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You need just 5 ingredients to make perfect luscious lemon bars. This lemon bar recipe is the perfect balance between sour and sweet.

Two Lemon Bars stacked on each other topped with a lemon slice.

Lemon bars are a classic dessert. People always love the bright zippy lemon on that delicious melt-in-your-mouth shortbread crust. This recipe makes the most lusciously thick lemon bars. The ratio of crust to lemon is perfect, giving you all the bold lemony goodness on top of shortbread. It’s so easy to make and lemon bars really only require 5 simple ingredients: sugar, butter, flour, eggs, and lemon juice. That’s it!

Did you know? The bottom crust of a lemon bar is a shortbread. Making shortbread is as easy as 1, 2, 3 since the basic recipe for shortbread is 1 part sugar, 2 parts butter, 3 parts flour. This recipe has a little extra flour to help support the weight of the lemon topping.

What kind of lemons should I use to make Luscious Lemon Bars? Can I use Meyer lemons?

You can use any variety of lemon to make lemon bars, including Meyer lemons. A Meyer lemon is a mix between lemons and mandarin oranges. They are sweeter and produce a more orange color of juice.

Can I use lemon juice from a bottle?

Freshly squeezed lemon juice will provide the best flavor in your lemon bars, but you can definitely use lemon juice you buy in a squeeze bottle from the grocery store. The flavor never tastes quite as bright or fresh, but it does work and should be used in the same amount as called for in the recipe.

How much juice comes from one lemon?

The amount of juice that comes from one lemon can vary. Sometimes it depends on the size, but often it’s just a matter of fact that some lemons are simply juicier than others. In our testing we have found that 1 large lemon can generally yield between 2 tablespoons and 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) of lemon juice. Therefore, a good rule of thumb is 3 tablespoons of juice per lemon. There are 16 tablespoons in 1 cup. You will need between and 4 to 8 lemons to yield 1 cup of lemon juice. We recommend purchasing at least 6 lemons to make this recipe.

Storage Instructions: 

Store your lemon bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or in the freezer wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months.

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious dessert recipes:

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTubeFacebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

Two lemon bars stacked on top of each other and topped with a lemon slice
You need just 5 ingredients to make the perfect meyer lemon bars. It's the perfect balance between sour and sweet.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes

Shortbread Crust

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup salted butter sliced
  • 2 cups flour

Lemon Layer

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup lemon juice
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x9 baking pan with parchment paper.
  • In a medium-sized mixing bowl use a pastry cutter to combine the butter, 1/2 cup sugar, and 2 cups flour, or use a food processor. Press this dough into the bottom of the 9x9 pan. Bake for 15 minutes. 
  • Five minutes before the crust is done baking, mix together the 1 1/2 cups sugar and 1/4 cup flour. Whisk in the eggs and lemon juice.
  • Gently pour the lemon mixture over the baked crust and return to the oven and bake until lemon layer is set, about 40-50 minutes. 
  • Let cool completely before dusting the tops with additional powdered sugar, if desired. 


Calories: 248kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 33mg | Potassium: 45mg | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 80IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1.4mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Lemon Bars
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