Cool, creamy, and refreshing lemon blueberry tart comes together with 10 ingredients. The simple lemon filling sits in a flaky shortbread crust and is swirled with homemade blueberry sauce. After the first bite of this sweet, tangy, and buttery tart, it’s impossible to put your fork down. Enjoy this beautiful dessert for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, spring or summer celebrations, and more.
I knew a tart or pie version of our beloved lemon blueberry cake would be a hit in my household AND with many of you reading this. I’m always dreaming up ways to use this unbeatable flavor combination such as lemon blueberry muffins or lemon blueberry cupcakes. A beautiful tart with tons of fresh flavor was definitely my imagination’s top choice. I cannot wait for you to try this one.
Lemon Blueberry Tart Details
- Texture: I went back and forth about which type of crust to use for this lemon tart, but shortbread seemed most fitting. It’s pleasantly crumbly with a flaky texture that melts in your mouth. The crust contrasts perfectly with the creamy and lush filling on top, making this one of our favorite spring dessert recipes.
- Flavor: If I were to describe the taste of pure sunshine, it would definitely be this lemon blueberry tart. The lemon flavor is delightfully fresh and bright, and there’s just enough tang to complement all the sweetness. You really only need a small slice since there’s such a strong punch of flavor, but honestly I’ve never witnessed anyone stopping at 1 serving. (HA!)
- Ease: There are 3 components to the tart and each must be prepared separately, but there’s nothing really complicated about the entire process. Take your time and read through the recipe before you start.
- Time: It only takes about an hour to prep and bake the tart. But you’ll want to cool and chill it before serving, so set aside a few hours to complete the entire recipe. It’s wonderful when made the day ahead, too! Lemon crumble bars are another excellent option for an even quicker lemony treat.
3 Parts to This Recipe
- Buttery Shortbread Crust: I make this shortbread crust with a lot of different desserts and it always reminds me of pie crust, but it’s so much easier. There’s no food processor or pastry cutter needed– instead simply combine melted butter with sugar, vanilla, salt, and flour and press into a tart pan or pie dish. You don’t even need to chill the dough before using. You’ll notice we use the same crust for our raspberry streusel bars, apple pie bars, and we double the recipe for our lemon bars. Keep in mind that these other desserts may require different oven temperatures and that’s because the desserts take longer, overall, to bake through. We bake the crust at 350°F (177°C) for this particular tart recipe.
- Lemon Filling: A lot of lemon tarts are prepared with a curd filling, but this one is thick, creamy, and rich. I use a similar lemon filling for our creamy lemon pie. I halved it for this tart, then cut down on the egg yolks. The egg yolks help the filling set, but I wanted the finished tart to remain soft. I think you’ll really love it. We’ll use only 1 egg yolk.
- Blueberry Sauce Swirl: You’ll enjoy pure blueberries without much else in the way. We hardly add any sugar to the blueberry sauce (some is needed to help them break down), so the natural flavor can really shine. Cook it on the stovetop for a few minutes, let it cool a little bit, then swirl some into the lemon filling. Feel free to strain it if you don’t want any blueberry lumps. You can use a toothpick or knife to swirl.
Can I Use a Graham Cracker Crust Instead?
A graham cracker crust will fall apart and crumble under this wet filling, so I suggest sticking with the shortbread crust for this recipe. If you wish to use a graham cracker crust, make these lemon blueberry cheesecake bars instead.
The shortbread crust dough is thick and a little greasy– don’t be nervous if it looks a little wet. Press it tightly into your pan and pre-bake it before adding the filling.
Creamy Lemon Tart Filling
You need one 14 ounce (weight) can of full-fat sweetened condensed milk, lemon juice and zest, and 1 egg yolk. That’s it. Fresh lemon juice is best. Here is a wonderful juicer if you don’t have one and if you need a recommendation for a zester, I use and love this one.
Spread the filling into the pre-baked crust.
I recommend making the blueberry sauce first so it’s ready when you need it. The recipe moves pretty quickly once you begin pre-baking the crust.
