These classic Lemon Bars are simple, delicious, and sweet, with just the right amount of tart! Add a bit of powdered sugar, and these easy lemon bars are irresistible!
When it comes to desserts, I usually prefer chocolatey over fruity, with a few exceptions – these lemon bars being one of them. I feel the same way about our Strawberry Shortcake Bars and Lemon Lasagna. So fruity and so refreshing!
a childhood favorite
Did anyone else grow up eating lemon bars? I feel like it’s one of those desserts that grandmas are notorious for making. Or is it just me? Regardless, I know you’re going to love this recipe. It’s perfect for any occasion from potlucks to fancy dinner parties.
I’ll paint the picture for you: Moist, buttery shortbread crust with a sweet, yet perfectly tart lemon filling, topped with a generous amount of powdered sugar. Are you drooling yet?
There’s something about the lemony flavor that makes these bars easy to eat. They’re not overly sweet or rich – they’re kind of refreshing rather than heavy!
But don’t take my word for it. Whip up a batch of these easy Lemon Bars and see for yourself!
How to make Lemon Bars
This lemon bar recipe is SUPER easy to throw together!
CRUST. Mix butter, powdered sugar, flour, and salt together with a pastry cutter or spatula. Pat mixture into a greased 9×13 pan.
BAKE. Bake for 20 minutes at 375. Make sure to not let it get brown, keep it light!
LEMON LAYER. Meanwhile, blend eggs, lemon juice, sugar, and flour until frothy, about 30 seconds. Pour over crust once it comes out of the oven, and bake for another 20 minutes at 350 degrees F.
TOP & SERVE. Remove from oven, top with powdered sugar, and ENJOY!
Tip: Use fresh lemon juice. A medium sized lemon with yield about 4 tablespoons of juice. For extra lemon flavor, include lemon zest.
- When the bars are finished cooking, the edges will begin to turn a golden brown and the middle will be set and won’t wobble.
- If you overcook your lemon bars they will curdle, look eggy and end up with more of a grainy texture. Make sure to take them out of the oven as soon as the middle is set.
Glass vs. Metal Pan: I suggest using a glass or ceramic dish for this dessert, but if you are using a metal pan line it with parchment paper as the acidity in the lemon can cause the dessert to take on a bit of a metallic taste. Also, note that the dessert may cook more quickly in a metal pan than a glass dish.
Do you see air bubbles? Don’t worry! Sometimes lemon bars have them and sometimes they don’t. They are created from the eggs rising to the surface. They don’t affect the taste at all. If you don’t like how it looks be sure to use a generous dusting of powdered sugar on top.
Making Clean Slices: Getting clean even slices can be pretty tricky. Here’s a tip that works every time! Line the pan with foil (sprayed with cooking oil) or parchment paper before adding the crust, then bake. Continue following the recipe as written.
Once completely cooked, cool for 15-20 minutes then chill in the fridge or freezer for another 20-40 minutes. Once chilled, use the foil/parchment paper to completely lift the entire lemon bar out of the baking pan in one large piece.
Using a sharp chef knife, dip it in hot water, wipe off water, then slice then lemon bars. Continue heating the knife back up before each slice.
Other Toppings: Instead of the powdered sugar topping, you can try using a lemon frosting or glaze. Or, you can add a garnish of a sliced lemon to each square, or another piece of fruit such as a raspberry, blueberry or slice of strawberry.
How to Store
How to store lemon bars: Once cut, store the lemon bars in an airtight container. Separate the layers with parchment paper to keep them from sticking to each other.
- Store at room temperature for up to 3 days.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- Store in the freezer for up to 1 month. Let them come to room temperature before serving.
Because we have been long-time fans of Lemon bars, we’ve tried so many versions in the past. This version is so simple and so delicious and was deemed the BEST lemon bars recipe by the entire family. I guess that means it’s a keeper!
There really is no reason not to whip up some of these old-fashioned Lemon Bars!
For more lemon desserts, check out:
- Lemon Lasagna
- Easy Lemon Cheesecake
- Lemon Cupcakes
- Lemon Sheet Cake
- Frosted Cake Mix Lemon Cookies
- Lemon Buttermilk Cake
Lemon Bar Recipe
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- 5-6 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1¾ cups granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
- powdered sugar for topping
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 9-x-13-inch glass baking dish and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, mix butter, flour, powdered sugar and salt with a pastry cutter or spatula. Pat mixture into the prepared dish.
- Bake for 20 minutes. Make sure to not let it brown.
- While crust is baking, blend eggs, lemon juice, granulated sugar and flour in a medium bowl with a hand mixer until frothy, about 30 seconds. Pour over warm crust.
- Bake for an additional 22–24 minutes. Bars are done when the edges begin to turn golden brown and the middle is set and does not wobble.
- Let cool completely in the pan. Sift powdered sugar over the top before cutting into squares.
Adapted from Among the Young.
What does TB stand for
Tablespoon 🙂 Hope you like these!
What type of flower do you ? Self rising or all purpose ??
How much flour for the 2nd part? I put 2 cups in the crust? Same for the top mix?
It is 1/3 cup for the 2nd part 🙂
Sorry meant flour lol
This is very similar to a Lemon Bar recipe made with a cake mix and all the other ingredients. However, one doesn’t always have a lemon cake mix on hand when they get the urge so will give this a try.
QUESTION: Should the pan be greased?
Yes, grease the pan first 🙂 I hope you like them, as much as we do!
Love a good lemon bar! Thank you for this recipe. Its not too tangy and has the perfect sweetness.
These lemon bars are so good!! I love lemon, it’s so refreshing! they are so soft & creamy! I took them to a potluck & everyone raved about them!
