Lemon Bars

Tom Burrows
Version 3.0


15 Tbsp.melted butter (i.e., 1 Tbsp. less than 1 cup)
1/2 cuppowdered sugar
2 cupsall-purpose flour

Mix well and pat out in a 13x9x2 inch ungreased pan lined with non-stick aluminum foil.

The filling will swell up somewhat during baking; so don't use a pan that's too shallow. (It settles back down after cooling.)

Bake at 325 degrees for 20 minutes, one level higher in the oven than the middle.


2 cupssugar
1 tsp.salt
5 Tbsp.lemon juice (2 lemons should provide enough)
4 Tbsp.all-purpose flour

Combine eggs, sugar and salt; and whip/whisk until fluffy. Add lemon juice and flour. When the crust is done, immediately pour the topping onto it. Bake for about an additional 25 minutes. It shouldn't get too browned.

After cooling, remove the whole thing from the pan, place on a cutting board and slice into bars.


  1. Some lemon bar recipes (including an earlier version of this one) call for leavening. After considerable experience and experimentation I have decided that this (possibly aggravated by high altitude) is a frequent cause of failure. It foams up while baking; and the surface of this foam burns and carmelizes before the filling has fully cooked. Parts of the filling may end up stiff and tarry while the rest remains semi-liquid.

  2. For a crust that has a graham-cracker flavor, use 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour combined with 1-1/2 cup of spelt flour. Also, reduce the butter by another 1/2 Tbsp. (Spelt is also popular with some people who have sensitivity to wheat.)

  3. If using Meyer lemons, use the Meyer Lemon Bars recipe. The techniques are different as well as the amounts.