Easy Lemon Bars (5 Ingredients!)

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Easy Lemon Bars with just 5 Ingredients are a 50 year old recipe that are rich, sweet and tart.

Easy Lemon Bars with just 5 Ingredients are rich, sweet and tart and they taste like they are straight from the bakery. The recipe is from a bakery who has been making them for 50 years.Easy Lemon Bars are one of those desserts that I have loved since I was a kid when most kids were all about chocolate. I think it is just the sour candy lover in me that can’t get enough of the sweet and tart flavors, but lemon bars are pretty much perfection in my eyes.ย 

*Quick Note* Sorry for the late post today! The last 24 hours has been a huge issue with servers and only 10 minutes ago did I get the go ahead to post.

The best thing about these *truly* Easy Lemon Bars is that the crust, which most people would normally say is the toughest part to make, is made in 20 seconds completely in a food processor. You literally just add the flour, sugar and butter cubes and let it go for 20 seconds. That is it, no scraping, no whipping eggs or adding ingredients in one at a time. It is just the best shortbread base and takes no effort at all.

The filling is just as easy, everything in a bowl, five seconds of whisking and the hardest part is just waiting for that shortbread base to come out of the oven before baking off the bars.

So with a recipe so easy I thought I would also share my favorite versions of this bar with you guys!

  • Add in strawberries! I’ve used both fresh sliced berries and freeze dried strawberries.
  • Swap out 1/4 cup of the lemon juice for lime or orange juice, I’ve even used tangerine juice with awesome results.
  • Add poppy seeds to the top and to the shortbread base for an awesome lemon poppy bar.
  • White chocolate, melted and drizzled on the shortbread base after it comes out of the oven and before the lemon layer.
  • Jam! I’ve added berry, orange, and even pineapple jam to these bars before. Just little spoonfuls after adding the lemon layer. Easiest hack ever and I normally do it when I’ve got 1/3 of a bottle left and need the refrigerator door space. ๐Ÿ™‚

Easy Lemon Bars with just 5 Ingredients are rich, sweet and tart and they taste like they are straight from the bakery. The recipe is from a bakery who has been making them for 50 years.

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Recipe

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Easy Lemon Bars (5 Ingredients!)

5
  • Yield: 16 bars
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Course: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American
Easy Lemon Bars with just 5 Ingredients are rich, sweet and tart and they taste like they are straight from the bakery. The recipe is from a bakery who has been making them for 50 years.

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • 12 tablespoons cold butter , cut in small pieces
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups flour

For the filling:

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup of lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest

Instructions

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add the butter, sugar and flour to a food processor and let process for 20-30 seconds or until the dough comes together into a ball
  3. Press into an 8x8 inch pan that you have lined with parchment paper.
  4. Bake the crust for 22-25 minutes.
  5. Combine the 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1/4 cup flour, 4 eggs, lemon juice and zest in a large bowl and whisk well.
  6. Let sit at least 15 minutes while the crust is baking.
  7. Whisk again just before pouring it onto the crust in case any sugar settled at the bottom.
  8. Put the pan back in the oven for 20-22 minutes.
  9. You don't want the tops to brown, just to set.
  10. The beauty of lemon bars is the beautiful, vibrant yellow color of them.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 16 bars, Amount per serving: calories

All images and text ยฉ for Dinner, then Dessert, Inc.

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Easy Lemon Bars with just 5 Ingredients are rich, sweet and tart and they taste like they are straight from the bakery. The recipe is from a bakery who has been making them for 50 years.

Easy Lemon Bars with just 5 Ingredients are rich, sweet and tart and they taste like they are straight from the bakery. The recipe is from a bakery who has been making them for 50 years.
Easy Lemon Bars with just 5 Ingredients are rich, sweet and tart and they taste like they are straight from the bakery. The recipe is from a bakery who has been making them for 50 years.

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Comments

  1. First of all, I love all things lemon and citrus, so right off the bat I’m a fan of this recipe. But I love the ideas for adaptations you provide, too! I mean, switching things up can be a delicious way to approach recipes! Yum.

