Classic Lemon Squares

These simple squares are a Nana's kitchen homestay. They can be made way ahead of time, so you can have a batch in your freezer when you anticipate guests. Make them more or less lemony depending on your taste for tart.

Prep time:
20 min.   |  
Cook time:
50 min.   |  
Total time:
1 hr. 10 min.   |  
Servings:
30 petite squares

Ingredients:

  • Crust:
  • 16 oz. or 2 sticks of butter
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 ¼ cup flour (AP or Whole Wheat)
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • Lemon Filling:
  • 6 Large Eggs
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon zest, about 5 lemons
  • 1 ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup flour (AP of Whole Wheat)
  • Confectioner's sugar, for dusting on top
  • 1 square 13x9 baking dish, greased

Let's go:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. In an electric mixer, with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar, until it’s a homogenous mixture and is a pale yellow color, about 4 minutes on medium/high speed.
  3. Turn mixture to low, slowly add the flour and then the salt. Place a towel over mixer and around bowl, turn up to medium speed (this makes sure flour doesn’t fly all over your kitchen), and mix together for 3 minutes.
  4. Scrape onto a well-floured cutting board and form into a ball. Let it sit while you prepare the baking dish.
  5. Place the ball of dough in the middle, and using your hands, spread out until it forms an even layer across the entire dish, making sure it comes up the lip of the dish about ½-inch to ¼-inch. You may need to continue to add flour to your hands so it the dough won’t stick to you.
  6. Place in oven and bake for 10 minutes, until dough is light brown. Take out and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile, in a medium/large bowl, whisk together the eggs. Then add in the remaining ingredients, whisk together until there are no flour clumps. Leave on the side until the dough is done.
  8. Pour the lemon mixture on top of the dough and then place in oven. Bake for 35 minutes, until the lemon curd is set and the sides are slightly browned.
  9. Take out of the oven and allow to cool completely. You may want to refrigerate to speed up the cooling. Do not cut the squares until after they have cooled.
  10. Once cooled, cut into squares, dust with the confectioner sugar (to hide the bubbly, sometimes not so perfect top) and serve or refrigerate until serving.

These are best made a day ahead. Keep in refrigerator or freeze for up to 2 weeks.

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