In my mind, I always had this vision of what lemon bars should be like. They should have a light crust, and be topped with a lot of lemon filling, then topped with a sprinkling of powdered sugar. I tried making lemon bars a few times, and was always disappointed with them, because they had this thin, thin layer of lemon. I know some of you may like them that way, but I wanted my lemon bars to be loaded with lemon. After searching around the world wide web a bit, I came across Ina Garten’s recipe for Lemon Bars. These bars looked promising. All I needed to do was convert them to contain no gluten.
The smell when you are preparing the filling for these bars is amazing. I love the smell when you zest a lemon (or any citrus fruit, really), it is so refreshing.
These lemon bars converted really well, and when we had them for dessert last night, my husband just says “They taste just the way I thought they should”. Finally, a lemon bar recipe that lives up to my standards and his. My daughter was sure to ask for some for her lunch kit today. My son has been begging me for a piece since 8:30 this morning. Yes, these gluten-free Lemon Bars are what Lemon Bars Should Be.
- 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour blend (see Note)
- 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
- pinch salt
- 7 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons grated lemon zest (4-6 lemons)
- 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (I needed 6 lemons to get 1 cup)
- 1 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour blend (see NOTE)
- Confectioners' Sugar for dusting
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, so the paper rises up the sides (I had it run up the 13" sides, and left the 9" sides bare). (This will make removing the squares much easier, as you can lift them out once they are cooled.)
- For the crust, in the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Combine the flour & salt, and slowly add to the butter/sugar mixture while the mixer is on low. Mix just until it is combined. Dump the dough into your 9x13-inch pan, and using hands dusted with gluten-free flour, press the dough evenly over the bottom of the pan, building up a 1/2-inch edge on all sides.
- Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until very lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack. Leave the oven on.
- While the crust is baking, you can prepare the filling. For the filling, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and gluten-free flour. Pour over your pre-baked crust and bake for 30-35 minutes, until the filling is set. Let cool to room temperature.
- To remove from pan, cut along 9" edges, and use the parchment paper to lift the bars out to a cutting board. Using a sifter or wire sieve, dust the top of the bars with confectioners' sugar. Cut into squares, and serve.
Adapted from Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook