prepare and provide pound cakes with both moisture and fruity flavor.
The choice between purees and curds depends on whether you prefer sweet or sour topping. For example, lemon and pineapple curds add a tangy flavor while purees made from pumpkin and mangos are more sweet than tangy.
I think we all agree that nut butter and pound cake are among the few matches that are always so good with each other.
The nutty flavor from peanut or hazelnut cream is a complete game changer for classic pound cakes.
An excellent alternative that also works extremely well here is pistachios butter, which also adds a unique color and warm earthy flavor for serious nut butter lovers.
Of course, you can also top it with a sprinkle of chopped nuts and give the cake a crunchy flavor that will make everyone go back for seconds!
If you have a sweet tooth and enjoy the slight tanginess of berries, this one would also work very well for you.
Preparing compotes and jams may take some time but it’s surprisingly easy.
I prefer homemade compotes over commercial ones because you’ll be able to add your favorite spices to the mix and enjoy a unique flavor, such as cinnamon and nutmeg.
Greek yogurt with honey and fruits is a popular breakfast recipe, but surprisingly, it also works incredibly well when you eat it with some pound cakes.
A good example of fruits here would be bananas, raspberry, and mango where each one gives the cake a completely unique flavor.
This is also a balanced choice if you’re not a big fan of excessive sweetness, and you can even drop the honey for this one if your pound cake is already too sweet.
Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without buttercream, as it’s easily one of the best toppings for all kinds of cakes.
However, one of the issues I have with buttercream is that it can be bland on its own, which doesn’t really help with pound cakes.
Luckily, you can easily solve this issue by flavoring your buttercream. One of the best options here is lemon buttercream.
Alternatively, espresso buttercream is an excellent choice for coffee lovers.
This combination may not add a remarkable aesthetic difference to your cake, but it completely changes its flavor.
Caramel flavor, especially homemade ones from molasses or brown sugar, is one that not only works well on its own, but you can also drizzle it over a huge variety of options on the list!
Another easy pairing option to consider for your pound cake is molten chocolate. This can be in the form of a cake topping or as a side dish to dip your cake in before enjoying it.
Of course, this combination usually works best with chocolate pound cakes, but you’ll be surprised with how well it complements nut butter and salted caramel toppings.
If you want a perfect side dish with your pound cake, I highly suggest you try creme brulee. Ideally, you should try this combination if the cake turns out a bit too dry or not sweet enough.
The rich custard blends well with the spongy texture of the pound cake while the crust adds a unique sweetness to the combination.
I’ve previously discussed using nut butter as a topping or a side dish to combine with your pound cake, but you can also use toasted nuts to get a completely different effect.
Toasting the nuts makes them crunchier and massively improves their flavor. You can sprinkle them chopped or as a whole over your cake, or serve them in a small dish with cake slices.
Ambrosia Salad is a refreshing and remarkably delicious dessert that you can enjoy on its own, but it also goes extremely well with all types of pastries including pound cake.
This one is simply a mixture of fresh fruit and whipped cream with the occasional addition of marshmallows.
The combination of sweet and tart while maintaining an addictive creamy quality that is sure to please everyone!
Now that I’ve discussed a wide range of regular side dishes, drizzles, and toppings, it’s time to cover some of the unique beverages to serve with your pound cake!
If you like coffee but you’re looking for a refreshing way to enjoy it with your pound cake, how about some vanilla iced coffee with a dash of caramel drizzle?
This delicious combination will not only cleanse your palate after every bite of the cake, but it’ll also give you a nice caffeine kick to start your day with full energy!
Sometimes, all you need with a pound cake is a warm drink. While the earthy, nutty flavor of espresso and coffee-based drinks go surprisingly well with pound cakes, it’s not ideal for every situation.
In that case, you can switch things up by serving a nice cup of hot cocoa and marshmallows along with the cake. This delicious drink will lift your mood while giving you sweeter notes than coffee.
There you have it! A comprehensive list of mouth-watering additions to pair up with your pound cake and take it to the next level.
As you can see, many of these additions go pretty well with each other, so you can mix and match them to create an infinite variety of delicious ideas for your next pound cake!
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.