This creamy, soft gelato is flavored subtly with lemon zest and makes for the perfect, light end to any meal – or late night snack!

T hough there are a couple different methods of making gelato – some utilize a 2:1 ratio of whole milk to heavy cream and egg yolks, where as others use cornstarch to thicken the mixure. This recipe uses egg yolks and creates a creamy, custardy dessert.

Gelato al Limone

  • Servings: 8-12
  • Difficulty: medium
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    Gelato al Limone

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 2/3 cups granulated sugar, divided

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • zest of 2-4 lemons (about 3 tablespoons)


  1. In a stand mixer, beat together the egg yolks and 1/3 of the granulated sugar using the whisk attachment. Beat until pale yellow in color, about 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, combine milk, cream, lemon zest and remaining 1/3 cup granulated sugar in a heavy bottom saucepan over medium high heat. Stir occasionally until sugar dissolves and mixture is simmering.
  3.  With the stand mixer on low speed, temper the egg mixture by adding about 1/2 the warm milk mixture in 3 additions.
  4. When combined, pour the egg, milk and cream mixture back into the pot and continue to cook until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  5.  Pour the mixture into a heat proof bowl, cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator until cold (4 hours or overnight). [Optional: if you would prefer a smoother consistency, strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve and discard lemon zest.]
  6. Pour into ice cream machine and churn according to manufacturer’s instructions – for about 20 minutes.

This recipe is intended to create a creamy gelato with a light lemon taste. If you prefer a stronger lemon taste, add 1/2 tsp of lemon extract.