Fresh lime sherbet

When I was a kid, my favorite flavor at the ice cream shop was rainbow sherbet.  I was one of the weird kids who picked through the sherbet not for the orange or the raspberry.  Nope, I loved the lime.  So, I had a bunch of limes to use and I found this recipe for fresh lime sherbet.  Perfect.  All lime, so no picking through rainbow sherbet for the good stuff.  I had never made sherbet before.  And, even though it sounds all fancy, it really isn’t any harder than making homemade ice cream.  After countless times of stinging hands and burning eyes from hand juicing citrus, I finally broke down and bought a juicer.  I know. What had I been waiting for?  This made the juicing process so much easier.  But, then I had to go ahead and somehow zest off part of two of my knuckles.  Ouch.  But, Sammie kissed them and now they are all better. 😀

According to ATK, sherbet is a cross between sorbet and ice cream, containing fruit, sugar, and dairy, but no egg yolks.  It should taste vibrant and fresh like sorbet, be smooth in texture but not heavy like ice cream.  So, how do you do make lime sorbet?  The first step is grinding the lime zest (Don’t worry. I only used the zest, pre-accident 😀 ) with the sugar and salt in the food processor to release the oils.  You then then add lime juice mixed with water (to reduce the acidity) and strain it so the sherbet is totally smooth.  The lime mixture is added to heavy cream that has been whipped to create the light texture.  You then churn the base in your ice cream maker and freeze it at least 3 hours before eating.  Ugh.  Three hours is a long time.  But, let me tell you, it was so worth the wait.  The sherbet is super creamy and tastes so unbelievably bold with fresh lime flavor.  Are you looking for the perfect, refreshing dessert to complete a delicious summer meal?  Well, I’m thinking this is it.

Fresh Lime Sherbet

Yield: 1 quart

1 tablespoon lime zest
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1 1/2 cups water
2 teaspoons vodka or Triple Sec (I used vodka)
2/3 cup heavy cream

Process the zest, sugar and salt in your food processor until it’s damp, 10 to 15 one second pulses.  Combine the lime juice and water in a large measuring cup.  With the machine running, add the juice-water mixture in a slow, steady stream.  Continue to process until the sugar has dissolved completely, about 1 minute.   Strain the mixture through a nonreactive, fine-mesh strainer into a medium, freezer-safe bowl.   Stir in the vodka (or Triple Sec) and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Chill in your freezer until the mixture is very cold (about 40 degrees F), 30 – 60 minutes. Don’t let the mixture freeze.

When the mixture is cold,  using a whisk, whip the heavy ream in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. Whisking constantly, slowly add the cold juice mixture in a slow, steady steam down the edge of the bowl and into the cream. Immediately start up your ice cream maker and add the juice-cream mixture to the canister; churn until it has the consistency of soft serve ice cream, about 25 to 30 minutes.  Transfer the sherbet to an airtight storage container; press a piece of plastic wrap directly against the surface and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours.  The sherbet can be wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for up to 1 week.  To serve, let the sherbet sit at room temperature until slightly softened and an instant read thermometer reads 12 to 15 degrees.

Source: The New Best Recipe

Leave a comment


  1. I loved rainbow sherbet too! Your lime sherbet looks heavenly and perfect for this hot, hot summer!

  2. Refreshing and with delicious colour my friend 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  3. Oh yum. I definitely need this in my life!

  4. This sounds delicious and a perfect way to beat the hit we’re experiencing. I, too, love sherbert and anything lime so this sounds right up my alley. I’ve never made sherbert before and this sounds like the perfect recipe to start with. Thanks for sharing…and your pictures are beautiful!

  5. Diane

     /  July 2, 2014

    I don’t have an Icecream maker. . . so now what? Am I outta luck for this deliciousness??

    • I’ve never made this without an ice cream maker. But, they have gotten pretty cheap. I think they are a great investment.

      • Diane

         /  July 14, 2014

        Thank you for responding 🙂 I’ll definitely have to invest in one!

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