  2. I love lemon bars– it’s one of my favorite treats! The tangy lemons, sweet powdered sugar and butter crust is the seriously addicting! I can’t wait to try these!

  3. I followed the recipe to the letter, and mine did not turn out, anything like yours. ๐Ÿ™ I am kind of disappointed. Maybe I made the filling wrong? I am going to try again, and see if I get a better outcome. Thank you for sharing this quick and easy recipe.

  4. Wow! These lemon bars are A-mazing! ๐Ÿ˜€ I used limes instead of lemons and it turned out wonderfully! The lemon bars (or lime bars) were deliciously tart, with a perfect balance of sweetness. Thank you for this scrumdiddlyumtious recipe!

    1. So sorry this message got snagged in my spam filter! What size pan did you use? Would be happy to troubleshoot via email, media @ dinnerthendessert . com

  5. I messed up this recipe because I was working top-to-bottom… Ingredients list very clearly says how much sugar is needed for the crust, than omits it from what is needed for the filling. Something to double check for next time

    1. Oh no! I’m so sorry. The recipe plug in must have had a glitch. I know it doesn’t help now, but I edited it. Thanks for letting me know.

    1. Definitely! My suggestion would be to keep them in a sealed container in the refrigerator and the take them out a few hours before serving. I would also wait to dust them with powdered sugar until before serving.

    1. Yes but make sure that you’re using 2 8×8 pans so ensure that the thickness stays the same and then you won’t have to adjust bake time. Enjoy!

  6. Made these tonight. Turned out delicious. They were a little soupy at first, but a few extra minutes in the oven fixed that. Looking back at the recipe, I think I know why. The recipe doesn’t specify what size eggs to use. Mine were extra large. Bumped the oven temperature up to 375 and put them back in for an extra 15 minutes, and they turned out fabulous!

    Rating: 4
  7. This might be a dumb question, but how do I go about measuring 12 tablespoons of ‘cold butter?!?! If we were dealing with melted butter that would be easy to do. But how does one measure cold butter in tablespoons? I would love to try this recipe but can’t get my head around this.

  8. Hi,
    I have a few questions.
    1. Should the crust be pricked with a fork before baking?
    2. Should be mixture be left to sit at room temp or in the fridge?

    Thanks,
    Celeena

    1. Sorry it took me so long to respond. Your questions were snagged in my spam filter.

      Yes, you can prick the crust with a fork before baking. The mixture can be left on the counter before baking.
      Thanks for your patience!

  9. I just made these and had the same problem as another person – the middle is not firming and staying very liquidy. I am super bummed. I followed the recipe to a T and I am using a 8×8 pan.

    1. I’m so sorry you’re having issues with it. If it’s not firming up, it sounds like it needs to cook longer.

    1. Just until they’re cooled….10-15 minutes, maybe. It’s easier to cut once it’s been refrigerated as well. Enjoy!

  10. LOVED these! However, nowhere ion your recipe to you say to use powdered sugar. I just took it as obvious from looking at them.They were PERFECT! and Oh, so easy!

    Rating: 5
  11. I have made these twice now and both times they turned out delicious! My lemons come from my own backyard so these bars are now a regular treat in my home.Thanks for the recipe!

    Rating: 5
  12. This is now my go-to for an easy peasy dessert! I’ve made it twice and my family has loved it every time!

    Rating: 5
  13. Absolutely the best lemon bars I have ever made. Super easy to follow instructions. Thank you for sharing your recipe, itโ€™s a keeper. I will be making these again next week for a get together.

    Rating: 5
  14. It’s great absolutely love it ! Also made as a double mixture as the first time it disappeared too quick! Cooked the base and then with the filling in for five mins extra each. Also added twice as much lemon zest and served with whipped cream. Yum thank you for the recipe !

  15. Super easy and wonderful! I have made these several times with gluten free flour for my gluten free friends and they rave about them. Iโ€™m in Florence, SC and we are waiting on Hurricane Florence at this very moment. I am making these to go in Hurricane prep kits for friends! Great recipe. I always use fresh lemons. You just canโ€™t beat fresh lemons. Thank you for a great recipe.

    Rating: 5