Meyer lemon bars are a bright taste of summer! With its tart-sweet filling and buttery shortbread crust, the delicious dessert is perfect for picnics or potlucks. This easy, classic lemon bars recipe will be part of your baking repertoire for years to come.
(As an Amazon Affiliate, I may earn a small commission on products I recommend.)
FAQs About Meyer Lemons
You’re probably wondering what is different about a Meyer lemon vs a regular lemon. The difference between the two is easy to discern. A Meyer lemon is a hybrid between a mandarin and a lemon. It has a thinner, deep yellow skin that almost looks like an anemic orange.
A Meyer lemon yields more juice and tastes sweeter than the Eureka lemon – the common one you are accustomed to seeing in the grocery store. The Eureka has a thicker skin and is easier to zest, but yields less juice.
When do Meyer lemons ripen?
While we usually think of lemons as “summer” fruits, Meyer lemons reach their peak ripeness during the cooler months, from November through March. While Eurekas are available year round, their season is from late winter to early summer.
Meyer lemons don’t do well in the cold, so they grow primarily in California.
How to store Meyer lemons
The thicker skinned Eureka lemons will last a long time on the counter, but Meyer lemons don’t seem to last as long. I’m sure it’s because they have thinner skin. When I get more Meyer lemons than I know I’ll be able to use within a week, I prefer to refrigerate them.
Are Meyer lemons better for baking?
With their sweet taste, these lemons work especially well with baked goods and desserts.
This recipe will work with any kind of lemon juice. But bear in mind that these lemon bars are not quite as sour because Meyer lemon juice is naturally not as acidic. If you prefer a tart lemon bar, you can add less sugar or use the juice of a regular lemon.
For more about using Meyer lemons, check out Everything You Need To Know About Meyer Lemons.
Tips For Making This Meyer Lemon Bar Recipe
The ingredient list for this recipe is simple: flour, sugar, eggs, butter, baking powder, salt, and lemon juice.
Here are some tips for making the perfect Meyer lemon bar:
- Make sure all the ingredients are room temperature. This is a good rule in general when baking.
- Weigh your ingredients. A baking scale is very inexpensive and will guarantee success.
- When juicing the lemons, an electric juicer is nice, but a little hand held juicer works just as well and is very inexpensive.
- Line the glass baking dish with parchment paper. When the bars are done, you can easily lift them out for cutting.
- Pre-bake the shortbread crust just until barely golden.
- Don’t cut the bars right away. Let them cool completely.
- If you’re not serving them right away, wait until just before serving to dust with powdered sugar. If you plan to freeze the lemon cars, skip the powdered sugar until ready to serve.
- I like smaller portions, so this recipe, baked in an 8″ x 8″ baking pan, yields 16 bars. You can, of course, make larger servings.
- Garnish with very thin wedges of Meyer lemon if desired.
How Do You Store Lemon Bars?
Meyer lemon bars will last several hours out of the fridge, making them perfect for picnics or potlucks. If you’re not serving or eating them until the next day, it’s best to refrigerate them.
You can also freeze lemon bars and they will keep for 3-4 months. The best way to freeze them is to cut them into squares and place them on a baking sheet. Freeze for one hour, then wrap each bar tightly in plastic wrap and place them all in a freezer bag.
Love lemon? This Lemon Posset is one of the easiest desserts ever! Lemon is also the main ingredient in this Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Feta and this Lemon Roasted Chicken.
This post was originally posted on January 31, 2012, and has been updated to contain nutritional information.
Meyer Lemon Bars
- 1 cup all-purpose flour (4.5 ounces)
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar (2.3 ounces)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- pinch of kosher salt (omit if using salted butter)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs room temperature, beaten
- 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/3 cup Meyer lemon juice, about 2 large or 3 small (or a scant 1/2 cup)
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease or line pan an 8"X 8" glass baking dish with parchment.
- Cream butter and powdered sugar together until light and fluffy. Add flour, and mix just until blended. Pat into baking dish. Bake at 350* for 20 minutes or until barely golden
- In the same mixing bowl, blend filling ingredients together.
- Pour onto baked crust and return to oven for an additional 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. The bars will continue to set after removing from oven. Cool completely. Cut into squares and dust with powdered sugar just before serving. Garnish with very thin slices of Meyer lemon wedges.
