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Close up of copper loaf pan with lemon curd ice cream, a scoop, white surface.

Lemon Ice Cream (no churn recipe)

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This homemade lemon ice cream recipe is very easy to make and big in flavor. With a ripple of lemon curd, it has a smooth, velvety texture and irresistible taste. Enjoyed as is or with a topping, this frozen dessert is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.

  • Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings


  • 2 cups cold cream (heavy, whipping, or heavy whipping)
  • 1 can (14oz or 397g) sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup lemon curd
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Beat cold cream until thick but not completely firm. 
  2. Pour the sweetened condensed milk into it and fold it in with a spatula or whisk. 
  3. Add lemon juice, zest, and vanilla and stir until smooth and even colored. 
  4. Pour into a large metal pan without a removable bottom (8-inch round or square pan or 2 medium loaf pans).
  5. Drop teaspoons of the lemon curd on top of the ice cream. Lightly swirl using a smooth-bladed knife. 
  6. Freeze for 4-6 hours or until completely firm.
  7. Scoop it into bowls and serve with sauces, fresh fruit, or plain. 
  8. Cover tightly with plastic wrap for longer storage, or use a freezer-safe container. 


  • Organization: read the recipe first and ensure you have ingredients at the correct temperature, equipment, and enough workspace. This will make the process so much easier.
  • Sweetened condensed milk: depending on the country, you might find sweetened and unsweetened (or evaporated milk). Make sure it has sugar. 
  • Vanilla: don't use too much. It enhances and mellows the flavor of the lemon, but we don't want it to shine on its own. 
  • Container: any metal pan (round, loaf, square) is excellent for storing no-churn ice cream in the freezer. Cover them with plastic wrap. 
  • How long does it take for condensed milk lemon ice cream to freeze? It depends on the amount of ice cream and the size and shape of the container, but it usually takes 4-6 hours to be ready to eat. I make it the day before and forget about it. 
  • How to store it for a more extended period: use an airtight container or cover the one you froze in with a double layer of plastic wrap. 
  • Using low-fat or non-dairy alternatives instead of condensed milk: I don't recommend it because the texture and flavor will vary. 
  • Author: Paula Montenegro
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 hours
  • Category: Ice Cream
  • Method: Mixing + Freezing
  • Cuisine: International


  • Serving Size: 1/8
  • Calories: 323
  • Sugar: 33 g
  • Sodium: 76.1 mg
  • Fat: 18.7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 34.1 g
  • Fiber: 0 g
  • Protein: 5.8 g
  • Cholesterol: 100.8 mg