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Lemon Bars are a Slice of Sunshine

We’re in the middle of a pretty major storm in California right now, so I’m really craving summer fruits after all the holiday meals and seasonal favorites. What better way to brighten a rainy day than these lovely lemon bars? If you are craving a non-frozen treat with potent lemon flavor, look no further.

I consider myself to be pretty fortunate; I have a steady supply of Meyer lemons most of the year. A citrus hybrid of lemon and mandarin orange, Meyer lemons are less sour than the typical Lisbon or Eureka varieties most commonly found in stores. I’ve seen Meyer lemons sold only a few times in stores. Your best bet for getting some is by befriending someone with a Meyer lemon tree in their yard (living in California will also improve your odds of finding such a friend). I get me Meyer lemons from my viola teacher, and my supply is kept well-stocked thanks to my weekly lessons with my son (who takes violin lessons).

If you can’t find Meyer lemons, there’s no reason to pass on making these lemon bars. I first fell in love with this recipe long before I had acquired a taste for Meyer lemons, so I know how good they are with more common lemons. I like to serve these with a dusting of powdered sugar. Dust them right before serving, since the sugar will absorb moisture from the bars after 10 or 15 minutes. These lemon bars are addictive, so plan on sharing these soon after making them to spare your waistline. I usually bring these lemon bars with my sifter filled with powdered sugar to work. Nearby coworkers would be alerted to the presence of these lemon bars by the squeaking sifter.

Ingredients for making Lemon Bars.

Cream 1 cup of room temperature butter with 1/2 cup powdered sugar.

Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla and then gradually mix in 2 cups of flour.

Spread the dough evenly in a greased 9×13 inch pan, going up about an inch on the sides. Bake for 20 minutes in 350° F oven until lightly browned.

Use a microplane grater to remove the zest of 2 lemons. Juice the lemons until you have 1/2 cup of juice.

Beat 4 eggs, lemon zest, 1/2 cup lemon juice and 2 cups of sugar until blended and sugar has dissolved.

Pour the lemon custard into the hot crust and carefully return the pan to the oven.

Bake for 20 minutes or until top just begins to lightly brown.

Remove from oven and let cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar immediately prior to serving.

The recipe pictured above, with detailed instructions and complete photo gallery can be found on the Lemon Bars recipe page.

  • It looks delicious, I’m going to try it, thanks for sharing!

  • JEP

    I think lemon is a welcome flavor after all the holiday “heavies”:) When I want a lemon bar, I usually buy ONE for the same reason you referred to—over consumption:)

  • Andy Couch

    We have a potted Meyer lemon tree that just produced 6 new lemons, so I think we may have to try this recipe.

  • Hey Andy, I have a super crappy lemon tree in my own backyard. I like the idea of starting with a potted one so you can move it around to see what spot it likes best.