Lemon Sherbet

Total Time

Prep: 10 min. + freezing


2 servings

Updated: Jul. 11, 2023
Lemon juice provides the snappy flavor in this wonderful lemon sherbet recipe from our Test Kitchen. The light, make-ahead treat looks splendid served in individual "boats" made from lemon halves. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin


  • 1 cup half-and-half cream
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest


  1. In a small bowl, stir cream and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Stir in lemon juice and zest (mixture will thicken slightly). Cover and freeze until firm, about 8 hours or overnight. Remove from the freezer 10 minutes before serving. Spoon into lemon boats or dessert dishes.

Lemon Sherbet Tips

What’s the difference between lemon sorbet and lemon sherbet?

While both desserts are fruit-based, the difference between sherbet and sorbet is pretty straightforward: Sorbet does not contain dairy—such as milk or cream—and sherbet typically does! Because of this, sorbet usually has a drier, icier consistency, while sherbet has a slight creaminess.

How do you store homemade lemon sherbet?

Store your lemon sherbet in an airtight container with a tight-fitting lid, preferably one that is plastic (it will help your sherbet freeze more quickly), and flatter and wider for easier scooping. Most ice creams, sorbets, and sherbets prefer the absolute coldest space in your freezer, so stash it away toward the very back. Stored this way, your sherbet should last 1-2 weeks, but it’s so delicious that we guarantee it will disappear before then! Here are some ice cream products that might come in handy as you make your sorbet.

What variations can you make on this lemon sherbet recipe?

You can experiment with adding even more finely grated lemon zest to further bump up that tangy lemon flavor, or swap out the lemon juice and zest and replace with lime juice and zest to make lime sherbet. You could also gently fold in a handful of fresh raspberries, blackberries, or blueberries halfway through the freezing process, when the sherbet is still easy to stir, then let it continue to freeze completely. Keep in mind that any additional fruit can make the texture of your sherbet a bit icier. Check out more sherbet and sorbet recipes.

Research contributed by Mark Neufang, Taste of Home Culinary Assistant

Nutrition Facts

3/4 cup: 295 calories, 12g fat (8g saturated fat), 60mg cholesterol, 61mg sodium, 39g carbohydrate (38g sugars, 0 fiber), 4g protein.