Best lemon bar ever
even though I’m not a huge fan of lemon, these lemon bars are super tasty!
What kind of lemon juice? Real or concentrate?
I just use the lemon juice you buy at the store 🙂 You could use freshly squeezed for sure!
I need to make these for a party the following day. Is it best to store them in the fridge or on the counter?
I keep them in an air tight container on the counter. Hope they are a hit!
do we have to wait for the crust to cool before pouring on the liquid?
How much powdered sugar in first mixture? 1/2 cup or 1 cup?
It is 1/2 cup, then just enough to sprinkle on top.
This waS THE FIRST TIME I HAVE MADE LEMON BARS AND THEY WERE WONDERFUL! I DON’T EVEN WANT TO TRY ANOTHER RECIPE. 🙂 THANK YOU! (ALSO IT SEEMS THE DEFAULT IS ALL CAPS SO I AM NOT YELLING BUT STILL VERY EXCITED ABOUT HOW DELICIOUS THESE ARE.)
Yay!! Glad you loved them! Thank you so much for letting me know!
Do you blend the lemon ingredients in BLENDER or just mix it together? I consider myself an experienced cook- but i can never get lemon bars just right- im super excited to make these
I used a hand mixer 🙂 Good luck!! I hope they turn out for you!
Love this!!! Just like mY moMs recipe i remember as a kid
Glad they remind you of your moms! Thank you so much!
This is an easy and delicious bar but the lemon is minimal. Next time I need to up the lemon.
You can definitely add more lemon taste. Thank you for trying them 🙂
Question for you… On your lemon bars i can not see how much powdered sugar you put in the crust.. Is it 1/3 cup or what??
I meant the amount of powdered sugar that goes into the lemon layer, sorry. How much??
To go over the top? It’s just for topping, so it can be as much or as little as you’d like 😉 No wrong amount!
I love the powdered sugar on top…it was the perfect combo of sweet & sour.
These have always been one of my favorite sweet treats – love this simple version!
Lemon happens to be my all time favorite flavor for desserts! These bars are so good and not too tangy!
Lemon is good…but i wanted to switch it up and used fresh lime juice….it was really good! (sorry for the caps…default setting I guess)
Good idea!! Happy you liked it! Thank you for sharing that!
Great recipe! Tastes so good my whole family enjoys this one. The only thing to add is im in high elevation so baking at 350 for 20 minutes did not work for me i had to Bake for an additional 10 min. Could you comment on how the texture should be in case i am over baking?
They are soft & gooey. I hope they turned out for you 🙂
Easy, quick and delcious! Gonna try it again with fresh lemons! Thank you!
You are so welcome!! Thank you for letting me know!
Sounds good. I will be trying g this. Ii8
We hope you enjoy them!
I absolutely loved this recipe. I made lemon bars not too long ago and they were good, but these were GREAT. I added a dash of vanilla extract to my shortbread and a little bit of lemon zest to my lemon filling. I think it made it perfect
Woohoo!! Glad you thought they were great! Thank you for letting me know!
I made these lemon bars for Mother’s Day gifts. It was my first attempt at baking them. Recipe was very easy to follow and were a big hit. Once my hubby tasted one, the lemon bars nearly didn’t make it into the gift boxes.
Haha..love to hear that! Thank you!
They looked lovely and I was keen to make them but there was no ingredients measurements….how many eggs?…..how much flour? Etc
The recipe with the ingredient amounts is found at the bottom of the post. All of the instructions should be there as well. Hope this helps!
I used passion fruit (lilikoi) in place of the lemon. Wow. Turned out great!
That sounds amazing! I’ll have to give that a try!
Did you use salted or unsalted butter?
You can use either salted or unsalted butter for this recipe – whichever you prefer. 🙂
Lovely recipe, can’t wait to try it. ☺️
Question – squeezed the lemons I have on hand and only came up with 3T of juice. I have limes – may I make up the 2-3T with lime instead?
You could use limes but it will change the flavor of the bars slightly. I have never tried them with lime juice, so I’m not sure how it would turn out. You’ll have to let us know!
These were amazing! I tried to make lemon bars before but they didn’t seem to come out right. Then I found your recipe and they came out perfect!! My brother in law even said they were the best lemon bars he’s ever tasted!
Oh that makes me so happy to hear! I’m so glad you all (including your brother in law) enjoyed the lemon bars!
Thank you so much for sharing this super easy to make lemon bars! It turned our really great and fam really loves it! Will make it again for sure.
Lemon Bars are a favorite of mine! These are so simple to make too! Perfect for summer or really all year long!
Lemon is my favorite summer flavor & these bars are incredible! Super soft & creamy!
Easy and fast. My husband loved them for his birthday. I will start making these instead of brownies.
Yay!! So happy to hear that these were a success for your family! Thanks for sharing.
Turns out perfect every time
I do make these is a sheet pan so almost double recipe I do like alot of crust but amazing bars
Thank you! I’m so glad you enjoy the lemon bar recipe!!
The whole family LOVED!
Yay!! So glad to hear that!
These lemon bars are so easy to make and they taste so good!!! I get so many compliments when I make them and the fact that my mom (best cook I know) says I make lemon bars better than her…. Makes this a winning recipe!
The best lemon bars by far!
I’m gonna tell ya’ll right now. These are absolutely obscene. For real. Heaven in a bar is more like it. The Buttery richness. The powdered sugar in the crust makes them taste divine. Please, if your looking for the best tasting lemon bars. The search ends here. I promise you won’t be disappointed. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful recipe with the rest of us.
Haha! Thank you for your kind words. I’m so glad you love the lemon bars!!