gluten-free lemon delicious pudding recipe

Citrus season is in full-swing in Perth and I've never seen such laden trees before moving over here! Back home in NZ our lemon tree used to take turns, you know... one year millions of fruit, the next, only a handful. But here, the trees seem to be full to branch-breaking point every year. We have a lemon tree out back nearly reading to start picking, sadly they are not my favourite kind of lemon; thick skin, super tart and not all that juicy but a friend of mine has the most amazing tree and kindly gifted us a big bag of these beauties below. She reckons her tree is that full that even after picking heaps of bags you still can't see any less.

I was all ready to get stuck into making lemon pudding this Sunday just gone. It was the craziest of days, one of those days when the wind was howling and the rain was coming down in sheets. At one point we were scared our lemon tree was going to turn into a weapon, the way is was bending from side to side, bright yellow bombs at the ready should a gust come through strong enough to let them fly.

Just as I was motivating myself to get up and make these puddings a reality... the power went out. And even though the updates on our power companies website keep promising it would be back on again at 9pm... then 12pm... it didn't come back on until a day and a half later! (By which time Si's iphone was well and truly flat and we'd stopped believing the updates anyway).
We were okay, the kids played board games and drew pictures all day as they had yet another day off school. But my god were we glad when that light flicked on just before 5pm last night. I didn't feel like another night of recharging the kids (hand-charged) torches every few hours to use as their makeshift night-lights.

They are predicting another afternoon and evening of wild weather here today, so I thought I'd better hurry up and make these long awaited puddings and sneak in a quick little post. Just in case the lights go out once more.

There's not much to say about lemon delicious pudding that isn't already said in the name! Light-as-air sponge atop smooth creamy lemon curd that magically appears underneath. I used coconut milk, but feel free to use any milk you like; almond, cow, rice, oat. And I much prefer to eat a little bit of butter, now that we handle it occasionally. But should you be completely dairy-free, simply sub in a good natural dairy-free margarine.

gluten-free lemon delicious pudding
I've only ever made a gluten-free version of these using fine brown rice flour, but I reckon because it's such a small amount that's needed, you could use whatever gluten-free flour you have at hand... fine millet flour, almond meal, corn starch, potato or white rice flour. To make these dairy-free use dairy-free margarine in place of butter. If you don't have any small bowls or ramekins, you can use a shallow larger baking dish. You will just have to adjust the cooking time accordingly. 
serves 4

  • 40g soft butter (or dairy-free margarine)
  • 3/4 cup (150g) finely ground organic raw sugar*
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 2 tablespoons fine brown rice flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) lemon juice
  • 1 cup (250ml) good quality coconut milk**
  • gluten-free icing sugar, to dust, optional

Preheat oven to 180 C/350 F. Grease 4 small 1 1/2 cup capacity bowls or ramekins.

Cream butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add zest and yolks and beat until combined. Sift over brown rice flour and baking powder and beat until combined. Add lemon juice and coconut milk and beat to form a runny batter. In another clean bowl beat egg whites to stiff peaks. Gently fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the batter, then add remaining whites and fold through until just combined. Spoon mixture evenly between the 4 bowls/ramekins and place into a deep roasting dish. Pour just boiled water into the roasting dish to come halfway up the sides of your little bowls. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until risen and lightly golden on top. Remove from the oven and serve warm or cold dusted with a little icing sugar if desired.

* I used organic raw sugar that I blitzed in the blender until fine. You could use caster sugar if preferred.

** As always I recommend you check the ingredients on your tin of coconut milk. It should read only coconut and water. Don't buy the ones with any added nasties.

This is my entry to Sweet New Zealand being hosted this month by Shirleen from Sugar & Spice.

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  • Reply
    Jessica Cox
    June 12, 2012 at 8:28 am

    These look delish! Would love to try the dairy free option. Do you think maple syrup would work well instead of sugar?

