Around the Table: Classic Lemon Bars

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Today I'm excited to team up with The Quiet Place to bring you this month's Around the Table link up! Around the Table is a monthly link up dedicated to recipe swapping. Each month there is some kind of theme to give everyone some help in decided what they might choose to share!

Our theme this time around is Desserts. You've got until next Thursday to link up with us. Bonus points if your recipe includes LEMON. 

So...I'm sharing my recipe for Lemon Bars which happens to be one of the desserts that is most popular at my house! It's super simple, fun to make with kids, and perfect for spring

Ingredient gathering. If that's not a sign of the ease that's in store, I don't know what is!

The first step involves making a lovely shortbread to serve as the base of your bars. You'll begin by creaming your butter and powdered sugar.

Here's a tip...I almost never remember to give my butter time to come to room temperature. If you're making cookies or a frosting or a shortbread (or something else that calls for soft butter), unwrap the butter and pop into the microwave on a plate for roughly 15 to 20 seconds.

Next you'll beat in the flour and salt just until the shortbread dough comes together.

Now it's time for my favorite part. Use your fingers to gently work this airy dough all around the bottom of a greased 8x8 inch baking pan. Make sure it's in a pretty even layer.

Pop into your oven and bake it for 18-20 minutes until the edges are just golden brown. Let it cool on a wire rack while you work on the filling.

Your filling begins with one cup of regular sugar and two eggs. Beat them until smooth. After this, you'll be swapping the beaters with a spatula, so make sure it's nice and smooth!

Stir in your lemon juice.

Another tip - I love using fresh lemons, but I also love the short cut that ReaLemon lemon juice provides! Sometimes I go to the store and buy the lemons, but usually, I reach for the big green bottle that's already in my fridge!

Very gently fold in your flour. It might clump up a bit, but work quickly and stay gentle. The texture of the filling is going to blow you away! It's like you're mixing up a cloud in your kitchen.

Pour your filling over your slightly cooled shortbread and pop it back into the oven for 17 to 20 more minutes. This time around, the filling is going to cook and set up.

You can remove it from the oven as soon as the filling doesn't really jiggle when you give the pan a slight shake.

This is the ugliest batch of lemon bars that I've ever removed from the oven. I'm convinced it knew it was going to be on here and was throwing a fit about it. Okay...Maybe not. BUT, I wanted you to see that dark spots and all, this dessert is super forgiving.

If yours comes out of the oven looking like mine did, don't even sweat it. There's powdered sugar going on top and it will take care of it ALL. Trust me.

This is the hardest and most important step. Once the bars have COMPLETELY cooled, cut them into squares (I do 9, because if I'm going to eat dessert, I want dessert. You can do more, or less, if you want!) and remove them from the pan. Sprinkle generously with powdered sugar.

Prepare to watch them disappear off of the cooling rack or be ready to swat the hands trying to get at them. They're really that good!

See how easy that was?

Classic Lemon Bars
slightly adapted from Joy of Baking

1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 cup all purpose flour
1/8 tsp salt

1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup ReaLemon juice
2 Tbsp all purpose flour

extra powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, place oven rack into the middle of the oven, and grease an 8x8 in glass baking pan.

To prepare shortbread crust: Beat butter and powdered sugar in a bowl until creamy and smooth. Add flour and salt and beat just until combined.

Press into bottom of pan in an even layer and bake for 18-20 minutes, or just until edges begin to brown. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool while you prepare the filling.

To prepare filling: Beat eggs and granulated sugar until smooth. Add lemon juice and stir to combine. Fold in flour.

Pour filing over shortbread and bake for 17-20 minutes, or just until filling has set. Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool.

Cool completely, cut into squares, and dust with a generous amount of powdered sugar.

If you have any bars leftover they keep for several days covered in the refrigerator. (We store ours on the counter, but the original recipe says to put them in the refrigerator...I don't want to make anyone sick, so we'll go with that. We've never had a problem, but I'll let you make the call!)

The Quiet Place Blog" title="click to view in an external page.">An InLinkz Link-up

ps - It's already been a month since our last round of Ask & Answer! I'm taking questions for this month's post, so please be sure to leave some in the comments. Remember, questions can be serious or silly. This series is a fun way for us to learn more about each other better! 


  1. i am not normally a lemon fan, but i love me some lemon bars!

  2. those look good! I may have to try those :) thanks for co-hosting girl!

  3. YUM, these look so good!! And I am definitely convinced that food knows when it's supposed to look nice for blog purposes, and rebells every time ;-)


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