Friday, May 10, 2013

Cream Cheese Lemon Bars

by Sheila Connolly

You knew the healthy recipes wouldn't last, right?  The butter and sugar are back, but it's dessert—indulge yourself!

There are lots of recipes for lemon bars.  In our household we often make the one that my daughter brought home from middle school. (And after the treacle slice recipe a few weeks ago, I'm looking for a good use for most of a jar of lemon curd—suggestions welcome!)  This recipe is a little different.

Cream Cheese Lemon Bars

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a 9" square pan.


1 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup chopped walnuts (I like mine finely chopped, but you can do what you want)
½ cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup unsalted butter

Beat together the flour, nuts, sugar and butter.  Press half of it in the cake pan and bake for 10-15 minutes until it is lightly browned.  Remove the pan from the oven.


Grated rind and juice of one small lemon (note:  My market happened to have Meyer Lemons this past week, so I bought a few—I really want to encourage them to branch out.  Meyer Lemons have a slightly different flavor than other lemons, and a more vivid outer rind.)

1 cup cream cheese (not the fat-free kind)

1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 Tblsp whole milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg

Beat together, first, the lemon rind, lemon juice, cream cheese and sugar (a hand or stand mixer works best).  Then beat in the milk, vanilla and egg.

Spoon the mixture over the baked bottom crust and spread evenly.  Sprinkle the rest of the crust/topping over the top.

Bake for about 25 minutes, until the top is golden.  Cool on a wire rack, then chill.

Cut into bars.

I'll confess, these are a little hard to get out of the pan.  Currently I'm coveting a baking pan I saw in Ireland last year:  square, about 3" deep, with a removable bottom.  It would be perfect for this.


  1. Could you bake it in a tart pan Sheila? And use lime instead of lemon?

    sounds yummy, good enough to have for breakfast!

  2. A sweet recipe for Mother's Day weekend, Sheila, and may I say... Happy Mother's day to you!! XO

  3. Sounds great.
    Try lining the baking pan with parchment paper, having the ends hang over two opposite sides. Then when it is cool, you can pick the whole thing up by the paper.

  4. I love the sound of this, Sheila! Lemony!!!

    Libby's trick with the parchment paper works perfectly. I recently discovered it and it's easy and effective.

    BTW, I am also loving Buried in a Bog.

  5. What's not to love! Lemon and cheese. Delish.

    Daryl / Avery

  6. I love lemon bars. Ohhh, and it's almost time for the first lemon meringue pie of the season! These sound great. I fear I shall have to try them!