Easy Lemon Bars + Recipe Video

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These lemon bars have a creamy texture and are bursting with citrus flavor. Make this bar dessert recipe with just 7 simple ingredients!

titled photo (and shown) Easy Lemon Bars

Recipes like Easy Lemon Bars

Bar dessert recipes are always a crowd favorite at parties and social gatherings since they’re perfect for grab-and-go snacking.

Not only that, but there are also so many flavor possibilities to choose from!

Salted Caramel Toffee Bars and Pecan Pie Bars are perfect for sharing during the holiday season.

Both desserts have classic, sticky-sweet fall flavors all wrapped up in the perfect bite.

Or, make No Bake Rocky Road Bars for the perfect balance of chocolate and peanut butter- no oven necessary!

3 homemade lemon bars, slightly stacked

Helpful tips and tricks

  • Easy removal – Use a long enough piece of parchment so it hangs over both sides of the pan. Then, use these as handles to lift the dessert out of the pan once cooled.
  • Forming the crust – If the dough is too sticky to press into the pan, sprinkle a little flour on your hands.
  • Clean cutting – Allow the dessert to cool completely before cutting into lemon squares. Use a sharp knife to get perfectly clean edges. It can also help to place the pan in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours once cooled, and the chill just enhances the lemon flavor.
  • Make a larger batch – You can easily double this recipe and divide it into two separate pans.

How to get more juice out of a lemon

The simplest method is to use the palm of your hand. Apply gentle pressure on the fruit as you roll it across a cutting board or counter top.

This is a great idea if you will also be zesting the lemons because the rolling will thin the outer layer.

Another option is to warm them first. Do this by either microwaving the whole lemons for 10-20 seconds, or by soaking them in a bowl of warm water for at least 30 minutes.

After you have softened the lemons, slice them in half lengthwise.This exposes more pulp, which releases more juice.

Recipe notes for lemon bars

  • Prepping the lemons

Before you zest citrus, it’s important to clean the fruit first. This removes any dirt or grime.

Gently scrub the fruit under cool running water, then dry them with a paper towel or clean cloth.

Zest the fruit first, then slice them in half and juice them.

  • Air bubbles

If you notice a layer of bubbles along the top of the bars, don’t worry! This can happen when the air from the eggs rises to the surface during baking.

The flavor will be the same, and also, a dusting of powdered sugar covers the bubbles.

  • Storage

This lemon dessert may be kept either covered at room temperature for 3 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Store it whole and slice as you go, or cut the entire batch into bars. Then, transfer;them to an airtight container.

How to freeze lemon bars

These bars freeze beautifully and stay fresh for up to 4 months.

To freeze an entire batch of them, first allow the bars to cool completely. Then, cover the pan tightly with foil and place it into the freezer.

Or, slice and freeze the bars in a single layer on a baking sheet for 1 hour. Then, wrap each one individually in plastic wrap and store them in a freezer bag or freezer-safe container.

When you’re ready to serve, thaw in the refrigerator first, then dust with powdered sugar. You can even enjoy them straight from the freezer if you’d like!

Watch how to make this lemon dessert recipe!

2 lemon bars with dusting of confectioner's sugar

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close up photo of a lemon dessert with powdered sugar on top

 


Other Easy Dessert Recipes

stack of lemon bars dusted with powdered sugar

Easy Lemon Bars + Video

Donna Elick
Easy Lemon Bars is a go-to bar desserts recipe, for a bright, citrusy and utterly delicious summer treat. Fantastic for potluck desserts!
5 stars from 2 reviews
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Method Oven
Servings 16

Equipment

  • citrus juicer This gets every last drop out, which makes juicing lemons so much easier.
  • mixing bowls It’s good to have a variety of mixing bowls and prep bowls, and this set has them all!
  • whisk I’ve had this set for over 10 years, and it is still as good as the day I bought it. With 3 different sizes, there is a whisk for every job.
  • microplane grater Not only is it great for zesting citrus, I like to use it to grate garlic as well.

Ingredients
 

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 lemon finely zested

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Prepare a 9×9-inch pan with baking spray, then line the pan with parchment paper. *This will make it easier to remove the lemon bars in one piece so you can cut them properly on a cutting board.
  • In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, butter, and salt with a fork until a crumbly dough forms. Press the dough into the prepared pan so it covers the bottom and goes about 1/2 inch up the sides.
    Bake about 10 minutes or until crust is a light golden brown.
  • While the crust is baking, in a small mixing bowl, whisk to combine the remaining 2 tablespoons flour, eggs, sugar, lemon juice and fine lemon zest.
  • Remove crust from oven, then pour the lemon mixture over the crust. Use an offset spatula to spread the filling evenly over the crust, if needed.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes, or until the center is set (doesn’t jiggle when you shake the pan). Allow lemon bars to cool for 30 minutes in pan.
    Using the overhang of parchment, lift the lemon bars from the pan and transfer to a wire rack.
    Allow bars to cool completely, or refrigerate until completely cooled.
  • Once cool, cut into 16 squares. Sprinkle the remaining powdered sugar over the cooled lemon bars before serving.

Video

Donna’s Notes

Recipe doubles perfectly

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 122cal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 27mg | Sugar: 16g | Fiber: 1g | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled photo collage of lemon bars

Originally Published January 2021

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49 Comments

  1. Did anyone ever try it with Splenda? I sure would love to know how it turned out. Some of us who love your recipes would really love a diabetic version

  2. Hey
    Can I try the recipe with limes instead of lemons?
    Can I even zest limes (I guess I can not)?
    Just seeing them makes me hungry and my mouth starts watering….
    Want to make these and THIS IS GOING TO BE MY FIRST TIME BAKING

  3. 5 stars
    These are so easy and absolutely wonderful. Thanks for the utensil tips as well. I have everything but the Microplane and this has been on my ‘I want that list’ for over year but am ordering one now. Love all your recipes.

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