Ever wonder how to make lemon curd? Look no further! With just a handful of simple ingredients you could make your own easy lemon curd from scratch. This easy lemon curd recipe is tart, not too sweet and ultra lemony. Ready to make it?
How about an easy homemade lemon curd recipe? Once you make your own, there’s no going back to store-bought. It’s just too easy (and tasty).
I used lemon curd in lemon cream tarts a while back. I decided that this deliciousness needs to shine on its own.
So today, I’ve brought you simple step by step instructions on how to make lemon curd right in your own kitchen!
Lemon Curd Vs. Lemon Pie Filling
Lemon curd is a type of preserve made simply from lemon, butter, eggs and sugar…and a pinch of salt. You can actually make a variety of fruit curds, like grapefruit, pineapple or orange. Today, though, it’s lemon!
The difference between curd vs pie filling is primarily the thickening agents, the thickness and potency of lemon flavour.
The thickeners in curd are actually the egg yolks and pectin in the fruit. Whereas, lemon pie filling typically has a thickening agent, like cornstarch. Also, pie filling is typically thicker than curd. Flavour-wise, curd is a lot more potent and ‘punchy’ in lemon flavour than lemon pie filling too.
How to Make Lemon Curd
Full details are in the recipe card below, but here are the basics:
- In a heavy bottomed pot on the stove top set to medium heat, melt butter.
- Add sugar and salt and stir to combine, about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Remove pot from heat and add lemon zest, lemon juice and egg yolks. Place back on heat and whisk constantly to combine and until mixture thickens, about 5 minutes.
- Below is what your mixture should look like. It’s thick enough to cover the back of a spoon when you draw a line through it with your finger (note – lick finger…hehehe).
- Strain curd through a sieve and press with a spatula. This will remove any solids, especially those egg solids.
- When the curd is pressed through a sieve, pour into a glass jar, allow to cool slightly, cover, and refrigerate. It will thicken further as it cools (and it’s best enjoyed when cooled, if ya ask me). Told ya it was easy!
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Lemon curd needs to be refrigerated.
After you’ve made the curd on the stove-top and it nicely coats the back of a spoon, pour into a glass jar. After it has cooled slightly, cover and place in the fridge to further cool. It will thicken even more in the fridge.
How Long Does It Last
Because we are not preserving here and there are eggs involved, I recommend enjoying within 3 to 5 days.
Can You Freeze?
Yes! Lemon curd can be placed in freezer safe containers for up to a year. Allow some space at the top of the container for any expansion. To thaw, place in refrigerator for 24 hours before using.
Uses for Lemon Curd
- Fold cooled curd into whipped cream for a delicious dessert topping
- Enjoy over Greek yogurt
- Dollop over granola and berries
- Spoon over vanilla ice-cream for an extra special treat
- Eat straight from the jar….so tempting 😉
- Spread over toast
- Use in no bake dessert in a jar
More Recipe Tips
Use a heavy bottomed pot.
Just melt the butter. You don’t want it too hot.
Add the lemon juice to the melted butter before adding eggs to cool down the butter. You don’t want scrambled eggs.
Once you start making the lemon curd, whisk, whisk, whisk!
While optional, I like to strain the cooked lemon curd through a sieve to remove any egg solids. This makes for a creamier lemon curd.
Don’t forget to let this curd cool in the fridge for a couple hours. It will thicken even further as it cools.
Other Easy Lemon Recipes you May Enjoy
I’ve made other curds in the past too. Perhaps I’ll share one of those another day 😉 Hope you love this easy lemon recipe!
If you make this lemon curd recipe, be sure to leave a comment below. Love to know how you enjoyed! Thank you!
Easy Lemon Curd Recipe
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- ⅓ cup sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 5 large egg yolks (reserve the whites for another use)
- In a heavy bottomed pot on the stove top on medium heat, melt butter.
- Stir in sugar and salt to butter and whisk for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Remove pot from heat and stir in lemon juice, lemon zest and egg yolks, whisking to combine.
- Place mixture back on heat, whisking continuously for about 5 to 8 minutes until mixture coats back of spoon. Don't boil.
- Remove from heat and strain mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl to remove any egg solids.
- Pour into a clean jar. Allow to cool slightly before covering. Store in the fridge. Mixture will further thicken as it cools. Enjoy within 5 days.
- Use a heavy bottomed pot.
- Just melt the butter.
- Add the lemon juice to the butter before adding eggs to cool down the butter. You don’t want scrambled eggs.
- Once you start making the lemon curd, whisk, whisk, whisk!
- While optional, I like to strain the cooked lemon curd through a sieve to remove any egg solids. This makes for a creamier lemon curd.
- Don’t forget to let this curd cool in the fridge for a couple hours. It will thicken even further as it cools.
- Store in a covered container in the fridge and enjoy within 3 to 5 days.