Looking for the perfect lemon desserts?
From cakes to cookies, to bars and puddings, these light and luscious lemon treats are a refreshing finish to any meal.
With a tart, sour note, and a little added zest, lemon elevates the flavor of everything it touches (ok maybe not everything, but the list is long)!
Lemon desserts can be light and fresh or warm and comforting, but they’re always a welcome treat. How many of these amazing 24 lemon desserts will you make?
Want my advice? Try them all!
20+ Best Lemon Dessert Recipes
1. Lemon Bars with Shortbread Crust
An oldie but a goodie, there’s a very simple reason you always see lemon bars at parties and potlucks. They are so easy to make and packed with flavor.
Crumbly, buttery shortbread makes the perfect base for these bars. Lemon can be tart, so the sweet and crunchy shortbread will really help to mellow things out a little.
But that’s not to say the flavor of that lemon won’t pack a punch. The filling comes together in one bowl, making cleanup a breeze.
2. Lemon Cheesecake Mousse
I think the words ‘no-bake’ are a favorite of baking enthusiasts who don’t always have a lot of time on their hands.
Whether you’re just in the mood for something sweet or need a last-minute dessert for a party, this no-bake lemon cheesecake mousse will be a definite hit.
With just 5 ingredients – 1 being water – you can whip up a light and creamy lemon dessert in no time. They look beautiful in glass jars, but will be just as delicious in a ceramic pot.
Try a variety of fruit toppings or compotes to make this a tangy, sweet dessert you’ll keep coming back to.
3. Lemon Coconut Truffles
These little balls of cream cheese, coconut, and lemon can be served as delicate truffles, or as fun cake pops. Either way, they won’t last too long.
The lemon in this dessert is subtle and complemented perfectly by the creamy coconut and white chocolate.
However, if you like a little more zing, you can always substitute a little cream cheese for lemon curd in the mix.
4. Lemon Loaf
I know it’s technically pumpkin spice season, and I’m just as eager for it as you.
But if you’re looking for a moist loaf recipe that non-pumpkin fans will devour, this one has you covered.
Don’t worry if your batter looks a little curdled after you add the lemon juice, that’s normal. It will come back together once you incorporate the dry ingredients.
The glaze is optional, but I highly recommend it. The loaf is tangy and tender, but sometimes these things are easy to over-do.
To make sure you get the moistest loaf ever, poke a few holes in the top and lather over the glaze, letting the sweetness seep in.
5. Lemon Scones with Lemon Glaze
Scones are such a versatile treat. Whether sticking to the traditional raisin rounds with jam and clotted cream or taking things out of the box, they’re easy to make and great to travel with.
The important thing to remember when making scones is not to overmix the dough. I like to just incorporate everything, leaving the dough a little shaggy.
As you form the dough on the counter, it will come together, and your scones will be tender and flaky.
Try adding in a few blueberries or fresh raspberries for a pop of color and an extra bit of sweetness.
6. Lemon Strawberry Trifle
I love trifles. They can be made with all store-bought items that layer together to make an impressive dish.
For this lemon and strawberry dessert, you will need to layer angel food cake with creamy lemon pudding and sliced strawberries. But feel free to use more fruits if you like!
If you don’t have time to make lemon curd, most supermarkets will have it in a jar.
7. Lemon Creme Brulee
Creme Brulee may look like a dish better left to professionals, but I promise, it’s not as difficult as you think.
When making your lemon custard base, it’s important to gently heat the cream and very slowly add it into the egg mix.
I like to use a ladle to help control how much I’m adding, which will keep your eggs from scrambling.
What about that beautiful sugar top? Your oven broiler will do the trick just fine. But if you really want to do it like the pro’s, Chef’s torches are available online for less than $15.
8. Baked Lemon Donuts with Lemon Glaze
Though the texture is a little more cakey, baked donuts are a great way of getting that glazed fix at home.
With just a 5-minute prep time, you can whip up a batch and still have time to walk the dog and finish the laundry.
This recipe uses lemon extract rather than lemon juice. It’s easy enough to find in the store and will ensure you get as much flavor as possible, plus the lemon glaze will give it a boost.
A pleasant alternative would be to use a blueberry glaze for a colorful change and complimentary flavor combination.
9. Lemon Macarons
I know what you’re thinking, but trust me when I say you can make macarons at home. We’ve seen all the fails and worry they’re too complicated, and I was hesitant too at first.
But once you get it, you really get it, and you’ll be making these in your sleep.
Before you start, look online and read through the process and steps. Something as simple as using a scale instead of a cup measurement can make all the difference with these little cookies.
For this lemon macaron recipe, be sure they’re at the right consistency before baking, and don’t skip the drying stage. It’s crucial for this cookie to sit out for an hour to dry.
The lemon curd filling will be tangy and smooth and so good with the creamy vanilla frosting. Want even more lemon flavor? Mix some curd into the frosting!
10. Easy Lemon Sorbet
Got 15 minutes and some martini glasses? Then you have the easiest little dessert out there.
Sometimes after dinner, all you want is something sweet to top it all off. This recipe is so light, fast, easy to make ahead, and can be enjoyed even after a feast.
Once given enough time to freeze, this sorbet looks restaurant worthy when served in a tall glass. I personally love martini glasses for this dish, along with some fresh fruit and a drizzle of vodka.
11. Baked Lemon Raspberry Cheesecake
This lemon dessert looks just as good as it tastes. When allowed to set and sliced with a clean knife, you’ll have layers of graham crackers, creamy cheesecake, and a bright raspberry filling.
The key to this cheesecake is to add the raspberry sauce in the middle. Pour half of your cheesecake batter over the crust and top with the bright red sauce.
