Lemon Curd

17 April 2016 by Natanja

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  • This lemon curd is super creamy, rich, full of bright lemon flavor and extremely versatile.

    A spoonful of homemade lemon curd

    Lemon curd is one of those things that a) most people love b) isn’t difficult to make and c) has many uses. Due to its sweet and refreshingly sour flavor it has many fans. Popular uses for this creamy custard are:

    As a topping on:

    • Scones, muffins, toast, dinner rolls, pancakes, waffles, crackers,…

    As a filling for:

    • Cupcakes, layered cakes, cookies, crepes, macrons, meringue, puff pastry,..

    Or swirl it into:

    • Frosting, cake batter, cheesecake, yoghurt, mascarpone,..
    Creamy, velvety goodness in a jar

    What exactly is lemon curd though?

    It is a fruit curd, consisting of egg yolks, lemon juice, zest and sugar. After it has cooked to the right consistency, butter is  added to give it a smooth and velvety consistency.  The thickening agents are the egg yolks that turn the liquid mixture into a cream. Lemon juice and zest give it a wonderful zing. The zest is cooked down so much that you do not need to sieve it out.

    But what is the right consistency? When cooked over the double boiler the consistency should be like that of a cheese sauce or sauce hollandaise, thick but still pourable. If you want to be exact, it thickens at 70°C or 160°F. It will continue thickening once cooled.

    Why do we cook it over a double boiler and why is the temperature important? This is because eggs curdle when heated too high. You want to end up with a smooth cream, not scrambled eggs, so do not turn the heat up higher than the recipe calls for.

    Fresh lemon curd in a glass jar garnished with a flower.
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    Lemon Curd

    • Prep Time: 10 minutes
    • Cook Time: 15 minutes
    • Total Time: 25 minutes


    A rich and velvety homemade lemon curd.


    • 5 egg yolks plus 1 whole egg
    • 125ml lemon juice (about 2 and 1/2 lemons)
    • zest from 2 organic lemons
    • 100g white granulated sugar (1/2 cup)
    • pinch of salt
    • 60g butter, cubed and chilled (1/4 cup)


    1. Combine egg yolks, egg, lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar and salt in a bowl. Whip until well combined.
    2. Transfer to a double boiler and cook (while continuously mixing!) over medium heat until the mixture reaches 70°C (160°F) or until it resembles the consistency of cheese sauce or sauce hollandaise. This should take about 10-15 min.
    3. Remove from heat and and add in the cubed butter, stir until it dissolves.
    4. Pour into a clean glass jar and cover the top of the curd with plastic wrap to avoid a skin from forming. Let it cool down to room temperatur and then store sealed tightly in the fridge.


    This recipe yields a little under 2 cups of lemon curd.

    Store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.



    Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, but these are all products I highly recommend. I won’t put anything on this page that I haven’t verified and/or personally used.


    1. demeter | beaming baker on 17. April 2016 at 15:55

      Natanja, your lemon curd looks so pretty! I love how bright the yellow of the lemon came out–remind me of Spring. 🙂 Heading straight off to pin this. 🙂 Hope you’re having a lovely weekend.

      • Natanja on 17. April 2016 at 19:06

        Thanks Demeter 🙂
        Getting a nice yellow color was actually a bit tricky since I was working with yolks that had an incredible deep orange color. I used a whole egg in addition to thin out the color a bit. Worked like a charm. Don’t know why the yolks are so orange…maybe it’s a quality thing (deeper color=better quality)..or maybe it’s just a brand thing..I guess I’ll never know for sure. Oh well 🙂

    2. Mona on 19. April 2016 at 18:13

      What a beautiful, simple, and timely recipe. I just bought a bag of Meyer lemons and was looking for something to do with them. Great cooking tip too. I will pull out my cooking thermometer!

      • Natanja on 20. April 2016 at 8:52

        Thanks Mona 🙂
        Ya a cooking thermometer is your friend here.
        Meyer lemons sound lovely, I actually never had them though. They are not common in my country and grocery stores don’t even sell them here. I wish they would!

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