Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Check Icon Print Icon Note Icon Heart Icon Filled Heart Icon Single Arrow Icon Double Arrow Icon Hamburger Icon TV Icon Close Icon Sorted Hamburger/Search Icon

Classic Lemon Curd

Rita Maas

Yield: Yields about 2 cups.

Seeing a jar of lovely yellow lemon curd in the refrigerator will brighten anyone’s day. Serve over Thick Scottish Shortbread, or use as a spread for toast or English muffins, or a filling for cakes and tartlets.


  • 3 oz. (6 Tbs.) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size per Tbs.
  • Calories (kcal) : 50
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 25
  • Fat (g): 3
  • Saturated Fat (g): 1.5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 1
  • Cholesterol (mg): 30
  • Sodium (mg): 5
  • Carbohydrates (g): 7
  • Fiber (g): 0
  • Protein (g): 1


  • In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer, about 2 min. Slowly add the eggs and yolks. Beat for 1 min. Mix in the lemon juice. The mixture will look curdled, but it will smooth out as it cooks


  • In a medium, heavy-based saucepan, cook the mixture over low heat until it looks smooth. (The curdled appearance disappears as the butter in the mixture melts.) Increase the heat to medium and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens, about 15 minutes. 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.
  • Remove the curd from the heat; stir in the lemon zest. Transfer the curd to a bowl. Press plastic wrap on the surface of the lemon curd to keep a skin from forming and chill the curd in the refrigerator. The curd will thicken further as it cools. Covered tightly, it will keep in the refrigerator for a week and in the freezer for 2 months.

For lime curd, substitute fresh lime juice and zest for lemon.


Rate or Review


  • BethThomlinson | 04/18/2018

    I love this recipe. It has become one of my signature dishes. For those who find it too eggy, just eliminate one of the egg yolks. Don't substitute a whole egg; removing one yolk works better.

    For a double batch, after much experimenting, I settled on this:
    1 3/4 cup sugar
    10 oz butter (1 1/4 stick)
    4 whole eggs plus 3 yolks
    1 1/3 to 1 1/4 cup lemon juice
    1 1/2 t. lemon zest

    This has the tanginess that I like, without getting too sweet or too eggy.

  • Mariv | 03/30/2018

    too sweet but deliciously tart

  • Banana Baker | 09/08/2017

    The most delicious and easy lemon curd I've ever made. Mixing the eggs and sugar ahead of time eliminates the need for a sieve later; since the egg is combined, there's no chance of it cooking in the pot. Perfect texture, delicious taste. The wooden spoon trick is spot on every time.

    I've made this recipe a few times, and I've found that I have one qualm: In a single batch, the flavor and texture is perfect. In a double batch, the egg flavor is ever so slightly more pronounced. I brought it to a Robert Burns dinner, where it received the highest praise, but my husband and I (who had tasted the single batch recipe) agreed that the flavor was just slightly more eggy in the double batch. I'll keep experimenting to see how to change that. Regardless, this is my favorite lemon curd recipe.

  • kodiakid | 04/06/2017

    This was very easy to make and has a nice bright lemon flavor. I wish the egg taste was a little less pronounced, but that's personal preference--everyone else loves it. (anyone know if this could be made with maybe a third egg and not the two extra yolks?)Also, it only took 5 minutes to get thick and to 170 (actually closer to 180 bc I wasn't thinking about checking the temp so early). I'm using it on the FC Lemon Cheesecake Squares.

Show More

Rate this Recipe

Write a Review

Delicious Dish

Find the inspiration you crave for your love of cooking

Fine Cooking Magazine

Subscribe today
and save up to 44%

Already a subscriber? Log in.


View All

Moveable Feast Logo

Season 4 Extras

Santa Fe, NM (509)

Settled at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Santa Fe, New Mexico is home to a culinary scene of mixed influences and Southwestern flavors and ingredients. In this episode of…

View all Moveable Feast recipes and video extras


Follow Fine Cooking on your favorite social networks