Bright, buttery, sweet, and floral, Meyer Lemon Curd is truly a treasure. Make a double batch with in-season lemons and freeze the extra to enjoy later. No double boiler is required and dairy-free options are available!
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What are Meyer Lemons?
Meyer lemons are a variety of lemons that are usually larger, sweeter, and thinner-skinned than common lemons found here in the United States. Though they are still tart, their juice is sweeter and more delicate than traditional juice and is more similar to sour orange juice than traditional lemon juice. Meyer lemon juice also has light floral notes to the aroma and flavor.
Meyer lemon trees aren't grown as commercially as common grocery store lemons, so they are usually easiest to find at farmer's markets, fruit stands, and in backyard gardens! These fragrant trees can also be grown indoors.
Why You'll Love Meyer Lemon Curd
- A Great Way to Use Up & Feature Meyer Lemons: If you are the lucky owner of a Meyer lemon tree or a recipient of a bushel of lemons, this Meyer lemon juice recipe makes the most of your loot! Make multiple batches at once and gift pots of the curd to friends and neighbors.
- Sweet and Floral: Even though I am certainly a fan of traditional lemon desserts, there is just something so memorable and satisfying about the delicate bergamot-like flavor Meyer lemon contributes to desserts.
- Quick & No Double Boiler Needed: Though homemade lemon curd may appear to be time intensive and requiring of sophisticated tools and techniques, it's actually a simple and straightforward recipe that's ready in less than 20 minutes!
- Indulgent: This Meyer lemon dessert recipe is simply decadent! With tart and sunshiney lemon notes and a rich buttery finish, you may -- like me-- find yourself scooping it directly from the pot!
- Meyer Lemons: of course, it wouldn't be a Meyer lemon recipe without this star ingredient! We will need both the zest and the juice, so zest the lemons before juicing.
- Granulated Sugar: Sweetens the deal and helps the yolk to thicken up as it cooks.
- Egg Yolks: Or four large eggs, with the yolks separated out.
- Unsalted Butter: Cut into small cubes.
- Salt: Just a pinch sweetens up and ties together the flavors.
How to Make Meyer Lemon Curd
For the complete recipe and measurements, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
Step 1: Add the granulated sugar, lemon zest, and lemon juice to a medium-sized saucepan.
Step 2: Heat over medium heat, whisking continually, or until the sugar has dissolved into the lemon juice but isn’t simmering yet, or has reached around 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 3: In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks together until smooth.
Step 4: Slowly whisk a generous ½ cup of the hot lemon mixture into the yolks.
Step 5: Whisk the lemon and yolk mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining lemon juice mixture. Whisk until combined.
Step 6: Bring the saucepan to heat over low, whisking constantly. Cook for 3-5 minutes, or until the mixture has returned to 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 7: Increase the heat to medium. Cook for 2-5 more minutes, or until the mixture thickens, gets slightly foamy, and reaches 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the pan from the heat.
Step 8: Whisk in the pinch of salt unsalted butter cubes until combined. Serve warm or let cool to room temperature and refrigerate.
- Mix the Hot Lemon Juice Very Slowly Into the Egg Yolks. We want to slowly introduce the heat into the yolks, so they can come to temperature and remain smooth and creamy rather than scramble. Whisk the hot lemon juice mixture into the yolks as slowly as you would drizzle olive oil, whisking rapidly with your other hand as you do.
- Use a Silicone Spatula and Whisk. This will prevent any metallic aftertaste!
- Making this Recipe Without a Thermometer. Though I prefer to make the Meyer lemon recipe with a candy thermometer, you can make the curd without it. Just keep an eye on the curd as you cook to reach the textures and consistencies noted on the recipe card.
This Meyer lemon curd recipe is naturally gluten-free, vegetarian, and nut-free. To make it dairy-free, simply substitute vegan butter for unsalted butter.
- Refrigeration: Leftover lemon curd keeps covered in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 7-10 days.
- Freezing: The curd can also be frozen in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Defrost in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours, or until thawed through.
Meyer lemons have milder and sweeter taste, so even though they can be used anywhere that regular lemons would be, they particularly shine in sweets and fresh recipes like lemonade.
You can eat lemon curd with so many things. Spread it on toast by itself or with ricotta cheese, dollop it on yogurt or cottage cheese, layer it in cakes, serve it with pancakes or waffles, use it to make thumbprint cookies, and more!
Yes, you can buy lemon curd at the store. Most often it is shelved near the jams, jellies, and peanut butter. This can be a convenient option, but if you have lemons and 15 minutes of time, I do recommend making lemon curd from scratch, however, as the flavor is truly superior!
Tools Needed to Make This Recipe
- Cutting Board
- Measuring Cups & Spoons
- Citrus Juicer
- Candy Thermometer (Optional)
- Microplane Zester
- Silicone Whisk
More Lemon Dessert Recipes
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