I’m feeling a little on edge today, quite literally. We’re teetering on the brink of spring (cloudy, windy, 68 degrees, and I can’t stop sneezing!). My deadline for cookbook production is coming right up. The suspense of closure is getting to me, and I spend too much time daydreaming how I’m going to use my newfound free time.
I think I’ll go to India for a month to become certified in yoga. Just putting that out into the universe.
This lemon curd is perfect for this moment in time, as citrus is still in season and bright colors start popping up around us. In fact, it’s the very same shade of yellow as the daffodils I picked up from Trader Joe’s and the forsythia blooming along the fences in my neighborhood.
The curd is tart, but sweet, with extra flavor since it’s sweetened with honey instead of plain sugar. It’s a seasonal treat that stores well in the freezer for later, in case you want to bottle it up and savor it over the next couple of months.
This curd is both simple and fun to make, with no straining required thanks to the preparation and cooking method. It goes through several distinct phases on its way to becoming so utterly creamy. I can imagine that it would be fun to make with kids around to watch as the lumpy, curdled-looking mixture slowly smooths into luxurious gold liquid, and finally, right at the brink of boiling—it condenses into the most perfect curd you’ve ever seen. Just like magic.
Uses for Lemon Curd
- Spread onto shortbread, sugar cookies, graham crackers (shown) or ginger/molasses cookies.
- Top quick bread, gingerbread, pound cake, olive oil cake, cupcakes, scones, pancakes or muffins.
- Swirl into yogurt (or add a layer to parfaits), dollop onto ice cream or mix into vanilla frosting
- Use as filling for tarts or sandwich cookies.
Honey Lemon Curd
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 15 mins
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: 2 cups 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: American
Meet the perfect lemon curd recipe. This classic lemon curd is made even better with honey, and it’s so easy to make—no straining required! Recipe yields 2 cups of curd.
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced into ½” cubes
- ⅓ cup honey
- 4 large egg yolks
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
- ⅔ cup fresh lemon juice (from around 4 large or 8 small lemons)
- In a medium bowl, combine the cubed butter and honey. Starting on a low speed and working up to higher speeds, cream the mixture until fluffy. I used a handheld mixer for this.
- While beating the mixture, slowly add the egg yolks and eggs. Then, add the zest and lemon juice to the bowl and blend again. It will look curdled at this point, but don’t worry!
- Pour the mixture into a medium-sized, non-reactive saucepan (stainless steel or enameled cast iron should work great). Cook over medium-low heat while stirring constantly with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon (it’s important to stir constantly throughout the cooking process, which will take somewhere between 10 to 20 minutes).
- Once the mixture starts looking smooth and shiny, slowly increase the heat to medium. Continue cooking until the mixture has thickened and your spoon meets resistance as you stir, which happens right at the brink of boiling. Once the mixture is trying to boil, cook for about 15 more seconds while stirring constantly, then remove from heat. The curd will thicken up more as it cools.
- Let the curd cool before transferring it to an airtight container and screwing on a lid. Store in the refrigerator for about 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 2 months. The curd doesn’t freeze solid, so you can scoop out as much as you want right from the freezer!
Recipe adapted from my blood orange and Meyer lemon curd recipes, which was originally adapted from the Green Market Baking Book and Fine Cooking’s foolproof method for lemon curd.
Why buy organic? It’s generally ok to use non-organic citrus as long as you’re just using the fruit or juice. Since the outsides of the fruit are often treated with chemicals, it’s best to stick with organic when using the zest. I also recommend using high quality local and/or organic eggs, for the best flavor and nutrition profile.
Make it dairy free/paleo: I’m pretty sure you can use coconut oil in place of the butter here. I’m not sure that it matters whether the coconut oil is melted or solid when you measure and whip it. Please let me know if you give it a try!
Change it up: You can use any variety of citrus you enjoy here, as long as you can get enough juice and zest out of them. I have enjoyed Meyer lemon curd and blood orange curd. Lime or key lime would be great, too, I’m sure.
What to do with leftover egg whites: You could make scrambled eggs or an omelet (I like to add at least one whole egg for best flavor) or use three of the egg whites for these amazing macaroons.
▸ Nutrition Information
This is beautiful! I have been developing a deep affinity for lemon, lately. I’ll have to make this with my nephew (he will definitely get a kick out of the changing textures). Thanks for sharing!
