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Naturally Sweetened Lemon Bars


  • Author: Joscelyn | Wife Mama Foodie
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 36 mins
  • Total Time: 56 minutes
  • Yield: 916 bars 1x

Description

These lemon bars are delicious and full of lemon flavor! They’re also free of eggs and refined sugar, and can easily be made dairy-free and gluten-free as well!


Ingredients

Scale

Crust:

1 cup all-purpose flour or gluten-free all-purpose flour blend

1/4 cup coconut sugar or other granulated sugar

pinch salt

1/2 cup regular/dairy-free butter or coconut oil, melted

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Lemon Filling:

7 tablespoons corn starch 

2/3 cup lemon juice (45 lemons)

3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons maple syrup and/or honey (I used a combo of both. You can also use 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar)

Pinch of salt

1 1/3 cup full-fat canned coconut milk or coconut cream (firm up more when you use mostly the white cream)

12 teaspoons lemon zest, optional

A few drops of natural yellow food coloring or pinch of turmeric, optional


Instructions

To make the crust:

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease an 8-inch square pan and line with parchment paper for easy removal later.

In a medium bowl, stir together crust ingredients—flour, sugar, and salt. Stir in melted butter and vanilla; mix until combined.

Press crust mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 18 mins, until lightly browned. Remove and let cool.

To make the filling:

In a medium bowl or large measuring cup, mix together cornstarch and lemon juice until smooth. Stir in sweetener, salt, and coconut milk. Strain mixture through a sieve and into a medium saucepan. Stir in lemon zest and food coloring/turmeric.

Place saucepan over medium heat and whisk until mixture begins to thicken. As it heats up, it will turn into a thick curd, almost pudding like. This process takes several minutes. If it still hasn’t thickened after 5–7 minutes, turn up the heat and stir constantly until it begins to thicken.

Spread lemon curd evenly over crust and bake 18 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack before covering and placing into the fridge to chill completely, at least a few hours, preferably overnight. Bars should be completely chilled before slicing and serving. Makes 9 large or 16 smaller bars.