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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

Reviews (76 reviews)

  • CaroM | 03/28/2022

    This is delicious Lemon Curd. TRUST that the curdled look WILL disappear! Like the previous reviews, I tweaked it a little. I used the Blender & then the double boiler method, which worked well. (see MsJenniferK review) I used 4 whole eggs instead of 2 eggs & 2 yolks & the result was fabulous. Less hassle. I also did a batch using the blender method again & then the stovetop method as above & got the same result. A little less hassle than using the double boiler method, for those that are wanting it to be simple. No need to strain with either method as it was perfect.
    For those wanting/needing to reduce their sugar intake, this works just as well with Stevia as with sugar. If you like it less tart, you can add more sugar/stevia or sub in some orange juice for the lemon juice. I LOVE that this recipe states an actual amount of lemon juice instead of '2 lemons' which can be very different in result!! I used this for a tart & simply increased the eggs to 5, the butter to 90gm & the juice amount to 300ml. Worked brilliantly! Lots of compliments on the Tart & I've had to make them some lemon curd too! :)

  • User avater
    MsJenniferK | 03/14/2020

    I made this recipe using Meyer Lemons and loved it! But I greatly modified the directions, based on a suggestion in the reviews. And that suggestion made it SO easy - highly recommend going the blender route. Here are the instructions I put together and used:

    1) Place the Sugar, Whole Eggs, Egg Yolks, Lemon Juice, and Lemon Zest in a Vitamix blender.

    2) Gradually increase speed of blender to High and blend for 2 minutes.

    3) Add the softened Butter and blend for 45 seconds more on High.

    4) Pour the mixture into a non-metallic bowl and place over a saucepan of simmering water but do NOT allow the bottom of the bowl to come in contact with the water. You can put a foil ball in the bottom of the saucepan to prevent the bowl from touching the water.

    5) Cook over Medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick enough to leave a path on the back of a spoon. It should measure 170F on a thermometer. Do NOT let the mixture boil.

    6) Remove from heat and strain using a fine-mesh strainer, if desired. NOTE - I did not have to do this, as it was so smooth.

    7) Transfer to an air-tight container and press plastic wrap to the surface. Place in the refrigerator to cool. Once completely cooled, plastic wrap can be removed.

  • Nottinghamgirl | 07/15/2018

    I love this recipe and I've just made (for the first time!) two jars of lemon heaven! It really is foolproof and there is no danger of ending up with lemony scrambled eggs as the sugar and butter are mixed thoroughly first.

    It tastes wonderful - tangy but definitely not too sweet. In fact it's inspired me and I'm now planning to bake a lemon curd swiss roll and a batch of lemon curd muffins tomorrow despite the 90 degree heat we are currently experiencing in England.

    Thanks so much for the recipe!

  • 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.

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