Kirbie's Cravings

4 Ingredient Lemon Bread (No Butter or Oil)

This easy lemon bread is perfect for brunch or dessert. It doesn’t need any butter or oil but you won’t be able to tell. The bread is sweet, fragrant and a little tart from the citrus. It’s an easy one-bowl recipe that doesn’t even require a mixer.
a loaf of lemon bread with two slices cut off.

Spring is here, which means warmer weather and more opportunities for weekend brunch. This bright lemon bread is the perfect way to welcome in the new season and to serve at brunch. I love that this bread only takes a few minutes to prepare and then it’s ready to be baked. It has a lovely fragrant lemon scent from the lemon zest, and a touch of tartness from the lemon juice. You can enjoy it as is or add a lemon drizzle over the bread.

Ingredients

  • Lemon
  • Eggs
  • Condensed Milk
  • Self-Rising Flour

Lemon: You will need fresh lemons to make this bread. The bread uses fresh squeezed lemon juice and zest from approximately 1 medium lemon. If you want to make the glaze you will need an additional lemon.

Condensed Milk: This recipe uses full fat sweetened condensed milk. The milk provides sweetness for the bread, helps bind the bread together and replaces the need for butter or oil.

Self-Rising Flour: This bread is made with self-rising flour, which already has baking powder and salt added to it. If you do not have self-rising flour on hand, you can make your own by whisking together all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt. The exact amounts are listed in the notes of the recipe card.
two slices of lemon bread.

Lemon Bread Texture

This lemon bread has a texture that is somewhere in between regular bread and a quick bread. It does have a very tight crumb from the condensed milk, so it’s not as fluffy as a classic quick bread. I like that the bread is sturdy enough that you can even add some spread onto it. It also goes great with coffee or tea.
overhead shot of the bread.

More Easy Bread Recipes

4 Ingredient Lemon Bread

Servings: 12 slices
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: American
This easy lemon bread doesn't require any butter or oil. It is sweet, fragrant and a little tart. It's perfect for brunch.
4.92 from 23 votes

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup (2 oz) lemon juice + 2 tsp lemon zest approximately 1 medium lemon
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 (14 oz) can (397g) full fat sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 ¼ cups (156 g) self-rising flour

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper.
  • Add lemon juice, zest, eggs and condensed milk to a large bowl. Whisk until eggs are fully incorporated and batter is uniform. Add in flour. Whisk until flour is fully incorporated. If you find any pockets of flour, the best way to break them up is to rapidly run your whisk in a back and forth motion rather than just stirring in a circular pattern.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for about 35-45 minutes or until bread is done. To check for doneness, insert a toothpick and it should come out mostly clean. Let bread cool fully in pan before removing. If adding icing, wait until bread is fully cooled before drizzling it on top.

Notes

  • For the lemon drizzle on top, I whisked together 1 cup of powdered sugar with 1 tbsp of lemon juice. Add milk as needed to thin out icing to desired consistency. 
  • You will need approximately one medium lemon to produce 1/4 cup (2 oz) of lemon juice and 2 tsp of lemon zest. 2 ounces refers to the volume.
  • Condensed milk is usually sold in 14 oz cans. 14 oz refers to the net weight. One can contains 1 1/4 cups condensed milk or 397 grams. Because condensed milk is so sticky, make sure you scrape the sides of the can with a spatula to get all the condensed milk out of the can.
  • To make your own self-rising flour, combine 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour, 2 1/4 tsp baking powder and 3/8 tsp salt.  Whisk until evenly combined. Measure out 1 1/4 cups for the recipe. Do not use the full amount of flour. You can save the rest of the flour in an airtight container for a future recipe.
  • I used Lily's self-rising flour* to make this recipe.
  • *This product link is an affiliate link. This means I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.
  • Nutrition estimate does not include lemon drizzle.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice, Calories: 169kcal, Carbohydrates: 28g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 193mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 18g, NET CARBS: 27g

The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.

Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Mention @KirbieCravings and tag #kirbiecravings!

