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Easy Lemon Curd

Enjoy the zesty sweetness of this versatile condiment.
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or scroll for tips (and a little nostalgia).

lemon curd

This Easy Lemon Curd recipe uses just one lemon and takes about 15 minutes to put together.

For that 15 minutes of effort you get a medium jar of absolutely divine homemade Lemon Curd.

It’ll last for a few weeks when stored in the fridge – though I can’t guarantee it will last that long once you’ve tasted it!

lemon curd in jars

Lovely Lemon Curd

Lemon curd is a sweet and zesty condiment that you can enjoy on a cracker or toast, or just spoon it straight from the jar. Add it to a shortcrust tart shell and – voila – lemon curd tartlets, an easy dessert.

Lemon curd has been popular with sweet tooths for centuries, and was often known as lemon cheese years ago.

Here’s a recipe from 1867!

lemon cheese newspaper cutting
The South Australian Weekly Chronicle and Mail, 2 November 1867

Lemon cheese or lemon curd?

Nana Ling’s recipe, which I’ve used here, names this recipe as “Lemon Cheese”.

Nana Ling's easy lemon curd recipe
Nana Ling’s handwritten recipe from 1941.

(A reminder to keep scrolling for the tested and tweaked version of this recipe below.)

There seems to be no real consensus on whether lemon cheese and lemon curd are the same thing, however most cooks seem to agree that they are at least so similar that it’s not worth arguing about.

My quick research through some historical newspapers on Trove puts me in the “no difference” camp. While there are many variations for both lemon cheese and lemon curd, there appears to be no standout difference between the two.

Lemon cheese or lemon curd? All I know for sure is that it tastes like a dream.

Easy Lemon Curd Recipe

To make this recipe you’ll need a medium sized jar, sterilised, and just four ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 1 lemon (juice only, approx 1/3 cup).
lemon curd ingredients

Start by beating the eggs well in a medium saucepan.

Next, juice the lemon and add to the saucepan along with the sugar and butter.

Stir with a whisk over low-medium heat to dissolve sugar, and then bring to the boil, continuing to stir.

Simmer for about 5 minutes or until the mixture thickens, continuing to stir briskly with the whisk and taking care not to burn.

Pour into a medium sized jar with a lid and store in the fridge.

Lemon Curd FAQs

Q. How do I choose the best lemons for lemon curd?

You can use any type of lemon for this recipe, keeping in mind that Meyer lemons are sweeter than Eureka and Lisbon lemons.

Whichever lemons you choose, you’ll need a juicy lemon that produces about 1/3 cup of juice. A juicy lemon will be heavy for its size and the skin should be bright with no wrinkling.

lemons for curd

Q. How is lemon curd used?

Lemon curd is perfect to fill tart shells or as a topping for cupcakes, scones or cakes. Spread it on a crepe, layer it in a trifle or stir it into ice cream. Team it with berries or meringue or, alternatively, enjoy a spoonful straight from the jar!

Q. Does lemon curd need to be refrigerated?

Yes, once it’s cooled to room temperature, place it in the fridge immediately and always store in the fridge.

Q. How long does lemon curd last in the fridge?

You can store lemon curd for up to approximately 3 weeks in the fridge.

Q. Can you freeze lemon curd?

You can freeze lemon curd for up to one year. Store in an airtight container and cover surface of curd with plastic food wrap before freezing.

Q. Does lemon curd thicken as it cools?

Your lemon curd will thicken a little more as it cools, so keep this in mind when cooking.

lemon curd

Easy Lemon Curd

Enjoy the zesty sweetness of this versatile condiment.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: Australian
Keyword: lemon cheese, lemon curd
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
0 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 medium jar
Calories: 963kcal

Equipment

  • medium sized jar, sterilised

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 1 lemon (juice only, approx 1/3 cup)

Instructions

  • Beat the eggs well in a medium saucepan.
  • Juice the lemon and add to the saucepan along with the sugar and butter.
  • Stir with a whisk over low-medium heat to dissolve sugar, and then bring to the boil, continuing to stir. Simmer for about 5 minutes or until mixture thickens, continuing to stir briskly with the whisk and taking care not to burn.
  • Pour into a medium sized jar with a lid and store in the fridge.

Notes

  1. Use a medium lemon which should produce about 1/3 cup of juice.
  2. Use a whisk instead of a spoon to stir over the heat.
  3. Makes one medium jar.

Nutrition

Calories: 963kcal | Carbohydrates: 210g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 338mg | Sodium: 161mg | Potassium: 276mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 203g | Vitamin A: 624IU | Vitamin C: 57mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 2mg

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