When it comes to lemon desserts, my lemon cream pie is the perfect dessert for just about any occasion. The light, creamy, sweet-tart custard is guaranteed to bring smiles to your table.
There is something magical about lemon desserts. The tangy sweet flavor satisfies the palate like nothing else can. And my luscious lemon pie elevates lemon desserts to a whole new level of deliciousness.
You’re going to love my easy lemon cream pie. Using simple pantry ingredients and fresh lemon juice, this is an easy recipe you’ll be making time and time again for your friends and family.
Ingredients to make Lemon Cream Pie
Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make Lemon Cream Pie. In Chef Speak, this is called the “Mise en Place,” which translates to “Everything in its Place.”
Not only does setting up your ingredients ahead of time speed up the cooking process, it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.
- sweetened condensed milk
- egg yolks
- fresh lemon juice
- granulated sugar
- heavy cream
- graham cracker crumbs
- unsalted butter
*One of my friends adds lemon zest to the pie, but I like to keep it smooth and creamy.
How to make graham cracker crust
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the oven rack in the middle of the oven.
- Pulse the graham crackers in a food processor to make fine crumbs (or buy ready-made graham cracker crumbs).
- Place the graham cracker crumbs in a mixing bowl and add the sugar and melted butter.
- Mix the ingredients together until well blended. *If the crust is too wet, add additional graham cracker crumbs to the mixture.
- Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate.
- Bake the crust for 10-12 minutes, until it is just beginning to brown.
- Remove the pie crust from the oven and allow it to cool thoroughly on a wire rack.
*If you’d like to skip this step, you can buy a premade graham cracker pie shell, but nothing beats a homemade buttery graham cracker pie shell.
How to make lemon cream pie
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the oven rack in the middle of the oven.
- Add the sweetened condensed milk and egg yolks to a medium bowl and whisk until smooth and creamy.
- Slowly whisk the lemon juice into the milk mixture.
- Pour the lemon filling into the cooled pie crust and smooth the top using an offset (or rubber) spatula.
- Place the pie on a sheet pan on the center rack of the preheated oven and bake until the edges are set, but the center still has a little jiggle. *Depending on your oven, it will take 15-18 minutes.
- Place the pie on a wire rack to let it cool completely.
After the pie has cooled, cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours. This will give the pie time to set so that it can be sliced. If you have time, chilling the pie overnight will give you the best results.
How to make whipped cream topping
- Add the heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla to a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer).
- Whip the ingredients to stiff peaks. This process should be slow, starting at low speed and increasing the speed over about ten minutes. **This method is how you keep the whipped cream from breaking. The cream should be ice-cold and as fresh as possible. Look for heavy cream with the longest expiration date.
Pipe the whipped cream around the edges of the lemon cream pie and garnish with fresh lemon circles cut in quarters.
Wouldn’t you love to see the smiles that this delicious lemon cream pie brings to your dinner table? Your family is going to love this lemon dessert!
A lemon cream pie will be made with a custard base, which is made with condensed milk or cream and egg yolks. A lemon meringue pie is made with egg yolks, corn starch, and butter, making a curd rather than a cream.
A cream pie is topped with whipped cream, and a meringue pie is topped with whipped egg whites.
I use egg yolks to thicken the creamy custard filling for the pie, and cornstarch is not needed because I am baking the pie. For a stove-top cream filling, cornstarch will be used to thicken the filling before egg yolks are added, making it a no-bake cream pie.
Lemon cream pies can easily be frozen. If you’re freezing the whole pie, leave the whipped cream topping off and wrap the pie well before freezing. Defrost the pie in the refrigerator overnight or a few hours before using and add the whipped cream before serving.