Easy Lemon Pudding

DessertQuick and EasyGluten-FreeVegetarian

This is THE EASIEST lemon pudding EVER. Just 4 ingredients. No gelatin. No eggs. Gluten-free. Great for Easter, Mother's Day, or dinner parties.

Photography Credit: Sally Vargas

This lemon pudding couldn’t be easier. It’s made with just four ingredients: whipping cream, sugar, lemon zest, and lemon juice.

All you do is warm everything up, then let the pudding set. It’s like magic.

Elegant, simple, and with a velvety texture that is positively dreamy, this lemon pudding is perfect for Easter dinner, Mother’s Day brunch, and everything in between.

No one needs to know it only took you 15 minutes to make.

Easy Lemon PuddingThe recipe is a modern adaptation of a medieval drink called a posset, which was popular from the Middle Ages to the early 19th century. This was a hot milk or cream mixture thickened with acidic wine or cider. It was considered medicinal for treating a cold or flu. Syllabubs, another sweet frothy drink, are closely related.

History lesson over! Lemon posset is fast becoming a trendy dessert, especially in Britain.

The magic is in the thick cream, reduced slightly, and combined with tart lemon juice. The two interact to form an exquisite creamy consistency, especially after you strain out the little bits of zest.

Look through your cupboard for pretty stemmed glasses if you want to be fancy, and make this for your next party!

Easy Lemon Pudding Recipe

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 10 minutes
  • Chilling time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 4 servings

Recipe is easily doubled.

Recipe can be prepared up to 2 days in advance.


  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 6 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 cup blueberries, raspberries, sliced strawberries or blackberries, to garnish


1 Warm the cream and sugar: In a medium saucepan over medium heat, stir together the cream, sugar and lemon zest. Bring to a boil. Adjust the heat to a gentle boil, and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes.

Watch carefully and stir frequently to keep the cream from boiling over.

Easy Lemon Pudding

2 Add the lemon juice and continue to simmer for 5 more minutes. Stir frequently.

3 Take the pan off the heat and let the cream cool for 5 minutes.

4  Strain and chill. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a 4-cup liquid measuring cup or other container for easy pouring.

Pour into 4 four-ounce ramekins or pretty stemmed glasses.

5 Refrigerate, uncovered, for 2 to 3 hours, or until set. This pudding can also be prepared and refrigerated up to 2 days in advance. Top each glass with berries just before serving.

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Sally Vargas

Sally Pasley Vargas is a freelance writer and the author of three cookbooks (Food for Friends, The Tao of Cooking, Ten Speed Press, and The Cranberry Cookbook). She currently writes the column The Confident Cook for The Boston Globe along with seasonal recipes for the Wednesday Food Section.

More from Sally

Showing 4 of 19 Comments / Reviews

  • Kay Kaye

    OH MY! Simply delicious! I only had one cup of heavy cream so I halved the recipe. I was a bit skeptical at first since I couldn’t imagine a pudding without a thickening agent, like cornstarch. Not only did it thicken like a pudding but the resulting texture was an incredible silky delight. The lemon flavor in this pudding was well balanced by just the right amount of the sugar so as not to overwhelm the taste. Thank you for this dessert. It will become a family favorite for sure.
    PS: I didn’t want to waste the bits of lemon peel so, after straining, I rinsed them, let them air dry and then heated them in a frying pan with half teaspoon of granulated sugar and a tablespoon of water with a teaspoon of lemon juice. I put them on wax paper to dry and, while the pudding cooled in the fridge, so did the lemon peel bits. I crunched them up with the back of a spoon and sprinkled them atop one of the dishes of pudding. Both with and without candied bits, this dessert was DELISH!


  • lynne

    Have just made this dessert,it was easy to make and tastes wonderful! I also made some lemon shortbread to go with it.Will definitely make again.

  • hapless cook

    I love lemony flavours, so I knew I had to try that. It was ridiculously good, especially considering the small number of ingredients. I loved it, my finicky not-a-fan-of-lemon husband loved it, even my fussy son liked it.

  • Hayley

    As I type this delicious, creamy dessert is currently chilling in the fridge. My excitement got the better of me and I had a quick taste. It’s quite sweet! Would the recipe still work if I reduced sugar?

  • Sandra

    Would it be possible to make it into a mango pudding using mango juice?
    I’m just not sure how to substitute for the zest.

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