If you're a lemon dessert lover, you should absolutely save this recipe! This microwave lemon curd can be used in so many ways. It's great between layers of cake, spread on top of cheesecake, or even as a dip for cookies and graham crackers. The best part is, it's made in less than 5 minutes!
I've confessed this to you before, but I'll say it again: I'll take a lemon dessert over a chocolate dessert any day.
The fun thing about loving lemon so much and being a recipe developer is that when I do make a chocolate dessert to share with you, it's gonna be GOOD. Mind-blowing, even. I promise.
My small-batch brownies for two are killer, my chocolate gooey butter cookies will make you weak in the knees, and my mini chocolate cake for two will be on semi-weekly rotation at your house after just one bite.
What I'm trying to say is, when I make something with chocolate, it's freaking fantastic, because honestly, I'd rather be eating this microwave lemon curd. If a chocolate dessert can tempt me away from the lemon curd, it's a winner.
How to Make Microwave Lemon Curd
I'm very picky about lemon curd, because most of it is overly egg-y tasting, do you know what I mean? Any kind of canned/ packaged/ pre-made lemon curd always tastes like eggs to me. If I wanted lemony scrambled eggs, I'd make that. But I don't, and you probably don't either.
We want a smooth, creamy luscious sauce that is sweet with a lemon pucker at the end. It should be bright and tangy yet silky and creamy. So, if you want really good lemon curd, you have to make it yourself.
- Granulated Sugar. This recipe for microwave lemon curd makes a small batch that fits in a pint jar, so we only need ⅓ cup of white granulated sugar.
- Egg. One large egg, beaten.
- Fresh Lemons. We need the juice of 3 large lemons that equals ⅓ cup of fresh juice. Please do not substitute bottled juice. Also, we need the lemon zest from the lemons! The key to an amazing lemon curd is fresh lemon zest.
- Butter. Three tablespoons of unsalted butter, melted.
- Salt. A small pinch of salt balances the flavors here.
- Microplane - Here's the exact the microplane grater that I used in the video, because freshly grated lemon zest is the key to great lemon curd.
- Microwave-Safe Bowls - These are the exact bowls I cook and bake with all the time. They're microwave and dishwasher safe; I love them.
In a microwave-safe bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg, lemon juice, butter and salt. Microwave on HIGH for 1 minute. Stop, stir, and then microwave another minute.
Whisk the lemon curd very well after the 2 minutes in the microwave, and then place it back in the microwave for a final 30 seconds.
After 2 minutes and 30 seconds, begin testing the lemon curd by quickly dipping a spoon into it, and running your finger through it. If the line holds, the lemon curd is done. If the curd runs and fills the line you just made, try another 30 seconds in the microwave and test again. The curd will thicken a lot as it cools.
Strain the curd through a fine-mesh strainer into a jar with a lid or small bowl (press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd if you're storing in a bowl). Place in the fridge, and use within 7 days.
Best Tips and Tricks for Microwave Lemon Curd:
I have a newer model microwave that took 2 ½ minutes on HIGH to make this lemon curd, but I also shared in the video the best way to know when your lemon curd is done--your microwave might take more or less time to set. Check the comments below from others who have made the recipe to see how long it took in their microwave!
Yes, it will thicken quite a bit as it cools. Please keep this in mind!
To Make on the Stove:
If you want to make this on the stove instead of the microwave, just put all of the ingredients in a small saucepan and heat over medium-low heat while constantly stirring until it starts to thicken. Do the same spoon trick--coat the back of the spoon with the hot mixture and run your finger through the middle. If the line holds, it's set! Then, place the mixture in the refrigerator for a few hours to thicken.
This dessert keeps in the fridge in an airtight container for up to one week. Lemon curd should always be stored in the fridge since it contains eggs.
You can freeze lemon curd successfully if it's in a freezer safe storage container. Leave about a half-inch of head space for expansion as it freezes. It will keep for at least 6 months. To thaw, place in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours, whisk again and serve.
This recipe makes 1 cup of lemon curd. You can double it to fill a 9-inch pie crust with room for meringue on top.
Best Ways to Eat Lemon Curd:
- Spread some on homemade graham crackers.
- Drizzled over my mini angel food cake in a loaf pan.
