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Classic Lemon Bars with a bite
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5 from 1 vote

Easy Classic Lemon Bars

Classic Lemon Bars are tart, refreshing and simply the BEST lemon squares! Made up of thick tangy lemon curd sitting on a buttery shortbread crust then topped with tons of powdered sugar, these
easy lemon bars are irresistible! 
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Servings: 12
Calories: 242.4kcal


Shortbread Crust

  • 1-1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 lemons .. zest only
  • 1 cup cold butter .. cut in small pieces

Lemon Filling

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1-3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice .. about 2 lemons
  • 2-3 lemons .. zest only


  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar for dusting


  • Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and line a 9 x 13 pan with parchment paper and set aside.  
  • Start with your shortbread crust. In a large mixing bowl, add flour, powdered sugar, salt, lemon zest and cold butter cut into little pieces. Using your hands or an electric mixer, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until it all looks like crumbs and then keep mixing until a dough forms. Take that dough and evenly press into the bottom of your baking pan. Bake your shortbread crust for 20 minutes. 
  • While your crust is baking, add eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder, lemon juice and lemon zest to a large mixing bowl and mix well until your lemon curd mixture is loose and a bit frothy. Once your crust is done, remove from the oven and pour your lemon curd mix on top of the crust. Reduce your oven temp to 350 degrees and bake your Easy Classic Lemon Bars for anther 25 minutes. 
  • Remove from the oven and move pan to a wire rack to cool. Wait 30 minutes and then remove the lemon bars from the pan by picking up the edges of the parchment paper and carefully (they are super gentle at this point!) to baking sheet. Move your baking sheet to the refrigerator to chill for 1 hour before dusting them with powdered sugar. Lemon Bars can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.


  • This classic lemon bar recipe calls for a lot of lemon zest.  You are going to need around 6 lemons but I promise it's worth it!
  • If  you find your shortbread is giving you trouble while you are trying to get it to it's dough stage, set your mixer aside and get your hands in there! I found the easiest way to bring my dough together was to get my hands in the bowl and start crumbling the butter together with the dry ingredients and then mix with my electric mixer. I went back and forth doing this a few times and my crust came out perfect. 
  • If you find that your lemon zest has stuck to your electric beaters, simply swish your beaters (in Off position) through your lemon curd mixture and use a soft spatula to release the remaining zest from your beater.
  • Use a small fine mesh strainer to dust your lemon bars with powdered sugar.  It makes life so easy and I use that strainer on a daily basis for various reasons so if you don't already own one, it's an inexpensive investment that you won't regret.


Serving: 12g | Calories: 242.4kcal | Carbohydrates: 19.4g | Protein: 4.1g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.9g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 103.4mg | Sodium: 163.4mg | Potassium: 62.4mg | Fiber: 0.7g | Sugar: 5.2g | Vitamin A: 680IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 36mg | Iron: 1mg