Homemade Lemon Curd


OK, we should rename this stuff. Because “curd” just doesn’t do it justice.

Lemon curd is a buttery, sweet and tangy, lemon-y sauce that you can use for a zillion things.

Spread it on muffins. Swirl it through ice cream. Use it in icing. Use it as a base for a ridiculously delicious Limoncello cocktail.

Use it in the filling for my Buttery Lemon Layer Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream.

Heck, sneak it straight from the jar with a spoon.

You get the idea.

And? It’s really easy to make at home.

Here, you’ll see what I mean…

Homemade Lemon Curd

2 whole eggs
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup sugar
6 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, strained

Makes about 1 cup.

Juice the lemons

Juice your lemons. Strain out the pulp and discard.

Make the lemon curd mixture

Put the eggs, egg yolk, and sugar in a medium-sized pot.

Add the lemon juice and whisk the whole business up until uniform.

Toss in the chunks of butter.

Set the pot on the stove over medium heat.

Cook over medium heat for a few minutes, whisking constantly, until the butter melts and the sugar dissolves.

Now, the name of the game here is to keep the eggs from sticking to the pot, so resist the urge to a) walk away from the pot and b) turn the heat up higher.

When the mixture is melted and uniform, clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pot (make sure it’s not touching the bottom or you can get a false reading).

Cook to 175 degrees

Cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture reaches 175 degrees.

When it reaches 175 degrees, yank the pot off the stove.

It will be pretty thick, and will continue to thicken as it cools. Here’s how mine looked on the back of a spoon:

Strain the lemon curd

Strain the hot lemon curd into a large bowl. This will catch any stray bits of cooked egg.

Push the last bit through the strainer with a spoon so you get it all.

Cool and bottle

Cool the lemon curd to room temperature.

When it’s cool, transfer to a clean jar, bottle, or smaller bowl. Cover and refrigerate.

The lemon curd will thicken up and get opaque after it’s been in the fridge for a few hours. Enjoy!

Limoncello Swirl Frozen Yogurt, anyone?

How about a big bowl of tangy frozen yogurt that’s fragrant with Limoncello and swirled with lemon curd? Get the recipe (plus tons more) in my new cookbook, Slushed! Click here to pre-order it today!


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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie serves as an Associate Creative Director at PARTNERS+simons, a boutique ad agency in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.


  1. That remind me of something that my grandma made for us when we were kids. i really love the taste of lemons, so I would definitely try this recipe.

  2. Very excited to try your recipe for Lemon Curd. I plan to drizzle over berries on Pavlova nests. Your recipe is so simple – thinking about making it to top the pavlovas is making me happy! : ) Thanks!