Rating: 3.5 stars
59 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 11
  • 4 star values: 24
  • 3 star values: 18
  • 2 star values: 2
  • 1 star values: 4
  • 59 Ratings

Packed with the juice of 4 lemons and a tablespoon of zest, these creamy, tangy lemon bars are bursting with fresh lemon flavor. The crisp shortbread crust is made with brown butter, which adds a nutty flavor and smells incredible as it bakes. These are great just after they’re baked or eaten hours later after they’ve chilled in the fridge—meaning you can make them the night before for easy entertaining. If you prefer, dust with powdered sugar for a more traditional finish. But we find it fun to sprinkle with sugar and brulée the top, for a nice golden, crackly top.


Credit: Kelsey Hansen

Recipe Summary

25 mins
1 hr 45 mins
16 bars


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Prepare the crust: Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving several inches extending over sides for handles. Coat foil with cooking spray.

  • Whisk together flour, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat until butter foams, begins to brown, and smells nutty, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat; cool 10 minutes. Slowly add browned butter to flour mixture; stirring with a fork until combined. Press mixture into bottom of prepared pan. Bake until puffed and very light golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven.

  • Prepare the filling: Whisk together eggs, yolk, flour, salt, and 1 cup of the sugar in a large bowl. Add zest and juice; whisk until combined. Pour into hot baked crust. Bake until just set, 13 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and heat broiler to high. Top lemon bars with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar and broil until top becomes golden in spots, 1 to 2 minutes. (Alternatively, brown the top with a kitchen torch.)

  • Cool completely in pan, about 1 hour. Remove from pan using foil sides as handles; cut into 16 squares.