Lemon Bars-Crazy Good!

Crazy Good Lemon Bars with Coconut and White Chocolate

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Lemon Bars also known as Lemon Squaresare are probably the most requested dessert treat in my family, hands down. And when shredded coconut and white chocolate are mixed in the lemon bar equation…Oh Lord…my camera doesn’t click fast enough! Whip these up for Mother’s Day or Easter or any day of the week and make everyone happy they know you!

single lemon bar with coconut and white chocolate on a crystal serving tray

Lemon “Love” Bars

I have been making these beautiful, lusciously sweet bars for at least 30 years since my mom designated me official family Lemon Bar maker, LOL! She loved them so much; she got a batch every Mother’s Day. Gosh, I miss her😢

Now I’m making these Love Bars for my kids, yes they inheritated the addiction. They both always request these bars for their birthday treat. No birthday cakes in our family…just bars or cold pies…or hot pies or homemade cookies…You know what I mean!

How Do You Make Lemon Bars?

Lemon Bars really are very simple to make, it’s basically a two bowl recipe. One for the crust and the other for the lemon filling. And then of course the glass baking dish.

To make the best tasting bars you must use real ingredients, no bottled lemon juice or plastic margarine for these sweeties. The real stuff is a must!

Yummy Shortbread Crust

As any lemon bar lover will tell you, “It’s the crust that makes the magic”. I cannot stress this enough! In this shortbread recipe I have added oatmeal, almonds, cardemon and lemon zest.

These added ingredients are a game changer folks! The oatmeal and almonds make the crust a little bit crispy to the bite while still remaining soft and buttery.

The cardemon adds a sweet little spice and the lemon zest adds just that extra bit of sweet, sour pucker. I’m telling ya…you won’t make it any other way from now on!

Below is the result of my 30+ years of many crust experiments.

  • Flour, I find that all purpose, non bleached is the best to use.
  • Quick Oats
  • Confectioner’s Sugar
  • Almonds, sliced
  • Butter
  • Cardamen
  • Lemon zest
4 picture collage on making the shortbread crust for the lemon bars

The Best Lemon Filling

This lemon filling is in one word Delish! I’ve tried so many different lemon bar recipes and I always go back to the original I started with from the Blue Denim Gourmet Cookbook my mom gifted me when I moved into my first apartment after college.

2 picture collage of lemon bar filling ingredients and mixing

Ingredients

  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Lemon Juice
  • Flour
  • Baking Powder
  • Coconut (optional)
  • Blueberries or Raspberries (optional)
  • vanilla or Almond Extract (optional)

Whisk the sugar, flour and baking powder together. Add beaten eggs and whisk, then add the fresh squeezed lemon juice and whisk again. Make sure it incorporates well and the lemon juice doesn’t sit on the eggs. The lemon will “cook” the eggs if not blended well together.

upclose stacked lemon bars with lemon shavings, lemons, coconut on a crystal serving tray

Tips and Tricks for Awesome Lemon Bars

Make sure you have blended all your dry crust ingredients in the processor before you add the butter.

Use cold, soft butter. Let it set for about 20 minutes at room temperature, cut into smallish cubes and then add to the food processor.

Lightly grease the glass baking pan with spray oil and then finger create the crust conforming to the pan.

BAKE THE CRUST BEFORE YOU ADD THE FILLING!

You will know the crust is ready when it just starts to turn golden. About 15-20 minutes at 350.

Pour the filling into the really warm crust so it will set up on the bottom.

Filling is done when it is no longer jiggly in the center.

Sprinkle powder sugar on about 5-10 minutes after it comes out of the oven.

The best way I know to cut Lemon Bars is to wet a knife with warm water and cut when they are completely cooled off and chilled.

Kitchen Needs for Lemon Bars

Storing Lemon Bars

Refrigerating Lemon Bars is the best way to store them. Make sure they are covered with plastic or foil.

I have never put lemon bars in the freezer but I can’t imagine they would be as good as just storing them in the fridge. Plus, I doubt you would ever have any left over that would warrant freezing for later eats.

Best Times to Serve Lemon Bars

  • Mother’s Day
  • Easter
  • Fourth of July
  • Bridal Shower
  • Baby Shower
  • Birthdays
  • Any Day of The Week!

More Delicious Desserts from TTC

No Bake OrangeSicle Cast Iron Ice Box Pie!

No Bake Cast Iron Key Lime Ice Box Pie!

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookie Bars

Homemade Chocolate Orange Pecan Pie

lemon bars on an Easter table with jordon almonds, flowers and fruit

Best Shortbread Crust

Shortbread crust made with sliced flour, butter, oats, confectioners sugar, slivered almonds, cardamen, zest
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword bar crust, cookies, pie crust, shortbread crust
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 24
Calories 230kcal
Author Elise

Ingredients

  • cups flour
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • ½ tsp cardamon spice
  • 2 lemons zest optional
  • 1 cup cold butter, 2 sticks cubed

Instructions

  • Place all ingrediants in a food processor except butter. Process until just mixed. approx 15-20 seconds.
  • Add cubed butter to processor and process until just mixed and starts to ball up.
  • Place dough in a greased 9"x13" GLASS dish. Pat out with hands and fingers. Make sure you go up the sides of the dish with the dough making edges.
  • Bake at 350° for 20-25 mins. Or until just starting to turn golden on the edges.
  • Don't let it cool to much before you add the filling.

Lemon Bar Filling with optional suggestions

The Best Lemon Bar Filling with coconut, white chocolate and blueberry options.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword blueberries, chocolate chip cookie bars, coconut, lemon, lemon bars, white chocolate chips
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 24
Calories 230kcal
Author Elise

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ½ fresh lemon juice, 3-4 med lemons or 2-3 large or a little more to pucker taste
  • ¼ cup all purpose non bleached flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp Almond or Vanilla Extract optional, I usually add Almond…so good!
  • 1 cup coconut, shredded optional
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries optional
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • powder sugar

Instructions

  • Whisk the sugar, flour and baking powder together.

  • Add beaten eggs to the flour mixture and whisk.
  • Add lemon juice to the flour/egg mixture and whisk again making sure the lemon juice doesn't sit on the eggs.
  • Add coconut flakes, white chocolate chips if desired. Stir!
  • Pour lemon filling mix on top of cooked crust.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes at 350° or until filling is firm and not jiggly.
  • Sprinkle powdered sugar about 10 minutes after you take out of the oven.
  • Let cool for at least an hour. For even better flavor put in fridge for about 2 hours after they've cooled.
  • Enjoy!

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