Delight in a zingy twist on a classic with this easy and decadent Lemon Tiramisu—a no-bake dessert that layers creamy and tangy flavors for an amazing indulgence. With the addition of luscious lemon curd, this make-ahead treat offers a refreshing and zesty delight that will leave your taste buds craving more of its creamy goodness.
If you love the tangy punch lemon can add to any recipe, look no further. This lemon tiramisu is the perfect dessert for any lemon lover, with a bright summer twist. The ladyfingers are soaked in lemonade and combined with creamy, velvety mascarpone cheese. Add some delicious lemon curd, lemon pudding, and lemon zest; this recipe is an absolute hit. The layers offer a delightful punch of lemon that will have everyone returning for more.
This exciting take on traditional tiramisu is perfect for your next summer gathering. A certified crowd-pleaser, this lemon tiramisu recipe is great for potlucks, BBQs, and everything in between. A refreshing yet creamy and indulgent summer dessert like this is perfect for your summer menu.
Why You’ll Love Lemon Tiramisu
- Easy to Make: Making lemon tiramisu is surprisingly easy, allowing bakers of all skill levels to enjoy the process without feeling overwhelmed. With readily available ingredients and straightforward instructions, you can have this delicious and beautiful summer dessert assembled in what feels like no time.
- Versatile: Lemon tiramisu is a versatile dessert served on various occasions. Whether it’s a summer gathering, a dinner party, or a festive celebration, this dessert effortlessly complements any menu and adds a touch of elegance to the table. Its invigorating flavors make it a showstopper that is sure to impress.
- Crowd-Pleaser: This yummy summer recipe is loved by many. Its harmonious blend of sweet and tangy flavors and luxurious texture make it a dessert that pleases almost anyone. Whether shared among family and friends or presented at a social gathering, it will garner appreciation and leave everyone craving more.
- Visually Stunning: Lemon tiramisu stands out among other desserts, making it an impressive choice for special occasions or gatherings. Its bright appearance, with layers of mascarpone, lemon curd, and lots of lemon flavors, creates a visually striking dessert that will captivate the eyes and taste buds of anyone who sees or tastes it. It makes a stunning centerpiece for your next gathering.
The full printable recipe card with measurements and instructions is found at the bottom of the post.
- Lemon curd
- Whipping cream
- Lemon zest
- Powdered sugar
- Instant lemon pudding mix
- Marscapone cheese
- Optional fresh lemon slices
How to Make Lemon Tiramisu
- Step One: Place the lemonade in a large, shallow dish and dip Ladyfingers into it, allowing the excess to drip off.
- Step Two: Place the soaked Ladyfingers in an even single layer in the bottom of a deep, 9×9-inch square pan.
- Step Three: Spread ½ of the lemon curd over the ladyfingers.
- Step Four: In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the whipping cream and lemon zest with a hand or stand mixer, gradually adding the powdered sugar and lemon pudding mix until thick and creamy. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed so that the ingredients combine evenly.
- Step Five: Add the mascarpone cheese and beat until thick, smooth, and combined.
- Step Six: Spread ½ of the whipped cream mixture over the lemon curd, then dip and layer on another layer of Ladyfingers.
- Step Seven: Spread the remaining lemon curd into an even layer on top of the second layer of ladyfingers.
- Step Eight: Gently dollop on the remaining whipped cream mixture and spread it into an even layer.
- Step Nine: Cover well with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
- Step Ten: Before serving, garnish with fresh lemon slices, optional, and cut into squares.
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- Large shallow dish
- 9×9 inch square dish
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Stand mixer or hand mixer
- Scraper spatula
- Plastic wrap
What to Serve with Lemon Tiramisu
Serve this delicious dessert alongside your favorite summer dishes.
- Shirley Temple Drink
- Macaroni Dill Salad
- Pretty in Pink Punch
- Broccoli Salad
- Cream Cheese Stuffed Jalapeno Burgers
Variations and Substitutions
- Lemonade substitution: If you prefer a more intense lemon flavor, you can substitute the lemonade with freshly squeezed lemon juice or even lemon syrup. Just make sure you taste your mixture so it doesn’t become too tart.
- Ladyfinger variations: Ladyfingers are a classic choice for tiramisu, but you can try experimenting with other types of biscuits or cookies. For example, you could use sponge cake, shortbread cookies, or even graham crackers for a unique twist.
- Whipping cream replacements: If you prefer a lighter option, substitute the whipping cream with chilled coconut cream. It will lend the dessert a subtle coconut flavor and a creamy texture.