How to Make Mini Lemon Blueberry Tarts
Try using this recipe for about 10 mini tarts in mini tart pans. I don’t recommend a muffin pan for turning this recipe into mini tarts. Divide crust mixture between each mini tart pan (bake these in batches if you have less than 10), press firmly into the bottom, and bake for 8 minutes to help set the crust. It’s usually easiest to bake mini tart pans on a larger baking sheet. No need to poke holes in the crust before adding the filling as directed for the full size tart below. Pour filling into warm crusts, drop a few tiny spoonfuls of blueberry sauce on each, then swirl as directed below. Bake for 9-10 minutes or just until the centers no longer jiggle. Cool completely, then chill for at least 1 hour before removing from tart pans and serving. (Or serve in tart pans.)
Lemon Blueberry Tart Variations
If you want to switch up some flavors, be our guest! Here are the variations we tested. We’re unsure of the results outside of these listed changes, so let us know if you try anything else.
- Lime Tart: Switch the lemon juice and zest for lime juice and zest. Feel free to keep the blueberry swirl or skip it. You could also use the strawberry, raspberry, or blackberry swirl.
- Strawberry Swirl: Replace blueberries with 1 cup chopped fresh or frozen strawberries. You can’t really detect the strawberry seeds in the baked tart, but feel free to strain the sauce through a fine mesh sieve before swirling into the filling.
- Raspberry or Blackberry Swirl: Replace blueberries with 1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries or blackberries and add 1 more teaspoon of sugar to the sauce (for a total of 3 teaspoons). Strain the finished sauce through a fine mesh sieve to remove the seeds before swirling into the filling.
- We haven’t tested other citrus besides lime or lemon. We do not recommend swapping the lemons for orange zest/juice because the tart will be very, very sweet. You really need the tang from lemons or limes. We haven’t tested this recipe with grapefruit.
See Your Lemon Blueberry Tarts!
Many readers tried this recipe as part of a baking challenge! Feel free to email or share your recipe photos with us on social media. 🙂Print
Lemon Blueberry Tart
- Prep Time: 1 hour
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 4 hours (includes chilling)
- Yield: serves 8-10
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
There are 3 parts to this creamy lemon blueberry tart and each are prepared separately before bringing them all together. For best success, take your time and read through the recipe before starting.
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice (or water)
- 1 cup (190g) fresh or frozen blueberries (do not thaw)
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1 (14 ounce weight) can full-fat sweetened condensed milk
- 6 Tablespoons (90ml) lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest (1 lemon)
- 1 large egg yolk
- Lemon slices, blueberries, leftover blueberry sauce, whipped cream
- Blueberry Sauce: Using a fork, mix the cornstarch and lemon juice together in a small bowl until the cornstarch has dissolved. Set aside. Warm the blueberries and sugar together in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally for 3 minutes, mashing the blueberries as best you can against the bottom and sides of the pan to help break them up. Stir in the cornstarch mixture. Cook for 2 more minutes as the sauce thickens, stirring and mashing the blueberries to break them up as desired. Remove sauce from heat and set aside at room temperature until step 6. Makes about 1/2 – 2/3 cup blueberry sauce and you’ll use about half for the swirl. (Reserve extra for garnish/serving.)
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
- Crust: Mix the melted butter, sugar, vanilla extract, and salt together in a medium bowl. Add the flour and stir to completely combine. The dough will be a little greasy and very thick. Using a rubber spatula or your hands, press dough firmly into a 9-inch tart pan (no need to grease it), making sure the layer of crust is even on the bottom and all around the sides. It may seem like it won’t fit, but it will. You can use the bottom of a measuring cup to pack the crust in too, but sometimes it sticks.
- Bake for 15 minutes or until the edges are very lightly browned. Remove from the oven. Using a fork, poke a few holes all over the top of the warm crust (not all the way through the crust). This helps the filling stick.
