Lemon Curd

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Lemon Curd – How to make lemon curd that is easy, sweet, tart, and good on just about everything! Forget lemonade – when life gives you lemons, make lemon curd! You won’t go back.

What is lemon curd - lemon curd in jar

Turn Lemons into Lemon Curd

I love it when life gives me lemons because I can make tasty lemon recipes, like this easy Lemon Curd! I know the traditional saying suggests making lemonade, but the next time life gives you a bunch of lemons, make lemon curd instead. You will probably never go back to lemonade unless it is a super hot day and you are thirsty, but I promise you this lemon curd recipe will become a favorite! You will be begging for lemons!

And I know it is just a saying, but the idea is to turn something negative into something positive and this lemon curd is definitely positive! It is amazing! One bite will put a big smile on your face and make you forget about all of your worries:)

Fresh lemons for lemon curd

Why Lemon Curd?

Lemons make me happy! They are so bright and full of sunshine…and when you transform them into luscious lemon curd, even better!

The lemon curd is super easy to make and is great on just about everything…toast, pancakes, French toast, scones, stirred in yogurt, etc. I also love using it to make my favorite Blueberry, Brie, and Lemon Curd Grilled Cheese! You have to try it, it’s all kinds of awesome! Lemon Curd is also great for making desserts, like Lemon Coconut Bars or Coconut Lemon Macaroon Nests. Those are a must for spring! Too cute!

And you know lemon curd is also great eaten by the spoonful. Smooth, sweet, tart, refreshing….the perfect pick me up!

How to make lemon curd

This lemon curd is also great with Meyer Lemons! Meyer Lemons have a sweeter taste and lower acidity, which makes them perfect for lemon-based desserts. I picked up a bunch of Sunkist Meyer Lemons the other day and I can’t wait to make another batch of Lemon Curd!

I hope life gives you lemons so you can make this Lemon Curd ASAP! It is sooooo good! And make sure you come back on Monday, I created an amazing dessert with this lemon curd. You will want the recipe, trust me:) Happy weekend!

If you like this Lemon Curd recipe, you might also like:

Easy Lemon Curd Recipe - stored in glass jar

Lemon Curd

This easy lemon curd recipe is the BEST! It's great on just about everything!
4.75 from 4 votes
Prep Time
10 minutes
Cook Time
12 minutes
Total Time
22 minutes


  • 4 large lemons zested and juiced (a little over 1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter cut into pieces


  1. In a medium bowl, combine lemon zest and sugar. Rub together with your fingers until fragrant.
  2. Put the lemon zest and sugar mixture, lemon juice, egg yolks, and butter in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and stir until combined. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the butter melts and the mixture thickens, about 12-15 minutes. The lemon curd will continue to thicken as it cools.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and pour lemon curd into a jar or glass bowl. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly against the curd so it is airtight. Cool to room temperature and then place in the refrigerator. Again, the curd will thicken up after it is completely cooled.
  4. Note-Lemon curd will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Nutrition Facts
Lemon Curd
Amount Per Serving
Calories 166 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 5g25%
Cholesterol 101mg34%
Sodium 5mg0%
Potassium 57mg2%
Carbohydrates 20g7%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 17g19%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 350IU7%
Vitamin C 19.1mg23%
Calcium 21mg2%
Iron 0.4mg2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

lemon curd


Maria Lichty

I’m Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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CommentsLeave a reply

  1. I’ve never made lemon curd before! Can you believe it?? I have been craving it for some while though, so this would be the perfect time to do it! 🙂

  2. I recently used lemon curd to make thumbprint cookies and they came out amazing; that was my first experience tasting lemon curd and I fell in love. Thank you for sharing a recipe. I used the jarred kind from the grocery store, but your recipe looks easy to make!

  3. Thank you so much for this recipe. I bought a jar awhile ago from a specialty food shop and fell in love. Seeing this recipe aand how easy it is I can make it all the time. :). Thanks again.
    Carol L

  4. This post is so bright & cheery! I love all the bright yellow. It makes me think of spring. I’ve never considered putting lemon curd on toast. Sounds amazing though. Thanks!

  5. Wow! I can’t wait to try this recipe! I’ve always used the recipe that is in the Betty Crocker cookbook (I use it for filling lemon cupcakes), but that recipe uses cornstarch. This recipe sounds so much more delightful! Thank you!

  6. Made this last night for my Lemon Loving son whose Bday we will celebrate tomorrow !

    Delish! Mine took about 20 minutes to thicken….so don’t fret if 8-10 doesn’t do it 🙂

    1. Cheryl, thank you for your comment. It was very helpful to know I hadn’t done something wrong. It did take 20 minutes, although I made it on a very hot day. That may have had something to do with it? I love comments from folks who have actually prepared the recipe. They’re much more helpful than reading how good a recipe sounds!!

  7. Have you ever tried Dori Greenspan’s lemon cream? As much as I love lemon curd I think lemon cream is even better! And it uses the whole egg so I’m not left with a bunch of egg whites to use.

    1. I always use the leftover whites to make meringue cookies ,hubby loves to dip them in the lemon curd lol

  8. First I love love this site. I pull half of my recipes from you! Second, how much lemon juice? I buy fairly large lemons. Also I cooked for 10 min and it was still very runny. It is in a glass bowl right now cooling but I am VERY worried it won’t be thick due to to much juice and not cooking long enough. Btw The Biscoff pretzel bites are requested at every birthday party I throw!!

