Lemon has the power to brighten up any seafood, chicken, pasta, salad or sauce. But its magic is arguably most apparent in desserts. This iconic citrus fruit shines in pies, cakes, cookies and beyond, making it a must for every Easter party, Mother’s Day gathering or spring dinner. Here are 60 lemon desserts to whip up this season, from lemon-raspberry whoopie pies to lemon icebox cookies.
If you can still find Meyer lemons that are in season, you’re one lucky duck. If you can’t (since they’re usually available from November to January), regular lemons will work just fine.
It’s like a lemon meringue pie and a sugar cookie had a delicious, tart-sweet baby. The trick is rubbing the sugar with lemon zest before baking for an extra boost of citrus flavor.
This old-school British treat is usually served in a fancy crystal-cut bowl. But we love this simple sheet-pan approach that allows easy access to the airy meringue, cream topping and lemon-kissed berries.
Trust us: These blow the store-bought kind way out of the water. Think cakey lemon pies stuffed with raspberry filling and fresh fruit.
Ah, lemon and blueberry: a match made in baker’s heaven. You can thank freeze-dried blueberries for the meringue’s lilac hue.
This recipe stars homemade lemon cake, but we won’t blame you for saving time with store-bought lemon cake mix. Just be sure not to skip the hibiscus-cream cheese frosting. It’s well worth the effort.
They’re a classic for a reason. You’ll want to add this seven-ingredient rendition to your arsenal like, right now.
The secret to making the creamiest, dreamiest ice cream without an ice cream machine? Starting with a silky Italian meringue base made with ginger-lemon sugar syrup.
Boxed cake mix + fresh blueberry syrup + lemon whipped cream = spring in a pan.
Icebox cookies never go out of style, likely because of how damn easy they are to whip up. Just make a batch of lemon dough, roll it into a log and keep it chilled in the fridge until you’re ready to slice and bake.
Fair warning: Your guests will most likely assume you ordered this chic centerpiece from a fancy local bakery. Feel free to set them straight.
Think crisp, golden brown cookie crusts brimming with creamy lemon custard. The torched three-ingredient meringue merely gilds the lily.
They’re zingy, light as clouds and only take 15 minutes from start to finish. Need we say more?
Chalk the crispy, sweet crust up to pecans, dates and maple syrup. But what’s even more mind-blowing is the filling’s secret ingredient: cauliflower rice.
Our favorite part about this double-decker beauty is that you can have a slice (or three) without feeling too weighed down. Take that, pie.
Meet the Swedish equivalent to zucchini bread. The grated parsnip not only gives the cake some mild earthiness, but it also makes the texture extra moist.
Sometimes, less is more. And this seven-ingredient, 20-minute gem is delicious proof.
Behold, your favorite summer beverage in dessert form. This recipe calls for both lemon extract and frozen pink lemonade concentrate.
Phew, are these epically spiced. Think ground ginger, crystallized ginger and allspice, plus fresh lemon juice and zest.
These poppable treats are totally vegan, thanks to dates, walnuts almond flour and coconut flour.
Psst: The fresh lemon curd can be made up to two days ahead and stored in the fridge until you’re ready to fill the pastry.
Aka the most epic breakfast of all time. The strawberries are tossed in lemon sugar before topping off the giant skillet pancake.
Everything looks better in a jar or ramekin, no? These cuties are filled halfway with lemon pudding, then topped with fluffy lemon cake.
There’s truly no such thing as too many five-minute dessert recipes. (It’s as simple as combining vanilla Greek yogurt, whipped topping and a few pantry staples in the blender until smooth.)
The unglazed cake can be kept in the freezer for up to three months, meaning you can savor summer berries all through the fall.
This beauty is vegan and gluten-free, from the date-walnut crust to the cashew-rice milk filling.
Think of ’em like chewy lemon brownies complete with sugar cookie crusts. (P.S., odds are you have almost every ingredient you need in your kitchen right now.)
