This Creamy Lemon Tart is bursting with lemon flavor and incredibly luscious and tasty!
This Lemon Curd Tart was created for a bridal shower. When I learned the bride-to-be loved lemon, I turned to Dorie Greenspan for her take on a glorious citrus dessert.
Why You Should Make this Lemon Tart
I made two of these exquisite lemon tarts for a bridal shower last weekend. As with most French sweets, they had just enough sugar and a nice citrus bite.
- Dorie Greenspan created a creamy filling without cream by using eggs, butter, and a blender. Such an intriguing method to make lemon curd. She was inspired by Pierre Herme’s emulsified lemon “cream” or curd.
- Plus her recipe utilized one of my favorite tricks—to rub the lemon zest into the sugar to release all the essential oils from the peel.
- The extra boost of lemon flavor makes this lemon curd tart one crazy delicious dessert!
Tips for Making a Creamy Lemon Curd Tart Filling
The lemon curd filling is not made in the typical fashion. Because the butter does not melt and resolidify, it’s super silky and luscious.
- PRO-Tip: Rubbing lemon zest into the sugar releases the lemon oils which adds even more lemon flavor than simply mixing.
- Once the custard thickens over a double boiler, it’s slowly added to a blender (affiliate link) to be emulsified with a boatload of butter. Definitely a new method for me.
- If your blender motor starts getting warm, just blend for short spurts until the mixture is thick and creamy. A food processor is another alternative, but Dorie states that the blender is her preferred method.
- An offset spatula (affiliate link) is perfect for smoothing and swirling the top of the lemon curd tart.
- Lemon slices make a pretty garnish, but remove before slicing. Alternatively, pipe whipped cream stars around the perimeter of the filling and top each mound with a ripe red raspberry.
Bill, a bona fide lemon lover, sampled the leftover lemon filling in my blender and gave it two thumbs up. This Creamy Lemon Tart was a smash hit at the shower! This double Dark Chocolate Tart would pair nicely with this lemon gem if you need another alternative!
- Sugar – Just regular granulated sugar
- Zest of 3 lemons – Never use the dried lemon zest in a jar. And zest your lemons before squeezing. It’s hard to zest a squeezed lemon!
- Eggs – Always use large eggs unless otherwise noted
- Freshly squeezed Lemon Juice (from about 4 lemons) – For the best flavor, always use fresh lemon juice, never bottled.
- Butter – I use salted butter. Note that it needs to be at room temperature for this recipe.
- 9-inch pie crust or Tart Shell – Bake and cool before filling. Look for a recipe with butter or part butter part shortening for the tastiest results.
More Lemon Recipes You’ll Love:
- Lemon Garlic Broccoli
- Lemon Steamed Spinach
- Mile High Lemon Meringue Pie
- Best Lemon Bars
- Lemon Souffle
- Meyer Lemon Streusel Bars
- Lemon Mascarpone Cake
- More Dessert Recipes
This recipe was originally posted in March 2016. The text and photos were updated in 2019.
- 1 cup sugar
- Finely grated zest of 3 lemons
- 4 eggs
- 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 4 lemons)
- 2 sticks plus 5 tablespoons (10 1/2 ounces) butter, at room temperature and cut into tablespoon-sized pieces
- 1 9-inch pie crust or tart shell, baked and cooled
- Set up your double boiler by bringing a few inches of water to a boil in a saucepan (choose one whose size works to fit on top of the pan).
- Put the sugar and zest in a large, heat-proof bowl that can be fitted into the pan of simmering water. Rub the sugar and zest between your fingers till it's well incorporated and fragrant. Whisk in the eggs then the lemon juice.
- Fit the bowl into the pan and make sure the water doesn't touch your bowl. Whisk until the mixture reaches 180º. Don't stop whisking or you may get bits of scrambled eggs in your custard. Start checking the temperature when you notice the custard getting thick.
- Remove from heat, then strain the lemon custard (to remove any bits of egg) right into your blender. Let cool about 10 minutes, then blend on high, adding 4-5 pieces of butter at a time. Scrape down the sides of your blender as needed. Once all butter is added, blend for a couple more minutes.
- Pour the lemon filling into a container, press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface to create an airtight seal and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight. When you are ready to construct the tart, just whisk the filling to loosen it and spoon it into the tart shell. Spread and swirl with an offset spatula if desired.
- Best when served immediately, but can be chilled overnight to serve.
You will need an instant-read thermometer to make the filling.
Total time does not include chilling time or the making and baking the crust if you choose to do a homemade version.
( I used Dorie's press in tart dough)
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Serving Size:1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 316Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 99mgSodium: 149mgCarbohydrates: 52gFiber: 2gSugar: 32gProtein: 6g