Lemonade Icebox Cake

This amazing lemonade icebox cake has just 6 ingredients, is super easy, and there’s no baking. It lasts in the refrigerator for up to 3 days…but I can guarantee it won’t last that long!

lemonade icebox cake piece

Summer and lemonade are like Bert and Ernie, or peanut butter and jelly. Chips and dip…Lucy and Ricky. They just go together…so when I found this Lemonade Icebox Cake recipe I knew it was a great choice for an easy summer dessert. Emphasis on easy. The hardest part is waiting the six hours it takes for the cake to set up!

The sugar from the cream cheese/Cool Whip mixture somehow soaks into the graham crackers and they end up tasting like a graham cracker crust. When it comes to the number of layers, make as many as you want. I ended up with four, but it would be just as good with three…and the cream cheese/Cool Whip layers would be thicker. (You can see exactly how to lay the graham crackers out by visiting my No Bake Strawberry Icebox Cake post.)

piece of lemonade icebox cake with raspberries

Lemonade Icebox Cake Tips

A couple more things about this cake that I just love.

  • Because it doesn’t contain any fresh fruit, this lemonade icebox cake lasts for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. You can definitely make it a day ahead if you are serving it for an event. If you are making an icebox cake that calls for fresh fruit, it won’t last as long.
  • It cuts like a real cake and it looks beautiful. A simple lemon and mint garnish is all you need to make it extra special
  • It’s very important to refrigerate the finished icebox cake for at least 6 hours. It takes that long for the cream cheese mixture to become solid enough to cut nicely.

Graham Cracker Substitutions

Using graham crackers for this lemonade icebox cake works best, but if you want to try something different, here are some suggestions:

  • lady fingers
  • store bought sugar cookies (like Lorna Doone)
  • vanilla wafers

To test to find out if a cookie will make a good substitute for the graham crackers, dip it in a glass of milk. If it begins to absorb the milk and soften right away, you have a winner.

lemonade icebox cake piece

Lemonade Icebox Cake

This amazing lemonade icebox cake has just 6 ingredients, it's so easy to assemble, and there's no baking. It keeps in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, but I guarantee it won't last that long!
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5 from 3 votes
Servings: 9 pieces
Prep Time 20 minutes
refrigeration time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. cream cheese softened
  • 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
  • 3/4 cup frozen lemonade concentrate thawed
  • zest of one lemon
  • One box of graham crackers
  • 12 oz. Cool Whip

Instructions

  • Beat cream cheese and milk until smooth. About 2 minutes.
  • Add thawed lemonade and lemon zest.
  • Beat again another minute until well blended.
  • Fold in 12 oz. of Cool Whip. (I bought a 16 oz. container and used about 3/4's of it.)
  • In an 8 x 8 glass dish, spread a thin layer of the Cool Whip mixture.
  • Place graham crackers (covering the whole layer) and press lightly so they sink into the Cool Whip.
  • Make three more layers. You should end and begin with the Cool Whip mixture and have four layers of graham crackers.
  • Refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight.

Notes

I used Cool Whip Lite and it worked great.
This lasts in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Just cover lightly with foil.

Nutrition

Calories: 263kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 262mg | Potassium: 289mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 197IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 256mg | Iron: 1mg
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43 Comments

  1. Ann! This is SO good I could eat my weight in it! Thanks very much for another win!
    PS I give this 5 stars but the star rating buttons aren’t working.

  2. J'nean Askey says:

    5 stars
    Hello. I’ve made this recipe twice and it’s a big hit. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong but there is no way I am able to fit this recipe into an 8×8 pan. I can, however, fit it into a cake pan. Was the 8×8 and mistake or am I doing something wrong? Thank you. Love your site.

    1. Ann Drake says:

      I’ve always used an 8 x 8 square pan. I don’t think you are doing anything wrong! If I had filling left over, I would probably just sit and eat it!

  3. Looks delicious! A quick question: I have to use gluten free graham crackers and the boxes are not the same size. What was the weight for your graham cracker box?