- Poured over small-batch cheesecake in a loaf pan.
- Decorate my 6 inch cheesecake with a thin layer of it.
- I use this microwave lemon curd over my lemon cheesecake bars.
Microwave Lemon Curd
Microwave lemon curd made in just 5 minutes with 1 egg.
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- ⅓ cup freshly-squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- pinch of salt
- In a microwave-safe bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients very well.
- Microwave on HIGH for 1 minute. Stop, stir, and then microwave another minute.
- Stir the lemon curd after 2 minutes, and then place it back in the microwave for a final 30 seconds.
- After 2 minutes and 30 seconds, begin testing the lemon curd by quickly dipping a spoon into it, and running your finger through it. If the line holds, the lemon curd is done. If the curd runs and fills the line you just made, try another 30 seconds in the microwave and test again. The curd will thicken considerably as it cools.
- Strain the curd through a fine-mesh strainer into a jar with a lid or small bowl (cover with plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd if you're using this method).
- Place in the fridge, and use within 7 days.
To Make on the Stove: Place all of the ingredients in a small saucepan, and heat over medium-low heat while constantly stirring until it starts to thicken. Do the same spoon trick--coat the back of the spoon with the hot mixture and run your finger through the middle. If the line holds, it's set! Then, place the mixture in the refrigerator for a few hours to thicken.
How to store lemon curd: It keeps in the fridge in an airtight container for up to one week.
To freeze: Place in a freezer safe storage container, leaving a half-inch of head space for expansion. It will keep for at least 6 months. To thaw, place in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours, whisk again and serve.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 162Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 69mgSodium: 57mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 0gSugar: 17gProtein: 2g
Your video calls for the juice of one lemon. Your recipe calls for 1/3 cup of lemon juice. That would be roughly two lemons, possibly more. Respectfully, please make up your mind. I suspect your video is correct. I went with 1/3 cup of lemon juice, and got a curdled mess.
"make up your mind"?? C'mon Steven. Lemons come in different sizes.
Steve, that's massively rude. If you don't understand or like the recipe then don't use it. There's pretty much an infinite amount of lemon curd recipes to be found online.
Steve if you read the whole post you would have noticed that she says 3 large lemons that equals 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice. Nowhere does it say 1 lemon.
I just made this lemon curd yesterday, and it was so easy and delicious! My microwave is 1200 watts, and I did keep an eye on it while it cooked. Mine bubbled a lot in the microwave, and so I made sure to whisk it well between each minute in there (and for the second minute, I stopped early, at 30 seconds, to whisk an extra time because it looked like it might boil over if I didn't). I was so excited to have made lemon curd so easily, I forgot to strain it, but, fortunately there were no lumps or curds in the finished product.
To the previous poster: I am sorry you had such a hard time with it. I don't think the curdling had anything to do with the amount of lemon juice - 1/3 cup was exactly right for me. Perhaps it had more to do with how much you stirred? or the strength of your microwave? or perhaps it was simply bad luck? Also, the amount of juice each lemon gives depends entirely on the size of the lemon. The lemons that grow in our yard (I think they mighty be Meyers, but am not sure, since I did not plant them) range in size, and the larger one I used for this recipe (physical size much larger than my fist) gave exactly 1/3 cup. That's why I always appreciate when a recipe that uses fruit or veg specifies the amount needed in volume or weight, as Christina has in this one; all lemons (or bananas, or carrots, etc) were not created equally.
If it nearly bubbled over, you might need a slightly bigger bowl. I can't wait to try this but will consider what you have said so as to watch out for problems. Lemon curd can take so long in the old method. I have copied this down for my son as he was only talking about not being able to get descent L/curd in Spain. thank you.
Delicious! Worked absolutely perfectly for me. I just used juice of 1 lemon. My microwave is super powerful just took 2 minutes.
This lemon curd is so easy to make and SO good!! I've made it twice in the past 2 weeks. I microwave it in 30sec intervals for 2.5-3min and whisk it really well after each interval. It has such a bright and bold lemon flavor, slightly tart, not too sweet. I think next time I might try it with superfine sugar as I don't know that the regular granulated sugar fully disolved for me. It was still super delicious!!