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5 from 1 vote

Easy Lemon Bars

Easy lemon bars with a zesty lemon custard atop a crisp brown sugar shortbread crust--these lemon bars lovely and delicious!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr 20 mins
Servings: 16 bars
Calories: 264kcal
Author: Lucy Brewer



  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 vanilla bean


  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated lemon zest
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced and cold


  • 2-3 tablespoons confectioners sugar


  • Preheat oven to 350. Line a 9x13 inch pan with foil, allowing the foil to hang over the sides, and lightly grease the foil.


  • Whisk flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean and mix into flour. Pour in butter. Stir until well mixed and press into prepared pan. Bake 20-25 minutes until dark golden brown. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.


  • Whisk together flour, salt, and sugar. Whisk in lemon zest. Whisk in eggs and lemon juice. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, for 5-7 minutes until thickened. Strain through a mesh strainer. Whisk in butter until smooth.
  • Pour gently over hot crust. Bake 8-10 minutes or until center is set.
  • Let cool in pan on wire rack for 1 1/2 hours. Lift from pan, using foil sides as handles. Gently peel foil down and cut into squares. Sprinkle with powdered sugar just before serving.


Recipe adapted from
  • Cook's Illustrated
  • Food Network
  • Fine Cooking
  • Gabriel's Bakery