Thank you, Brooke! Hope you two have a blast making curd. It’s really neat to watch. :)
Gorgeous and delicious! Thanks for sharing this recipe! Will definitely be making it with some fresh scones! YUM!
Thanks, Ieva! Hope you love it!
Could this lemon curd be processed in a water bath in mason jars? My freezer space is very limited.
Hi Naomi, I’m sorry, I really don’t know enough about canning to say for sure.
Just stepping in. It is best not to process lemon curd with a water bath. Because of the dairy and eggs you need to use a pressure canner. I know this from experience. lol
I love lemon curd on scones for tea time. This one looks delicious!!
This looks amazing – as always – is there any reason I couldn’t use the sharp (almost seville like) oranges in my garden for this if I play with the honey levels?Loving the idea of a healthier curd and I know my 3 year old will have a ball with the mixing. Thanks again for all the amazing recipes.
I don’t see why not! I’ve used the same amount of zest, juice and honey to make Meyer lemon curd and blood orange curd.
Thanks so much for your quick reply Kate. So, we made the curd with our sharp oranges which worked brilliantly. We had a ball making it and my son was so proud we ended up baking little pastry cases and turning it into tiny tarts to share with his preschool class. Thanks a million from 15 very happy (sticky) little preschoolers and me!
I’ve been looking for a lemon curd recipe and I like yours. My lemon tree still has a lot of lemons.
I love anything with lemon and this looks so good I could eat it out of the jar! I’ve never made curd with honey before, so I definitely want to try it.
I’ve never tried curd before, but this looks delicious and really refreshing, especially on crackers!
Lemon is my first fruity love. This recipe using no refined sugar is amazing. Must make time to make my own lemon curd. Utterly delicious. Sammie xx
I’m pregnant and all I’ve been able to tolerate is lemon flavored things! Just made tonight and added to some yogurt. Great recipe!
I love that you took the time to offer suggestions for use of the curd and for the remaining egg whites. I wish you every success in your cookbook! I will for sure be buying one for my household when it comes out.
Lisa | Healthy Nibbles & Bits
Hang in there on finishing the manuscript, Kate! I can’t wait to see your cookbook when it comes out! I’ve been having a huge craving for lemon curd lately–this recipe couldn’t come at a better time!
I want to eat this on everything! Or maybe even just by the spoonful…that would be good too :)
Yum! I love lemon curd this time of year and this recipe looks perfect!
Ksenia @ At the Immigrant's Table
I have always wanted to make lemon curd, and this easy, simple recipe is the perfect starting point.
Angela - Patisserie Makes Perfect
I love making curds, this is so pretty. Lime is one of my favourites, I also made a bergamot curd that was lip puckeringly sour!
This looks like lovely curd, I like it on scones with clotted cream.
Just a suggestion–lemon curd is a lovely topping for rice pudding!
Laura (A Beautiful Plate)
That’s the biggest irony of working on a cookbook. The anxiety of deadlines (and needing MORE time) and the absolute joy in the idea of just being DONE! Ha. This curd is beautiful!
PS. Can I go to India with you?
Amazing!! I’m obsessed with lemon curd and this looks like the perfect version! Excited to make it :)
Kate, your recipe is just on time.. I’m craving a good lemon tart and your lemon curd recipe looks yumm! Quick question.. Do you think lime will work instead of lemon? Might be a tad sour though I guess.
Hey if you are serious about coming to India, you must!! I’m from Mumbai, India so if you need any help.. Do let me know :)
Lemon curd is magical. I love the flavor, but I’ve never made it with honey. I can’t wait to try this.
Kate, This looks so good. I can’t wait to try it. I think I will make some when two of my grandchildren will be over this coming weekend. My grandson does not believe in magic but will talk about “chemical reactions” and the such. He is four. Should be fun! Did you know if you cut citrus lengthwise you can squeeze out about twice as much juice. Here is the source and a video. Thanks for the new recipe!
Just made this using grapefruit (I have an abundance that needs to be used soon) and coconut oil and it turned out great!! Super easy and delicious, love that it is naturally sweetened.
Did you use the same amount of citrus with the grapefruit? So glad that you had success with the coconut oil because that is what I would prefer using, and grapefruit is my favorite.
I did use the same amount and it turned out lovely! I enjoyed it on some fresh biscuits.
I made it today & it was so delicious.
