Lemon Gelato
Lemon Gelato

Ugh! I couldn't take one more gloomy grey day anymore! We needed some serious brightening up around here and I can think of nothing that brings on the sunshine more than my homemade Lemon Gelato. Tart, creamy and bursting with lemon flavor through and through it's one of my family's favorites and I can't believe I haven't shared it with you yet! So call me crazy 'cause it's January and the middle of winter--but knowing there's a container of this little bit of sunshine in my freezer makes the miserable weather a little more bearable!!

This is the very first gelato I ever made when I first got my ice cream maker several years ago. The recipe came in a booklet with my DeLonghi machine and though I've tried a number of other lemon gelato recipes, I've never found another one that's better. It comes together in a snap and produces a gelato that's so perfectly balanced between creaminess and iciness (it's got an amazing consistency) and so intensely flavorful and tangy, that you'd swear it comes from a fancy Italian gelateria and yet it's in the comfort of your own home. Make it with the Meyer lemons that are in season now and you'll swoon! Take that freezing rain and cloudy skies!!

If you don't already own an electric ice cream maker, now's the time to pick one up. You can be all ready for ice cream season--it'll be here sooner than you think and you can practice a lot until ti comes, right? Anyway, who made the rule that frozen desserts are a summer-only thing?!! One spoonful of this and you'll become a regular rule-breaker like me!!

Lemon Gelato

Makes about 1 quart
You will need an electric ice cream maker for this.
Prep Time:  10  minutes, plus several hours of chilling and about 20-30 minutes of churning


  • 6-8 lemons, finely grate rind from 2-3 of them and then use the rest to juice so that you wind up with 1 cup of lemon juice
  • Scant 1 cup water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • Scant 1 cup milk (I usually use whole but you could use 2% as well)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

The Recipe

1.  Into a large bowl, place the grated lemon rind, lemon juice, water and sugar and stir well so that the sugar dissolves. Stir in the milk and the cream. Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for several hours until it's really cold, or even overnight.

2.  Before you're ready to churn it, give it a really good stir, since the ingredients will have separated somewhat. Pour into the bowl of your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer's directions for churning.

3.  Once gelato is churned, transfer to a freezer-safe container and let harden. This will never get rock hard. It maintains a smooth consistency and lasts at least a couple of weeks in the freezer if you hide it well!!


Note:  Recipe adapted from the DeLonghi Gelato Recipe Book. I doubled the recipe and tweaked the proportions a bit.

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