Ice Cream & Frozen Desserts

Fresh & Sweet Lemon Semifreddo

4.95 from 19 votes
My Lemon Semifreddo recipe is a perfectly bright, sweet, and cold spring dessert recipe that you'll be making for months.
Top-down view of my Lemon Semifreddo, a perfect Easter dessert.

Hi Bold Bakers!

Do you know what makes Lemon Semifreddo so incredible? Yes, homemade lemon semifreddo has an intensely lemon flavor, it’s creamy, it’s light, it’s super refreshing for a sunny spring dessert. But, personally, I think the best part is, this seemingly sophisticated dessert is SO EASY to make!!

Seriously, if you follow this recipe, it is foolproof. 

Another bonus is this lemon semifreddo uses very few ingredients, likely things you already have in your cupboard and fridge! As the weather starts to warm up, you can’t go wrong with a soft, cold, lemony dessert. After this, make sure you try my other semifreddo dessert, Rich & Creamy Tiramisu Semifreddo.

What Is Lemon Semifreddo?

Semifreddo is an Italian dessert that translates to “half cold.” And if the shoe fits, wear it, right? The dessert is literally half-frozen! 

Don’t get semifreddo confused with ice cream, though! They are similar but different. Ice cream is typically frozen first then air is introduced to it. Semifreddo, however, the air is introduced first, then it is frozen. This makes it feel like it is half frozen! 

Lemon Semifreddo cut into thick, sweet slices, next to some whole lemons.

What You Need To Make Lemon Semifreddo

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • 9×5-inch (23×12.5cm) loaf pan
  • Plastic wrap
  • Mixing bowls
  • Fine mesh strainer
  • Large bowl filled with ice
  • Small saucepan

How To Make Lemon Semifreddo

If you follow these directions, you’ll be shocked at how easy it is to make this delicious, refreshing dessert! Here is how you make lemon semifreddo (get the printable written recipe with measurements right here):

  1. Line a 9×5-inch (23×12.5cm) loaf pan with plastic wrap. Be sure to leave some extra hanging off the side.
  2. Set a fine-mesh strainer over a small bowl. Place the small bowl on top of a large bowl of ice and place it near the stove.
  3. In a small saucepan, whisk the egg yolks, lemon juice, sugar, lemon zest, and salt over low heat.
  4. Stir constantly until the mixture starts to thicken and it coats the back of your spoon.
  5. Immediately, pour the curd through the prepared strainer to stop the cooking. Stir in the vanilla extract and let the curd cool completely. Stir it occasionally to speed up the cooling.
  6. Once the curd is cold, whip the cream to soft peaks in a large bowl.
  7. Gently fold the curd into the whipped cream until it is evenly mixed, then spread it evenly into the prepared loaf pan. Cover the semifreddo with the extra plastic wrap and freeze for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips For Making Lemon Semifreddo

  • Make sure your curd is completely cooled before folding it into the whipped cream; otherwise, you could melt and deflate the cream.
  • Make this recipe a berry-lemon semifreddo by gently stirring in 1 cup of fresh berries of your choice after mixing the curd and cream.
  • For some added texture, make my graham cracker cookie crust and press it into the loaf pan before you pour in the semifreddo mixture.
  • Semifreddo can be sliced or scooped, whichever you prefer. Try serving this with my homemade ice cream cones
  • You can pour the semifreddo into individual ramekins before serving for elegant, individual servings. 
  • For something different, try this with a drizzle of my homemade salted caramel sauce

A slice of Lemon Semifreddo with a spoonful removed.

How To Store Lemon Semifreddo

You can keep any leftover lemon semifreddo in the freezer, wrapped well, for up to 2 weeks! 

Make More Ice Cream!

And don’t forget to buy my Bigger Bolder Baking Cookbook!

Full (and printable) recipe below!

Fresh & Sweet Lemon Semifreddo Recipe

4.95 from 19 votes
My Lemon Semifreddo recipe is a perfectly bright, sweet, and cold spring dessert recipe that you'll be making for months.
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 1 loaf
Prep Time 25 mins
Freeze for 8 hrs
My Lemon Semifreddo recipe is a perfectly bright, sweet, and cold spring dessert recipe that you'll be making for months.
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 1 loaf

Ingredients

  • 8 large egg yolks
  • cup (5floz/142ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 ⅓ cup (10½oz/296g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (16floz/450ml) heavy cream

Instructions

  • Line a 9x5-inch (23x12.5cm) loaf pan with plastic wrap, leaving some extra hanging off the sides.
  • Set up a small bowl with a fine mesh strainer on top of it over a large bowl of ice and place all this near the stove.
  • In a small saucepan over low heat, whisk the egg yolks, lemon juice, sugar, lemon zest, and salt.
  • Stir constantly until the mixture begins to thicken and coat the back of a spoon.
  • Immediately pour the curd through the prepared strainer to stop the cooking. Stir in the vanilla extract and let the curd cool completely, stirring occasionally to speed the cooling.
  • Once the curd is cold, whip the cream to soft peaks in a large bowl.
  • Gently fold the curd into the whipped cream until evenly mixed and then spread into the prepared loaf pan. Cover the semifreddo with the extra plastic wrap and freeze for at least 8 hours (or overnight).
  • When ready to serve, remove from the pan, unwrap and serve slices with some fresh berries. Store any leftovers well wrapped in the freezer for up to 2 weeks.

Submit your own photos of this recipe

1 Images

J Stoutamire

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Shaista Kiran
Shaista Kiran
5 months ago

Can you kindly share video of the recipie please

J Stoutamire
5 months ago

This recipe turned out perfect! See photo. And everyone loved it! Though we all agreed next time I should make it with graham cracker crust to give it a little texture.

shl
shl
3 months ago

Hi, Gemma,

I made this for my kids and it turned out really well! We all loved it. Thank you for the recipe 🙂

I’ve recently been given a big tub of rhubarb puree; I was wondering if I could do the same thing – fold the puree into the whipped cream. But I suspect there’s a need for a custard base of some sort?

Darla
Darla
4 months ago

Can you use the recipe for Meyer lemon curd for this?

Kaysee
Kaysee
4 months ago

Could the sugar be substituted for a sugar free version like stevia?

Yanni
Yanni
5 months ago

Hello, Gemma. I know that this makes one loaf, but I do not know how many people a loaf serves. How many people does this recipe serve then?

SamiSam
5 months ago

Hi Gemma,
I made this desert for Easter and it didn’t turn out. I used my homemade lemon curd that’s always a hit with Lemon pie topped with whipped cream; however I make my curd on the Lemony, tangy side and no sugar in the whip cream. However when frozen there was very little flavour to the desert; I had to pour honey on it to gain back the sweetness. Is that what I did wrong you think, is not put enough sugar in the curd/whipcream before freezing?

Aide Vicente
5 months ago

Hello Gemma,
I will love to try to make this recipe. Will store bought lemon curd work for this recipe? If so how much will equalize the amount you use in your recipe?

Last edited 5 months ago by avicent2
Maze
5 months ago

Hey there Gemma,

Do you think the eggs can be reduced a little..?
And can I use other loaf pan sizes besides this since I don’t own one? What do you recommend?

Thank you.

Chana
Chana
5 months ago

Hi Gemma,,
Can I use lemon curd I already have on hand? If so, how much do I use?
Thanks 🙂

Last edited 5 months ago by Chana

About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere! No matter your skills, I have you covered. Sign up for my FREE weekly emails and join millions of other Bold Bakers in the community for new recipes, baking techniques, and more every week!