I probably used a bit more lemon juice than your recipe however it still had a great consistency.
I also made a lovely Lemon Yoghurt Cake and added some of your lemon curd to it
It was a marriage made in heaven!!
Thanks for a great recipe using honey
instead of sugar.
Oh my! I think I’m drooling…my family’s lemon tree just produced buckets of lemons and I have been on the hunt for a perfect lemon curd recipe. Looks like I found it!
yummy yummy I absolutely love lemon curd.
I make it only for special occasions with a large breakfast like Easter, Christmas or a family brunch. This post inspired me to try to make it little bit more often and to treat myself and my loved ones :)
Thank you :)
I made this yesterday and it’s SO good! My husband, a retired chef, said it was the brightest, most yellow curd he’s ever seen.
We did decide to make it in a double boiler though, which set my mind at east a bit – I didn’t want to burn it! And you do feel like you are eating healthier with the honey instead of sugar. You don’t notice a difference which is plus :)
I also made your lemon blueberry scones and they were amazing. You’re right, they are so easy to make! I think next time I’ll make the dough and freeze it. That way we can have fresh scones for Sunday brunch.
I’ve made so many of your recipes and not one has disappointed. I always tell people about your blog.
Keep up the great work!
This recipe looks beyond delicious! I absolutely love lemon curd and will try your version tonight. Love your blog, too, the pictures are amazing. Check out my blog on www.merry-green.com!
Best wishes from Germany,
It turned out just perfect! Thank you for this wonderful recipe!
This was the first lemon curd I’ve ever made! I loved the flavour of it, but found that it tasted a bit grainy. I wonder if I did something wrong? Or maybe needed to let it warm up a but before serving?
Did it taste grainy or feel grainy? I’m just wondering if the eggs may have cooked slightly.
Made this to serve with dessert for Easter and it was so delicious.
Will make this again next time using coconut oil to see how it turns out!
This is delicious and super easy!
Hi Kate! :) Do you think this could work as a salad dressing? xx
That’s an interesting idea. I don’t like sweet dressings, and this one would make a very sweet and thick dressing.
Michelle @ Feed Me I'm Hungry
Thanks for sharing this! Just made it this morning and it was so easy, and turned out so delicious! I really appreciate your detailed instructions about what to watch for at each stage. It made me feel confident everything was on the right track as I was making it.
Have a bumper crop of lemons this year – desperately looking for easy and delicious recipes. Your Honey Lemon Curd fit the bill. Thank you.
So is it six yolks and 2 whites?
I made this last night and had it on top of buckwheat pancakes with a dollop of whipped cream (homemade) and some raspberries. It was superb!
Homemade whipped cream sounds *delightful* with this curd. So happy you enjoy it, Sara!
I have bananas, organic honey, and a bag of lemons. I am trying to do something with that. It may be risky but I am thinking honey banana cupcakes with lemon curd. I had a orange citrus cupcake that unexpectedly had lemon curd I got from Motor City Casino. When I went back they had it without the curd and it just wasn’t the same. Even though I am not using orange juice I am hoping the flavors complement each other. I don’t want to waste more bananas. I just tossed two that stayed on the counter far too long. I am going to give your recipe a try but cut back and just use 3 eggs. My mom is now diabetic type 2 and I don’t want to use sugar. She has Trivia bit I may just use the honey. Thanks for this recipe ^_~
You’re welcome, Danielle! I hope it all worked out.
May have to toss and remake. The skillet was hot. I should have put ingredients into a cold skillet. I also used coconut oil
I got browned pieces of something. Either the zest wasn’t small enough or it was lemon flesh. It could just be a layer of coconut oil that got scortched from the heat of the skillet! Oh well I tried! I will remake it though!!! ^_~
Oof! Sorry this didn’t work out so well, Danielle. Let me know how your second try goes!
Just made this as described, delicious!
Absolutely stellar. I had an overabundance of egg yolks and a hankering for something citrus-y, and this hit the spot beautifully. I’ve frozen it in small batches, but every once in a while dip my spoon in for some lemon curd (almost sorbet!) goodness. Thanks for the honey version!
Sounds wonderful! Thank you, Hannah for providing feedback to how much you liked it. I appreciate your review!
Sounds delicious! Do I need to change the recipe in any way to use the curd for a full size lemon meringue pie rather than tarts? Will the chilled curd keep it’s shape once cut into pie slices?
