Lemon creams recipe

(528 ratings)

These lemon creams are easy to make and use just three ingredients.

lemon creams
(Image credit: Future)
  • Vegetarian
Preparation Time15 mins plus chilling
Cooking Time5 mins
Total Time20 mins
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories412 Kcal21%
Sugar16.6 g18%
Fat37.9 g54%
Saturated Fat23.6 g118%
Salt0.08 gRow 4 - Cell 2
Protein1.2 g2%
Carbohydrates16.9 g7%
Salt0.08 gRow 7 - Cell 2

Lemon creams are a fantastic prep ahead dinner party dessert because they are made in 15 minutes using only three ingredients. 

If you’re looking for a quick and easy dessert that is light, fluffy and delicious you’ve come to the right recipe! These lemon creams require three affordable ingredients and 15 minutes of your time to prepare them. It’s best to make them the night before or the morning of your party so they have plenty of time to set. 


  • 300ml double cream
  • 60g caster sugar
  • Zest and juice of 2 lemons, pls extra lemon parings to serve (optional) 




  1. Heat the cream, sugar and lemon zest in a pan over a medium heat until it almost boils. Reduce the heat to low and cook gently for 3 mins, until the sugar dissolves.
  2. Take off the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Pour through a sieve into a jug, then pour into shot glasses. Cool, then chill for a couple of hours or more. Decorate with lemon parings, cut into fine strips, if liked.

Top tips for making lemon creams

This set cream dessert has a rich flavour that is perfectly matched by sharp citrus. You can infuse the cream with some fresh thyme if you’d like a subtle herby flavour or use a vanilla pod for something luxurious. If you’d like some more serving suggestions or you’re considering using single cream, read our tips below for more information. 

What can I serve with lemon creams?

Lemon creams have a wonderful smooth texture. You can compliment this by serving with a rich shortbread biscuit for some contrasting crunch or a scattering of toasted flaked almonds works nicely too. Instead of garnishing with lemon zest we also like to use small mint or thyme leaves. For something fresher, some sliced strawberries or raspberries would also be nice. 

Can you freeze lemon creams?

Yes, this cream-based dessert can be frozen once cooked and cooled. Ideally freeze in the container or dish you want to serve in and close cover with cling film while cooling to prevent a skin forming. The texture may be a little less silky once defrosted but you can blitz it in a blender or sieve before serving to improve it.

Can I use single cream?

Single cream has a lower fat content compared to double. While you may be tempted to make these lemon creams lower calorie by switching the cream you should do so with caution. Single cream curdles when it boils and will not thicken in the same way double cream does. Therefore we do not recommend using single cream in this recipe. 

In this recipe you need the finely grated zest of two lemons. Using a sharp, effective grater means you’ll get maximum yield of zest with minimum bitter pith. We like this one from Joseph Jospeh which has a clever tool to ensure zero wastage. 

Joseph Joseph Handi-Zest Multi-Function Zester - View at Amazon

Joseph Joseph Handi-Zest Multi-Function Zester - View at Amazon

This razor sharp zester has a comfortable, ergonomic handle and a protective sheath for safe storage. There is an integrated cleaning blade too which ensures no zest is wasted or left behind. The zester can be put in the dishwasher but we recommend hand washing to prolong its life and quality. 

If you love citrus flavours you should try our easy lemon posset recipe too. For something a little more technical our lemon tart or lemon meringue pie are excellent options. However, if you prefer something classic, quick and easy - you can’t beat our lemon drizzle cake

Jessica Ransom
Senior Food Writer

Jessica is a freelance food writer, stylist and recipe tester. She previously worked as Senior Food Writer at Future. While at Future Jessica wrote food and drink-related news stories and features, curated product pages, reviewed equipment, and developed recipes that she then styled on food shoots. She is an enthusiastic, self-taught cook who adores eating out and sharing great food and drink with friends and family. She has completed the Level 1 Associate course at the Academy of Cheese and is continually building on her knowledge of beers, wines, and spirits.