Lemon Bars with Shortbread Crust

by Kirsten on July 29, 2013

in Desserts, Misc. Sweets

Lemon Bars with Shortbread Crust

Last week I spend a few days at my friend’s house in Point Loma, San Diego. What a beautiful place to live at. We did some sailing and sightseeing, visited friends at their beach house in Del Mar and went out to eat at the fish market twice (LOVED IT!!). I also made some new friends that vacationed in Del Mar from Texas. Hey, y’all!! One night we hosted a small dinner party for which I baked these lemon bars with shortbread crust for dessert. The inspiration came from the ripe lemons hanging on the beautiful lemon tree in my friend’s back yard. The bars are very easy to prepare. The filling consists of a simple custard with fresh pressed lemon juice to which I decided to add some extra lemon zest for an even tangier flavor. The crust is buttery and flaky and complements the velvety filling perfectly. Our guests loved the lemon bars and we only had 3 small pieces left, which, lucky me, one piece made for the perfect breakfast the next morning. I just couldn’t resist.

Make sure to purchase organic lemons or pick some fresh ones from your own lemon tree, just, whatever you decide,  don’t miss out on this citrusy dessert. It is pretty scrumptious!

Lemon tree

Lemon Bars with Shortbread Crust
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 16
  • ½ cup (1 stick, 113 g) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • ½ cup (60 g) confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (120 g) all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 can (14 ounces, 396 g) sweetened condensed milk
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • ¾ cup (187.5 ml) fresh lemon juice (from about 3 lemons)
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F.
  2. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan and line with parchment paper. Make sure that paper is overhanging the pan on two sides. Butter the parchment paper. Set aside.
  3. For the crust combine butter, sugar, and salt using an electric hand held mixer. Cream for about 4 minutes.
  4. Add flour and mix on low until just combined.
  5. Press the dough evenly into the prepared baking pan. Make sure to add a ½ inch rim up the side of the pan. Prick the dough evenly with a fork.
  6. Bake for 15 - 20 minute or until golden brown. (I remove my crust from the oven after 10 minutes of baking and press the dough, especially the rim, back into place with a spoon. Return into oven to finish baking).
  7. In the meantime prepare the filling by mixing egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk, lemon juice, and zest.
  8. Pour the filling into the baked crust and return the pan back to the oven for 25 - 30 minutes or until the filling has set. Don't over-bake!
  9. Cool in pan to room temperature and then refrigerate at least for 2 hours.
  10. Remove the baked good from the pan by lifting it out with the overlapping parchment paper. Cut into 16 square pieces.
  11. Dust with confectioners' sugar right before serving.


Lemon Bars with Shortbread Crust

Adapted from marthastewart.com.

You could also try this recipe of lemon squares with pine nuts in the crust which is featured by Cooking Light.

A few impressions of my visit:

San Diego collage

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