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Homemade Lemon Curd Recipe

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This easy-to-make Homemade Lemon Curd recipe is buttery, silky smooth, and sweet yet tart – perfection in a lemon curd!

Homemade Lemon Curd Recipe

Homemade Lemon Curd

When life gives you lemons, make lemon curd! There’s something incredibly satisfying about the velvety texture of homemade lemon curd. It’s buttery, silky, sweet, yet tart—perfection!

As a thank you, my neighbor gifted me a basket of Meyer lemons from her mother’s tree. We’ve been enjoying all sorts of lemon recipes, from savory dishes like this Lemon Ricotta Pasta to no-bake lemon desserts like this lemon cheesecake and this Lemon Ice Box Cake.

I made the first batch of lemon curd a few weeks back, but it was gone way before I could write about it. We pretty much ate that batch straight from the jar. It was that good!

Over the weekend, I made a triple batch to ensure that I had enough for us to “sample” (eat straight from the jar) and still have plenty for all the recipes I have in mind. (It’s a good thing I did because that jar was full before I took these pictures!)

Easy lemon curd recipe

Why you’ll love This Homemade Lemon Curd

  • Simple: All you need is five ingredients and a few minutes at the stove top.
  • Tastier than store-bought – This Homemade Lemon Curd tastes absolutely delicious. The perfect rich combination of sweet and tart.
  • No Artificial Ingredients: Keep things natural and free from preservatives found in store-bought varieties
  • Versatility at Its Finest: From toast toppers to tart fillers, this Lemon Curd does it all.

Ingredients in Lemon Curd

(Ingredients at a glance, you will find the full printable recipe with ingredient amounts in the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post.)

  • Egg yolks: Egg yolks are what give this lemon curd its bright yellow color and help thicken it up.
  • Lemons: You’ll need the zest and juice to give this curd its flavor. The zest imparts a robust, unrivaled lemon flavor. (There is no real substitute here; fresh is best!)
  • Sugar: Use white sugar to add sweetness and balance the tartness of the lemon.
  • Unsalted butter: Unsalted butter gives the curd a rich, velvety finish; you can also use salted butter if you wish.

How To Make Lemon Curd

1Get the yolks and lemons going. Combine yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a small saucepan. Whisk to combine.

2Cook the mixture. Over medium heat, stir constantly with a wooden spoon and cook until the mixture is thick.

3Add the butter. Remove the saucepan from heat, add butter, a few pieces at a time, stirring until consistency is smooth.

4Transfer and cool. Transfer the mixture to a serving container. Refrigerate and let cool for about an hour.

It’s so easy! The hardest part is stirring the lemon curd the entire time it cooks (about 7 minutes).

how to make lemon curd.

Recipe Tips

  • Take the lemons out of the fridge as you begin to prepare this lemon curd so they can come to room temperature. Room-temperature lemons are easier to juice.
  • Make sure to stir constantly so the mixture turns out smooth and silky and it doesn’t burn and stick to the pot.
  • Stick with white sugar, as it is best to use in lemon curd.
  • Use fresh lemon juice to make this lemon curd, not bottled as fresh will have the best flavor.
  • You can strain your curd through a fine-mesh sieve for extra silkiness.
  • Be patient. The curd will thicken as it cools.


Once cool, transfer to an airtight container or mason jar. Leftover lemon curd will keep in the fridge for up to two weeks. Just ensure it’s well-sealed to maintain its freshness.

You can also freeze lemon curd for up to 3 months.


  • For a slightly sweeter curd, stir in vanilla extract. Or try almond extract.
  • Forget the lemons altogether and make cranberry curd.

What to use lemon curd for?

  • As a topping for scones, pancakes, waffles, sugar cookies.
  • To hide inside muffins or cupcakes.
  • For a filling for cupcakes, cookies, crepes, pies and tarts.
  • Mix with a little whipped cream for a fabulous fruit dip.
  • I especially like to stir it in my vanilla yogurt and top it with granola and fresh blueberries or raspberries.
  • Make ice cream (or do what I did and mix it into store-bought vanilla ice cream- I had to test it out and make sure it was good before recommending it…)


Is lemon curd the same as lemon pie filling?

They are similar, but the curd is thicker and more intensely flavored.

Can I use any type of lemon to make lemon curd?

Yes, you can use any type of lemon.

Can I use bottled lemon juice or juice from concentrate?

Fresh is best, but in a pinch, you can use bottled for a zest-less version.

Why isn’t my curd thickening?

You may need more cooking time. Continue stirring until the lemon curd coats the back of a spoon and registers about 175 degrees F on a candy thermometer. It will continue to thicken as it cools.

