This easy no bake lemon cheesecake is packed with sweet and tangy lemon flavor. Thanks to lemon Jello, sweetened condensed milk, and a few other simple ingredients, you can enjoy this quick and easy cheesecake any time!
Hey folks! I don’t know what it is about summertime, but I am always craving lemon desserts. One of my favorite lemon treats would have to be a no-bake lemon cheesecake.
Now, even when it’s not summertime, ya girl has GOT to get her fix of sweet and tangy lemon. That’s why I love this no-bake cheesecake so much. No matter what time of year, you can make this sweet, tangy, EASY no-bake lemon cheesecake thanks to the secret ingredient: lemon Jello!
A Tangy Lemon Cheesecake with Jello
Now, why would we use lemon JELLO in a cheesecake?! Because using Jello is a great way to make a no-bake cheesecake. This cheesecake recipe doesn’t use any eggs, so using gelatin is a special hack that helps the creamy filling set up with no bake time.
Aside from lemon Jello making a delicious creamy cheesecake filling, it also really kicks up that tangy, bright lemon flavor. With the addition of some lemon juice, this easy no-bake dessert is the perfect recipe for those hot summer days, crisp fall afternoons, or even the rainy spring months! You don’t have to wait for lemon season to make this easy no-bake lemon cheesecake recipe.
Ingredients for No Bake Lemon Cheesecake with Jello
Whenever I make my semi-homemade no-bake lemon cheesecake, I keep it simple. I use a handful of ingredients, and I cheat by using a store-bought graham cracker crust. So, let’s go over the main ingredients you need to make your very own lemon Jello cheesecake at home!
- Cream Cheese: I use full-fat cream cheese for the flavor, but you can use light/low-fat cream cheese if you choose. The important part is that it’s brought to room temperature!
- Lemon Jello: any brand will work, but nothing really compares to the OG Lemon Jell-o brand!
- Boiling Water: using HOT water is important to activate the gelatin mixture, so don’t skip out and use cold water!
- Sweetened Condensed Milk: this ingredient adds sweetness and creaminess to the cheesecake filling.
- Vanilla Extract: for a little extra sweetness and enhanced flavor.
- Lemon Juice: for an extra tangy kick of authentic lemon flavor! I use lemon juice from a bottle, but it’s even better if you can use fresh lemon juice.
- Graham Cracker Crust: using a store-bought crust makes this recipe even easier. However, if you want to make a simple graham cracker crust on your own, go ahead!
How to Make a Homemade Graham Cracker Crust
If you want this easy no-bake lemon dessert to feel a little more homemade, you can easily make a classic graham cracker crust, which takes almost no time at all! All you need are some graham crackers, granulated sugar, and a little melted butter. Mix the graham cracker crumbs, butter, and sugar, mold the mixture into your pie pan, and chill for up to 1 hour. There you have it! It takes about 5 minutes and is the perfect addition to this already easy no-bake cheesecake recipe.
Can I use sugar-free Jello in this lemon cheesecake?
You sure can! The zero-sugar lemon Jello might come in a smaller box, so just make sure you grab enough to make this recipe. Otherwise, it won’t change the recipe one bit!
What equipment do you need to make a no-bake cheesecake?
You don’t need much to toss this recipe together! Here’s a quick list of what I use to make my lemon cheesecake.
- Mixing Bowl: you only need one large mixing bowl for this recipe (unless you’re making your own crust, then you’ll need two).
- Electric Hand Mixer: using a hand mixer is highly recommended. If you don’t have one, I recommend a sturdy whisk or rubber spatula.
- Pie Pan: I use a good ol’ disposable aluminum pie pan that you can get from the dollar store, but really, any traditional 8- or 9-inch pie pan will work! A springform pan might be a little too big for this recipe, resulting in a thinner cheesecake.
How to Make No-Bake Lemon Cheesecake
Okay, Cousins. Are y’all ready to see how EASY this recipe is? Aside from the chill time, you can whip up this creamy, delicious lemon cheesecake in about 10 minutes flat. Scroll down to the recipe card at the end of this post to find the complete ingredient list and directions!