  9. No, =( it is still pretty runny. Won’t be able to put into a cupcake or into the middle of two cake layers. But that’s okay it does taste amazing! Can you use a strainer and strain out the lemon zest? Or would this take away from the flavor? My kids and myself included do not care for little things like this in stuff lol. Yes we buy pulp free juices! I don’t mind it in the custard, but the kids do lol. I am baking the cake atm. I forgot I was out of all purpose flour and had to use a mix of wheat flour and white. Will this change the taste? AND sorry one more thing. On the cupcake recipe after I had it in the oven I realized you have vanilla in the ingredients list but NOT in the actual recipe. I missed putting it in lol.

    1. Sorry, ours always sets up after it is chilled. You can strain out the zest if you don’t care for it. The texture might be a little more dense with wheat flour. I just updated the recipe, sorry about that!

  10. Oh it’s okay!! I just LOVE your recipes. Seriously your page and one other are my go to pages for almost everything baked or sweet! I have been following you for a few years now. We now have 4 kids now and I love getting new ideas for their cake flavors. I have to write down that pretzel bite recipe so I have it on hand in case something ever happens to your blog or my internet!

  11. Have you thought about putting together a couple recipe books with ALL your recipes in them? I mean actual books. I would totally buy them. I am not one for the ebooks =( I like having a hard copy in my hands.

    1. Jana, I love something to hold in my hand also. To that end, I started printing out all the recipes I love, marking down anything of note on them, then placing them in a 3-ring binder. You could even laminate the pages so they don’t get too messy, especially if you’re as sloppy as I am! Lol! Hope this helps!

  12. I had the same problem as Jana. Mine didn’t thicken either, and I was unable to use it in the cupcakes. Now I have runny curd that I don’t know what to do with. 🙁

    1. Ours always sets up. Did you chill it in the fridge? Maybe cook it longer? It usually takes us 10 minutes, but I will change the recipe to say 10-15 minutes to be safe. Sorry you had issues!

    2. Mine is in the fridge but I don’t think it is going to thicken. The recipe says to cook on med high heat which I did for a while but then it started to boil ( which the recipe says to avoid). I turned down the heat and cooked a bit longer but it was already at 179 degrees. We’ll see what happens when it cools.

  13. Just wondering if anyone has tried this with orange juice and zest instead of the lemons. I need an orange dessert and sort of think this might be nice as a filling in thumbprint cookies.

  14. Just wanted to say that I made this recipe last night, and I would say that the juice of “4 large lemons” was probably more like a cup and a quarter for me…I cooked it for about 22 minutes, and while it’s marginally set up enough now that it’s been in the fridge overnight, you may want to add the “1/2 cup” measure to the original recipe rather than just the “juice of 4 large lemons”…would have prevented many fewer minutes of panic for me last night as I stirred and stirred over the stove wondering if it would ever set up!! 🙂 I should have read the comments first. *laugh*

  15. How muc zest did you use? Looking for an approximate measurement. I have a lemon tree at home, but my lemons are HUGE! Any help is appreciated. Thanks!!

    1. If your lemons are huge, maybe use the zest of 3? It just depends on how tart you want your lemon curd. If you like it strong, use more, more mild…use less. I hope that helps!

  16. Yum. yum. YUMMMM!!!! Just made the curd…and licked the saucepan clean. So delicious! Macaroons are next. Thank you for the recipe!!

  17. What is the history of this recipe? I originally received the recipe in July 1965 from my dad’s aunt, Augusta. : )

  18. I made this recipe and my lemon curd did not set either. It was refrigerated overnight.
    I stirred it over heat for 15 minutes. Any ideas as to why it didn’t set?

  19. 4 stars
    This is a great curd.  I have tried several different recipes over the years and this is the best one i have tried, lots of lemon flavor.  I have rather large lemons on my tree so it only took two and a half lemons.  I did have to cook it for about 17 minutes for it to thicken enough.  Thank you.

  20. I loved this recipe! Everybody loved it, but 3 people told me they were expecting (hoping) to taste a more ‘tart’ curd. I tried to make it more tart with more lemon, another time with less sugar, to no avail. Could you please tell me how to resolve this?
    So frustrating, and I am running out of lemons for my next cake 🙁

  21. Could a sugar alternative like erythritol or xylitol be used or would that affect how it sets? Also, can this be canned by putting in a hot water bath like a jam? Or frozen? It only lasts 2 weeks and I am hoping to have something more at the ready!

  22. 5 stars
    Just made it tonight. It is delicious and a beautiful deep yellow. It reminds me of the curd my mom used to make from scratch when I was a kid. I learned two lessons from this recipe. Microwave your lemons a few seconds, they’ll give more juice (I got over a half a cup of juice from two lemons) and STIR, STIR, STIR, DON’T STOP!

  23. 5 stars
    I wanted to make blueberry lemon crepes, and I thought I had a jar of lemon curd laying around, but I couldn’t find it. Your recipe was the first one to pop up on Google, so I made it. It’s so delish! I’m putting this recipe in my heirloom collection for sure! I only used 2 lemons because they gave me well over 1/2 cup. Thanks for the great recipe! I’ll be back for more!

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