You’ll love these homemade lemon bars for the delicate, buttery shortbread crust that is strong enough to hold up the sweet, tart, and luscious lemon curd filling. Finish with confectioner’s sugar for the prettiest and most delicious dessert.
I am normally a chocolate person when it comes to desserts, but I love a good lemon bar. Lemon Bars are always a good idea and this lemon bar recipe is easy to make and the end results are amazing.
The lemon bars have a thick, buttery shortbread crust with a luscious lemon curd filling that is sweet, but still a little bit tart. They are also dusted with confectioner’s sugar to make them extra pretty. These lemon bars are DREAMY, everything you want in a lemon bar and more!
I love making these lemon bars for parties, potlucks, picnics, baby showers, bridal showers, bake sales, or just because I want a refreshing dessert. They are always a hit!
Lemon Bar Ingredients
This lemon bar recipe is made with basic ingredients, making them easy to whip up whenever you are craving something sweet, tart, and delicious!
- Butter– I use unsalted butter because I like to control the amount of salt in the recipe.
- Granulated Sugar– You need sugar to sweeten the shortbread crust and the lemon filling.
- Vanilla extract– Always vanilla!
- Flour– You need regular all-purpose flour.
- Salt– A little goes in the crust to balance out the sweet.
- Lemon Zest and Lemon Juice– Pro tip-zest your lemon BEFORE you juice, it will be much easier. And only use fresh lemon juice, not the stuff in the bottle.
- Eggs– You need eggs to create the lemon curd filling.
- Confectioner’s sugar– for sprinkling on bars, the perfect finishing touch!
How to Make Lemon Bars
- First, make sure you line a 9×13-inch glass baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides so you can easily lift out the bars. Spray with nonstick cooking spray. The parchment paper will make it so much easier to get the bars out of the pan.
- Now, we can make the shortbread crust. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until creamy and smooth. Mix in the vanilla extract. Add the flour and salt and mix just until combined. Press the dough evenly into the prepared pan. Bake until the edges are lightly golden brown.
- While the crust is baking, make the lemon filling. In a large bowl, combine the sugar and lemon zest. Rub together with your fingers until fragrant, this will bring out the lemon flavor. Add the flour and whisk together. Add the eggs and lemon juice and whisk again.
- Pour the lemon filling over the warm crust. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the center is set.
- Now, the bars need to cool. This is the hardest part about the recipe, but I promise the wait is worth it. Let the bars cool completely at room temperature and then transfer the pan to the refrigerator and chill until cold and firm, at least 2 hours.
- When ready to serve, remove the pan from the fridge and dust with confectioner’s sugar. Make sure you decorate with confectioner’s sugar right before serving because it will melt into the bars after sitting for a bit.
- Cut into squares and enjoy!
How to Store
Cover the pan with plastic wrap and store any leftover lemon bars in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. You can also transfer the bars to an airtight container and keep them in the fridge. I don’t recommend layering the bars.
You can freeze lemon bars for up to 3 months. Cut the cooled bars into squares and place them on a large baking sheet, without confectioner’s sugar. Freeze for 1 hour. Wrap the bars in plastic wrap, individually, and place in a large freezer bag. Thaw in the refrigerator before serving. Decorate with confectioner’s sugar and serve!
More Lemon Dessert Recipes
- Glazed Lemon Cookies
- Lemon Sugar Cookies
- Lemon Blueberry Bars
- Lemon Sugar Cookie Bars
- Lemon Blueberry Loaf Cake
For the crust:
- 1 cup unsalted butter, at cool room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
For the lemon filling:
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- Zest of 2 large lemons
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 large eggs
- 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- Confectioner’s sugar, for sprinkling on bars
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9×13-inch glass baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides so you can easily lift out the bars. Spray with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until creamy and smooth. Mix in the vanilla extract. Add the flour and salt and mix just until combined.
- Press the dough evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes or until the edges are lightly golden brown.
- While the crust is baking, make the lemon filling. In a large bowl, combine the sugar and lemon zest. Rub together with your fingers until fragrant. Add the flour and whisk together.
- Add the eggs and lemon juice. Whisk until combined. Pour the lemon filling over the warm crust.
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the center is set. Remove the bars from the oven and cool completely at room temperature. When the bars are cool, transfer the pan to the refrigerator and chill until cold and firm, at least 2 hours.
- When ready to serve, remove the pan from the fridge and dust with confectioner’s sugar. Cut into squares and serve.
Have you tried this recipe?
Leave a comment below and share a photo on Instagram. Tag @twopeasandpod and hashtag it with #twopeasandtheirpod
Photos by Baked Ambrosia
I love lemon bars. I love lemon anything. Your bars look very tempting . . .
Great minds think alike! I made lemon bars over the weekend too!
Oooh I’ve been craving something lemony for a while now. These look great!
I’ve been craving lemon bars but now that I have gelato al limone in my freezer, I will have to wait on the bars. I think I’m going to try out this recipe. It looks perfect! Lovely photos!
Mmmm these look perfect for spring i bet the fresh lemon flavour is delicious :).
Perfect spring dessert. And so lovely looking!
Love the desert AND the plate, very cute.
Beautiful lemon bars! Perfect for snacking on a hot summer day by the beach 🙂
Lemon bars are one of my favorite desserts. And btw, I love the plate!!
These look lovely… I love lemon bars!
Lemon is my chocolate! Thanks Maria!
mmm! I’ve been craving lemon bars and these aren’t helping me!
Lemon is my favorite, my mouth is watering! No one in my family likes lemon bars but me so I’m afraid to make them, because I know I can eat the entire pan! I think my neighbors might get lucky tomorrow!
I made these on Sunday and they are so yummy! They are making sticking to my diet pretty hard!
Yum! I can’t get enough lemon bars! I think it’s a Southern dessert, no?
Thanks for the sweet comment on my site. I’m really enjoying your website too! 🙂
I love these. I make a recipe that is very similar to these by Paula Deen. I like that I don’t have to have actual lemons on hand to make them! lol.
HI. Thanks so much for posting this! I made these delicious lemon bars for a birthday get together and they were a huge hit!! Everyone loved them.
I made these last night and oh my goodness are they delicious (and easy!)! I finally had to put some on a plate and give them to friends, otherwise I would have eaten the whole thing by myself! Thanks for sharing!
I use almost this exact same recipe!!
Do these freeze?
I made these yesterday and baked the bars for an extra five minutes and it still wasn’t set. Even after putting the bars in the refrigerator for over and hour they were running when cut up. The flavor was amazing, though! Any suggestions because I want to make them again. Thanks!
Hmmm, I am not sure, they always set up for us. Maybe your oven is different, maybe needed even more time???
Would these save alright if made three days in advance? Would you recommend freezing them? Thanks!
See the section in the post on How to Store! Enjoy!
Loved this lemon bar recipe thanks for sharing
Love the recipe. My go to for lemon squares. Every recipe that I have tried has turned out great!
So glad you are loving our recipes. Thanks for sharing.
See More Comments