Homemade lemon curd in a glass jar on a wood table with fresh lemons and scones in the background.

Lemon Curd | Simple Sundays

Have 15 minutes? Make this easy, homemade lemon curd. You’ll be licking the spoon in no time. (Make double – it makes a good gift!)

Homemade lemon curd in a glass jar on a wood table with fresh lemons and scones in the background.
Lemon Curd | Simple Sundays

Have 15 minutes? Make this easy, homemade lemon curd. You’ll be licking the spoon in no time. (Make double – it makes a good gift!)

Jar of lemon curd on brown table with fresh lemon in background.

Note: This post first appeared August 7, 2011 and has been updated with improved kitchen notes, recipe annotation, photography and video. I hope you enjoy this favorite from my kitchen!

Today’s post comes by way of a special request from a reader comment when I published my recipe for No Bake Lemon Curd Cheesecake Bars a few weeks ago. When I made the bars, I used the convenient (and divine) lemon curd from Trader Joe’s. However, we don’t all have a Trader Joe’s nearby, and the truth is, Lemon Curd is really very simple to make. Thanks to Stef the request!

Lemon curd on scone with fresh berries on a plate.

Lemon curd – I could eat it by the spoonful. I must confess, as simple as it is to make, I usually buy it. Honestly, I’m not sure why. Habit, perhaps. Or maybe because the Trader Joe’s lemon curd tastes so damn good.

But, it really is so easy to make; store bought lemon curd isn’t exactly time saving. You can whip up a batch in 15 minutes, and it will keep for a long while – about a week in the refrigerator, and much longer in the freezer.

Lemon curd in a jar.

Simply put, lemon curd is a custard, but take a look at all the recipes in the books and online, and you will see that there can be quite a variation when it comes to the critical ingredient (other than the lemon, of course) and the methodology. There seems to be a debate as to whether one should use whole eggs, just yolks, or a combination of the two. They probably all work. But for the purpose of today’s recipe, I wanted to recreate the lemony lusciousness I have grown accustomed to in the TJ’s jar. This recipe is a marriage of Martha Stewart and David Lebovitz. If their lemon curds could marry, this would be their child.

Have 15 minutes? Make this lemon curd. You’ll be licking the spoon in no time.

Lemon curd in a jar, with scones.

Have 15 minutes? Make this homemade lemon curd. You’ll be licking the spoon in no time. (Make double – it makes a good gift!)

Wondering how to use lemon curd?  Besides slathering it on top of scones, be sure to check out these recipes that use lemon curd:

No-bake Lemon Curd Cheesecake Bars
Meyer Lemon and Raspberry Pavlova
Lemon Curd Frozen Yogurt
Lemon-berry Cheesecake Parfaits
Meyer Lemon Coffee Cake with Almond Streusel

Lemon Curd

Have 15 minutes? Make this easy, homemade lemon curd. You’ll be licking the spoon in no time. (Make double – it makes a good gift!)
Homemade lemon curd in a glass jar on a wood table with fresh lemons and scones in the background.
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5 from 6 votes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Chilling Time 1 hour
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 1 cup
Calories 152kcal

Ingredients

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 whole egg
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into small cubes

Instructions

  • In a small saucepan, whisk together egg yolk and egg until combined. While whisking, pour in sugar, lemon juice and zest, and continue whisking until creamy and well incorporated, about one minute. Place over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the custard thickens and can coat the back of a wooden spoon, about 8-10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in the butter, one cube at a time. Strain into a bowl or jar, cover surface with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour. Keep refrigerated.

Notes

Adapted from David Lebovitz‘s Improved Lemon Curd and Martha Stewart’s Lemon Curd, The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook (MSL Omnimedia, 2000).
Gift Giving
This makes a delicious homemade gift. Just be sure to let your recipient know to keep it refrigerated.
Make it Dairy-Free
Reader Naomi L. made this lemon curd dairy-free by substituting the butter with one egg yolk plus 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Can Blueberry Lemon Curd Be Canned?
Many people ask if blueberry lemon curd can be processed in a hot water bath for long term storage, similar to jams and jellies. I know friends who do make and can fruit curds. In general, what I have learned is frozen lemon curd can be kept much longer (up to 1 year) than lemon curd that is preserved by canning (3-4 months), but the key in doing it the latter way is using bottled versus fresh lemon juice. The worry is that fresh lemon juice lacks the acidity to make the canning safe.
I recommend checking out these two links that have info/recipes for canning lemon curd:
http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/can_02/lemon_curd.html
http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/publications/nchfp/factsheet

Nutrition

Serving: 2Tbsp | Calories: 152kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 108mg | Sodium: 12mg | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 275IU | Vitamin C: 5.7mg | Iron: 0.2mg
Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see! Tag @kitchconfidante on Instagram and hashtag it #kitchenconfidante

Comments

Recipe Rating




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  1. Paula H.

    5 stars
    So good and easy! Next time I may add just add a little more sugar.

    Reply
    • Paula H.

      5 stars
      I forgot to say that I didn’t strain it either, and it doesn’t bother me at all.

      Reply
  2. Vivienne Stanek

    5 stars
    Made this and love it, easy to follow, I did not think it needed to be strained as I love the full flavour, I used fresh lemons that grow abundantly in my area. This is my go to Lemon Curd. Thank you.

    Reply
    • Liren Baker

      Vivienne, I’m so glad that this has become your go-to recipe for lemon curd! How lucky that lemons are abundant where you live! Thank you so much for coming back to let me know :)

      Reply
      • Chris

        5 stars
        What an easy recipe. Just finished making 2 batches, after picking lemons from my Dads tree. The taste is amazing. Closest recipe that reminds me of my Nans curd and then my mums curd recipe. Thank you for sharing. This is the best recipe definitely a keeper.

      • Liren Baker

        Thank you, Chris! I’m glad you love the lemon curd as much as I do — how lucky that you have lemons from your dad’s tree!

  3. Naomik

    Just finished making this and its divine! I had to make it dairy free for an allergy so instead of butter I added an extra egg yolk and then added about 2 tbsp of olive oil at the end. It turned out really well! (I’m sure coconut oil would work even better but I don’t have any at the moment!) Anyway, just thought I would share in case others need a dairy free alternative! Thanks! (And now to not eat all of it before the party…)

    Reply
    • Liren Baker

      I’m so glad you shared this!! Such a good trick to make the lemon curd dairy-free, I’ll be sure to add this tip to the recipe notes to help the other readers. Thank you so much!

      Reply
  4. Jennifer Dabney

    5 stars
    This was really easy to make, with delicious results. I will be making it for a second time tonight.

    Reply
    • Liren Baker

      I’m so pleased you loved it, Jennifer!! Lemon curd is such a delicious indulgence! Thanks for letting me know!

      Reply
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