Lemon Icebox Pie

This Lemon Icebox Pie recipe is the perfect marriage of two of my favorite things. The wonderfully sweet tartness of lemon and the soft and creamy texture of a key lime pie. It is seriously hard to stop eating.

Lemon Icebox Pie

And even though it’s an icebox pie, it’s awesome both frozen and refrigerated. It totally depends on your preference. Refrigerated is more like the soft, creamy texture of key lime pie, but when it’s frozen it’s firmer (and sometimes I really dig that). Fortunately, even when it’s frozen it never really gets hard so it maintains that smoothness that I love!

And it’s not hard to make. The directions for a graham cracker crust are pretty straight forward. Some crumbs mixed with sugar and butter, then you press it into the pan. My favorite kind of pie crust – quick and easy.

Lemon Icebox Pie

Of course if you want it to be even easier, you can always buy a pre-made graham cracker crust at the store. No shame in that.

The filling isn’t hard to make, but squeezing all the lemons and grating the lemon zest does take a bit of time. And don’t forget to zest the lemons before you juice them. Zesting already squeezed lemons isn’t easy.

Lemon Icebox Pie

Once you’ve got that covered, it comes together pretty quickly. I love my stand mixer because I can set it on high and just wait for the egg mixture to start getting a paler shade of yellow. No arm workout necessary.

But truly the hardest part of making this is having to wait for it to cool after baking. Absolute torture. I couldn’t wait to dig in and it did not disappoint.

Lemon Icebox Pie

Lemon Icebox Pie

Yield: one 9-inch pie


1 3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 14 graham crackers)
1/4 cup sugar
6 tbsp butter, melted
1 1/4 cups fresh lemon juice (6-8 lemons)
2 14 oz cans sweetened condensed milk
8 large egg yolks
2 tbsp finely grated lemon zest
8 oz Cool Whip or Homemade Whipped Cream for topping, optional


1. Grease pie pan.
2. Mix together graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter.
3. Press graham cracker mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 inch pie pan to make the crust.
4. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
5. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and sweetened condensed milk.
6. In a large bowl, beat the lemon zest and egg yolks on high until pale.
7. Add sweetened condensed milk mixture to egg mixture and beat until smooth.
8. Pour filling into the pie crust.
9. Bake the pie for about 25 minutes. The edges should be set and the center should jiggle slightly when the pie is moved.
10. Cool for an hour, then refrigerate or freeze for at least 6 hours, depending on preference. The pie should keep for about a week.
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Recipe slightly modified from Pip and Ebby.


This post linked to Skip To My Lou, I Should Be Mopping The Floor, I Heart Naptime, Inside BruCrew Life, Chef In Training, Pint Sized Baker, Love Bakes Good Cakes, Flamingo Toes and Mandy’s Recipe Box.


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  1. YES. this is exactly my kind of dessert. i love my key lime pie for the exact same reason – that smoothness plus the tartness is perfection. and lemon i love even more. i will absolutely be trying this! like ASAP!

  2. Your pie looks beautiful! And I adore lemon in desserts. Seriously drooling right now!

  3. This is super gorgeous! I am so in love with lemon. Pinned!

  4. Smooth, creamy, and lemony sounds like the pie for me! I love it when pies have crumb crusts. It is so much easier! :)

  5. lovebakesgoodcakes says:

    I need some of this!

  6. YUM! A great summer dessert! And your pics are gorgeous!

  7. This pie looks lovely!! I’m loving lemon anything lately!

  8. How can you call it an “icebox” pie when it has to be baked?

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      Hi Dane! I didn’t really come up with the name of the pie, though I supposed I could’ve called it something different. However, I believe the “icebox” is in reference to the fact that it’s typically a frozen pie.

      • Thank you, sounds good and will make it soon when I get some lemons. I wonder if I could use lemon juice instead, since I always have it on hand.

  9. I love key lime pie and I love lemon. this looks great!

  10. Howdy just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading correctly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different internet browsers and both show the same outcome.

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      Hmmm, I wonder if the site was running slow. It seems to be working now. Please let me know if you continue to have issues so I can look into it. Thanks!

  11. Lindsay, I have been following your blog for a while, and I must admit I love it! From the beautiful photographs to the organization of the blog (I looove organized blogs, it is so much easier to find a recipe!) Your decorations are amazing, somehow you make everything look beautiful 😉 I also wanted to ask you if you had a Lemon Meringue Pie recipe? I’ve been looking for one in other blogs but cannot seem to find one! Congratulations on your blog!

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      Thank you so much Jessi! That means a lot! I have a thing about organized sites too, so I’m SO glad you find it easy to navigate. I don’t actually have a Lemon Meringue Pie recipe right now, but honestly, you could refrigerate this and add meringue or whipped cream and it’d be very similar. Not the same, I know, but it’d be delicious. I’ll add Lemon Meringue Pie to the list to try and make soon. Thanks again Jessi! :)

      • Haha organized blogs are the best, especially when you always have the new recipes listed in the index! Thank you for replying! I’ll try the refrigerating trick 😉

  12. I’m wanting to make this in the worst way but am afraid of a strong taste of lemon. I made key lime pie which was basically the same as this lemon pie recipe and sadly it went straight in the garbage. It tasted like disinfectant. So….has anyone actually MADE it here? I see all I’m gonna make it but nothing else.

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      If you don’t like strong lemon flavor, I’m afraid you won’t like this pie. Its similar to key lime in strength of flavor.

  13. Lindsey,

    I saw your lemon ice box pie on The Southern Lady Cooks weekly potluck – pies for Fathers Day. I haven’t read your blog before but clicked on the pie because my husband had just ordered lemon pie for the family Father’s Day gathering. I knew instantly that your recipe would be a much better, richer recipe than the old basic lemon ice box pie I had always used with one can of condensed milk and two eggs. I made the pie and took it to the gathering and you now have raving fans in our family. It was wonderful. Thank you I will be following you. Sylvia
    Sylvia recently posted…Here Are a Few of My Favorite ThingsMy Profile

  14. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you for the recipe for Lemon Icebox Pie, great reviews from the birthday girl! The only thing I am wondering is why did my pie get mushy the day after serving it? It still tasted great but was loose and watery in the center. Did I not cook it long enough? I cooked it longer than the recipe called for because it was jiggling too much in the center. What is your experience with this if any?

    • lifeloveandsugar@gmail.com says:

      Hmm, I actually haven’t had that happen before. That seems strange. I’m sorry, I don’t know what would cause that.

    • I actually cooked mine for about 35- 40 minutes. At one point, I even turned up the oven to 350.

  15. I just made this last night, and I’m sorry to say it was a disappointment. The filling was just way too tart, and I’m someone that loves all things lemon. The recipe calls for 2T. of zest and over a cup of juice, but most key lime pies call for only 2t. of zest. I know I’m comparing lemons to limes, but all the same it was still too tart. Everything else about the recipe worked well, it cooked up beautifully and sliced perfectly. I would recommend anyone else trying this not to hesitate to cut back on the zest.
    Love your website though, and I’m excited to try some other recipes on here! : )

  16. If I wanted to bake these in mason jars as individual sized pies, do you think the baking time would be about the same or less?
    Jess recently posted…Individual Chocolate TartsMy Profile

  17. I made this pie last night. It as so delish. I made it as a surprise for my boyfriend who loves lemon icebox pies. He is actually a chef, and he really enjoyed it. So, I think this recipe is definitely a keeper.

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