    • Reply
      June 12, 2012 at 10:13 am

      I'm not sure? You'd have to try it out… maybe adding a little less than the sugar amount… Let me know if you have success 🙂

    • Reply
      September 3, 2014 at 1:47 am

      Can you re heat these desserts?

    • Reply
      September 4, 2014 at 1:52 am

      I haven't tried re-heating them myself but I don't see why it wouldn't work in a low oven. Maybe 150-160C for 10-15 minutes, until warm? xx

  • Reply
    The InTolerant Chef
    June 12, 2012 at 8:43 am

    What a perfect pudding indeed! What perfect comfort food for the wild weather. I hope you can relax and keep your power on, I don't know what we would do if ours went out for long as even our gas bbq runs off the house. Good luck!

    • Reply
      June 12, 2012 at 10:14 am

      Yep everything seems to need power to run these days! Luckily our hot water is heated with gas and Si's mums still had power, so it was dinner at hers 😉

  • Reply
    the good soup
    June 12, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Oh, lemon delicious, where have you been this winter?! Those lemons look like meyers. What a gentle lemon they are. I've never made a gluten free version of this pudding, but it's about time. btw, have you ever added passionfruit into the mix? It's truly ethereal in this pud. xx

    • Reply
      June 12, 2012 at 10:15 am

      Nope can't say I have added passionfruit to this pud. It would be amazing though!

  • Reply
    June 12, 2012 at 10:08 am

    Did you write this in your cookbook for ben? Im pretty sure Rose made this pretty often, and I think it was from Bens book! It was super super yum!

    Citrus season is great – esp working in Gingin, everyone from the chittering valley/bindoon bring bags of their fruits for the staff to take!

    • Reply
      June 12, 2012 at 10:17 am

      Maybe? It was so many years ago that I wrote that book that I can't remember what was in it…
      You lucky girl getting free bags of citrus! Perth really is amazing for citrus.

  • Reply
    gfe--gluten free easily
    June 12, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    This pudding looks amazing! Will be making it for sure. 🙂


  • Reply
    Janet NZ
    June 13, 2012 at 7:17 am

    OK – let's make it official… I LOVE YOU.
    That is all.

  • Reply
    June 13, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    Absolutely beautiful photos. I've actually never had lemon delicious pudding before, but it sure looks like something I need to try. I am adding the dairy-free version to my to-make list!

  • Reply
    June 14, 2012 at 4:15 pm

    I am SO envious of your citrus! What a lovely use of lemons – your photos are beautiful and I am dying to pick up that spoon and take a bite…and then another.

  • Reply
    June 17, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    Making this pudding is one of my earliest memories. I can't have been more than three years old as we moved when I was three and a half. I am standing on a chair beside my mother banging the grater and stirring the mixture. It is dark outside. My little sister must have already been put to bed and this pudding was for my parents' dinner. We lived in Havelock North in New Zealand then but the pudding continued to be very popular with us all and appeared regularly. I introduced my husband to it soon after we met and then found that it appeared in Delia Smith's first recipe book. So it is not just an antipodean recipe and it taste just as good made with gluten free flour.

  • Reply
    lizzy (Good Things)
    June 18, 2012 at 8:47 am

    Emma, this is a recipe that I would definitely like to bookmark and try! I have a platter full of lemons on my kitchen bench at the moment. Love your work!

  • Reply
    June 22, 2012 at 6:37 pm

    Superb pudding, I am going to bookmark this, it looks delish!
    (Did I mention you're one heck of a food photographer. Those pictures just make the dish come to life. I can smell the lemon from here.)

    • Reply
      June 25, 2012 at 11:29 am

      Thank you so much Marie-Anne xx

  • Reply
    July 1, 2012 at 10:25 pm

    Hi Emma,
    I made these last night, using almond meal instead of the rice flour, and cooking for only 25 minutes (they were quite brown on top), but they were very runny, not curd/syrup like underneath the sponge. Any ideas on what went wrong? They were still delicious, if rather soupy! Perhaps i'll try a lower temp, but for longer? Anyone else have this problem? Thanks.

