Creamy Lemon Posset (An Eggless Citrus Custard)

Lemon Possets are creamy, lemony desserts with a velvety, smooth texture – like crème caramels or panna cottas but without the eggs or the gelatin. They are extremely simple to make and take no time at all.

Lemon Posset with shortbread cookies

For some helpful tips before you begin, click here.


  • 1 3/4 cups (420 ml) heavy cream
  • 10 tablespoons (125 g) granulated sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1 lemon (about 1/4 cup or 60 ml)


1. Combine the cream, sugar and lemon zest in a saucepan. Let boil for 6 minutes.

– In a small heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the cream, sugar and zest to boiling, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
– Continue boiling and stirring for 3 minutes then lower the temperature and simmer for 3 more minutes. (Watch the heat – don’t let the cream boil over.)

2. Stir in the lemon juice. Let cool.

– Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.
– Let cool, about 15 minutes. (The posset should already be thickening.)

3. Sieve out the lemon zest. Pour into ramekins and chill.

– Pour through a sieve to remove the zest, pressing out as much flavor as possible. Skim off any bubbles or froth.
– Pour into four ramekins or small dessert bowls.
– Refrigerate at least 4 hours, or until set.

Serve with lightly sweetened whipped cream or shortbread cookies.

Lemon Posset

About this recipe

Lemon Posset is a wonderfully sweet and tart, smooth and velvety dessert. This creamy, lemony, eggless set custard is a wonder of science and the easiest treat ever with only 3 ingredients and 6 minutes cooking time. It sets in the refrigerator without eggs or gelatin and is almost as easy as boiling water.

For such a simple dessert, they are very elegant. They are delicious on their own, paired with shortbread cookies or dressed up with whipped cream, berries or fruit coulis. Very nice!

Lemon Posset with shortbread cookies


Here are 3 helpful tips:

1) Don’t stray from the recipe.

– Do not alter the recipe or take any shortcuts. The proportions of the ingredients and the cooking method determines how well the lemon posset sets.

2) No substitutions for the heavy cream, please.

– Variations in the fat percentage in the cream may affect the how well your lemon posset sets. So no substitutions for the heavy cream.

3) Substitutions for lemons.

– The amount of acidity in the recipe also affects how well the posset will set. If you wish to use citrus fruits other than lemons, some adjustments may be needed to the amount of juice needed.

  • For Meyer lemons or oranges, use 1/2 cup (120 ml) juice.

Only 3 ingredients – a lemon, sugar and cream!

Lemon POsset with soft whipped cream, fresh blueberries and toasted milk crumb
Lemon Posset with soft whipped cream, fresh blueberries and toasted milk crumb.

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Interested in the science of Lemon Possets? Here’s some info from Cooks Illustrated:


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