Photo of Lemon bars by WW

Lemon bars

Total Time
1 hr 12 min
12 min
50 min
These well-loved bars will certainly make your mouth pucker! They're tart yet sweet and perfect for your next casual gathering. The crust is par-baked to prevent sogginess and create that wonderfully crisp bite that contrasts perfectly with the creamy lemon filling. Pouring the lemon mixture over the still-hot crust is another must-do step that prevents it from becoming too wet. Additionally, after baking, be sure to let them cool completely so that the bars are sturdy enough for eating. There is a small amount of cornstarch in confectioners’ sugar that helps thicken the filling thicken in addition to adding sweetness.


All-purpose flour

1 cup(s)

Packed light brown sugar

5 Tbsp

Unsalted butter

8 Tbsp, about 1/2 cup (1 stick), cold, cut into 1/2-inch pieces


4 large egg(s)

Vanilla extract

½ tsp

Powdered sugar (confectioner's)

1½ cup(s), divided, or confectioners' sugar

Fresh lemon juice

¾ cup(s)

Lemon zest

2 tsp


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. To make crust, mix flour and light brown sugar in food processor until well combined. Scatter butter over flour mixture and pulse to combine using short bursts of power until butter is cut into tiny pea-sized pieces and dough appears lumpy. Sprinkle crust mixture onto bottom of ungreased 13 X 9 X 2-inch baking pan as evenly as possible; firmly press down with spatula to create a packed surface. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, to make lemon topping, beat eggs in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until well blended. Add vanilla extract and 3/4 cup of confectioners' sugar; mix well. Add lemon juice and zest and remaining confectioners' sugar; mix until sugar is completely dissolved..
  4. As soon as crust is baked, remove from oven and reduce oven temperature to 300°F. Immediately pour lemon mixture over hot crust. Bake until filling is set, about 30 minutes. Let cool completely in pan on wire rack. Cut lengthwise into 3 strips, then cut each strip crosswise into 8 bars, making total of 24 bars.
  5. Per serving: 1 bar