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Easy to Make Lemon Curd

Mary loves cooking from scratch using natural ingredients. Here she shares some of her favorite recipes and products.

How to Make Luscious Lemon Curd

Quick, what did you have for your breakfast? If you had to stop to think about it, perhaps your breakfast wasn't that great. If you are ready to start your day with something that will make you open your eyes, look at your toast and say, "Wow, that's great!" you need to make some lemon curd.

Don't be put off by the term curd, although it sounds like cheese it isn't. What you will be making is a rich lemony spread suitable for toast, bread, or as a filling in cakes and various other types of desserts.

Made from just 4 ingredients with nothing artificial added to it, you will be treating your family to something that is healthier and tastier than anything you can buy in the store.

Use the Best Ingredients

I know that many of the readers of this article will shy away at the thought of using real butter, real lemon juice and free range eggs. You may feel that it isn't worth the hassle to source these items.

If you feel that way, then maybe you should buy a ready made product with a fancy label and some artificial coloring which is to make you think it is 'lemony'.

Let me tell you something, you and your family are worth the little extra cost and time it takes to make this recipe. Not only are the raw ingredients better for you, the lemon curd is far superior to anything you will buy at your local store.

The yellow color you see is not from the lemons, it is from the color of the yolks. Using eggs from caged birds will not give you the rich lemon yellow color you are after.

Here on my farm in Brazil, I have chickens and when guests see the color of the yolks, they can't believe it. They are closer to a deep orange yellow. The chickens are out all day eating a natural diet and the yolks reflect this.

If you're accustom to eating margarine and not real butter, reacquaint yourself with this simple luxury food. The end product from using butter in place of margarine is noticeable.

Always try and use real lemons and not the lemon juice from a bottle. Most good grocery stores carry lemons year round and the difference is immense.

Use fresh lemons

Use fresh lemons

**Top Tips for Lemons**

To get the maximum juice use room temperature lemons.

Before cutting, roll your lemon on the counter

several times to help release the juice.

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

5 min

6 min

11 min

Makes one jar

  • 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice, approx 4 lemons
  • 2 Eggs, large
  • 2 Egg yolks, large
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 3 oz + 6TBS Butter
  • 1 tsp Lemon zest, (optional)
Scroll to Continue
  1. In a heavy based medium size saucepan, stir together the lemon juice and sugar.
  2. Add the eggs and yolks and whisk. Do not commit yourself to anything else because you will be stirring until this is done.
  3. Using a spatula instead of a spoon, begin cooking over medium heat. Keep that spatula moving across the entire surface of the pan.
  4. The mixture will begin to thicken and should coat the back of a spoon. This will take approximately 6 minutes depending on how fast your stove cooks. The mixture will thicken as it cools.
  5. Once it has thickened, remove from heat and add the butter and zest if using. Stir to combine.
  6. Spoon this into bowl or jar. Seal or cover with plastic wrap. To cool this quickly it can be set into a waterbath. Once it's cool, refrigerate.
Cake with lemon curd filling

Cake with lemon curd filling

Uses of Lemon Curd

Now that you have made this, you might be thinking, what do I do with it?

I am glad you asked. Here are a few suggestions how I use it.

Cakes: Use this as a filling between layers. The sharpness of the lemon helps balance the sweetness of the cake. Even people who don't normally like lemon flavored products, love this.

Toast: This is how we use it most of the time. My husband loves a slice of toast in the morning and lemon curd is by far his topping of choice.

Scones or biscuits: Perfect for an afternoon snack. Slice the scone or biscuit in half, spead with a lashing of butter and top with lemon curd. If you're really feeling decadent, a dollop of whipped cream atop makes a heavenly creation.

Pies & tart: Use this as a filling for pies or tarts. A sprinkling of powdered (icing) sugar will make this look finished without the need for a top crust or a meringue.

Muffins, cupcakes, fairy cakes: Cut a hole in the top and make a hollow in the center. Place a small spoonful of lemon curd inside. Replace top and dust with powdered sugar.

Cupcakes with lemon curd

Cupcakes with lemon curd

Variations of Methods

You may have seen other methods of making lemon curd in cookbooks or on the internet. Some will add all the ingredients at the start. Others may add the hot liquid to the egg yolks as one does when making a custard. All of these methods will work when making lemon curd. The idea is the same, and with continued stirring all will result in a smooth texture.

Lumpy Lemon Curd?

If your mixture is lumpy, simply pass through a sieve to remove the lumps.

© 2015 Mary Wickison


Mary Wickison (author) from USA on October 25, 2016:

Hi Susie,

Mine too, I need to make some more. It is so versatile. The lemons here in Brazil are quite sharp but wonderful. In fact most people just use their lemons on fish. They don't make pie, lemon curd or even lemonade! I have seen lemons abandoned on trees here.

Lemon curd was something I used to buy when I lived in the UK and never thought of making it until I moved here.

Thanks for reading and pinning.

