Easy No Bake Key Lime Eclair

5 from 2 votes

No Bake Key Lime Eclair – this easy no bake recipe is like key lime pie in the form of an easy eclair! It really does taste like an eclair recipe, but without all the work and with all the key lime flavor.


No Bake Key Lime Eclair on a white plate with fork and slices of lime

Happy Tuesday my friends! Can you believe it’s the end of May already? I feel like the last month has been a total blur between activities and events and end-of-the-year school stuff.

Last weekend, I hosted 15 bloggers at my home for a blogging retreat all about video. We spent the days talking about video, learning all sorts of things from each other, and cooking for each other. I think I averaged 4 hours of sleep per night and spent most of the days on my feet mingling and cooking and cleaning. I’m exhausted this week but it was so worth it.

I love to entertain but we rarely do; life always gets in the way. I love all the prep and shopping and planning ahead of time and I love cooking for people and being the hostess. Having all those people in my house made me want to do it every month…but I’m exhausted thinking about it, ha!

My next event will be a huge 4th of July bash that I throw every year. We eat too much and drink too much, swim, and set off fireworks. Since my mind always moves onto the next thing, I’m already thinking about food for the party.

4th of July, to me, is all about easy food and party punch cocktails, BBQ, and no-bake desserts and that’s where this No-Bake Key Lime Eclair comes in!

No Bake Key Lime Eclair in pan with slices of lime

Before blogging, I’d never heard of an “eclair” dessert. I first saw something called Chocolate Eclair Cake on a friend’s blog back in 2011, and thought it looked so interesting. It wasn’t a no bake lush dessert but it was kind of a cross between that and an icebox cake. I was intrigued.

Eclair cakes are billed to taste kind of like a chocolate eclair without all the work. After all, regular eclair recipes are hard work. There’s making a pastry and baking it just so, plus making the cream which requires eggs and tempering and all that, so a no-bake dessert that tastes like one but is EASY? Now that was something I needed to try.

But, of course, I’m me and had to tinker. Basic chocolate eclair? No, I needed to kick it up a notch and make it KEY LIME! I’m in love with all things citrus, and lime is one of my favorites. Lime curd is a regular around here, plus I love me a good old key lime cheesecake.

Now, you can make Key Lime Eclair and it’s no-bake PLUS easy peasy!

No Bake Key Lime Eclair on a white plate with fork and slices of lime and bite missing

The key lime eclair recipe starts with pudding mix. I used a vanilla pudding mix that I made and added some key lime juice and lime zest. Now, you are welcome to buy your own key limes at the grocery store and zest and squeeze to your heart’s content, BUT if you’re lazy like me, just buy key lime juice. Then I buy normal limes to zest because I can buy a few instead of a dozen.

Once the pudding is made, you mix it with whipped topping, then layer it with graham crackers in a baking dish and let it soak overnight. The longer it soaks the softer the graham crackers get so it’s easy to slice. Guess what? It really does taste like an eclair pastry, but with key lime inside!

No Bake Key Lime Eclair on a white plate with fork and slices of lime collage photo

And, if you can’t find or don’t love lime, then you can totally make this key lime eclair with lemon flavor.

Just use fresh lemon juice and lemon zest and voila you have a new and improved no bake dessert recipe!

No Bake Key Lime Eclair

No Bake Key Lime Eclair - this easy no bake recipe is like key lime pie in the form of an easy eclair! It really does taste like an eclair recipe but without all the work and all the key lime flavor.
5 from 2 votes
Yield 9 -12 servings
Serving Size


  • 1 package 3.4 ounces vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons key lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon lime zest
  • 16 full Graham Cracker sheets
  • 16 ounces cool whip divided
  • Limes or lime zest for decoration optional


  • Whisk pudding and milk, let sit until mostly set. Whisk in lime juice and zest, then fold in one tub (8 ounces) whipped topping.
  • Line the bottom of an 8” or 9” square pan with graham crackers (break the sheets to fit). Place ⅓ of the pudding mixture on top and evenly spread it out. Top with more graham crackers, more pudding, etc, for 3 layers of pudding and 4 layers of graham crackers. (You will end with graham crackers on top.)
  • Frost the top with more whipped topping. Cover and chill at least 4 hours or overnight. Decorate with lime slices and/or zest if desired. Store loosely covered in the refrigerator.

Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate

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Last Updated on May 12, 2020

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13 CommentsLeave a comment or review

  1. Ohhh yes just made this!! AWESOME ❤️

    Thank you SO much for sharing …

    Very easy, & areal pleaser!! Guard this until set!

    It’s a keeper ?

  2. Very easy and delicious. I purchased the real deal, Key Lime Juice. This is a covered dish favorite. However I used 1/2 cup of lime juice. { Joe and Nellies} The 2 T did nothing to flavor the mix.
    Other than that it is perfect. I have had to share my recipe!

  3. I’m going to go for this for a small dinner party this weekend. I generally make my custard from scratch for puddings, pies, etc. It’s pretty creamy but never as solidified as jello pudding. Do you think this would be thick enough for the eclair? Also make homemade whipped cream as cool whip leaves an industrial taste in my desserts. Advice?

  4. Sorry! We tried the Key Lime Eclair recipe and it was actually very bland! I wonder if we had bought the actual Key Lime Juice you suggested would have been better. We used freshly squeezed juice from actual limes. Disappointing!

    1. Well yes, that juice is the best. I would try it with what’s called for in the recipe for best results.

    2. Hey Karen,
      Key lime juice is a completely different taste then regular limes. I use Joe & Nellie’s Key Lime juice. Awesome!
      You may have to ask for it before you go hunting in the store. My store moved it to a department that I never would have thought of. We think that it should be with the baking stuff, right? Always ask. If they don’t have Joe & Nellies brand, ask for any key lime juice. If they don’t have it you can order joe & Nellies and I’m sure many others. Or, ask where they think that you could find it. Sometimes Kitchen stores carry Key lime juice. You may have to google … Have fun! Karen 🙂

  5. I have a question. Does the pudding have to be cooked. If not how long does it take to set. i’m making it now.

  6. This eclair looks so yummy! Anything citrus makes me happy. And a big 4th of July bash sounds so fun. That’s actually my birthday and I love it!

  7. My future father-in-law LOVES key lime pie and I’m ashamed to say I’ve never tasted it. Ever. But seeing how easy it is to make this no bake dessert, now I feel like there are no excuses to not have it! I’m also eyeing up that key lime pie cheesecake of yours for future reference!!!

  8. I have a few icebox cake recipes but have never tried an eclair cake. My icebox cakes are made with pudding, cool whip, and graham crackers so I am thinking they are pretty close? I know you wrote about the differences but as a food blogger you these little details matter…lol

    Best weekend I have had all year, for sure. And THANK YOU!!! I am sure you are exhausted. And I wish I was in town for your Fourth of July party! Sounds epic!