    Thanks!

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Hi Kristin…the graham cracker box weighs 14.4 oz. Enjoy!

  4. This sounds amazing and so easy. I cannot wait to try it.

  5. Made this lemon icebox cake and it was a big hit! Today I made it with limeade concentrate instead of the lemonade concentrate for a Key Lime twist. Taking it to a Fourth of July celebration tomorrow. Thanks for a great no bake summertime recipe!

  6. Pingback: BEST SUMMER DESSERT RECIPES - StoneGable
  7. Ann Drake says:

    Hi Zoe! Well…this sort of stumps me. To replace the graham crackers, perhaps you could try some sort of thin shortbread or sugar cookie. For the lemonade concentrate, you could probably use regular lemon juice. I’m not sure of the amount…you would just have to go by taste. I am sure you could use regular whipped cream in place of the Cool Whip. The thing I’m not sure of is how long it would hold up. The cake may not last as long. Let us know how it turns out!

  8. Thanks for the recipe, I will love it.

  9. I’m getting the stuff to test this out – just invited to a 4th party and this would be wonderful to take along. But, I just have to give it a try!

    THANKS FOR THE RECIPE!

  10. Thank you for the recipe. I am wondering if this would freeze well. Have you ever frozen the lemon icebox cake?

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Hi Mary! No I have never frozen one so I’m not sure if it would work or not. The graham crackers might get soggy and I’m not sure how the Cool Whip would hold up. If you give it a try, let us know how it comes out!

  11. Marcia Marcoux says:

    Anxious to make this for company on the fourth! Looks easy and delicious…refreshing, too!
    Thanks!

  12. SueB of Blondin Blogs says:

    doesn’t this recipe just scream SUMMER?! thanx for sharing so many delish lemon recipes in one post, Ann!
    I agree wholeheartedly w your greenery comment… when we purchased our home 30 years ago it had 4 trees in the front yard and only 1 in small maple in the back (barely enough to shade a kiddie’s pool). I’ve since added 3 more trees out back which are all now towering over our house (that original maple must be some form of dwarf as it’s only grown about a foot or two). my DH sometimes talks about cutting one down of those back yard trees as it’s got a forked trunk he worries about but I assure him it won’t reach far enough to do damage to our neighbor’s roof even if it does fall… BUT he often comments in the spring/summer/fall about how much he enjoys looking out to the expanse of color! Me too!

  13. My Mother used to make a refrigerator cake with Lorna Doones. Don’t even know if you can still get them. She used real whipped cream and pineapple. Loved it and can’t wait to try your lemonade cake. I don’t know about your area but here it seems to be getting hard to find lemonade concentrate. People would rather buy it already made. So hard to add three cans of water!

  14. Nana Diana says:

    You won’t believe this-but I was telling my girls I used to make something similar to this and had lost the recipe. This is not the exact recipe but it is close enough for me. Definitely going to make this!!!! Thanks so much- x o Diana

    1. Ann Drake says:

      You are very welcome…enjoy!

  15. Mark Daniel says:

    So great! I am always wondering how you make the food look so so so awesome! I can’t wait to experiment on some of my recipes now!

  16. Sharon Kinkel says:

    I have a question about one ingredient in the lemonade icebox cake. Is “frozen lemonade thawed” supposed to be lemonade concentrate? If not, then 3/4 cup of lemonade can be used, right?

    Love your recipes!

    Thanks for your response!

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Yes. Use frozen lemonade concentrate that has been thawed. I will clarify that in the recipe. Thank you!

  17. Carole Thomas says:

    Hello Ann,
    This recipe is delicious. I served it when a couple of my girlfriends came for our “almost” monthly time together. They were impressed and wanted the recipe. I referred them to your site as well as shared the recipe and one of them is now following you.
    Thank you for sharing your ideas. You create such a warm and caring atmosphere in your blog.

