Mom It Down: Lemon Bars

First of all, thanks for responding about the Amish Friendship Bread starter. I was going to put that recipe up today, but I realized that the starter is not ready yet. (I’m on day 8 as I write this and it won’t be ready until day 12). That said, next week should be the week. So, if you’re still interested in getting some of the dough, let me know on this post. I will try and mail it since there are six days in between having to do anything with it. If it explodes in the mail, so be it. But I really don’t think it will be a problem. And you Brooklyn people? You’re easy; I can walk it to you.


OK! Now for today’s Mom It Down. This is a recipe I have been following for almost a year. I have to be honest upfront: these babies can be temperamental. I am not sure if it’s due to the weather, the temperature of oven or what, but it’s important to keep a close eye on everything while baking. It took me a few tries to get these correct, but once I did? Oh my crap! They are freaking amazing. And right now I can’t get enough lemon.

What you will need

  • 9 x 13 pan
  • Mixer
  • Lemon zester or grater



  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt


  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 tbsps. lemon zest
  • 1 cup of fresh lemon juice (About six lemons)

Mom It Down!


Preheat oven to 350. Make sure the oven is hot for a while before putting the crust in. I find that while my oven claims to be at 350, it really isn’t. Granted, I only discovered this once I bought a separate oven thermometer. If you don’t have one, just make sure it’s hot for at least 15 minutes.

Let your butter warm to room temperature. I usually let this happen in the mixer itself. Once that’s done, add everything and mix it up into a ball. Take that and mash it down into the bottom of your 9 x 13 pan.


Put that in the oven for 15 minutes. You want to make sure it’s golden. DO NOT over bake the crust! If you do, it will be far too hard in the end. (I took mine out too soon, before the 15 minutes because I was nervous. The crust you see below could have gone the full 15 and maybe a little longer. Eyeball it.)


Remove from the oven. Set aside.



Beat your eggs until they are fluffy. Add the flour, sugar, baking powder. Mix that. Add lemon juice and zest. Pour that over pre-baked crust. Put that in the oven for 25 – 30 minutes.

LET THAT COOL COMPLETELY, then add powdered sugar to the top. Cut and serve. YUM!!

Overcoming Obstacles

Like I said earlier, keep an eye on these babies while they’re baking, both with the crust and the filling. It’s pretty obvious when they are done and when they’re undercooked. I overbaked the crust one time and it was REALLY hard at the end. So, it’s probably best to air on the lighter side when it comes to the crust. The filling should look precisely how one might imagine. I have undercooked the bars before and they turn to mush in the end. You don’t want that. So, while you might air on the conservative side with the crust, you can be more liberal on time with the filling. I hope that makes sense.


I haven’t messed with these too much because they are truly amazing as is. I have lessened the sugar to 1 1/4 cup (Because I ran out!) and it was fine. Otherwise, I haven’t done much in the way of messing with them, so feel free to give suggestions, however. I wonder if some fresh ginger might be nice?

Let me know if you have any comments!


  1. Michele Chaves July 6, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    these look delicious. i love lemon bars and have never attempted to make them. i’ll have to try these! yum.


  2. I love lemon bars, and these look delicious.

    I’ve been obsessed with grapefruit lately, and you may have just inspired me to play around with a grapefruit version of these. I’ll report back if I try it!


  3. Oh, Amber! If you do, you must let me know how it goes. I keep meaning to try a lime version of these but every time I decide to make these, i always default back to lemon because LEMONS RULE. :]

    I bet a lime version would rock too.

    Michele: You must try them. In fact, I think i may have to make another batch tomorrow. They’re just so good. And when they are perfect, my goodness, they make me dance. No joke.


  4. Have you tried lowering the sugar and butter content of the crust ?


  5. Yes. You can lower it to 3/4 cup super easily. I have done that. I really should have said as much. Sorry!


  6. It is so funny that you posted this- I had a DREAM about lemon bars last night!

    This is very similar to the recipe I use. My English husband had never had lemon bars before, but my grandma always made them when I came to visit. I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, but lemon bars (and cheesecake…) are my weak spots.

    You have inspired me to make lemon bars again this weekend! Will make both the husband AND me happy campers….


  7. I’ll have to try this recipe, it looks great!

    And if you’re willing to mail the Amish friendship bread to MN, I’d love to have some.


  8. Send me your address! If mine works out, one of the batches is definitely yours. (If it’s terrible, I won’t put you through it. hehe)


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