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5 from 3 votes

Seriously Lemony Lemon Bars

No matter what the time of year, we could all use a bright citrusy boost every now and again. Enter these extra-lemony lemon bars - packed with gumption and vitamin C to ward off all that scurvy, me hearties.
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr 30 mins
Course: Baking, Cookie Bar, Dessert, Party food
Cuisine: American
Servings: 30 squares
Calories: 203kcal
Author: Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa


For the crust:

  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups flour

For the lemon layer:

  • 5 lemons peeled with a sharp vegetable peeler (avoid the white pith)
  • 2 3/4 cups granulated sugar divided
  • 6 eggs extra-large, room temperature
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice strained (about 5-6 large lemons)
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • Confectioners’ sugar for dusting


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking sheet with parchment. Lightly butter the parchment.

For the crust:

  • Cream the butter, sugar and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. It should look a few shades lighter than when you began. With the mixer on low, add the flour until just mixed.
  • Sprinkle tablespoon-sized chunks of dough all over the bottom on the pan and then press down to flatten and even it into the bottom, building up a 1/2-inch edge on all sides. Chill for at least 20 minutes. Bake the crust for 15 to 20 minutes, until very lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack. Leave the oven on.

For the lemon layer:

  • In a food processor, combine all of the lemon peel and one cup of sugar. Process until completely combined, scraping down the bowl and pulsing a few more times until you can’t see anymore bits of peel. (if you don’t want to use a food processor, you could zest the lemons with a microplane and just add it to the sugar. It won’t be quite as lemony but will still be good).
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the processed lemon zest/sugar, the remaining 1- 3/4 cup sugar, eggs, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over the crust and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until filling is just set. Let cool to room temperature.
  • Cut into 1″ squares (or whatever size bars you like) and dust the lemon bars generously with confectioners’ sugar. If the sugar melts on top, just re-dust it and it will stay.


Calories: 203kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 34mg | Potassium: 61mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 241IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @NerdsWithKnives or tag #nerdswithknives!