Lemon Cream Dessert Recipe
Lemon Cream Dessert Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Lemon Cream Dessert Recipe

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My friend Mary and I enjoy coming up with innovative menus to try out on our husbands at our weekly Saturday night dinners. We combined 60-plus years of culinary experience to concoct this easy yet yummy layered lemon dessert. Our spouses loved it. -Laurel Adams, Danville, Kentucky
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + chilling Bake: 15 min. + cooling
MAKES:18-24 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + chilling Bake: 15 min. + cooling
MAKES: 18-24 servings


  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1-1/2 cups cold water
  • 3 egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 3 tablespoons butter, cubed
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • CRUST:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup cold butter
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 cups cold milk
  • 2 packages (3.4 ounces each) instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 carton (16 ounces) frozen whipped topping thawed

Nutritional Facts

295 calories: 1 piece, 16g fat (9g saturated fat), 54mg cholesterol, 149mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate (23g sugars, 0g fiber), 4g protein .


  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch; gradually stir in water until smooth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 1 minute or until thickened. Remove from the heat. Stir a small amount of hot filling into egg yolks; return all to the pan, stirring constantly. Bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir for 1 minute. Remove from the heat; stir in butter and lemon peel. Gently stir in lemon juice. Refrigerate until cool.
  2. In a bowl, combine flour and nuts. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press onto the bottom of a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
  3. In a bowl, beat cream cheese and confectioners' sugar until smooth; carefully spread over crust. Spread with cooled lemon mixture. In another bowl, beat milk and pudding mixes on low for 2 minutes; beat in vanilla. Fold in half of the whipped topping. Spread over lemon layer. Spread with remaining whipped topping. Chill for at least 4 hours before cutting. Yield: 18-24 servings.
Originally published as Lemon Cream Dessert in Taste of Home June/July 2002, p33

Sweet White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a sweet white wine such as Moscato or a sweet Riesling.

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Reviewed Aug. 23, 2014

"This is absolutely, amazingly delicious. I made it as the recipe states and then I thought, "If I am making lemon pudding from scratch, why not the vanilla pudding, too?" So I do. Instant pudding doesn't have the greatest taste. This takes a WHOLE lot longer than 30 min. prep. I fool around making this during the day. Crust must cool, puddings must cool.Must chill for four hours. If you have company, make it the day before. NOTE: this freezes well, but it is a bear to get out of the pan after it is frozen. It does not deter my husband from chiseling it out of the pan. I prefer using the Rich Whip where you have to whip the stuff yourself. Cool Whip doesn't have the greatest taste either. After making the two different puddings from scratch, I am half way to an angel food cake from scratch!!"

Reviewed Jun. 21, 2012

"Made this for Easter and loved it! A little on the sweet side but awesome just the same! Was gone in two days! Next time I will try to make it a bit healthier but as far as taste - this recipe is awesome! Very creamy and refreshing."

Reviewed Feb. 6, 2012

"I found this recipe in June/July 2002 issue I picked up at a garage sale. What a wonder find. Made this for Super Bowl Sunday and it was a big hit with the family. Even the picky eater loved it. Will make this again for sure! Passed the recipe on to my wonderful daughter-in-law, she so loved this dessert."

Reviewed Jan. 17, 2012

"Rave reviews at family gathering! Asked 3x's for the recipe. Husband says this is our new family standard for desserts. Took me a bit longer than expected, but more than worth it. Looks beautiful & tastes great. Thank you!"

Reviewed Dec. 12, 2011

"This is one of my favorite desserts. I have made this numerous times and always get compliments on it."

Reviewed Nov. 9, 2011

"This dessert is soooo worth the time and effort! I've made it several times and I get asked for the recipe every time. I followed the recipe exactly and I've also used just a graham cracker crust and both are amazing!! Love it, love it, love it!! Highly recommend it!"

Reviewed Jun. 20, 2011

"Wow. I made this for Father's day and it was WONDERFUL!!! Give yourself plenty of time. I did not modify at all. I used fresh lemon juice which tasted perfect. I already had a request to make this again. Very rich but worth every minute and "calorie". This is definitely going to be a favorite."

Reviewed Apr. 25, 2011

"Made this for Easter, very good,,, but I would decrease the sugar,( we like it tart). Also it wasn't very firm when sliced!! Did I do something wrong?

Very tasty so I would make it again!!!!"

Reviewed Jun. 15, 2010

"I made this for a women's luncheon/35 people. Rave reviews & recipe requests. Kudos to you ladies. I am kind of slow & it took me a little longer to make. When I confessed this to the ladies, they told me MY extra time was worth it! My husband loved it too & agreed with the extra time being well spent. Thank you for being so generous & sharing your efforts!"

Reviewed Jan. 15, 2010

"I tried this recipe at a church potluck. It was a hit!! Several people said that I should enter it in a contest!!!!"

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