    • Reply
      July 2, 2012 at 1:57 am

      It's hard for me to know what went wrong without being there, but yes maybe reducing the temp would work? And make sure you don't add too much hot water to the pan, it should just come halfway up the sides of the dishes. Good luck and let me know how you get on xx

  • Reply
    July 4, 2012 at 6:35 am

    Oh my god yes please! Yum 🙂

  • Reply
    A Table in the Sun
    July 24, 2012 at 1:48 am

    I used to make the gluten version when I was a kid. Yum! My gluten free diet now requires specials measures, as you know. Thanks for reminding me of this childhood favorite.

  • Reply
    August 1, 2012 at 4:50 am

    This sounds so yummy- I love lemons and lemon pudding cake is one of my favorites. I have white rice powder so will try this.

  • Reply
    September 8, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    Kia ora Emma, How wonderful life can be when, giving up on trying to sleep and wanting to find a GF recipe for my favourite comfort lemon delicious pudding – I chanced upon your fantastic page and have been captivated!
    I must have been spookily directed to you out of the many options Google offered me because as I found out in reading about you – we have something in common – my maiden name was Galloway!!

    I will now happily go back to bed and tomorrow I will look forward to making the pudding and a few other recipes that look interesting.
    Thanks so much and I will become a regular reader from now on.

    • Reply
      September 9, 2012 at 1:04 am

      Haha that's wonderful! xx

  • Reply
    September 26, 2012 at 7:44 am

    Hi there,
    has anyone tried the recipe with stevia or xylitiol as the sweetener?
    thank you

    • Reply
      September 26, 2012 at 10:28 am

      Not me, but if you do and it works out let us all know 🙂

  • Reply
    October 24, 2012 at 9:16 am

    I had dinner at my gf & df friends a couple weeks back and she made this as the pudding, oh my – it was so so delicious alright! She also did a combination of two of your salads and I've tried the lemon chia cookies she made from your site also. I am neither gf, df or have any other intolrences but have bought some gf goodies so I can recreate some of your amazing recipes – thank you!

    • Reply
      October 24, 2012 at 1:15 pm

      Oh that is so great Tarina. That's the best compliment ever! My food is for everyone who loves real food, allergies or not 🙂 xx

  • Reply
    May 1, 2013 at 11:03 am

    So excited to make this tomorrow with Big Miss while Little Miss sleeps. Lemon Delicious for afternoon tea can't be a bad thing, can it?!

    Thanks Emma for yet another great adaptation from gluten non-friendly to gluten (free) friendly!

  • Reply
    February 15, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    Made this as a Valentine's Day dessert for my wheat-free, dairy-free boyfriend last night & he said it took him to lemony paradise! Delicious recipe – thank you 🙂

  • Reply
    Regan (The Grocery Girl)
    March 28, 2014 at 3:41 am

    -Used 3 TBSP. butter as conversion. They look like they'll be delicious!

  • Reply
    June 13, 2014 at 10:15 am

    I made this today and it has become my new staple as I love lemon delicious pud, my oldest is allergic to dairy (loves lemon things too), my in-laws are gluten intolerant and Uncle J is a full-on coeliac. So everyone's happy – divine! Allison in Canberra.

  • Reply
    June 29, 2015 at 8:49 am

    Emma I made this last week when friends came for dinner – have enjoyed it in the past already but hadn't let you know how much it was also enjoyed by our guests – they commented on how much they liked lemon delicious normally but sometimes found it too 'eggy' – your recipe was not however and enjoyed immensely. Such a good recipe. I'm also usually feeling the need to put cream, yoghurt or ice cream with desserts but there is absolutely no need with this one with the amazing curd that acts and pudding and sauce in one. Also such a great dessert to make ahead of time and serve at room temperature when the flavours are more pronounced x

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