Mom’s Legendary Lemon Bars – a soft and chewy shortbread crust with a perfectly delicious, tart lemon filling.
Mom’s Legendary Lemon Bars
I’m excited to share with you a favorite family recipe today: my mom’s legendary lemon bars! My mom is a lover of all things lemon and, in my eyes, is an expert of all things lemon flavored! Over the years she’s test dozens of lemon bar recipes, and while she’s found many she’s liked, mom always goes back to her tried and true recipe.
When we deem something “the best” or our “favorite,” there’s always a personal standard that dish has met. It’s like finding the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe. We all have certain (and sometimes different) expectations of what makes “the best” chocolate chip cookie. With that in mind, let me tell you a little about what makes my Mom’s Legendary Lemon Bars “the best” in my mind.
I learned from my mom that the perfect lemon bar has a chewy shortbread base. Some recipes she tried over the year were too flakey or too crispy. She’s taught me that the perfect crust (in our eyes), has a slight crumble but is overall soft and chewy.
The perfect lemon bar also has a tart lemon filling that gets slightly crispy on top but is soft and gooey on the inside. As it cools, it should set a bit, but still be slightly gooey. And to get the best experience eating a lemon bar, it is truly so important to let them cool completely. When the bars are completely room temperature, is when you’ll get the true texture of the crust and filling.
These have been my family’s go-to lemon bars for as long as I can remember. They were even the inspiration to my Lemon Bar Cake I made for my mom’s birthday last year.
I hope you love them as much as our family does!
Mom's Legendary Lemon Bars
Soft and chewy shortbread crust with a tart lemon filling.
FOR THE CRUST
- 1 cup (226 g) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup (75 g) powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp. (3 g) salt
- 2 cups (240 g) all-purpose flour
FOR THE FILLING
- 4 eggs slightly beaten
- 2 cups (400 g) granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp. (2 g) baking powder
- 1/4 cup (30 g) all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (55 g) lemon juice
- zest of one lemon
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13" baking pan with nonstick spray. Line the pan with parchment paper and spray again. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and powdered sugar. This will kind of look like buttercream!
- Add the salt and the flour. Mix until well combined. It should look like a dough
- Pat the crust into an even layer in the prepared 9"x13" pan. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. (Mine was perfect at 17).
- To make filling, mix all of the filling ingredients in a mixing bowl and beat until a smooth, silky consistency. Once the crust is baked, pour the lemon filling over hot crust and bake again for 20 to 25 minutes. (Mine was perfect at 20 minutes).
- After the bars have baked, let them cool completely. Sprinkle powdered sugar over the top of the bars and then cut into squares.