Dairy Farmers of Canada

The Lemoniest Lemon Squares

You’ve probably had lemon squares before but not like these ones. These are bursting with lemon flavour – in the crust and the topping - with a velvety lemon custard layer worthy of the finest patisserie, yet very easy to make.

  • Prep: 15 min
  • Cooking: 35 min - 40 min
  • Refrigeration: 2 h - 3 h
Yields 24 squares
the lemoniest lemon squares


  • Crust
  • 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup (80 mL) sugar
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) packed grated lemon zest
  • 1 cup (250 mL) 35 % cream
  • Lemon Topping
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) sugar
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) packed grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cup (250 mL) 35 % cream
  • Icing sugar (optional)
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Preheat oven to 350 °F (180 °C). Line a 13 x 9-inch (33 x 23 cm) metal baking pan with foil, leaving a 2-inch (5 cm) overhang.


In a bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and lemon zest; using a fork, stir in cream until a ragged dough forms. Drop handfuls of dough over bottom of prepared pan. With floured hands, press dough evenly into bottom of pan and 1/4-inch (1/2 cm) up sides. Bake for about 15 min or until edges are golden and top is firm.

Lemon Topping:

In another bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, flour, lemon zest and lemon juice until well blended and slightly foamy; whisk in cream. Pour over hot crust.

Bake for about 25 min or until topping is evenly puffed and centre is just slightly jiggley. Let cool. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, until set, or for up to 2 days.

Using foil overhang as handles, transfer to a cutting board; cut into squares. Dust with icing sugar, if desired.


Finely grate the lemon zest on the fine side of a box cheese grater or using a Microplane-style grater. Be sure to only grate the flavourful yellow zest and avoid the bitter white pith. You’ll need about 4 large lemons for the zest in this recipe and only 1 or 2 for juice. Once the zest is removed, the lemons don’t last well so squeeze out the juice from the extra zested lemons and freeze in small airtight containers for another use.

These squares freeze well. Once chilled, wrap well in plastic wrap, then place in a freezer bag or in a single layer in an airtight container and freeze for up to 1 month. Let thaw for about 1 hr in the refrigerator.

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Nutritional information

Per serving
Energy: 171 Calories
Protein: 2 g
Carbohydrate: 23 g
Fat: 8 g
Fibre: 0.3 g
Sodium: 68 mg

Top 5 Nutrients

(% DV*)
Calcium: 2 % / 25 mg
Folate: 9 %
Selenium: 11 %
Vitamin A: 9 %
Vitamin B12: 7 %