No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits

This time of year I just seem to crave lemony flavors. I think lemon is a promise of spring with it’s bright, sunny flavor. Goodness knows we need that promise this year! These bright, lemony No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits will make you forget about all that.

No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits
No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits

I had really wanted to serve up these No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits for my Easter dessert this year, but we had lemon bars, instead. I just couldn’t get the thought of these cute little desserts out of my mind, though.

About No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits:

No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits are a lusciously soft, lemony cheesecake layered over shortbread crumbs and topped by a bright, zesty Lemon Curd. It’s like a one-two punch of lemony goodness.

The cheesecake base is super easy, but the lemon curd does need to be cooked. Because, IMHO, you can never have too much Lemon Curd, I doubled my usual Lemon Curd recipe. And I was wondering why I don’t make lemon curd more often!

I made the bottom layer of my No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits with some of the Classic Scottish Shortbread cookies I made last week. I just pulverized them in the food processor. Graham cracker crumbs will work just fine, too.

No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits
No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits
Saving Money when making No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits:

Late winter to spring is one of the best times to buy lemons. You might even see them by the bag. Choose your citrus by weight, not size or color. As long as you’re using lemon, zest them. It’s nice to have zest on hand to add to salad dressing or other recipes.

Since we’re right around Easter, it’s a good time to mention any holiday is a great time to pick up butter, cream cheese and baking items like condensed milk. Buy butter on sale and freeze for months. Cream cheese keeps for weeks in the fridge and can be frozen.

Condensed milk is likely to go on special with coupons. Stock up on these items when they’re at a low, and check Aldi, too, if you have one nearby. This recipe calls for 1/2 of a can of the condensed milk. You couldn’t go wrong with making my Frozen Coffee Frappes with the rest.

Cookies, Graham Crackers, and Graham Cracker Crumbs are other items that go on deep sale during holidays.

No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits
No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits


No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits

No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits

Super rich  & the good dollop of Lemon Curd brightens everything up!

  • Author: mollie kirby
  • Total Time: 25 minutes + chill
  • Yield: 8 servings


For the Lemon Curd:

  • 6 large egg yolks
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 12 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 stick, 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces

For the No-Bake Lemon Cheesecake:

  • 1 1/2 (8 ounce) blocks of cream cheese (12 ounces total), softened
  • 1/2 can of Condensed Milk
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • zest of half a lemon


  • 1 cup of shortbread or graham cracker crumbs
  • Fruit, cookies or additional crumbs,  if desired for garnish


For the Lemon Curd:

Combine yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a small, heavy saucepan. Whisk to combine. Set over medium heat, and stir nearly constantly with a whisk, making sure to stir corners and bottom of pan. Cook until mixture is thick enough to coat back of spoon, leaving a distinct line that doesn’t fill in when swiped with a finger, 5 to 7 minutes.

Remove saucepan from heat. Add butter, one piece at a time, stirring until consistency is smooth. Transfer mixture to a small bowl. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd to avoid a skin from forming.

If desired, the egg yolks can be sieved before cooking or the whole batch may be sieved after. Because this curd is dolloped onto the finished dessert, sieving is optional.

For the No-Bake Lemon Cheesecake:

Beat softened cream cheese until smooth. While mixer is running, beat in the condensed milk, scrape down and beat again until incorporated. While mixer is running, drizzle in lemon juice. Scrape down and continue to beat at medium-high speed until mixture is smooth.


Spoon about a tablespoon of crumbs into each of 8 small glasses or cups. Divide the cheesecake filling over graham cracker crumbs, a good heaping tablespoon or so spoon in each. Smooth if desired. Dollop a good tablespoon of the curd over the cheesecake.

Cover and refrigerate 2 to 3 hours until chilled. Garnish with fruit, a cookie or additional crumbs if desired.


  • Store cheesecakes in refrigerator up to 3 days.
  • Be sure to have a use for the additional half can of condensed milk.
  • You’ll need about 6 lemons for this recipe


I’ll be posting these No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Parfaits at Fiesta Friday #217, hosted by Angie and Abbey @ Three Cats and a Girl.

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