Easy Lemon Bars from Scratch are simple, delicious, and bursting with lemon flavor. They are super easy to make and perfect for these warm summer days!
After my first bite of these I thought to myself, “these are so good they dangerous!" These lemon bars are that good- that if I didn’t give them away, I would’ve eaten them all!
Don't miss my other favorite lemon recipes:
There is something so refreshing about food with lemon in it- or any citrus really.
Everything from the crust to the delicious gooey lemony filling to the powdered sugar on top makes these lemon bars perfect!
What ingredients do you need for homemade lemon bars?
- Powdered Sugar
- Lemon Juice & Zest - I love using Meyers' lemons but any will do
- Powdered Sugar
How to make lemon squares from scratch:
- Combine the crust ingredients in medium sized bowl
- Press crust into a baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray
- Bake the crust for 20 minutes or until the edges turn golden brown
- Mix together all the ingredients for the filling and then pour onto baked crust
- Bake again for another 26 minutes or until the filling is set
- Allow to cool and then sprinkle with powdered sugar
Do I have to use real lemon juice for lemon bars?
Although I do recommend using real lemons for these lemon squares you can use store bought lemon juice if that's what you have. Fresh juice adds a stronger lemon flavor that is really needed to make these the best lemon bars ever.
Also adding lemon zest into the filling gives it more lemon flavor as well.
What kind of lemons do you recommend?
You can use any lemon you’d like. Meyers' lemons are known to be a little sweeter if that’s what you are wanting.
Why do I need to bake the crust first?
You bake the crust before adding the filling in order to prevent the crust from getting soggy. If you don’t prebake the crust you will have a mushy mess and no one wants that!
Can I use other citrus juice from a lime or grapefruit?
Absolutely! Just use the same amount.
Let me know if the comments below what other desserts you love that have lemon or other citrus flavors in them!
How do you cut lemon bars cleanly?
Clean the knife with a paper towel after each cut.
Do lemon bars have to be refrigerated?
Yes. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate any uneaten lemon bars.
If you like this recipe make sure to check out these other tasty treats:
- Grapefruit Cupcakes
- Homemade Brownies
- Double Chocolate Pudding Cookies
- Caramel Pear Pie
- Butterfly Cookies
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Watch how to make this recipe!
Lemon Bars From Scratch
- 1 cup flour
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- Pinch of salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 tbs flour
- 3 eggs
- ½ cup lemon juice fresh (3-4 lemons worth)
- 1 tbs lemon zest optional
- Powdered sugar for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350°F and spray an 8x8 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- Combine all the ingredients for the crust, mixing thoroughly until you have a dough. Press the dough into the bottom of the prepared baking dish, making sure to cover the entire bottom of the dish and the dough is spread out evenly. (1 cup flour, ¼ cup powdered sugar, pinch of salt, ½ cup melted butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla)
- Bake the dough for 20 minutes or just until the edges start to brown.
- While dough is baking, combine all the ingredients for the for the filling in a medium sized mixing bowl. (1 cup sugar, 3 tbs flour, 3 eggs, ½ cup lemon juice, 1 tbs lemon zest)
- Pour filling into baked crust. Bake for 25-28 minutes or until the center of the lemon bars is set and doesn’t jiggle. Let cool completely then dust with powdered sugar and more lemon zest!
- Leftovers: refrigerate any leftover bars- either in an airtight container or put plastic wrap over the dish you baked them in.
- Cutting: To cut the lemon bars cleanly simply wipe down the knife you use to cut them after every cut.
- Garnish: I highly recommend garnishing with a little extra lemon zest!