Here’s how to make lemon curd the simple way. You only need 5 ingredients and it comes together on the stove in 10 minutes!
If you love lemon as much as I do… lemon bars are your main squeeze and lemon blueberry cake is your dream come true… then you’re going to flip for this creamy, thick, dense, intensely flavorful, from-scratch lemon curd. A millions times tastier than store-bought lemon curd, which has likely been sitting on the shelf for too long and is filled with ingredients we can’t pronounce. Store-bought lemon curd doesn’t even taste like real lemon curd.
But if you’re not familiar, let me explain what lemon curd is.
WHAT IS LEMON CURD?
Lemon curd is a very rich dessert topping or spread. It’s ridiculously buttery with intense sweet-tart lemon flavor. Like jam, but creamy. It’s made from simple pantry and refrigerator items and comes together quickly on the stove.
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HOW TO MAKE LEMON CURD
Here’s how we make DIY lemon curd. The full recipe and instructions are at the bottom of this post.
You need 5 ingredients for lemon curd: egg yolks, fresh lemons, sugar, salt, and butter. Each ingredient serves a critical purpose in the making, thickening, and flavoring of lemon curd. The egg yolks thicken the curd, much like a custard or pudding. The fresh lemons are for flavor. You need real lemons; we’ll be using both the juice and the zest in my lemon curd recipe. The sugar supplies sweetness and structure, while the salt balances out the flavors. The butter is added after the curd is finished cooking on the stove– it’s stirred in right after you remove the curd from heat. The butter is what makes lemon curd sooooo creamy.
Lemon curd must be constantly whisked in a pot over simmering water. I use my double boiler. You can craft a makeshift double boiler by placing a heatproof bowl or small pot on top of a larger pot. Just make sure the bottom of the top pot or bowl does not touch the simmering water. Lemon curd should never be cooked on direct heat. The reason? The egg yolks will heat too quickly.
I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally