Lemon Curd

Lemon curd is such an easy thing to make and delicious on just about everything! It’s sweet, tart and so much better when it’s homemade!

Lemon Curd

Easy homemade lemon curd

How to use lemon curd

Lemon curd is a tasty addition to many things. It’s great for dipping shortbread cookies in, adding to yogurt or pancakes, or baking with. I’ve used it in multiple cakes, including a Lemon Cake with Lemon Bavarian Cream and a Lemon Mascarpone Layer Cake. It’s great as a filling in these Lemon Meringue Cupcakes. And it’s awesome on this Lemon Meringue Cheesecake and Mini Lemon Raspberry Cheesecakes. The possibilities are endless!

And if you’re going to have lemon curd, it should definitely be homemade! It always makes me sad when I hear of someone using store-bought lemon curd. There’s nothing wrong with it, but it just isn’t the same. It doesn’t have nearly the same flavor. If you’ve never made it before, you seriously have to try it. You will never buy it pre-made again.

How to make easy lemon curd

So now that you’re convinced of how you have to make this lemon curd, let’s talk about what goes into making it. It’s only 5 ingredients and two of them come from lemons, so it’s really like 4. Lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar, egg yolks and some butter – that’s it!

Naturally the lemon juice and lemon zest give the lemon curd it’s tart, lemony flavor. The sugar adds the sweet element. The egg yolks thicken the mixture and are what really adds that extra pop of flavor, in my opinion. No whole eggs here, just the yolks. They really accentuate the lemon, making this the BEST lemon curd. The butter also adds a little flavor.

lemon curd in sealed jarfavorite lemon curd

All the ingredients are cooked over a double boiler. You could also place a metal bowl over a pot of simmering water if you don’t have a double boiler (which is what I do). The reason for this method of cooking is so that you don’t cook the eggs too quickly and end up with scrambled eggs. That would not be good.

You want to heat the mixture until it’s nice and thickened. You can eyeball it and see that it’s done when it coats the back of a spoon, or use a thermometer to see when it reaches 160 degrees. I personally like the thermometer. It helps to make sure that it’s hot enough for the eggs to be safe to eat, but not so hot that it ends up too thick.

The final lemon curd is pure heaven. While I tend to use it in desserts, it’s truly a task to not just eat it all with a spoon. And it’s so easy to make, you can whip it together whenever you feel like a nice lemony treat! Time to go grab a bunch of lemons!

Best lemon curd recipe

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Easy Lemon Curd on spoon
Recipe

Lemon Curd

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes, plus cooling time
  • Yield: 3/4 cup
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Stove
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This lemon curd is such an easy thing to make and delicious on just about everything! It’s sweet, tart and so much better when it’s homemade!


Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup (60ml) fresh lemon juice (about 12 lemons)
  • 2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/3 cup (69g) sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 tbsp (42g) salted butter

Instructions

1. Combine all the ingredients in a double boiler (or in a metal bowl over a pot of simmering water). Heat while whisking constantly until mixture thickens and reaches 160 degrees, or coats the back of a spoon.
2. Pour the lemon curd into a heat proof bowl, cover with clear wrap pressed onto the the top of the curd to avoid a film developing, and refrigerate until cold.
3. Serve with your desired treat. Lemon curd is best when well covered and consumed within 1-2 weeks.


Keywords: Lemon curd

Enjoy!

collage of lemon curd

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Recipe rating

130 Comments
  1. Anne Jenkins

    I love this recipe. I find that if I microwave it a minute at a time on high and whisk after each time until it is hot enough it is very quick to make rather than doing it over hot water. I have a thermometer and when it is hot enough then it is ready. Thanks so much

    1. Anne Jenkins

      Forgot to say that when I make a pavlova I make it like a nest and put the lemon curd in the middle. Great to use up the yolks of the eggs, then I put the cream over the top, really delicious

  2. Allison G. Lewis

    I never knew lemon curd was so easy!! I use this between the layers of my gluten free coconut cake at Easter (which has become a recent tradition!) and absolutely love it! Thank you!

  3. zoya

    this is the besst lemon curd ive ever haddd the tangy and sweet ratio was perfet i acctually doubled the recipie it was sooo goood
    ps your website is so cute and the pictures are soo prettyyy

  4. Claire

    Just WOW… I’ve made this recipe a few times now and it’s amazing. I never actually looked at how much it made as I put it in several little jars for friends, can you tell me what this recipe would yield in a gram jar as I need to make quite a few full size jars for friends and I want to be able to buy the correct amount of ingredients. Thank you so much 😊 

      1. Lindsay

        Where do you live? I know outside of the U.S., cup measurements aren’t common. But here, we have actual measuring cups to measure with, which is what I’m referring to.

Lindsay
About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12