  18. I made this recipe but changed it to a strawberry ice box cake. I substituted a package of frozen sweetened berries for the Lemonade and omitted the lemon zest. I also used vanilla wafers instead of graham crackers. It was delicious.

  19. Christie Haggard says:

    I just made this and it is in the refrigerator. I cannot wait to eat it. I just licked and licked the bowl of the mixture and I know this one is going to be a winner. It will be perfect for a warm summer evening, like tonight.

  20. Chloe Crabtree says:

    This sounds wonderful, light and just the right flavors for summer. I have never tried an icebox cake, but think I will try one soon! I would love it if you would stop by and share this at my new link party at Celebrate and Decorate!

  21. Ann,
    I made the Lemonade Ice Box Cake for a Father’s Day BbQ…………it was a huge
    hit and every piece was gone………….even folks that aren’t crazy about lemon flavored desserts LOVED it! Thank you for a great recipe!!!
    Lynda Young

  22. oh my goodness…..is this ever yummy!!!! We had it for Father’s Day dessert. So easy, it was put together with the help of our four year old Grandson Donovan. Thank you for the inspiration. XXX

  23. Candy Weaver says:

    Sooo good! Made it last night and served it this afternoon! I think I am going to make it again for a 4th of July party, but will double the recipe!

  24. Teresa Mucha says:

    i just made this and I am not sure I can wait until after dinner tonight. It was super easy and smells so fresh and yummy. Thanks for sharing!

  25. kelly @ view along the way says:

    Oh dang. I know what I’ll be making when we have people over for a BBQ next weekend. This looks amazing! PS: your food styling/photography is amazing.

  26. Jeanne Haley says:

    I haven’t had an icebox cake since I was a kid. Reading your Blog on the Lemonade Icebox cake inspired me to make it. A perfect dessert for our Central Florida Summertime. It was so easy and is delicious!

    I love your Blog! I’ve made so many beautiful gifts from your ideas (sewing and baking). Thank You for continuing to remind me the simple things bring such joy to those you love.

    1. Ann Drake says:

      I’m so happy you enjoyed the cake…thank you for taking the time to say hi!
      Ann

  27. Suzanne hAyes says:

    This looks amazing!!! I WILL be taking his to church this summer. I’m Primitive Baptist (old baptists, old line or “hard shell” baptists…which is misleading to me because they’re some of the kindest, sweetest people ever!) and we still have dinner on the grounds twice a month. I just love your blog and recipes and just wanted you to know. Love, love, LOVE this. Thank you for doing what you do! Blessings! suzanne

  28. Bernardette says:

    I’m allergic to coconut and palm oils both in cool whip can real whip cream be used instead? I’d really like to try this recipe.

    Bernardette

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Hi Bernardette…yes you could probably use whipping cream but it might not hold up in the refrig. If you were planning to eat the cake in a day or so I think it would work great. Good luck!

  29. It looks scrumptious! But then again, everything you make looks really good! Lol! I think you should have a sign made for your kitchen that reads “Le Ann PATISSERIE”…or something along those lines:D

  30. lynne@lynnesgiftsfromtheheart says:

    This looks so delicious! Thanks for sharing. I don’t think it would last for days in my refrigerator. I couldn’t stay out of it. I”m anxious to try it. fondly ~lynne~

  31. Ann Hendershot says:

    Hi Ann,
    I cannot wait to make this. Thank you for sharing. :-) Have a wonderful day!!

  32. debbiedoos says:

    Jack would die for this! I am going to have to make it for him when we get back from vacation!

  33. diana moore says:

    Oh Ann these cake looks divine, will try today. So refreshing. Thank you

  34. Can’t wait to try the lemonade cake recipe. Your porch is delightful!! My bHome user name is slmartin52.

  35. Mmmmmmmm! So summery!

    1. Sonya M. Capps says:

      Ann,
      Lemon is so refreshing! And since the heat index is 101 degrees in my hometown in Florida, this week would be a great time to make this cake. Thank you so much for this recipe.