Jul 19, 2019 Last Updated 6:31 AM, Nov 9, 2017

Lemon Bars

Donna Bell’s Bake Shop's Lemon Bars. Photo by ©Ali Smith. www.alismith.com

Shortbread crust and lemon filling of Donna Bell’s Bake Shop.


Yield: 12 bars

Shortbread Crust:

  • 9.3 oz/265 g all-purpose flour
  • 7 oz/200 g granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 8 oz/227 g cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Add the cold butter pieces and quickly press between fingers to break up the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Or, to make in a food processor, place the flour, sugar, and salt in a processor fitted with the steel blade and pulse a couple of times to combine. Add the butter and pulse a few times until mixture resembles coarse meal. Be careful not to process too long or it will be too dough-like.

Lemon Filling:

  • 4 large eggs
  • 14 oz/400 g granulated sugar
  • 5.7 oz/162 g freshly squeezed lemon
  • Juice from 3 or 4 large lemons
  • 1.5 oz/44 g all-purpose flour
  • Confectioners’ sugar

1. Heat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, allowing enough foil to overlap the edges. Spray the foil with cooking spray. Press the shortbread dough onto the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake until par-baked about 10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs and sugar in a large bowl. Add the lemon juice and flour and whisk until smooth. After baking for 10 minutes, remove the crust from the oven and immediately pour in the whisked custard very slowly, then spread to cover. Tent the pan with aluminum foil, making sure the foil does not touch the top of the custard. Return the bars to the oven and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Remove the foil. If the lemon filling is still jiggly, return the pan to the oven and bake, uncovered, for another 5 to 10 minutes, until firm. Cool completely in the pan.

3. Lift the pastry out of the pan with the foil handles, dust the bars completely with confectioners’ sugar, and cut into 12 bars. Serve warm or allow to cool completely.


Click here to read more about this and related recipes in the article "Donna Bell’s Bake Shop: A Recipe for Success."

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