- Mascarpone cheese variations: While mascarpone cheese provides a rich and creamy texture, you can substitute it with cream cheese for a slightly different taste. Remember that cream cheese has a tangier flavor so it will change the overall flavor profile of this dessert.
- Garnish options: Fresh lemon slices make for a beautiful garnish, but you can get creative with other decorative options. Consider topping the tiramisu with fresh berries, grated chocolate, or a sprinkle of toasted coconut for an extra touch of elegance.
It’s unlikely that there will be any leftovers of this irresistible dessert. However, if by any chance there are, it is recommended to store your lemon tiramisu in the refrigerator, covered with plastic wrap, or in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days. Keeping it chilled ensures its freshness until you’re ready to indulge again.
Can I Freeze?
It is not advisable to freeze lemon tiramisu. Freezing and thawing can alter the texture and consistency of this amazing dessert. The Whipped cream and mascarpone cheese may separate and develop a grainy or watery texture upon thawing, compromising the overall taste and mouthfeel of the dessert.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Use fresh lemons: Choose fresh lemons when making this dessert. Whether you use fresh lemon juice instead of lemonade or simply make sure the lemons are fresh for zesting, this will ensure a vibrant and authentic lemon flavor in your tiramisu.
- Chill your mixing bowl and beaters: Before whipping the cream, chill your mixing bowl and beaters in the refrigerator for a few minutes. This will help the cream whip up faster, creating a better consistency.
- Layer ladyfingers evenly: When placing the ladyfingers in the pan, try to create an even layer. Layering evenly ensures consistent flavors and textures throughout the dessert. If needed, you can break the ladyfingers into smaller pieces to fit the pan.
- Allow to set: Give the tiramisu enough time to set it in the refrigerator. The minimum recommended time is 6 hours, but overnight chilling is even better. This allows the flavors to meld together and the ladyfingers to soften and absorb the delicious lemony goodness.
- Garnish just before serving: If using fresh lemon slices or any other garnish, add them to the top of the tiramisu just before serving. This ensures a fresh and vibrant presentation.
- Serve chilled: Lemon tiramisu is best enjoyed when served chilled. The cool and creamy texture, paired with the bright citrus flavors, makes this the perfect way to cool down this summer.
What Makes this Recipe a Tiramisu?
This recipe is considered a tiramisu as it follows the basic concepts of this classic Italian dessert. While it has a special lemon twist, it still uses many ingredients and techniques as a traditional tiramisu. The layering, ladyfinger cookies, and creamy filling make this very close to the classic tiramisu you know and love without coffee or cocoa.
What is Tiramisu?
Tiramisu is a popular Italian dessert that originated in the region of Veneto. The name “tiramisu” translates to “pick me up” or “lift me up” in Italian, which reflects its reputation for being a rich and indulgent treat.
Traditional tiramisu consists of layers of ladyfinger biscuits (known as savoiardi) soaked in coffee or espresso, layered with a creamy mixture made from mascarpone cheese, eggs, sugar, and sometimes flavored with Marsala wine or other liqueurs. The layers are often dusted with cocoa powder or grated chocolate for added flavor and presentation.
The ladyfingers are dipped in coffee briefly to soften them and absorb the flavor. The creamy mascarpone mixture, often sweetened and flavored, provides a smooth and velvety texture.
When properly chilled, tiramisu has a delicate balance of flavors, with the bitterness of the coffee, the richness of the mascarpone, and the sweetness of the biscuits and cocoa creating a harmonious combination.
Tiramisu is served chilled and enjoyed alone or accompanied by coffee. It is a beloved dessert in Italy and internationally, known for its creamy decadence.
What Ladyfingers to Use for Lemon Tiramisu?
For Lemon Tiramisu, it is recommended to use the classic ladyfingers known as “savoiardi.” These are dry, delicate sponge-like biscuits commonly used to make tiramisu desserts. Savoiardi ladyfingers have a slightly sweet flavor and a light, airy texture that absorbs the flavors of the soaking liquid well.
When selecting ladyfingers for your Lemon Tiramisu, look for the ones specifically labeled as “savoiardi” or “ladyfingers.” They can usually be found in the baking or cookie section of most grocery stores or specialty food stores. Choose the dry, crisp variety rather than the soft or moist types, as the latter may become too soggy when soaked in the lemonade.
Using savoiardi ladyfingers will provide a sturdy base for the layers of the tiramisu while adding a pleasant texture to the dessert. They will also absorb the lemonade, softening slightly while maintaining their structure.
Can I use Homemade Lemon Curd?
Yes, you can use homemade lemon curd in your Lemon Tiramisu recipe! Using homemade lemon curd can add an extra level of freshness to your dessert. Homemade lemon curd allows you to control the sweetness and tanginess according to your preferences. So go for it and use your lemon curd. It will make the perfect Lemon Tiramisu with extra fresh flavors.
