Lemon Raspberry Bars

Ward off the rainy spring blues with these bright and cheery Lemon Raspberry Bars. With a buttery shortbread crust, creamy lemon filling, and bursts of bright whole raspberries, this dessert is perfect for spring and summer gatherings.

Lemon raspberry bars on a slate board

Spring Baking Self Care

If you’re anything like me, you’re getting sick and tired of rainy, gloomy weather. It’s APRIL! It’s supposed to be sunny! Where are my hopeful blossoms? Why am I still wearing a sweater? Why does it feel like 7 PM at 11 in the morning?

We often joke about dreary weather, but I find it has a serious impact on my mood. This time, instead of dwelling in my disappointment, I’m trying my best to practice some gloomy-spring self care. I filled our house with cheap and colorful bouquets from Trader Joe’s, turned on some Colbie Caillat to channel my inner beach vibes, and broke out all my best spring baking recipes: Rhubarb Upside Down Cake, Easy Raspberry Bars, and the sunniest recipe of all, Lemon Raspberry Bars.

Here’s Why You’ll Love these Lemon Raspberry Bars

  • It has a nice crust-to-filling ratio. I always appreciate a thick, buttery shortbread crust, and it also has enough lemon juice to be tart and refreshing without being too sweet. The filling is a tad more gooey/creamy than some other bars I’ve tried, which I actually really enjoy.
  • The filling is dotted with whole, fresh raspberries. It’s just another little sign of spring, a colorful sweet surprise tucked into every other bite.
  • These bars are easy to make and their bright yellow color is the perfect antidote for a dreary day.

I suppose the saying should actually be, “If life hands you a gloomy spring day and you also happen to have some lemons, make lemon bars.”

Sifting powdered sugar onto lemon raspberry bars

Key Ingredients

This recipe starts with an easy shortbread crust made with flour, sugar, lemon zest, and salt.

For the filling you’ll need:

  • Eggs
  • More flour, sugar, and salt
  • Lemon juice – I know what you’re thinking…Duh! Just make sure you’re using fresh squeezed lemon juice—not the bottled stuff. It makes a big difference!
  • Raspberries – You’ll need 1 pint of fresh raspberries for this recipe.
Slices of lemon raspberry bars with powdered sugar

How to Make Lemon Raspberry Bars

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan with butter or shortening.
  2. Prepare and bake the crust. Whisk together the flour, sugar, lemon zest, and salt in a bowl. Cut the butter into cubes then add them to the bowl. Use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour, working the dry ingredients into the butter until the mixture is in small, sandy clumps. Pour the mixture into the greased pan, spreading it evenly to the edges. Use your fingers to pat it down until smooth and firm. Bake for 18 minutes or until golden brown on the edges.
  3. Prepare the filling. In a stand mixer, beat the eggs on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Gradually add the sugar, and continue to beat until light and creamy. Add the flour, baking powder, lemon juice, and salt. Beat on low speed until just combined. 
  4. Pour and bake. When the crust is removed from the oven, spread the raspberries evenly over the top. Gently pour the filling over top of the raspberries and the warm crust. Bake for an additional 18-20 minutes or until the center is no longer jiggly.
  5. Allow the bars to cool, refrigerate for 1-2 hours, then sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve.
A slice of lemon bars with raspberries inside

FAQs

Should you refrigerate Lemon Raspberry Bars?

Lemon Raspberry Bars keep best in an airtight container in the fridge. They’ll keep for up to 4 days, but are best enjoyed within 24 hours.

Can you freeze lemon bars?

Absolutely! Lemon bars freeze beautifully. Always allow lemon bars to cool completely before freezing, and add powdered sugar after thawing.

You can freeze the whole slab, uncut, double wrapped tightly in saran wrap, or freeze individual bars in a single layer in an airtight container. Bars should last about 4-6 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before serving.

How do you tell if your lemon bars are done?

You should bake these Lemon Raspberry Bars until the center is no longer jiggly. Give your pan a gentle wiggle towards the end of the baking time. If the bars remain firm, they’re ready to go!

Should I cut lemon bars hot or cold?

It’s best to allow the bars to cool, refrigerate for 1-2 hours, and then cut and serve. 

More Lemon Recipes

Nothing gets me in the mood for spring like a sweet-tart lemon recipe! Here are a few more of my favorites:

Start your day off with my Lemon Zucchini Bread or Lemon Raspberry Poppyseed Muffins and a cup of coffee. 

For dessert, you can make my Lemon Sandwich Cookies, Lemon Rosemary Butter Cookies, or Lemon Cake.

We also love these refreshing Lemonade Shake Ups.

More Spring Recipes

If we don’t have perfect spring weather, at least we can pretend. My Creamy Mushroom and Leek Pasta only takes 30 minutes, and you can serve it with an Easy Carrot Saute or Air Fryer Asparagus. This Strawberry Spinach Salad with Sweet Lemon Dressing is another spring and summer favorite.

For breakfast, you don’t want to miss these Blueberry Crepes with Cream Cheese Filling. And for dessert, you can’t go wrong with my Gluten Free Carrot Cake.

Happy spring, everyone!

Lemon Raspberry Bars

Lemon Raspberry Bars

Yield: 20
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

These bright and tangy lemon bars are studded with whole raspberries for a beautiful and delicious spring dessert.

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the filling:

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pint fresh raspberries, rinsed and dried

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan with butter or shortening.
  2. To make the crust, whisk together the flour, sugar, lemon zest, and salt in a bowl. Cut the butter into cubes then add them to the bowl. Use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour, working the dry ingredients into the butter until the mixture is in small, sandy clumps. Pour the mixture into the greased pan, spreading it evenly to the edges. Use your fingers to pat it down until smooth and firm. Bake for 18 minutes or until golden brown on the edges. 
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In a stand mixer, beat the eggs on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Gradually add the sugar, and continue to beat until light and creamy. Add the flour, baking powder, lemon juice, and salt. Beat on low speed until just combined. 
  4. When the crust is removed from the oven, spread the raspberries evenly over the top. Gently pour the filling over top of the raspberries and the warm crust. Bake for an additional 18-20 minutes or until the center is no longer jiggly.
  5. Allow the bars to cool, refrigerate for 1-2 hours, then sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve. Bars can be stored covered in the fridge for up to 3 days, but are best enjoyed within 24 hours. 

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5 Comments

  1. Made these delicious lemon bars! They turned out excellent and exactly as shown! Will definitely be making these again. Thank you!

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