- Filling: Whisk all of the filling ingredients together until combined. Pour into warm crust. Stir up the blueberry sauce because it has likely thickened. It can still be warm when you use it in this step. If it’s too thick, warm it in the microwave for 5-10 seconds. Drop spoonfuls of blueberry sauce all over the top, using about half of the sauce. Reserve the rest of the sauce for serving. Using a toothpick or knife, gently swirl the sauce and filling together. Shimmy the pan back and forth 2-3 times to let the sauce and filling settle down into the crust a bit.
- Bake for 17-19 minutes, just until the center of the tart no longer jiggles when you give the pan a light tap. It will still be a little sticky on top. Avoid over-baking because the tart will taste rubbery. (Tip: Err on the side of under-baking because the filling also has a chance to set up in the refrigerator. You want a creamy soft filling.)
- Remove tart from the oven and place on a cooling rack. Cool completely at room temperature, then chill in the refrigerator uncovered for at least 2 hours and up to 1 day. If chilling for longer than 2 hours, cover it. After chilling, remove the sides of the tart pan if your pan has removable sides.
- Slice and serve with optional garnishes including any leftover blueberry sauce.
- Cover leftovers tightly and refrigerate for up to 1 week.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: You can bake, cool, and chill the tart 1 day in advance. See step 7. The filling must be poured on a warm crust so it will stick, so I don’t recommend pre-baking the crust ahead of time. You can prepare the filling and blueberry sauce in advance though. Cover both and refrigerate until ready to use. The blueberry filling will be quite solid after refrigerating, so warm it up on the stove or in the microwave until thinned out again. (It can be warm when you swirl it into the filling.) Baked and cooled tart freezes well up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
- Tart Pan: A 9-inch tart pan with or without removable sides (it doesn’t matter) is ideal for this recipe. If you use other size tart pans, the bake times and thickness of the tart will differ. You can also use a 9-inch pie dish, but slicing the tart isn’t quite as neat. The bake times are the same. For mini tart pans, see post above. I don’t recommend a springform pan because the crust leaks. We haven’t tested this recipe in a round cake pan or as bars.
- Blueberry Sauce: If you don’t want blueberry lumps in your tart, feel free to run the blueberry sauce through a fine mesh sieve.
- Sweetened Condensed Milk: Make sure you are using sweetened condensed milk, not evaporated milk. There are no successful replacements for sweetened condensed milk in this particular recipe– it’s really the key ingredient. (Sometimes half-and-half or heavy cream works as a substitution, but then you’ll have to test with varying amounts of sugar since both are unsweetened.) Use one 14 ounce can full-fat sweetened condensed milk. Do not use fat free because the tart will not set. Keep in mind that 14 ounces is the listed weight on the can. 1 standard 14 ounce can is a little over 1 liquid cup.
Keywords: lemon blueberry tart
Reader Comments & Reviews
I’ve made this recipe dozens of times now. I use Key Lime juice instead of lemon juice, and it’s amazing. One great thing about this tart is that it freezes beautifully! I now pre-slice it before putting it in the freezer. That way I can just pull it out and take it with me if we’re going to a friend’s house, or pull out one or two slices at a time without defrosting the whole thing!
You can buy vegan sweetened condensed milk. I bought a can to make magic bars for my vegan niece. I bought it at Walmart. I went online and searched and found the isle it was on it’s hard to find in the store if you don’t know where to look. Other stores also carry it but the only one near me that had it in stock was Walmart. My niece raved an about the bars I made. I even tried them and I’m not vegan but they tasted great.
can I sub the lemon with something else, to make it plain vanilla?
Hi Cindi, I don’t think this is the best recipe to do that. It won’t taste like much if you, say, replace it with milk and add some vanilla. I think the dessert would be lacking.
Hi Sally! As teen baker your recipes have been so fun to do in my downtime and has genuinely helped ease exam/school life and much more. I have a minor dairy allergy and usually substitute any milk/cream for a vegan substitute. Is it possible to mix half the sweet condensed milk with almond milk to create a half and half? Are there any other substitutions you recommend? Thank you!