Can I use Store-Bought Ladyfingers or Make Them From Scratch?
Yes. You can use either store-bought or made-from-scratch Ladyfingers to make this delicious dessert. Both options will work well. It is quite time-consuming to make your own ladyfingers, so if you are looking for a quick and easy dessert, it is best to stick to the store-bought kind.
Can I Substitute Lemon Curd with Something Else in This Recipe?
Yes, you can substitute lemon curd with another ingredient in this lemon tiramisu recipe. While lemon curd adds a tangy and creamy lemon flavor, there are alternatives you can consider. Try using lemon pastry cream, lemon cream cheese, or even lemon whipped cream. So that you know, switching out the lemon curd for any other option will change the flavor and texture of this dessert.
How Long Does Lemon Tiramisu Need to Chill Before Serving?
Lemon tiramisu must chill for at least 6 hours or overnight before serving. Chilling is an essential step in the recipe as it allows the flavors to meld together and the ladyfingers to absorb the moisture from the lemonade. It also allows for the other creamy components to meld together and the layers to be properly set.
Can I Make Lemon Tiramisu in Advance?
Yes, lemon tiramisu can be made in advance, which makes it convenient for special occasions. Making it ahead allows the flavors to develop and the dessert to set properly.
Once you have prepared the lemon tiramisu according to the recipe, you can cover it tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dessert for up to 3-4 days before serving.
Making this recipe in advance allows the ladyfingers to soak up the flavors from the lemonade and other components, resulting in a moist and flavorful dessert. It also gives the creamy filling time to set and become firm, allowing for easy slicing and serving.
Can I Add Additional Flavors or Toppings to the Tiramisu?
Absolutely! Tiramisu is a versatile dessert that can be customized with additional flavors and toppings to give it a personal touch.
- Fresh Berries: Incorporate fresh berries like raspberries, blueberries, or strawberries to add a burst of fruity flavor and vibrant colors to your dessert. You can either layer them between the ladyfingers or use them as a topping when serving.
- Citrus Zest: Enhance the lemony flavor of the tiramisu by adding zest from other citrus fruits, such as lime or orange. These citrus zests can be mixed into the whipped cream filling or sprinkled on top as a garnish.
- Liqueurs: For an adult twist, you can soak the ladyfingers in a flavored liqueur or add a splash of liqueur to the creamy mixture. Traditional choices include Marsala wine or coffee liqueur, but you can experiment with other options like limoncello syrup for a lemony kick.
- Chocolate: If you enjoy the combination of lemon and chocolate, you can sprinkle grated dark chocolate or cocoa powder between the layers of ladyfingers or on top of the final layer. This adds a rich and decadent element to the dessert.
- Nuts: Consider adding a crunchy texture by incorporating chopped nuts like toasted almonds or hazelnuts. They can be sprinkled between the layers or used as a topping.
This delicious summer dessert makes 12-16 servings, making it perfect for a crowd in the summer months.
While the assembly of this dessert takes only 20 minutes, the setting time is the longest part. Chilling your lemon tiramisu for at least 6 hours before serving is best. Overnight is even better.
While the recipe calls for an instant lemon pudding mix, you can experiment with other flavors. Vanilla or white chocolate pudding mix could work well as an alternative, adding a slightly different flavor profile to the dessert.
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- ¾ cup lemonade
- 1 ½ packages Ladyfingers 7oz packages
- 1 jar lemon curd 11oz jar
- 1 ½ cup whipping cream
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- ⅔ cup powdered sugar
- ¼ cup instant lemon pudding mix
- 1 package mascarpone cheese 8oz
- fresh lemon slices for garnish, optional
- Place the lemonade in a large and shallow dish and dip the Ladyfingers into it, allowing the excess to drip off.
- Place the dipped Ladyfingers in an even layer in the bottom of a deep 9×9 inch square baking pan.
- Spread ½ of the lemon curd over the Ladyfingers.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream and lemon zest with a mixer.
- Gradually add the powdered sugar and lemon pudding mix and beat until thick and creamy.
- Add the mascarpone cheese and beat until thick, smooth and fully combined.
- Spread ½ of the whipped cream mixture over the lemon curd, then dip and layer on another layer of Ladyfingers.
- Spread the remaining lemon curd into an even layer on top of the second layer of Ladyfingers.
- Gently dollop the remaining whipped cream mixture and spread it into an even layer.
- Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
- Before serving, garnish with fresh lemon slices, if desired, and cut into squares.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.