Lemon Sorbet

updated Jul 5, 2023
Lemon Sorbet
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This may sound crass, but I have yet to find a lemon sorbet from the grocery store whose flavor doesn’t remind me of cleaning fluid. Luckily, lemon sorbet is an easy dessert to make at home, and it’s so worth it. You don’t even need an ice cream maker to get good results.

As we know from Some Facts About Ice Cream, sorbet contains more sugar than ice cream, but has less fat. It’s also non-dairy and is usually flavored with fruit. Because you don’t have to prepare a custard base as part of the process, sorbet making is incredibly easy. The basic formula is water + sugar + flavor = sorbet.

Lemon sorbet is the classic so let’s get you going with that one and then I double-dog dare you to make your own recipes with this basic formula.

Lemon Sorbet

Makes about 5 cups

Nutritional Info


  • 1 3/4 cups


  • 2 cups


  • 2 cups

    freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons

    freshly grated lemon zest


  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the water and sugar, and boil until the sugar dissolves, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Stir in the lemon juice and lemon zest, then pour into the bowl of an ice cream maker. Churn according to manufacturer instructions. When the sorbet has frozen into ice crystals (it will still seem quite soft), transfer to a storage container, cover tightly and freeze until ready to serve. The sorbet will solidify in the freezer.

Recipe Notes

Sorbet Without an Ice Cream Maker: If you do not have an ice cream maker, you can transfer mixture to a 9x13 metal baking pan. Freeze until firm (about 2 to 3 hours), stirring with a fork every half hour.