Lemon Bars

A Quarter Baked
by A Quarter Baked
1 9x13 pan
8 hr 30 min

This easy lemon bar recipe is so fresh & light. One thing I love about these lemon bars is the light and silky texture of the lemon filling. The smooth filling is bursting with fresh lemon flavor. I paired this filling with a wonderful shortbread that is buttery and has a real crunch to it. The contrasts in textures makes for a real party in your mouth. A few tips I have are to not over work the short bread crust and to keep a watchful eye on the filling. The last thing you want is a burnt lemon filling. If you would like to see how I make this recipe you can find my YouTube video below. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do.

Recipe details
  • 1  9x13 pan
  • Prep time: 8 Hours Cook time: 30 Minutes Total time: 8 hr 30 min
Show Nutrition Info
Hide Nutrition Info
Short Bread Crust
  • 2-1/2 c All Purpose Flour
  • 2/3 c Powdered Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 14 T Unsalted Butter Melted
Lemon Filling
  • 10 Egg Yolks
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 c + 2 T Corn Starch
  • 2-1/2 c Sugar
  • 1-1/2 c Lemon Juice Fresh
  • 2-1/2 c Water
  • 3 T Lemon Zest
  • 8 T Unsalted Butter Cold
Short Bread Crust
In a bowl combine the flour, powdered sugar, salt, and melted butter together.
Mix until all of the flour is hydrated. The dough will be crumbly. However if you squeeze the crumbles together in your hand it should hold its shape.
Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper.
Spread the dough crumbles evenly in the bottom of the pan. Then firmly press the dough down into the pan. There shouldn't be any cracks or spaces. It should be one solid piece of dough in the pan.
Pre heat your oven to 350 degrees.
Bake your crust for 20 minutes.
Lemon Filling
In a bowl add all of your egg yolks and set it aside.
In a sauce pan combine your sugar, corn starch, and salt. Whisk together until fully combined.
Add your lemon juice and water to the pan. Stir until well combined.
Cook the filling on a medium to high heat and stir continuously.
Once the filling starts to boil and thicken take it off the heat.
Give your egg yolks a quick whisk to break them up.
While whisking your egg yolks slowly start adding your hot lemon filling to the yolks. You are adding all of the lemon filling to the yolks. Its very important to do it slow so you don't cook the yolks and have scrambled eggs.
Now that its all combined add the filling back to your sauce pan.
Cook for another 1-2 minutes on a medium to low heat while stirring continuously. The filling will continue to thicken.
Take the pan off the heat.
Add your lemon zest and your cold butter. Stir until all of the butter is melted and combined. The texture of the filling will change once you add the butter to a smooth velvety consistency.
Pour your filling on top of your short bread crust and give it a little shake to level everything out.
Refrigerate the lemon bars for at least 6 hours but overnight is preferred.
Cut the lemon bars with a warm knife and they are ready to eat! You can top these with a little lemon zest or with powdered sugar if you like.
  • Antonia J. Hoh Antonia J. Hoh on Jul 19, 2022

    I just made them! They look scrumptious! I can’t wait to try it tomorrow!

  • Kendra Kendra on Jul 19, 2022

    I have a can of lemon pie filling in my pantry can I substitute that for the homemade feeling well it’s set up the same way in the refrigerator?

    • See 2 previous
    • Donald Mills Donald Mills on Jul 20, 2022

      No! The egg yolks cause the filling to gel once cooked and refrigerated. Pie filling will not gel, it will remain runny as it was when removed from the can/jar.