Cooking Through A Cookbook

Whole Lemon Bar Review

Recipe 74 from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman


WW Note: So the serving size for these bars is 12 but they are pretty huge. So if you wanted a 1/12 then that’s 15 points. Enjoy 1/24 for 5 points or cut them into 48 small bite sized pieces for 4 points a piece. What I love is that you can cut these into 12 bars them decide easily how many points you want to spend and cut (or don’t cut) the bar accordingly. Enjoy!


This recipe can be found in Deb Perelman’s “The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook” pages 217-219 or from the following sites:

Food Network

Kirbie Cravings

Two of a Kind Cooks


Welcome to the next chapter! We’ll be covering 8 different recipes in this chapter and I actually have to be honest and tell you this chapter is going to be posted in order but it won’t exactly be made in order. I started a few of these this summer when the fresh ingredients were in season so while this is the first post, I have 2 other posts I’m working on for recipes I’ve already done. You’ll see more on those later but just trying to keep it honest!

That being said…lets pile on more bad news… this recipe didn’t go very well. I need to try them again to give it a fair review because right now it’s a 2 star rating from me…blaming me not Deb on this one though! Yet, I honestly don’t know what happened! I was disappointed in the end result but I’ve seen this recipe well reviewed on other sites (see above) so I’m assuming it was me not this recipe.

I’ve made Ina Garten’s Lemon Bars and the are amazing! So my standard was high going in. The biggest difference between this recipe and Ina’s is the way you use the lemon. Ina is team lemon zest + juice (a LOT of fresh lemon juice) and Deb is team throw-the-whole-lemon-in!

For that reason I love the recipe because it’s way easier to throw a whole lemon in the food processor instead of zesting and juicing till you’re sore. However something happened with mine in this recipe that caused clumps….and I never recovered from that!

The clumps affected the texture of the custard (and it’s appeal if I’m being honest). I keep thinking I may have messed things up with the eggs if my melted butter was too hot. But the clumps are more reminiscent of what sometimes happens with me and cornstarch. So maybe the temperature or freshness of the cornstarch made a more coagulated version of the custard…hmmmm.

Despite that, these came together really quickly! These will be a go to if you need more quick/easy dessert recipes in your life. You do need them to cool before powdering them with sugar and cutting them into squares but that still shouldn’t cost you too much time.

You may be able to see my clumppy mess here in the picture above. Sad to say they were not gobble worthy this time. We ate a few bars and kind of gave up. Not a good texture at all.

All is not lost. I will come back and try this again. My lemon tree is growing me some Meyer lemons so I’m going to need something fun to make with them. I’ll probably swing back and try this recipe.

Time to try one more time before I give these an honest rating. I’ll be back…but got to keep moving! Working with bananas next!

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