A classic recipe for Lemon Bars with a shortbread crust and a tart and lemony curd filling. These lemon bars are luscious and totally scrumptious.
Lemons, lemons, lemons! Meyer Lemons! When life gives you lemons you make lemon bars or lemon chicken piccata!
I’m still working my way through all the Meyer lemons I bought. These lemon bars though, are so good and such a great use of those Meyer lemons. They were totally worth it. If you love lemons, or lemon bars, or anything lemony, you must try these lemon bars.
One of my favorite chefs is Ina Garten. I love her cooking style and this is why I chose her recipe for lemon bars. I’m glad I did because these are the best lemon bars I’ve had. They’re sweet, tart and lemony, just what you want in a lemon bar.
How to Make the Crust for Lemon Bars
These lemon bars start with a simple yet delicious shortbread crust, that basically requires only 3 ingredients; flour, butter and sugar. To make it easier to remove the bars I lined my baking pan with parchment paper and left the edges longer. This ensures you can easily pull out the bars by lifting up the parchment paper. Great tip and not only does it make it easier to lift out the bars, but you will also end up with a pretty clean baking pan. Not much scrubbing and cleaning required.
This is really simple to make. You just have to use your hands to flatten out the shortbread dough and make sure the entire surface is covered. Pop the shortbread in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes, just until you see the edges start to brown a bit.
How to Make the Filling for Lemon Bars
While the crust is baking in the oven you can make the filling. You’ll need about 2 tbsp of lemon zest. I was able to get this from 3 lemons, but it could differ for you.
You’ll also need 6 eggs at room temperature and about a cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice. I needed about 7 Meyer lemons to get 1 cup of lemon juice.
Once your crust is done, you need to let it cool at room temperature. Once cooled, you can pour the filling over the crust and pop it back in the oven to bake for about another 35 minutes or just until the filling sets.
Let the whole thing cool at room temperature. It will smell delicious and you will be tempted to cut into it, but try and resist. This is where the parchment paper comes in handy. Just lift up the edges and the whole thing comes out easily which makes it super easy to cut.
You can cut into squares or triangles, totally up to you. I just thought triangles look cuter and since my squares were pretty big, triangles would make for a more normal portion. And of course to finish off these puppies, you need to dust them with some powdered sugar.
Totally yum and worth the effort, though honestly, not a lot of effort is required.
How Much Lemon Juice Is in a Lemon
The answer could vary because there are variations between fruits and they are all different sizes. Usually 1 lemon yields 3 tablespoons of juice and 1 lime yields 2 tablespoons of juice.
I find the same is true for Meyer lemons. While they are juicier, they are a bit smaller and we get the same amount of juice from one.
How to Store Lemon Bars
Of course, as with any baked goods, lemon bars are best when enjoyed within 24 hours. Make sure to chill the bars until firm. I like to to do this in the refrigerator because they chill faster, in about 30 minutes. Once chilled, slice the bars and store them in an airtight container, using parchment paper or wax paper to keep the stacks separate.
They’ll last in the fridge like this for up to 3 days. The great thing is that these bars also freeze well. They could last up to 2 months in the freezer if store properly.
Craving More Lemon Recipes? Try These:
- Lemon Blueberry Yogurt Loaf
- Lemon Chess Pie
- Lemon Buttermilk Scones with Lemon Glaze
- Limoncello Lemon Cake
- Two Ingredient Fat Free Lemon Bars
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For the Crust
- 1/2 cup sugar granulated
- 1/2 lb butter unsalted, at room temperature (2 sticks)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/8 tsp salt
For the Filling
- 6 eggs at room temperature
- 3 cups sugar granulated
- 2 tbsp lemon zest grated
- 1 cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- Preheat the oven to 350 F degrees.
- PREPARE BAKING PAN: Prepare a 9x13 inch baking pan with parchment paper, make sure the parchment paper is long enough to come over the sides, this will make it easy to pull out the bars.
- MAKE CRUST: In the bowl of your mixer add sugar and butter and beat using the paddle attachment until light. Add flour and salt and mix until the dough starts forming into a ball. It will still crumble easily.
- Dump the dough into the prepared baking dish and flatten using your floured hands. I straightened mine out with a spatula, but it's not necessary.
- BAKE CRUST: Bake the crust for 20 minutes, until very lightly browned, you'll start seeing the edges brown. Let it cool and leave the oven on.
- MAKE FILLING: Whisk together all the filling ingredients. Pour over cooled crust.
- BAKE LEMON BARS: Transfer the baking pan back to the oven and for another 30 to 35 minutes or until the filling is set. Let it cool at room temperature.
- Cut into triangles or squares and dust with powdered sugar.
- Store in an airtight container. These lemon bars also freeze well.
- This recipe will yield about 24 triangles, depending on how big you cut them.
- Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on products used.