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Recipe Rating




105 comments on “4 Ingredient Lemon Bread (No Butter or Oil)”

  1. Looking forward to making this lemon bread!
    Having to get a new stove!

  2. I waited until today, Father’s Day and Juneteenth Celebration so my husband would have a special dessert on His Day.
    I “went to the mat” making this! I added to the flour like recipe says if I had no self rising flour,was shocked I had no sweetened condensed milk so I made that as well, then got to the good part of mixing to make my cake! I am a gadget collector so I had my lemon juice squeezer and my choice of zesters which made all that a snap. My loaf is out of the oven, looks so tasty even my trademark cracker is there. Once cooled I will put the drizzle on and have No doubt it will taste heavenly! I subscribed so more goodies will come for me to try on my husband! Thank you and I will let you know how wonderful it was.

  3. I just made my 5th loaf!  I’m not a baker and this is so easy and delicious. I make it at least once a month.  I like to put sliced strawberries over a slice.  Delicious! 

  4. ?? ? 

  5. Will let you know, just put in the oven.  I am so we excited. Thanks for sharing! 

  6. I’m about to make this but I don’t have a bread pan I’m going to try and use my Dutch oven. Any tips or advice?

  7. Just made this for the second time. Love how easy it is, and made of just 4 ingredients I generally have on hand. Most challenge part of this recipe has been waiting patiently while it cools! Thank you for sharing!!!

  8. I made this Lemon bread Gluten Free making self rising flour with Bobs Red Mill 1 to 1 baking flour, It turned out great I did not put the drizzle on top which made a great breakfast bread that  was not too sweet. I will be experimenting with blue berries. Thank you so much for all of your simple recipes with few ingredients. I have tried many and have not been disappointed.

    • Thank you for your nice comment!

      • I made this recipe again , and then I made another batch with fresh orange juice and orange rind, this time I made the drizzle glaze with the orange. What a treat and it was gluten free everything I make from your recipes is gluten free. Thank you again for all you recipes.

      • Thanks for sharing that! We’re so glad you’re enjoying the recipe.

    • What did you use to make it self rising and how much?

      • We include the instructions for making self-rising flour in the notes section of the recipe card.

  9. Just made this today and we love it. A little denser than I was expecting, but good moist texture and great flavor. A keeper. Do you have any recommendations for storing? It will take us several days to polish it off. Thanks. 

    • It should keep well for a day or so at room temperature or you can store it in the refrigerator.

  10. Super Simple. Not very lemony for my tastes, so will try it again, double up on the lemon zest for sure, maybe some lemon extract w/ the lemon juice too. But, it came out very nicely the first try! I did make the glaze, though I used only about 1/2 to 2/3’s the amount of powdered sugar.

  11. We made this in England. It took longer to cook on a gas oven. Not had a chance to cut it as it is cooling.

  12. I like it and will give it a try

  13. What is lemon zest ?

    • It’s the yellow part of the peel that you can shave off using a zester or rasp.

    • Lemon zest
      Is the peel of the lemon without the white pith underneath. Grated lemon zest or the zest of any citrus fruit can be used to flavour sweet and savoury recipes.

  14. I made lemon bread without oil or butter but i fail it didn.t get agood cloaf

    • We’re sorry to hear that! Can you share a little more about what went wrong? Did you make any substitutions?

  15. Looks wonderful and easy! However, I’d like to know if anyone has made them with gluten-free flour?

  16. Am trying this 4 ingredients Lemon ? Bread this weekend it sounds amazing wl take photos of my bread am so excited about this recipe. ?

  17. This was pretty easy to make, though zesting and squeezing the lemon takes some time. Mine came out holding together very nicely, not leaving any crumbs. It was a little chewier than I expected, more like a heavy bread than a cake. It was tasty, though I think I will try to double the lemon zest next time to give it more flavor. I would prefer to call this Lemon Bread rather than lemon cake. It’s a keeper!

  18. Like it so much is good some of the recipe no butter on it thanks for sharing .