Try a zesty twist on a classic dessert with this Lemon Tiramisu recipe! Perfect for those looking to try a refreshing variation of the traditional Italian favourite, this dish combines the creamy, dreamy texture of tiramisu with a bright lemony kick, making it an irresistible treat for any occasion.
In This Post:
- 🍋 Recipe Overview
- 🛒 Ingredients
- 📷 How To Make
- 💭 Recipe Tips
- 🍚 What To Serve With
- 🍰 Storage Tips
- 📝 Go To Full Recipe
This lemon tiramisu is a delightful fusion of rich and creamy textures with a burst of citrusy freshness.
Imagine the traditional tiramisu’s luscious layers, now interspersed with a tangy lemon curd that adds a sweet and tart dimension to each bite. The key ingredients – mascarpone cheese, ladyfingers, and limoncello – work in harmony to create a dessert that’s simultaneously fluffy, creamy, and zesty.
Tiramisu, meaning “pick me up” in Italian, does just that with this vibrant lemon version that’s sure to lift your spirits and tantalise your taste buds.
This recipe is NOT gluten-free or sugar-free, it’s got all the goods and I love it. Having said that, you could use sugar-free sweeteners partially. I have some links to gluten-free and keto ladyfingers below. I also provide an alcohol-free alternative to limoncello in the recipe notes below.
👉 If you’re looking for more no-bake desserts, check out my strawberry cheesecake bars (grain-free, low-carb), coconut yoghurt panna cotta and chocolate hazelnut fudge brownies (also low-carb). My citrus cake is a great paleo/grain-free sponge cake alternative.
What You’ll Need
Here is some key ingredients you need to make this lemon tiramisu recipe:
- Lemon curd is a vital component, offering a bright and tangy flavour and needs egg yolks, butter, lemon juice, zest, vanilla and sugar. Orange or lime zest can be used for a different citrus twist.
- Mascarpone cheese: Provides the classic, rich, and creamy tiramisu texture. Cream cheese mixed with a bit of heavy cream can be a suitable alternative.
- Ladyfingers: The base for the layers, soaking up the limoncello for a moist texture. Sponge cake or even biscuits can be used if ladyfingers are unavailable. Here is a recipe for gluten-free ladyfingers and one for keto ladyfingers.
- Limoncello: Adds a unique, zesty lemon liqueur flavour. Substitute: Lemon juice mixed with a bit of sugar syrup can be used for a non-alcoholic version.
How To Make Lemon Tiramisu
Find the full list of ingredients, nutritional info, and instructions in the recipe card below. Here are some step-by-step pictures to guide you along.
Make Lemon Curd
- Combine sugar, lemon juice, zest, egg yolks, vanilla, and salt in a saucepan. Whisk over medium-high heat for 10 minutes until thickened. Remove from heat, stir in butter until melted, and transfer to a bowl to cool. Cover with plastic wrap, ensuring it touches the custard, and chill in the fridge until ready to use.
Make Lemon Cream
In a stand mixer bowl, blend mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt until smooth for 2 minutes. Transfer the mixture to another bowl. Whisk heavy cream in the same mixer bowl until stiff. Fold in the mascarpone mixture, then add and fold in half of the lemon curd.
Assemble the cake
Spread a thin layer of the filling in a 9×13” baking dish. Gently dip ladyfingers one by one into limoncello, placing them on the filling. Spoon half of the filling over the ladyfingers, then add another layer of dipped ladyfingers and top with the remaining filling. Finish with a layer of lemon curd. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 8 hours or overnight.
- Constantly stir the lemon curd while cooking to prevent curdling. If it does curdle, it’s best to start over.
- Dip ladyfingers in limoncello quickly to avoid them becoming too soggy or disintegrating.
- The recipe uses salted butter. Unsalted butter may be used instead. If used, add a slightly heaped ⅛ tsp to the recipe.
- Garnish with a sprinkle of lemon zest or powdered sugar for an extra touch of elegance.
- Serve chilled as a refreshing end to a meal, perfect for summer gatherings or special occasions.
- You could add a scoop of vanilla ice cream but it’s perfect as is.
- Store the Lemon Tiramisu in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- It’s best enjoyed within 4 days, ensuring the flavours and texture remain fresh and delightful.
Find the full list of ingredients, instructions, and a nutritional breakdown below. If you have questions or cook this recipe, please let me know in the comments, and make sure to rate this recipe so it’s easy for others to find.
- 1 9×13 glass Pyrex baking dish or similar size ceramic or glass dish
- 1 cup sugar you could use sugar-free alternative here
- 2/3 cup lemon juice About 3 large lemons
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 ½ tablespoons lemon zest
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons salted butter about 1/2 cups, room temp
- 680 gram mascarpone cheese about 24 oz
- ½ cup powdered sugar sugar-free alternative could be used
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1.5 cups cold heavy cream
- 1 cup lemon curd around half of the pre-made curd
- 28 ladyfingers about 2 packs, depending on the brand, you can use gluten-free or homemade low-carb, see in notes
- 1-2 cups limoncello or lemon liqueur, for dipping, see notes for alcohol-free option
- In a medium sized saucepan combine sugar, lemon juice and zest, egg yolks, vanilla and salt. Whisk constantly over medium-high heat for 10 minutes, or until thickened. Once thickened, remove from heat and stir in the butter until melted. Transfer the mixture to a separate bowl and cool completely.
- Cover with plastic wrap – making sure the plastic wrap is resting on top of the custard, then place into the fridge to chill until ready to use.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment combine mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla and salt. Beat together on medium speed for 2 minutes, until smooth.
- Transfer the mixture into a separate bowl. Use the same stand mixer bowl to whisk the heavy cream on medium-high speed for about 3 minutes, until stiff.
- Remove the mixing bowl from the stand mixer and add in the mascarpone mixture. Fold in using a rubber spatula. Add half of the lemon curd to the bowl and fold in using a rubber spatula.
- Spread a thin layer of the filling onto the bottom of a 9×13” baking dish. Quickly dip – do not soak – ladyfingers, one by one into the limoncello. Place the dipped lady fingers into the bottom of the baking dish, until it is fully covered. Spoon ½ of the filling mixture on top of the lady fingers in an even layer. Add another layer of dipped ladyfingers on top of the filling, then top with the remaining filling.
- Spoon the remaining lemon curd on top of the filling mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and place into the fridge to chill for at least 8 hours or overnight.
- It’s essentially a homemade lemon syrup. It will capture the essence of limoncello’s bright lemon flavour without the alcohol content. This syrup can be used to infuse the ladyfingers in your cake with a delightful lemony taste.
- You will need 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar, zest of 2 lemons, 3/4 cup lemon juice.
- In a small saucepan, combine the water, sugar, and lemon zest. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring until the sugar completely dissolves. Once the sugar is dissolved, reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes to infuse the zest’s flavour into the syrup. After simmering, remove the saucepan from heat and stir in the fresh lemon juice. Allow the syrup to cool to room temperature. Then, strain it to remove the zest. This step ensures a smooth syrup.
- Pour the syrup into a clean bottle or jar and store it in the refrigerator. It can be used as needed for recipes, drinks, or desserts.