This lemon icebox cake is layers of buttery shortbread and lemon cream that come together in this scrumptious no-bake summer dessert! Not only is this recipe beyond easy, but has the perfect balance of tart and sweet flavors!
Sweet Lemon Icebox Cake Recipe
I can never get enough of lemon desserts. They are so light, bright, refreshing and absolutely perfect for summer! I love the way the tartness of lemon fuses with sweet creams and buttery crusts. These flavors plus the ease of putting ice box cakes together is a winning combination. This lemon icebox cake comes together in a snap without even having to touch your oven.
This lemon icebox cake truly is a foolproof recipe. My kids make it with me all the time! With only a few easy ingredients and simple layering process, lemon icebox cake will be your new go-to dessert. It is so bright and delicious, it is hard to resist sneaking bites all throughout the day. You have to try this divine lemony goodness for yourself!
No Bake Lemon Icebox Cake Ingredients
Lemon icebox cake is a delicious and inexpensive dessert to whip up for all of your summer get-togethers! Follow the recipe card below for the printable recipe card with measurements.
- Heavy Cream: To create lemon filling.
- Powdered Sugar: For sweetness and smooth texture.
- Instant Lemon Pudding Powder: For flavor and thickness.
- Vanilla Extract: Adds flavor. I recommend using pure vanilla extract for best taste!
- Lemon Juice: Fresh lemon juice works best. I have found that sometimes bottled lemon juice can be too bitter for desserts.
- Lemon Zest: For zesty flavor.
- Shortbread Cookies: I prefer to use Lorna Doone cookies, but you can use whatever shortbread cookie brand you like best! Nilla Wafers are also a delicious substitute.
How to Make The Best Lemon Icebox Cake
You don’t need to worry about messing up this lemon icebox cake. It is super simple and turns out delicious each and every time!
- Make Lemon Cream: Using a mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream, powdered sugar, pudding powder vanilla extract, lemon juice and lemon zest together on high until you have stiff peaks.
- Layer Cream and Cookies: In the bottom of a 9×13 pan, spread a thin layer of whipped cream over the bottom. Add a layer of shortbread cookies topped with ⅓ of the remaining whipped cream.
- Repeat: Repeat the layers two more times until all the cookies and whipped cream have been used. Top with more lemon zest.
- Chill Overnight: Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 4 hours, or overnight. Serve cold.
Lemon Icebox Cake Tips
Make the most of this easy, delicious cake recipe with these simple tips! The lemon icebox cake is perfect for all occasions!
- Picking Lemons: For the best tasting lemon juice, I recommend picking lemons that are heavy, slightly soft when squeezed and completely yellow all around. Any hints of green indicate a lemon that is not yet ripe and your juice may be too bitter.
- Keep Whipped Cream and Mixer Cold: Keeping your whipped cream and mixer attachments cold will help your lemon cream base thicken completely.
- Toppings: I love to serve my Lemon Icebox Cake with fresh raspberries on top. You can also serve with blueberries or strawberries for extra juicy flavor. Top it with homemade caramel sauce for a boost of decadence.
- Enhancing Lemon Flavor: For extra tangy flavor and creaminess, add my homemade lemon curd between layers.
- Let Chill Before Serving: It is important to let your Icebox Cake chill before serving. This helps it solidify and allows the cookies to absorb moisture from the cream- giving you the best cake texture possible.
- Cookies: Try substituting shortbread cookies with sugar or NIlla wafers to switch up your cake’s flavor and texture.
- Garnish: For a dessert that is sure to impress, top your cake with candied lemons. This not only makes your cake look beautiful, but adds a pop of flavor and texture as well!
Storing Leftover Lemon Icebox Cake
The best part about lemon icebox cake is that it stores easily and can be eaten straight from the fridge!
- In the Refrigerator: Wrap cake with plastic wrap and store in fridge for up to 4 days.
- In the Freezer: Wrap cake completely with aluminum foil. Icebox Cake will keep in the freezer for up to a month. Simply thaw in the fridge overnight before serving.
Lemon Icebox Cake
- 3 cups heavy cream
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ¼ cup instant Lemon pudding powder
- ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
- 3 Tablespoon lemon zest
- 2 ½ boxes Lorna Doone shortbread Cookies or other shortbread cookies
Using a mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream, powdered sugar, pudding powder vanilla extract, lemon juice and lemon zest together on high until you have stiff peaks.
In the bottom of a 9×13 pan, spread a thin layer of whipped cream over the bottom. Add a layer of shortbread cookies topped with ⅓ of the remaining whipped cream.
Repeat the layers two more times until all the cookies and whipped cream have been used. Top with more lemon zest.
Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 4 hours, or overnight. Serve cold.
The Recipe Critic