- (To double batch, bake in a 13″X 9″ pan)
Best recipe I’ve had so far! I received so many compliments and recipe requests. This is a great recipe and it is easy! The crust turns out perfectly and is a great balance of crust and Lemon curd!
Thank you Claudia! I appreciate it your kind commments.
Wow, these lemon bars are truly amazing! I’ve harvested Meyer lemons from a tree where I’m staying this winter and made the bars three times so far in three weeks!
One interesting observation is the variety in the size of the lemons produced and that may be why others require longer baking. This tree offers lemons the size of grapefruits down to the size of mandarin oranges. That offers a whole lot of variety in the volume of juice produced.
Thanks again for the fantastic recipe!
Thank you Mike! Yes, the meyers tend to yield a lot more juice!
My son’s girlfriend has celiac disease. I want to try this recipe with gluten free flour. Would it be a 1 to 1 ratio or do you recommend a particular flour substitute? Thanks
Hi Rachel,if you buy a good gf flour, it should be 1 to 1. If she’s a celiac and you’re planning on doing a bit more baking, OR if you’d like to give her a little gift, make her a gluten free flour blend. Follow this post for my gf almond pound cake. I post a link to the Art of Gluten Free Baking. She has a flour blend, that to me, is nearly indistinguishable from regular flour.https://whatagirleats.com/gluten-free-almond-pound-cake/
Dora F. says
So glad you reshared this as I have so many lemons atm! These are sooo good!
Don’t you love the flavor of the Meyer!?
Fabulous information! Thank You!!
Very good not overly sweet I used a combination of meyer lemon juice and regular lemon juice .
so glad you liked them! A mixture of the two lemons is a great idea!
Jennifer W says
Simple recipe and everyone loved these! They didn’t last more than a day! I recommend using Meyer lemonade if you can, we had some fresh from our tree outside which made these another level!
Thanks so much Jennifer! Glad you liked them!
I added some lemon juice to the crust recipe. I love the taste and consistency of the bars. It is a real winner and I shared with friends!!!
ooh! I’ve never tried adding lemon juice to the crust! thanks for the tip!
Can I freeze these?
Absolutely! cover well and defrost in the fridge.
Super easy to make and absolutely delicious!
You say in the beginning if you like your lemon bars more tart, DON’T adjust the amount of sugar. So what do you add to make them more tart?
oops! Lol…I meant DO adjust the sugar! amended! Thx
joanne clemons says
Made this recipe with 2 Meyer lemons that my son brought back from a trip to San Diego. I don’t know if we can even buy such lemons in Maine where we live so this was a special treat. I don’t own a 8×8 glass pan so I used a metal one which worked fine. Delicious bars, tart but yet not too much so. And the shortbread crust is yummy as well.
Aww! So glad you found Meyers! You can get them around the country, but outside of california, you’ll have to go to Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods.
Really delicious. I got a Meyer lemon tree for Mother’s day last year, and finally had a few ready to pick, so this is what I made. I am in New England, so they don’t grow outside!
They are a special lemon! That’s awesome!
This is the perfect recipe for my homegrown Meyer Lemon harvest. Simple and delicious. I doubled the recipe and used a 13×9 glass baking pan and the lemon bars turned out perfect! The crust was evenly baked and super crunchy which contrasted so beautifully with the soft, delicate lemon custard. I will sharing this recipe and making these again soon!
Thank you so much for your review and kind words.
Lemon bars are my absolute favorite treat but I just adore this buttery shortbread crust! Yum!
Oh, these are so refreshing and easy to make! Thanks for sharing the recipe!
Lemon bars are my favorite sweet treat! These look the perfect texture!
I’m such a sucker for lemon bars, but this is the first time I made them and wow. WOW. So good. I can’t believe how easy this was to make, even for someone who doesn’t bake much.
Awesome! It is an easy recipe.
Aimee Mars says
One of my favorite recipes! I love lemon all year long and am bookmarking this recipe for the holidays. Thanks for sharing!
Tasty and easy to make lemon dessert. Im a fan
Thank you! I appreciate it!
Loved the simplicity of this recipe and not too many ingredients. The flavor was really good, gorgeous lemony and sweet. Will be making again!
Thanks so much!
Lemon bars are my favorite and this recipe was so fantastic. It had the best flavor ever.
Never knew about these varieties of lemon! Will look for them. Good recipe, too!