Why is my lemon curd lumpy?

High heat is the likely culprit. Always cook slowly over medium heat and whisk constantly. You may have overcooked it or cooked it at too high of a temperature. You can press your curd through a fine-mesh sieve to remove the lumps.

Can I double this recipe?

Yes, absolutely! If you want to have a double batch on hand go ahead and double the recipe.

Can I use lime or orange instead of lemon?

Definitely. You might need less sugar with the orange. Start with 5 tablespoons of sugar and give it a taste while cooking to test the sweetness.

lemon curd recipe

BTW, do you like my turquoise backdrop?  It’s my favorite.  (I’ve been using it quite often lately…  Must be this dreary winter weather.)  Are you curious about how I made it?  I have the instructions here: DIY Photo Backdrop

More Lemon Recipes:

Did You Make This Homemade Lemon Curd Recipe?

Please leave a star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating and/or a review in the comments section below. If you share an image on Instagram or Facebook, be sure to tag me and use #scatteredmomrecipes!

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Homemade Lemon Curd

Homemade Lemon Curd Recipe

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 1 review
  • Author: Jamie Sanders
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 75 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: desserts
  • Method: stovetop


This easy-to-make, Homemade Lemon Curd recipe is buttery, silky smooth, sweet yet tart. Perfection in a lemon curd!


Units Scale
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 6 tbs sugar
  • 4 tbs unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces


  1. Combine yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a small saucepan. Whisk to combine.
  2. Over medium heat, stir constantly with a wooden spoon.
  3. Cook until mixture is thick enough to coat back of wooden spoon, about 7 minutes.
  4. Remove saucepan from heat. Add butter, a few pieces at a time, stirring until consistency is smooth.
  5. Transfer mixture to a serving container. Let cool.
  6. Refrigerate for about an hour or until chilled.



(This recipe makes about 8 oz.)


  • Serving Size: 2 tablespoons
  • Calories: 89
  • Fat: 6
  • Carbohydrates: 10
  • Protein: 0

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  1. I need to compare your recipe with the one I make. I make it when I make a lemon cheesecake, Mixing it in vanilla ice sounds like a scrumptious use of it. Thank you for sharing

  2. Susan Bauer says:

    How long does lemon curd last in the fridge?

    1. Jamie Sanders says:

      Lemon curd will last in the refrigerator, in an airtight container up to 4 weeks. If you plan to keep it any longer than that, you can freeze it. Leave about half an inch room at the top of the container for the curd to expand in the freezer.

  3. Wow, I found a recipe that called for lemon curd a few days ago. So off I went to the grocery store to buy some…..but that 8 ounce jar was almost $5.00! So I came home without it….and now I have the recipe so I can make my own!!! Thanks!!

  4. Aga Tinca says:

    I'm crazy about lemon these days! Probably because it's so dark and moody outside 😛
    Love your photos, I took some of my lemon hand lotion but it's more yellow + pink 🙂
    hugs x

  5. Christine says:

    Could that look any more delicious?!! YUM! I love lemon curd!

  6. Barb Brookbank says:

    Looks so yummy! great photos!

  7. I adore lemon curd! I must make up a batch now that lemons are back in season and our tree has more than we could ever use (even with giving our neighbors unfettered access to it, too!).

  8. Miz Helen says:

    I would just love your Lemon Curd, what a great recipe! Thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and hope you have a great weekend!
    Miz Helen

  9. Muntasir ahmed yead says:

    This looking so beautiful.I love this.

  10. Natashalh says:

    I really want to make lemon curd and I love the backdrop! I have a blue one that I use way too often.

  11. This looks great, Jamie! I blogged about lime curd years ago and have terrible photos. Yours are gorgeous! I'll certainly have to try your recipe and then make my own again to post. Thanks for sharing, and yes- I love your turquoise backdrop!

  12. MyFarmLifeDiary says:

    I love lemon curd. Whenever I make meringues and have the leftover egg yolks, I whip up a batch of fresh lemon curd. It goes really well spread over a strawberry meringue roulade (which I linked up on your link party – thanks for hosting) Have a wonderful week. Tamara @ MyFarmLifeDiary

  13. Elizabeth Jack says:

    I have never made this before but I definitely plan on trying your recipe, it looks delicious!

  14. mmm . . . I love lemon curd and yours looks fabulous!

  15. Elizabeth H. says:

    My Yorkshire grandmother used to make lemon tarts for Christmas…..Yum Yum!! The tradition continues as the recipe went to my mom and her sisters and then to their daughters. If there's any left, it's good on toast!