Susie Lehto from Minnesota on October 25, 2016:

I have never made lemon curd. I tell you, my mouth is watering for some right now. Pinned this on my on my cooking recipes.

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on March 06, 2016:

Hi Audrey,

You're welcome. It is quite a zingy wake up call.

Audrey Howitt from California on March 06, 2016:

This has always, always been a favorite of mine--so luscious! Thank you for waking up my taste buds this morning!

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on September 06, 2015:

Hi Bronwen,

You must be psychic. We have passion fruit growing here and normally I juice it. There is always an excess of fruit so that is a great idea. I imagine it is fantastic. I will definitely be adding it to my repertoire.

Thanks for the inspiration.

Bronwen Scott-Branagan from Victoria, Australia on September 05, 2015:

Good recipe. I used to make this and also one with passionfruit. Yummy!

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on September 01, 2015:

Hi Dr. BJ

You live in the perfect area to make this with so much citrus around you. Don't stop at lemon curd, try orange and lime as well. Oh heck you could make a wonderful mixture of the three.

Here, in Brazil we have limão which are the original lemons, and are often green. They are like a cross between a lime and a lemon, quite sharp.

Obrigada para lendo.

Thanks for reading.

drbj and sherry from south Florida on September 01, 2015:

I had never thought of curd as something delicious to eat, Mary. Thanks for this intro to healthful lemon curd.

I mean, obrigada!

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on September 01, 2015:

Hi Ms Dora,

You're very welcome. I do hope you get the opportunity to try this, it is delightful.

Thanks for reading.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on September 01, 2015:

I totally agree with you about the best ingredients. I'm tempted to try it, and I may. Thank you so much for a really good recipe.

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

Hi Grace,

It is! I see you are from NYC so you can get the best food going. A friend of mine from there, said she missed the availability of great food when she moved to the southern states.

If you get a chance to make this lemon curd, do, you won't regret it.

Thanks for your visit.

Grace Marguerite Williams from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on August 31, 2015:

This sounds delicious. I did not know that lemon curd could be so good!

Ann Carr from SW England on August 31, 2015:

Eton Mess is one of the easiest things to make ever - it must be, because I'm no cooking expert by any stretch! With home-made meringue it would be even better.

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

Hi Wissam,

It is fantastic, I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Wissam Qawasmeh from Amman - Jordan on August 31, 2015:

WoW, look delicious, gonna try it right now, it's easy to make

thank you for sharing

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

That sounds ideal Ann. I have seen Eton mess recipes but never tried it. Because we have a glut of eggs at the moment, I should make some meringues and have a try.

Thanks for the idea.

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

Hi Carb Diva,

Oo you and me both. It is like a taste of sunshine. That is great, let me know what you think of it.


Ann Carr from SW England on August 31, 2015:

Great recipe and great suggestions. I love Lemon Curd and our French friends don't have it so I educate them too!

I use lemon curd in Eton Mess - fold it into a mixture of cream, meringue and fruit (strawberries, blueberries or blackcurrants are best) and you have a wonderfully tasty dessert which is so easy. Don't mix the curd too much, though; it's great to see the swirls in the mixture and you get a surprise tang now and then.


Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

Hi Bill,

Well this curd is different than the cheese curd. I think it originally meant to curdle but this doesn't curdle, it just cooks which makes it thick.

Not sure how you feel about lemons but pass this recipe on to Bev and she'll whip it up in no time.

Always a pleasure to hear from you.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on August 31, 2015:

I love anything lemon-y. You have inspired me. I'm off to buy lemons. Thank you for a great hub.

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

Hello PeachPurple,

Yes some do, I know my kids do. I remember they used to eat a lot of small lemon curd tartlets. They were quick for me to make, and were always a big hit with them.

Thanks for stopping by.

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

Hi Amber,

It was something I bought when I lived in the UK. Then I found out how simple it was to make. I try and keep a jar in the fridge, it is so versatile.

I hope everything is going well for you up there in Georgia.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on August 31, 2015:

That's one of those words I've heard of my entire life but had no idea what it was...curd! Thank you for filling in a huge gap in my education. :) Seriously, I didn't have a clue what curds were. LOL I feel so stupid right now.

peachy from Home Sweet Home on August 31, 2015:

Kids gonna love this

Mrs Frugal from United States on August 31, 2015:

Sounds and looks delicious! I think I would enjoy this lemon curd best in a cake, on a scone, or a warm buttermilk biscuit. Thanks for sharing and I hope you have a wonderful day! :)

Mary Wickison (author) from USA on August 31, 2015:

Hi Paul,

Yes you are right. In certain areas the food which is widely available is tasteless and I suspect equally lacking in vitamins.

We need to return to the goodness of freshly properly grown food.

Paul Edmondson from Burlingame, CA on August 31, 2015:

I agree with your comment about high-quality ingredients. They can really make a big difference in the outcome of a recipe. Fresh and real everytime:)

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