If there’s one fruit suited to making desserts, it’s the lemon. For one, it’s sunny yellow color is enough to cheer anybody. Two, it’s tartness will wake up your dormant, bored tastebuds. And who can resist a sweet-tart burst of flavor exploding in their mouths when they take a bite of a sunny yellow lemon bar? Sure wouldn’t be me. I love lemons.
I found this recipe on one of my favorite food blogs, Gutsy. She’s got some of the most wonderful recipes, including frog’s legs! (sorry, Caroline, I just lost any new readers to your blog)
Being the lemon fanatic that I am, I tweaked her recipe just slightly. For one, I doubled the filling and increased the amount of lemon juice. I think that the latter alteration was what made my bars so soggy, but I don’t care–I’ll eat it with a spoon if I have to. It’s lemon. It’s worth it.
Healthy Lemon Bars (grain free)
1 1/2 cup blanched almond meal flour (I’ve heard it said that you can use coconut flour if you double the amount called for)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1-2 TBS honey
2 TBS room temp butter (I haven’t tried this, but I imagine that you could replace this with coconut oil to make your bars dairy free as well!)
1 TBP vanilla extract (we use homemade vanilla extract because a lot of times the store-bought stuff has sugar in it. Isn’t that silly? Sugar is in everything!)
1 cup organic lemon juice (this will be about 4 squeezed lemons. If you’re not wild about lemons like I am, you can half this, as the original recipe prescribes, or reduce it to 3/4 cup, which would be 3 lemons)
3 pastured eggs (this is when having your own chickens comes in handy)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup melted butter (again, I imagine coconut oil would work)
Preheat oven to 350f. Grease a 9X9 baking dish with butter or coconut oil (I did use coconut oil for this). Dust the dish with almond flour (I think I forgot to do this last time and my bars ‘stuck’ more–but that might of been because of the extra lemon juice).
For the Crust:
In medium sized bowl, mix almond flour and salt. Add the butter (coconut oil if you’re using it), vanilla and honey. Mix until all is combined in a ball. Now, at this point, you may take a bite and decide that your lemon bars don’t need a crust. I’m telling you, maybe you ought to double the crust recipe and save half to eat by itself. It’s like healthy, grain-and-sugar-free cookie dough. Yes, it has more texture than a gluten cookie dough, but I’ve been gluten free for so long that I don’t care.
Press your almond dough (what’s left of it) into the bottom of your prepared pan. Bake for 10-15 minutes until it’s golden brown. While it’s baking, mix all the filling ingredients together in a medium sized bowl (I use used the crust bowl, rinsed out and dried). Mix filling together with a whisk or blender until smooth. When the crust is done, pour lemon mixture over it and return to the oven for 20 minutes or so until the edges and top are slightly golden brown (watch it carefully, you don’t want your golden to turn black).
Cool on the counter for 30 minutes. I prefer to put it in the refrigerator after it cools (for one, I like my lemon bars cold–two, they’re much easier to cut when they’ve set in the fridge for two hours or so). Maybe you can’t wait and want to eat them still hot…..to each his own, go ahead.
So there. Very easy, very lemony, and very good!
~This post was shared on Waste Not Want Not Wednesday on the Poor and Gluten Free blog~