Meyer Lemon Curd

Meyer lemons are an ideal choice for making lemon curd; their sweeter flavor truly shines in this recipe. One taste and you’ll agree it’s bold, sassy and decidedly sublime.

Meyer Lemon Curd by Cakewalker

When there’s a run on Meyer lemons at the store I stock up. Big bag, little price; what’s not to love? You may know from previous posts, I refer to the Meyer variety as the golden gems of the citrus family. Now that we’re looking at the start of May, it may be the last of this lemon I’ll see for a while. They start showing up in the market around Thanksgiving, peak in January, and then begin to fade in February. 2016 must have been a splendid crop for the winter jewel as I’ve been reveling in their supreme flavor for a long stretch.

One way I make use of lemon abundance is to whip up a batch (or two) of curd. The flavor is intense lemon brought on by utilizing the juice and the zest. Its pucker power is tempered by the interplay of the sugar measure against the salt in the butter. And when the acid, sugar and salt commingle, it dazzles the palate.

Meyer Lemon Zest by cakewalkr.comThe zest and juice of the Meyer lemon is culinary gold. Sigh.

The Meyer Lemon Curd recipe below is the one used in this Lemon Chocolate Cake!

Alton Brown’s recipe is my go to. I like the few, simple ingredients and easy directives. The viscosity (thickness) of the finished product can be more or less tailored to your needs―be sure to see the recipe notes below. The curd may be made using standard lemons or the Meyer variety. It’s clear which choice I prefer, and if you’re not familiar with the Meyer lemon, you’ll find they are the sweetest, full-flavored, lemony lemon on the globe.

I suppose it would be trite to suggest what to do when life gives you lemons, but if you do have them, lots of them, lemon curd uses them in the tastiest way.

Meyer lemon curd from cakewalkr.comRecipe adapted from Alton Brown

Meyer Lemon Curd

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 12 minutes

Cook Time: 8 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: One pint

Meyer Lemon Curd

Meyer lemons are an ideal choice for making lemon curd; their sweeter flavor truly shines in this recipe. One taste and you’ll agree it’s bold, sassy and decidedly sublime.


  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 Meyer lemons, zested and juiced (or regular lemons)
  • 1 stick butter, cut into pats and chilled


  • Add enough water to a medium saucepan to an inch or so in depth. Bring water to a simmer over medium-high heat.
  • Whisk egg yolks in a medium size metal bowl until broken and liquid. Add the sugar and whisk until smooth, about 1 minute. Measure lemon juice and if needed, add enough cold water to reach a total of 1/3 cup. Add the juice and zest to egg mixture and whisk smooth.
  • When the water reaches a simmer, reduce heat to low and place bowl on top of saucepan. (Bowl should be large enough to fit on top of saucepan covering the opening but without touching the water below.) Whisk continuously and gently until thickened, approximately 8 minutes, or until mixture is light yellow and coats the back of a spoon. Remove promptly from heat and stir in butter, a piece at a time, allowing each addition to melt before adding the next. Transfer the curd to a clean container and cover by laying a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd, pressing the plastic gently to remove trapped air bubbles; cool to room temperature, then refrigerate. May be stored refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.


Meyer lemons are quite juicy and I’ve never been short the 1/3 cup needed for the recipe―the 4 lemons typically yield more. When using standard lemons, however, it’s possible the added water may be needed to meet the third cup requirement. Truth is, the juice content of lemons depends upon the season, variety, and how they’re grown.

The viscosity of the curd at the 8-minute cooking mark yields a lush, smooth and thick texture which pours similarly to corn syrup (this is the texture depicted herein). It is ideal to top cheesecakes, to spread onto pastry, shortbread and the like. To achieve a thicker curd with body to use as a cake or cupcake filling, cook 2-3 additional minutes. In all cases, the curd thickens as it cools and is refrigerated.

Whisking the mixture too vigorously during cooking may over-incorporate air into the curd rendering a frothy texture.


  1. Nothing like homemade lemon curd! I really need to get my hands on some Meyer lemons this summer to find out what all the fuss is about! They’re not easy to come by at all here, Brooks.
    Your photos, as always, are amazing!

    • Brooks Walker says

      Dear Azlin, I wish you the best in finding some―I think you’ll adore the Meyer variety. Thank you for the compliment, my friend!

  2. Just got a bag of Meyer lemons! I was shocked to see them at this time of year. This looks like a wonderful way to use them!

    • Brooks Walker says

      I know, right Chris? I’m surprised by the extended season too! I appreciate you stopping by.

  3. I am about to embark on baking 60 French macarons (for our 30th anniversary party) so I will have several egg yolks left over — this recipe comes just in the nick of time, thank you! My Meyer lemon tree (named Oscar) is doing well and will gift us with two beautiful lemons from his winter nap inside. I can already see a flower is going to bloom very shortly so an abundance of Meyer lemons is definitely in my future (providing the squirrels leave them alone — I plan to put a fruit sock on each one when I move Oscar outside). Do you think I can ‘can’ this spread in sterilized glass jars? So I can keep them over a longer period of time?

    • Brooks Walker says

      Eva, I don’t have a solid answer for you in regards to canning this recipe herein as I’ve never canned it. A key to canning safely is reaching a proper acidity level—as such fresh lemon juice varies in acidity and it’s not recommended. For that reason, recipes I’ve seen call for a good measure of bottled lemon juice which standardizes the acidity. Look on the web for canned lemon curd recipes and you’ll see what I mean. Oscar sounds like a lovely giving tree and I’m sure the fruit will bring much glee. It’s always a pleasure to have you here. Best wishes!

      • Thank you for your detailed response Brooks, I really appreciate it. I shall refer to Google regarding the canned lemon curd. Do you think it would freeze well? I just finished baking 146 macarons and they’ll sit in the freezer until a few days before our party and so I have 12 yolks waiting for something to do with them!

        • I just found that it freezes well, so that’s what I’ll do. Off to make some of your gorgeous lemon curd now. woot woot!

          • Brooks Walker says

            You’re most welcome for the reply, Eva. And I thank you for letting me know the curd freezes well (it’s never lasted long enough in my house to freeze)! Knowing this may change future batch quantities. Happy lemon curd making―I’ll bet the macarons are going to be splendid!

  4. The curd was a huge success! I made 1.5 times the recipe which yielded just over 400 mL! It’s got the right amount of sweetness and just enough sour to pucker a bit! Damn good. Tomorrow I’ll whip up a pate brisée for a tiny tart for JT and freeze the rest. My organic egg yolks resulted in a gorgeous, rich, deep yellow curd.

    • Brooks Walker says

      Hooray! It’s a terrific recipe; I’m so glad you’re happy with the results. And the yellow hue afforded by the organic yolks…sigh. Thank you for sharing your success with me. Cheers!

  5. Brooks, I agree. I always make my curd with Meyer lemons. They are the best. This is quite similar to my own recipe, and I give it the extra two or three minutes to make it as thick as I like it for spreading on scones. Glad to learn from the comments that it freezes well. I’ve never tried it but always wondered. Next time I’ll freeze half a batch and see how I like it. Your photos have my mouth watering!

    • Brooks Walker says

      Thank you, Jean! Next time I’m thinking of making a double batch and freezing one. 🙂

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