- Cream the softened cream cheese using an electric mixer or whisk. Then, mix in the rest of the ingredients until the cream cheese mixture is creamy and smooth.
Pro-tip: scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl while mixing to make sure all ingredients are incorporated evenly!
- Pour the cheesecake filling into the prepared crust, cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, pop it in the fridge or freezer until set, and serve!
Yes, y’all… it’s really THAT easy! Two simple steps.
This recipe is a dream for lemon lovers. It’s the perfect balance of tangy and sweet. The cheesecake filling has a perfectly creamy texture. It’s not just the perfect summer dessert–it’s the perfect anytime dessert!
No Bake Lemon Jello Cheesecake Recipe Video Tutorial
If you’re a visual learner, check out my step-by-step video tutorial below! Don’t forget to subscribe to I Heart Recipes on YouTube, where you’ll find all my previous recipe video tutorials.
No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Recipe Pro-Tips & FAQs
Now, I know this is a crazy simple recipe. It’s semi-homemade, only needs a few ingredients, and takes barely 10 minutes to make. However, y’all best believe there are plenty of ways to make this “simple” lemon cheesecake a little fancy. Next time you make this no-bake dessert, try some of these variations!
- Top the cheesecake with dollops of whipped cream. Make your own with heavy whipping cream, or use Cool Whip or canned whipped cream.
- Mix fresh lemon zest into the cheesecake mixture to enhance that delicious lemon flavor.
- Garnish the cheesecake with a dusting of powdered sugar, small quartered lemon slices, or a fancy fresh lemon zest curl—it will look straight out of a restaurant kitchen!
- Serve a slice of lemon cheesecake alongside fresh berries. Fresh blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries all go with lemon.
- Try this same recipe with a different flavor of Jello! Try key lime Jello, strawberry Jello, or even orange Jello!
How long do I have to chill no-bake cheesecake for it to set?
I refrigerate my no-bake lemon cheesecake for a minimum of four hours. It seems like a long time, but it’s oh-so-worth it. For best results, you could refrigerate it overnight. If you’re in a hurry, pop it in the freezer for at least 1 hour, and it should set up just fine.
How do you keep a no-bake cheesecake from being runny?
If you feel like your cream cheese filling is too runny before chilling it, you can thicken it up with more cream cheese, Greek yogurt, or sour cream. Greek yogurt has a pretty neutral flavor. Sour cream might make the cheesecake filling a bit more tangy, but it will still be perfectly creamy and delicious.
How to Store No-Bake Lemon Jello Cheesecake
This no-bake cheesecake should definitely be refrigerated. You can store any leftover slices in an airtight container or cover them with plastic wrap and store them in the fridge for 3-4 days. This lemon cheesecake also freezes well and can be kept frozen for up to 3 months.
More Delicious Recipes to Try
Want more sweet lemon desserts? No bake desserts? I got both!
Here are some more lemon desserts to try:
- Southern Lemon Pound Cake
- Lemon Ice Cream Cake
- Easy Lemon Bars Recipe
- 3 Layer Orange Lemon Cake
- Strawberry Lemonade Dream Pie
Next, try some of my favorite no-bake dessert recipes:
- No Bake Banana Pudding Cheesecake
- No Bake Strawberry Cheesecake
- No Bake Butterfinger Pie
- No Bake Oreo Cheesecake
- No Bake Pina Colada Cheesecake
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No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Recipe
- Place the cream cheese in a large bowl, and whip it up until it’s nice & fluffy.8 oz cream cheese
- Next add in the sweetened condensed milk, and mix until well combined.6 oz sweetened condensed milk
- Sprinkle in the lemon gelatin, then pour in the hot water.3 oz lemon gelatin, 1 cup HOT water
- Add in the lemon juice, and the vanilla extract.1 tsp vanilla extract, 2 tbsp lemon juice
- Mix everything until it’s nice and creamy, then pour the no bake lemon cheesecake filling into the graham cracker crust.1 graham cracker crust
- Cover the cheesecake, and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours.
- Serve & enjoy!