Old-Fashioned Lemon Squares

Mary Anne here. It seems every family has their own version of these sweetly tart cookie bars and ours is no exception. They’re a snap to whip up and they store beautifully in a sealed container in the fridge. They’re the perfect foil to a steaming cup of hot tea and an elegant addition to a bridal or baby shower. Let us know your family’s recipe for these delicate treats!

Searching for other sunny citrus treats? Try our Key Lime & Blackberry Bites, Lemon Pudding Cake, Lemon Cupcakes with a Raspberry Mint Glaze, Lemon Olive Oil Cake, Key Lime Pie, Orange Curd Puff Pastry Tartlets, or Key Lime Pie Pops (apparently we love key lime).

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Old-Fashioned Lemon Squares
Makes 16

For the crust:
1 cup flour – stock
¼ cup granulated sugar – stock
¼ cup chopped nuts (I used almonds) – stock
¼ Teaspoon salt – stock
1 stick chilled, sweet butter, cut into slices (8 Tablespoons) – stock
For the filling:
¾ cup sugar – stock
the zest of 3 lemons (about 3 Tablespoons) – $1.50
6 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice – included above
2 eggs, lightly beaten – stock
3 Tablespoons flour – stock
pinch of salt – stock
½ Teaspoon baking powder – stock
confectioner’s sugar, fresh raspberries, and mint for garnish – optional
Grand Total Assuming a Well-Stocked Pantry: $1.50
Total Per Serving: $0.09

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 9 inch square pan with foil. Spray with cooking oil (i.e. Pam), or butter the foil.

2. Prepare the crust. In the bowl of a food processor, armed with the metal blade, combine the flour, salt, and sugar.

3. Add the chilled butter and nuts. Hit the pulse button several times until the mixture resembles fine meal.

4. Using the flat bottom of a custard cup or glass, dusted in flour, press the crust mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan.

5. Bake until the edges are golden brown, between 15 and 20 minutes.

6. Meanwhile, prepare the lemon filling. In the bowl of the same food processor, combine the filling ingredients. Note: This isn’t much more than blending. If you’re too enthusiastic, the mixture will be foamy and compromise the surface’s presentation once baked.

7. Pour into the warm crust. Bake for about 20 minutes until the edges are brown and the lemon is set.

8. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack.

9. Carefully lift the foil/dessert from the pan and peel away the foil. Cut into 16 squares. Decorate with sifted Confectioner’s sugar, berries, and mint leaves, if desired. Serve at room temperature; store tightly wrapped in the fridge.


  1. says

    I love these too and yes, I think I have the best recipe…which of course if pretty much like everyone else recipe…it’s just from an old and trusting book and that does give it special meaning.

    So I made something today that is similar but not. Lemon, raspberry and mint even. But you might have to drink mine. :)

  2. says

    Wow, what a wonderful dessert! Love these beautiful squares. The perfect dessert for Mother’s Day! I can’t wait to try this recipe :-)

    I would like to invite you to share this post (and other posts :-) ) on a new photo based recipe sharing site that launched only this Monday. The idea is simple: all recipe photographs are published within minutes of submission. And, of course, the images link back to the author’s site.

    It’s called RecipeNewZ (with Z) – http://recipenewz.com

    I hope you get a chance to visit and to share some of your delicious posts with our viewers. It would be a pleasure to have you on board :-)

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