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How to Make Lemon Curd from Scratch

How to Make Lemon Curd from Scratch

Last Updated on 12th December 2021 by

Lemon curd, lemon cheese, or lemon butter…you call it as you may. This tasty and creamy curd is spread on scones, muffins, and bread to give them a heavenly flavour you won’t get from any other product.

It is used as a filling for cakes and cookies too. Even though it looks as if it requires special attention and technicalities to make, it is super simple to prepare than most people imagine. It takes me just under 20 minutes to make a batch.

After reading this, you won’t need to buy lemon curd from the local store again. Making one cup every week is easy peasy work, and I guarantee you’ll also be able to do it in under 20 minutes with just a single lesson.

Of course, you’ll get slight differences and variations in the recipes from different foodies like me.

As an indigenous English product, you’ll find it in most cookbooks and recipes. In some of the guides, you’ll notice them use the yolk alone, while in others the whole egg is used.

While in some instances all the ingredients will be stashed at once in a container before the stirring process begins, other experts will recommend a step by step approach to making the perfect lemon curd.

Regardless, this doesn’t matter because the end result is always yummy considering one gets the ingredient measurements right.

Ingredients You Need to Make Lemon Curd

Lemon curd uses ingredients that are already in most kitchens. Some of these include:


You won’t miss eggs in lemon curd, but as mentioned before, there is a contention in the way to use eggs to make the curd. Some people will recommend using the whole egg, while others will insist on using the yolk.

Those who include the white part do so because it’s lighter. Those who use egg yolks praise the consistency they achieve when making lemon butter. The result is creamier as well.

For me, I take the whole thing. I believe the mixture of lightness and richness makes better lemon curd.

White Sugar:

You don’t want to steal away the sunshine yellow colour from your lemon curd by using caster sugar. White sugar ensures it provides the flavour as well as retain the preferred bright shine of this product.

Lemon Juice and Zest:

Lemon must be there to qualify the product’s name lemon curd. Different individuals prefer different strengths of the lemon acid in the product. Therefore, varied recipes will contain different amounts.

The sour spread of lemon curd on my bread in the morning does it for me. I, therefore, get as much lemon juice as necessary for my taste. Then there is the zest. It is what provides you with the lemon flavour. Get as much as you need (a spoonful is enough for our example.)

Butter or Dairy:

For some people, eggs, sugar, and lemon juice are enough to make their Lemon curd. However, like most dairy lovers out there, I prefer using butter to enhance the richness in flavour.

Even better, it makes the product thicker if you used the whole egg, that would produce a creamy light product. Those who like it lighter and insist on using dairy as a recipe will go with double cream.

However, the cream will kill the lemon acid to make it mild. If acidity and the burst of lemon flavour is important to you, don’t use cream.

3 Eggs

5 Ripe Lemons

1-tablespoon of Grated Lemon Zest

3/4-cups of sugar

1/2-softened and unsalted butter

How To Make Lemon Curd With Lemon Juice

Some people will just take every ingredient, mix it all in a bowl, and start stirring. Going step by step, I believe, produces better results.

So, after zesting and juicing your lemon, beat your eggs and whisk them together with the lemon juice, lemon zest, and sugar in a bowl. The results should be a perfect blend. If you own a blender, whisking becomes faster and produces smoother results.

Add in your butter and combine it with your blended results using a spoon. Ensure you get a smooth paste.

Simmer water in a saucepan (that can accommodate the bowl with the ingredients). Place your bowl with the mixture in it and continue with the stirring or whisking to achieve thickness.

Continue with the whisking until you see the whisk leaving its trail in the curd as you stir. This process should take about 10 minutes.

Get the curd out of the simmering water and allow it to settle. Some people don’t like the lemon zest particles in the curd. In such a case, you’ll have to squeeze it through a fine mesh (a great opportunity to taste what you’ve made).

Pour your fine curd into a sterilised jar if you want it to last several days. Cover it with plastic at first and refrigerate. Then replace the plastic with the proper lid of your jar when it is refrigerated.

How to Make Healthy Lemon Curd

For health-conscious people, I often recommend low-fat lemon curd that is still delicious and nutritious. For your ingredients, you just need to reduce the number of eggs and remove butter entirely.

Then for the best results, follow these three steps:

  1. Mix your sugar and lemon juice. Then using simmering heat as above, stir until the sugar dissolves.
  2. Beat your egg in a bowl, and pour the lemon juice sugar syrup slowly in it as you whisk. Proceed with the whisking process for about a minute.
  3. Take the mixture back to your saucepan, add zest under low heat and stir until it thickens.
  4. While still hot, pour into your jar and immediately cover it to avoid a skin from forming. Then put it into the refrigerator.

What Types of Lemon Curd Are There?

I experiment with my lemon curd every time I make it. If the temperature is more than it needs to, you’ll see white lumps in the finished product. Don’t worry. That’s just the white part of the egg responding to heat (the reason why some people don’t keep it among the ingredients).

If you pass your results in a fine mesh, you can easily eliminate these particles. But be sure to lose more curd in the process. Unless you are making it for commercial purposes, this should not be a major concern.

Sure, the particles are a bummer, but they communicate that you should do better next time.

It is possible to make your curd using different fruits including blood orange, grape, passionfruit, lime, and lemon to get varied taste and flavour.

You can also input different flavours into the cooked lemon curd to achieve the desires of the end-user. Like me, the more you prepare lemon curd, the more experiments you’ll do to get variations that meet your particular tastes and preferences.

What Is the Best Lemon Curd?

I love experimenting with many ingredients but so far, these three are my top favourites.

  1. Lemon zest-flavoured curd: My all-time lemon curd is described above takes the first position. The thought of it spread on bread or scones wakes me each morning.
  2. Healthy lemon curd: This one takes a shorter time to prepare and yet very healthy. I go for it whenever I feel I should live healthily.
  3. Lemon ginger-flavoured curd: With this, I add a teaspoon of grated ginger when sugar has dissolved to give it the strong ginger flavour. I recommend this for pregnant mothers because it works well against nausea and vomiting. Also, when I’m having indigestion issues, it helps speed up the bowels.

There you go. Making lemon curd is that simple. Invite your friends over and see what they have to say.

5/5 - (1 vote)

I'm Pauline, a mother of four grown children, my passion for cooking stemmed from the joy i get cooking for my family. I love to try new dishes, especially when dining out but creating and sharing my own recipes is my favourite thing to do!