Homemade Lemon Curd

Lemon curd is very popular in California where it is usually made with 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, it’s 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.

Homemade Lemon Curd


  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon zest ( we used 3 large lemons to make the zest)
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice ( this will depend on the size of your lemons)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar ( we used cane sugar)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 6 Tablespoons butter (3/4 stick), cut into 6 pieces , at room temperature
  • (Makes about 1 1/2 cups)


  1. Zest your lemons.
  2. Squeeze the lemons.
  3. Seperate the egg yolks from the whites. You only need the yolks for this recipe.
  4. In a heat proof bowl, combine the lemon zest, juice, sugar and salt and stir together.
  5. Select a pan to fit the heat proof bowl and put about two inches of water in it. Bring it to the boil, then turn it down to simmer.
  6. Put the heat proof bowl with ingredients already in it into the pot with the heated water.
  7. Whisk in the egg yolks.
  8. Let this cook for about 7-10 minutes, whisking while it is cooking. Once the mixture thickens you can remove it from the hot water pot.
  9. Whisk in the butter pieces, one at a time until all the butter is in the curd.
  10. Your curd can now be transferred to a container.
  11. If you do not like the texture of the zest in the curd, you can put the curd through a strainer to remove it. We happen to like the texture so we leave it in.
  12. Keep the lemon curd refrigerated. The curd is now ready for you to use with other recipes.
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