Then, very carefully, cover the sauce so that it bakes inside, leaving you with that great contrast.
12. Tangy and Delicious Lemon Bark Recipe
Chocolate bark is such a great option for gifts or a quick treat at home. It’s easy to change up but usually comprises Christmas-like flavors.
This recipe is something a little different. Using lemon oil to flavor white chocolate, and sprinkling with candied lemon peel, this bark will be a great Christmas alternative, or something fun for spring.
You can eat the bark alone, or use it as a different cupcake topping. Try sprinkling some freeze dried raspberries with the candied peel.
13. Lemon Marshmallows
Homemade marshmallows are often fluffier than store bought. With this recipe, you can slice them into squares and eat alone, or cut into shapes and dip in chocolate.
They can be made into fun marshmallow pops or tucked into an Easter basket.
You’ll need a stand mixer for this recipe and be careful when pouring the sugar syrup. Though kids will love them, it’s not the best recipe to be making with young helpers.
Where they can assist is with decorations! Once you have the mix prepared in your dish, you can either leave them plain or go nuts with toppings – literally!
Sprinkle with chopped nuts, sprinkles, or even edible glitter for a fun and delicious sticky treat.
14. Classic Lemon Meringue Pie
A list of luscious lemon desserts wouldn’t be complete without a lovely lemon meringue pie!
Top tip! Blind baking the crust – baking it alone without filling – will help to prevent a soggy bottom. And don’t forget to spread that fluffy meringue right to the edges, to avoid any sad weeping.
15. Lemon Meltaways
If I were you, I would double, or even triple this recipe. These buttery, lemon shortbread cookies are so delicious that you will need extra.
Slice and bake cookies are always a great option and come together nice and fast.
Just roll your dough into a log and freeze down any extra to have on hand, should you need lemon cookies in a pinch.
16. Lemon Tiramisu Cake
I think coffee is one of those unicorns that isn’t enhanced by adding lemon. Don’t worry though, I haven’t gone mad. This dessert is all lemon.
Rather than coffee, this recipe asks you to dip the lady fingers in lemonade, but if you want something more grown-up, Limoncello will be so good.
Either way, you have a creamy, tart dessert that screams springtime.
17. Blueberry Cream Cheese Cookies with a Lemon Glaze
Although I’m partial to a soft, warm chocolate chip cookie, there is something about a little variety. Soft, chewy and perfectly tart, these cookies have it all.
If you’ve never put cream cheese into a cookie before (why not??), add with the butter and sugar, then continue as normal.
When adding the blueberries, fold them in gently so they don’t streak through the dough too much – unless that’s the look you want.
The glaze really amps up the lemon flavor of these cookies, but you can always stripe with a little white chocolate, too.
18. Easy Lemon Meringue Cookies
If you’re short on time but looking for something lemony and impressive, nobody has to know how easy these cookies come together.
By using store-bought lemon curd and shortbread cookies, you can cut your prep time down to less than 20 minutes.
This recipe requires a chef’s torch, as putting them under the broiler would ruin the lemon curd.
19. Lemon Cupcakes
I used to think lemon was more for adults and avoided it when making things for kids. But after seeing these cupcakes fly off the plate, I know better.
The lemon flavor in the cake is subtle and the frosting is creamy rather than super tangy, making it great for kids with more sensitive palates.
But if you really want to take it up a notch, try adding some lemon curd inside the baked cupcakes.
20. Lemon Raspberry Parfait
Lemon and raspberries are a match made in heaven. Not only do the colors make any dessert more beautiful, but the flavors compliment each other so well.
The lemon mousse is airy and works perfectly beside the raspberry sauce. As a duo, this dish would be appealing to anyone.
But if you want to really impress, try serving with a couple of buttery shortbread biscuits for a little crunch.
21. Easy Lemon Danish
Calling it a danish makes this a perfectly acceptable breakfast dessert. Right?
With just half a dozen ingredients, you don’t have to worry about yeast or proofing dough.
Store-bought puff pastry is filled with sumptuous lemon cheesecake and baked for just 20 minutes. It’s so easy and so good.
The glaze will add a little sweetness, but you can always add a few blueberries before baking instead.
22. Coconut-Lemon Ice Cream Cake
Summer BBQ’s can be both a blessing and a curse. How many pieces of apple pie can you possibly eat?
This recipe will make a refreshing change and turn some heads at the next gathering.
Coconut, macadamia nut shortbread cookie crumb might sound complicated, but it’s as easy as blitzing for a few seconds. The worst part is the 8-hour wait to dig in!
This dessert will be more than delicious served alone, but adding some sliced fruit on the side will give it a little extra freshness.
23. Fritters with Lemon Mousse and Strawberries
Deep-fried sweet dough is pretty perfect as it is. But put it together with lemon mousse and fresh strawberries, and you have a whole new dessert.
The lemon mousse is a mixture of a quick lemon curd with whipped cream, and you can use store-bought.
For the fritters, don’t worry about trying to make them pretty. They’re not supposed to be.
The funky shapes will create soft spots along with some crispy parts to give this dessert some amazing texture.
24. Lemon-Blackberry Cheesecake Bars with Toasted Coconut Crust
I know I’ve mentioned raspberries and strawberries a few times, but have you tried lemon and blackberry? You should. It’s pretty amazing.
These cheesecake bars are beautiful, full of color and flavor, and so worth a try. The coconut in the crust adds a chewy texture to the base but can be omitted.
For the filling, it’s as simple as making up a cheesecake batter and splitting in two. Half will be flavored with blackberry puree while the rest is loaded with lemon juice and zest.
When swirled together, they make an eye-catching lemon dessert that nobody will be able to resist.
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