File this one under World’s Cutest Birthday Cake Ideas. Did we mention they’re topped with pure white chocolate instead of frosting?
Want to make it dairy-free? Substitute heavy cream with coconut cream—just be sure to boil it for 10 minutes before using it so it’s extra thick.
Not only does this refreshing summer staple call for lemon juice and lemon zest, but it also gets a few dashes of limoncello.
We can’t decide what we love more, the two-ingredient lemon glaze or the additions of oil and sour cream for an extra-moist treat.
Helloooo, summer. These uber-fluffy cupcakes (thanks, cake flour!) are topped off with mojito cream cheese frosting that’s spiked with rum, lime zest and fresh mint.
If you’re not digging into these alfresco with a caffeinated beverage on hand, you’re doing it wrong. Might we suggest washing them down with gorgeous pink quartz lattes?
Careful: These half-hour wonders are scary poppable, and one batch makes a whopping 36 cookies.
It’s so moist, lemony and light that all it needs for its big debut is a modest dusting of powdered sugar.
The hardy pecan crust can hold its own against layers of zippy lemon curd, cream cheese filling and whipped topping.
This pie has spring picnic written all over it. The sweet-and-salty crust made with graham crackers and roasted almonds really takes it to the next level.
Pressing blackberries through a strainer to make fresh purée might be time consuming, but we promise it’s worth it.
Picture a brown sugar crust slathered with tart raspberry jam. Now imagine sprinkling fresh raspberries over it before coating it in rich lemon filling.
If you’re in search of a lemon dessert on the healthy side, look no further than these oat- and cashew-studded bites that come together in the food processor.
Spread this plant-based sweet on everything from waffles and pancakes to muffins and cakes.
We recommend serving them alongside a piping-hot cup of tea. (Bonus points for using a homemade tea bomb.)
Don’t the slices of sweet, candied lemon make the most elegant finishing touch?
Pound cakes have high moisture content, so they begin to dry out as soon as they’re cut. Preserve this baby by covering the leftovers tightly with foil or plastic and popping them in the fridge for up to a week.
Just as fluffy, citrusy and moist as Starbucks lemon loaf—only ten times cuter.
The easiest way to make a cookie look fancy? Top it off with two-ingredient glaze and slivered almonds. It’s just a fact.
The recipe calls for all the usual suspects, like cake flour, lemon zest and sugar. But there’s a secret ingredient that makes all the difference in flavor and texture: instant lemon pudding mix.
Aromatic lemon zest and bright lemon extract are just the ticket for perking up the traditional vanilla custard base.
There’s no better way to show off your farmers market haul than with this juicy number. (The filling gets a hit of fresh lemon juice, of course.)
Thanks to Otis Spunkmeyer, this dessert doesn’t require a second of baking. Just look for pre-baked lemon cakes at the supermarket and drizzle them with the easiest raspberry sauce of all time.
Finished with decadent lemon cream made from mascarpone, whipped cream, powdered sugar and lemon curd.
We seriously wouldn’t mind getting out of bed for a slice of *this* on a Sunday morning.
The vibrant filling gets a full cup of fresh lemon juice, some lime juice and a whole lot of blackberries.
Layers of lemon whipped cream and homemade blueberry sauce chill in the freezer between graham crackers for a cool spring indulgence.
We don’t know which part we love more: the dairy-free tofu lemon filling or the date-walnut crust. It’s tangy, it’s creamy, it’s sweet, it’s crunchy—you really can have it all.
The Ritz cracker crust gives these bars a salty edge, while the brown-buttered raspberries offer them pleasant nuttiness.
Go ahead, let your guests think you picked it up at a local patisserie. (Or brag and tell them the truth.)
Whole wheat flour? Check. Protein-rich Greek yogurt? Check. Low-sugar blueberry preserves? You bet.
The crispy oat crust has fresh thyme leaves and lemon zest baked inside. Swoon.
Just bake, toss them in melted butter, sprinkle them with sugar and lemon zest and devour to your lemon-loving heart’s content.