Grandma’s Lemon Bars – A Couple Cooks


This simple lemon bars recipe (aka lemon squares) has all of Grandma’s secrets and techniques! A zingy custard topping layers a thick shortbread layer.

Lemon Bars

Right here’s a traditional recipe that’s one of many prime methods to take pleasure in zingy citrus: this simple lemon bars recipe! This one is my Grandma’s recipe, accomplished up with a number of small tweaks to coax out much more taste. A zingy lemon custard topping layers over a thick shortbread layer, making the perfect textural distinction of gooey versus crunchy. It’s bought simply the correct burst of lemon and trace of vanilla within the shortbread. And, they’re less complicated than you’d think about to whip up. And as a self-professed chocoholic, I really may choose one in all these bars over chocolate (gasp!).

Substances in lemon bars

Lemon bars or lemon squares are an American dessert that incorporates a lemon curd topping layered over a shortbread crust. The primary reference to a recipe was in a Chicago newspaper in 1962, so it’s a retro recipe that went on to change into a traditional. One good factor about lemon bars is that the lemon curd is baked proper on prime of the crust, making it a lot less complicated than whisking it on the range just like the traditional technique. There are various totally different spins on lemon bars, however most recipes embrace the next:

  • All goal flour
  • Butter
  • Powdered sugar
  • Salt
  • Vanilla extract
  • Eggs
  • Granulated sugar
  • Baking powder
  • Lemon juice and zest
Lemon Bars

The supply of this lemon bars recipe

This lemon bars recipe actually is Grandma’s: she was my mother’s mother who I referred to as Gram. Gram’s lemon bars recipe is typed onto on a recipe card that’s attributed to somebody named Lynn Drier. As a modern-day recipe developer, I really like studying recipes of the previous and the way easy they have been.

In fact, a number of the directions have been “widespread information” and assumed the reader would know precisely what to do. For instance, the recipe lists the crust elements (flour, butter and powdered sugar) then states, “Combine and bake 20 minutes at 350 levels.” There’s loads to deduce right here: Melted butter or chilly? What measurement pan? Combine with a whisk or spoon? Bake till golden brown, and does the timing depend upon the oven?

Right here we’ve taken Gram’s lemon bars recipe and added a bit extra element for the fashionable cook dinner. We additionally added just some elements to make the flavour pop: barely extra lemon juice and lemon zest for zingier topping, and salt and vanilla within the crust for complexity within the shortbread. However in any other case, the recipe is actually the identical! Because of Gram for this recipe and my mother for sending {a photograph} of that previous typed recipe card.

Lemon bar recipe

Suggestions for lemon bars

This lemon bars recipe could be very simple to whip up: however there are some things to notice whenever you go to make the recipe. Right here’s what to know:

  • They’re finest chilled, so make them prematurely (day earlier than is finest). You don’t desire a lemon bar heat from the oven: they’re sometimes served chilled or room temperature after chilling. So make them nicely earlier than you wish to serve them! They work nicely if you happen to throw them within the fridge the evening earlier than.
  • Don’t fear if the highest is erratically browned or has bubbles. This was one thing that shocked us: the highest can brown in a short time when baking! Watch the oven so it doesn’t get too browned. Nevertheless, it’s not an issue if it does: the powdered sugar topping covers every little thing.
  • Add the powdered sugar topping proper earlier than serving. If the lemon curd is heat, the topping soaks proper in. (That is one different place we diverged from the unique recipe!) Cool the lemon bars fully earlier than topping.
  • For clear slices, clear the knife after every lower. When chopping into bars, clear off the good for the perfect edges to the bars.
Lemon Squares

Storage data

Lemon bars retailer very nicely within the fridge! Listed here are a number of ideas for storage:

  • Retailer the bars refrigerated for as much as 2 weeks. They probably final even longer if you happen to nonetheless have leftovers.
  • Or, freeze them for as much as 3 months. Ensure to freeze with out the powdered sugar topping for finest outcomes.
  • The powdered sugar topping can dissolve if the bars sit some time at room temperature. This occurred we had them sitting out on a dessert desk. You may merely add extra powdered sugar after which refrigerate the leftovers.

Extra lemon recipes

We’re fairly obsessive about this lemon bars recipe. Actually, regardless that I’m an enormous chocolate lover I actually can’t resist one in all Grandma’s lemon squares. Listed here are a number of extra lemon recipes starring this tart citrus:

This lemon bars recipe is…



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This simple lemon bars recipe (aka lemon squares) has all of Grandma’s secrets and techniques! A zingy custard topping layers a thick shortbread layer.

For the crust

  • 2 cups [280 g] all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup [60 g] powdered sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon superb salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the lemon layer

  • 4 eggs, crushed
  • 2 cups [400 g] granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup all goal flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup recent lemon juice (3 massive or 4 medium lemons)
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

  1. Preheat and put together the pan: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish, then line it with parchment paper. Permit two edges to increase outdoors the pan to permit for simple removing. 
  2. Make the crust: Combine the flour, melted butter, powdered sugar, salt and vanilla extract in a bowl. Pour crumbles into the pan, spreading them out evenly together with your fingers. Press them into the pan in an excellent layer, utilizing the again of a measuring cup to pack it flat. 
  3. Bake the crust: Place the pan within the oven and bake 20 to 23 minutes till flippantly golden brown. (You may bake the crust first and let it sit whereas making the filling elements, or combine up the filling whereas the crust bakes; both works).
  4. Make the filling: Whisk the eggs, then whisk within the granulated sugar, flour, baking powder, lemon juice, and lemon zest till mild and fluffy. Permit the crust to chill no less than 5 minutes, then pour the filling over the nice and cozy crust.
  5. Bake the bars: Place the pan within the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Take away the pan and rotate it, then then bake about 10 minutes extra till flippantly golden on prime. It’s okay if it will get erratically browned or if the highest has small bubbles as a result of it will likely be lined by the powdered sugar topping.
  6. Chill: Permit the bars to chill to room temperature (about 1 hour), then switch to the fridge for no less than 2 to three hours to agency up (in a single day is even higher).
  7. Prime, slice and retailer: Sift powdered sugar excessive of the bars. Reduce them into 24 squares, wiping off the knife after every lower to get a clear lower. Retailer bars refrigerated with parchment paper between the layers for as much as 2 weeks. (Observe that when sitting at room temperature, the powdered sugar topping can soften into the lemon filling, so you could have to refresh with new powdered sugar earlier than serving leftovers.) You can even freeze lemon bars for as much as 3 months with out the powdered sugar topping, with parchment paper between the layers.

  • Class: Dessert
  • Methodology: Baked
  • Delicacies: American
  • Weight loss plan: Vegetarian

Key phrases: Lemon bars, lemon bars recipe, lemon bar recipe, lemon bars, lemon bar recipes, lemon squares, lemon squares recipe



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