Hi Maya, we’re so glad you’re enjoying our recipes! There are no substitutes for sweetened condensed milk in this recipe, unfortunately – it’s really the key ingredient. If you do give any dairy-free alterations a try, we’d love to know how it turns out for you.
Made this over the weekend for my sister’s birthday. Like all of Sally’s recipes that I’ve tried, this was easy to follow and turned out beautifully. It was delicious and a HUGE hit!! Thank you again for another successful baking experience
Hi Sally! Do you think I could make this with your classic pie crust to make a pie instead of a tart? I don’t have a tart pan, just a pie plate and I love your pie crust!
Hi Sheryce, this wouldn’t be enough filling to fill a pie crust. You could use the filling from this creamy lemon pie recipe instead.
In Canada sweetened condensed milk comes in a 300ml can. What should we do?
Hi Eugenia, that is about 10 oz. You’ll need about 4 ounces of a second can.
I hav enact this Lemon ( without the swirl ) but topped with berries so many times ! It comes out beautifully every time ! Thank you for an amazing recipe
I hav Meade this lemon tart so many times ! It’s comes outw beautifully very time and love your recipe . Making one right now
I would like to serve this for Easter brunch. Do I have to use an egg. My granddaughter has an egg allergy and I was wondering if there is a good substitution
Hi Martha, we haven’t tested this recipe to be egg-free. The yolk helps the filling set. Sorry we can’t help more!
I don’t know what’s going on. Every time I bake these mini tarts they disappear in less than 24 hours!
This tart totally exceeded my expectations! I used a 12-inch rectangular tart pan and the amount of dough was perfect. The crust was deliciously flaky, and the filling was light and creamy, with a delicious hint of lemon. The blueberry swirl was delicious as well. Overall, this recipe was outstanding, and I totally recommend it!
Great recipe! So easy and delicious!
I just made this today–it was awesome! For the filling, I found that the sweetened condensed milk worked really well, and the flavors were bright and sunny. The blueberries gave a nice touch of sweetness and gave a nice presentation to the tart overall. I also found that the shortbread crust worked nicely, and it fit in to my tart pan that I was so eager to use again for my 2nd time making tarts completely from scratch. I can’t wait to make it again–I wonder when I’ll do so.
Just made this was so good!
To chill it, I know that I should leave it uncovered. Can I still cover it in the fridge after it’s finished cooling on the wire rack?
Hi Allison, yes!
Thank you for the response. For the filling ingredients, should the egg yolk be cold? I’m making sure before I begin–the filling ingredients all have to be room temperature?
Hi Allison! It doesn’t matter too much for this recipe, which is why it isn’t specified. Room temperature would be best, but cold is fine here.
I see. How can I tell if the shortbread crust is fully cooked, and would it work if I put the tart pan on a baking sheet lined with foil? How can I bring the leftovers to work with me if I decide to?
I only had an 11 inch pan so to make more of the dough I added 2 tbsp more butter and 3.5 tbsp more flour. This got it to where it covered the entire pan nicely and texture matched the photos in the guide. Yes you have to spread it out thin, but it’s more than enough. Because of the pan size my filling also was much thinner and I reduced bake time by 20%. After 15 mins on the oven it was no longer jiggly. I took it out and let cool completely. Looks beautiful and smells amazing.
Can’t wait to slice in!
I knew I wanted to make this when I saw it in my email. I made it for a luncheon after church. It disappeared so fast and was so good. Everyone raved about it to me. So so yummy and fresh. Added to my recipe app, next to many of your other recipes. Thank you for this wonderful creation.
Another homerun! Knocked off a star because there isn’t quite enough dough for a 9″ tart pan. I had to really spread it thin on the bottom for enough to press up the sides. Otherwise, a delicious and easy dessert that’s sure to impress.
This is the best tart ever. Became my husband’s favorite of all times, easy to make and tastes absolutely perfect.