Classic Lemon Curd Recipe

Lemon Curd with Baguette
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Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 32 servings
Yield: 2 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
65 Calories
4g Fat
7g Carbs
1g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 32
Amount per serving
Calories 65
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 5%
Saturated Fat 2g 11%
Cholesterol 48mg 16%
Sodium 14mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 1mg 7%
Calcium 8mg 1%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 18mg 0%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This curd is popular in California, where it is usually made with native Meyer lemons. A Meyer lemon is a cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange and came from China in 1908. It was planted all across California, and chefs quickly fell in love with its sweet, complex flavors.

Once a darling of the "California Cuisine" movement, lemon curd is now common on many dessert menus. If you can get Meyer lemons, give them a try. If not, don’t worry; it is still very delicious with regular lemons. While it's traditionally served as a topping for cakes, it's also wonderful spooned over a bowl of fresh berries.


  • 6 large egg yolks

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, from 4 to 5 lemons

  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest

  • 4 ounces (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/8-inch slices

Steps to Make It

  1. Add 1 inch of water to a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat. In a medium metal bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar for about 2 minutes until smooth and well blended. Whisk in the lemon juice and zest until combined.

  2. Place the mixing bowl on top of the saucepan (the bowl should be wide enough to fit on top of the saucepan, but shouldn't be touching the simmering water). Cook the mixture over the water, stirring constantly with a rubber spatula, scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl as you stir, until the mixture begins to thicken, and will coat the back of a spoon. It should leave a path on the back of a spoon and will read 170 F on a thermometer.

    Don't let the mixture boil.

    This will take approximately 7 to 10 minutes. Remove the bowl from the water. Turn the burner off.

  3. Whisk the butter into the lemon mixture, adding 1 slice at a time. Wait until each piece of butter is almost completely dissolved before adding the next.

  4. Spoon the lemon curd into a clean bowl or several small glass containers and place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd to prevent a skin from forming.  Let the curd cool to room temperature. It will continue to thicken as it cools. Refrigerate the curd until ready to use.


  • Covered and refrigerated, the lemon curd will keep for two to three weeks, or place in an airtight container and freeze for up to two months.