If you’re here, you must be looking for the incredible satisfaction and delight of a lemon bar without all the eggs and egg yolks of the classic versions.
You may even be wondering if your pursuit makes any sense at all? Since the lemon part is the most important part of the bar, is it even possible to have something good without the eggs?
Now you can guess what I am likely to say next, cause I’ve got the recipe right here, and the photos prove that this dessert is worthy of the perfection I promised you.
So How Do You Make Lemon Bars Without Eggs?
Let’s break down the components of an eggless lemon bar first.
At the bottom you’ve got a rich, buttery, shortbread crust.
Then there’s the lemon filling.
A traditional lemon bar filling is made with six eggs, sugar, and a a lot of fresh lemon juice.
Woah! That’s a lot of eggs. So you can see why it might be tricky to make this recipe without eggs, right?
The secret to our eggless lemon filling is simply full fat coconut milk to replace the richness of eggs, the same zippy lemon juice, and a thickening agent. (cornstarch in this case.)
Since the eggs are what allow a traditional bar to set and become firm, we do need that thickener.
Now, I have to warn you that the filling will look strange when you’re cooking it on the stovetop, since the cornstarch will make it look translucent.
And even after you take it out of the oven, it will still look translucent and jiggly. I totally wondered at first if I was looking at an epic fail.
However, rest assured that after it cools, the filling sets and becomes perfectly what you’d expect.
How Do You Make An Eggless Lemon Filling Yellow?
I have to admit that I didn’t really think about this as a problem before, but in a traditional lemon bar, the yellow color comes mostly from the eggs.
If you try to make this lemon filling without eggs, it will be more white, and that doesn’t look right!
So turmeric powder comes to the rescue to provide both the yellow color, and a subtle medicinal quality.
Do not worry about the taste of the turmeric! There is not enough here to taste, and it would be very, very, difficult to compete with the lemony lemons.
Is This Lemon Bar Recipe Vegan?
Nope, but it could easily be.
While the filling is vegan, I used butter to make the lovely shortbread crust for this recipe.
This food blog is named Buttered Veg after all! I think butter tastes great and that it’s a healthy food in moderation.
However, for the vegans out there, you can opt for vegan butter or coconut oil instead, and it will still work.
If this all sounds good to you, then give these eggless lemon bars a try.
Can You Freeze Eggless Lemon Bars?
In my household I am the sole lover of lemon bars, so I slice it into small squares and store most of my tray in the freezer where I can enjoy one whenever the hankering arises.
It has been weeks, and my lemon bars are still perfect like they were the day I made them. I am anticipating they will be fine for months in fact.
This freezer strategy is great for guests too. The benefit is that when guests come you can create an assortment tray.
In fact, when it comes to desserts in general, the freezer is my friend.
I learned that from my mom! She always rationed homemade desserts in the downstairs freezer “outta sight, outta mind.”
I revel in the idea of spreading out the enjoyment just as she did.
How about you?
Oh, one last tip is to remember to dust your lemon bars with fresh powdered sugar before you serve them.
Of course, if it’s just you, you needn’t bother with niceties. Just enjoy it!
Perfect Eggless Lemon Bars
Helpful Kitchen Tools:
For the crust
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup sugar, (see notes)
- ¼ teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
For the lemon filling
- 1 ¼ cups full-fat coconut milk
- 1 ½ cups sugar, (see notes)
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ¾ cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest, (organic; see notes)
- 5 tablespoons cornstarch
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line an 8 x 8 inch pan with parchment paper, and allow the parchment to come up the sides of the pan so that you can remove the lemon bars from the baking tray later.
Make the crust
- Add all-purpose flour, sugar, and salt to a medium mixing bowl. Pour in melted butter and mix well with a wooden spoon.
- Transfer to the prepared baking tray. Use your hands to press down until the crust is even. Bake 15-20 minutes until the edges of the crust are very lightly browned. Set aside.
Make the filling
- Start a medium saucepan on medium heat. Add the coconut milk, sugar, and turmeric. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
- Combine the lemon juice, lemon zest, and cornstarch, then add it to the coconut milk mixture. Stir continuously until it thickens (about 5 minutes).
Bake and portion
- Pour the prepared filling onto the crust, then bake for 20 minutes. Allow to cool, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving to allow the filling to fully set.
- When you are ready to portion the bars, lift the entire recipe out of the tray using the parchment paper as a handle. Place on a cutting board and cut into pieces using a large knife. Dust with powdered sugar, either before cutting, or after.
- Enjoy right away, or store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks, and in the freezer for months.