I love lemon pie but find most recipes very sweet and can’t wait to try this one with honey. Thank you!
I have the same question. Did you end up making it for the pie?
I used my old “too sweet” recipe instead and just reduced the sugar. I did not want to risk a runny pie for a large crowd of dinner guests. I will try this recipe soon.
Marilyne, I’m so sorry I missed your question. I haven’t used this curd in a pie, but I think it would do well. Did you give it a try?
I love this recipe! I have made it a bunch of times, it is so easy and always turns out excellent. I keep it in my freezer and take it with some yogurt for a snack at work.
I would like to make a larger batch to give as Christmas gifts. Do you think doubling the recipe would work? Have you tried it? Any suggestions you can think of off the top of your head?
Thanks so much!
Michelle, I’m sorry that I missed your question! I’m so glad to hear the curd has been turning out well for you, though. I want to say that you could double the recipe without issues. Did you give it a try?
I did try it!It wasn’t bad, just a lot more tart than usual. So if you like that, it’s good!
Lemon curd is a traditional part of our Christmas morning breakfast with waffles and this year a family member is not eating refined sugar of any kind. I made grain free waffles and a half recipe of this lemon curd with honey and it was all gone when breakfast was over. Another winning recipe from Cookie and Kate! Thank you.
What a great combination and tradition! Thanks so much for your review.
Thank you for sharing all of your delicious recipes! I’ve made your healthy banana bread a few times and i love it! Id like to make the lemon curd recipe and am wondering if i could use maple syrup instead of the honey or would that ruin the consistency. Look forward to hearing from you.
Thank you, Joanne! Glad to hear it. I haven’t tried, but I think you could make this curd with maple syrup. I do love the lemon-honey flavor combo, though!
Dear Kate & Cookie,
I am so pleased to have found your site.
I must by medical necessity not eat white brown sugar etc SO,I am looking for quality sites which are using primarily unprocessed ( or swap out for ) ingredients and have taken the time to find the best techniques for the perfect result.
Bad highly processed sugars are incredibly inflammatory, and I have finally made the mind body connection that if I eat bad sugars my joints hurt
( can’t use NSAIDS )
I consider serious chocolate a necessity as you do, so coco sugar/ maple Syrup/ RAW. UNheated Honey are valuable to me . I was just drooling over your peppermint patties. Unfortunately the HONEY Lemon Curd recipe heats the honey ( which renders the enzymes moot/ and raises theGlycemic Index a lot. ( ie: causes inflammation and converts the Honey to tasty white sugar )
RAW UNheated Honey has a Low G I score and cleans out arteries!!
I confess I went insane when I found ERYTHRITOL on sale and bout 12.5 pounds. It is a sugar alcohol cultured on NON GMO organic Corn/ with none of the intestinal agony that XYLITOL causes.
Whatever Dr Axe( good site) claims, sugar alcohols are not artificial sweeteners.
If you have ever researched baking with Erythritol you know it’s a bit quirky, but I will be happy to share my results with you.
( 12.5 lbs should last for 10 years)
I’d love to make lemon curd, any other Low GI ideas?
Hi Bonnie, I’m glad you found my blog, too! I’m sorry, I’m afraid I don’t have a solution for you unless you can heat maple syrup without damaging its properties (I think it would work in the curd). Without sugar or natural sweetener, I don’t think you’ll be able to achieve a curd-like texture. I honestly don’t enjoy the taste of Erythritol and I’m concerned about the potential effects of calorie-free sweeteners on our appetites, but I appreciate your offer!
Do you think the zest from a clementine would work? I have lemons, but I already used the zest for another recipe. ; )
It will work, but flavor will be much different.
IT DOES NOT THICKEN UP!!!
Hi, sorry to hear the curd didn’t work for you—something must have gone awry here. There’s no way that many egg yolks won’t thicken over heat as instructed. If you’d like to provide more details, I’d like to help troubleshoot!
Made the honey lemon curd recipe today as it is lemon season here. I wanted to get away from the sugar recipes. I used raw local honey. It is delicious. I didn’t strain it as I always have in the past and we lived the lemon taste and creamy texture.
This looks delicious! Do you think this would hold up well as the filling in a layer cake? Especially one that won’t be refrigerated before it’s served.
That is an idea! I’m not sure without trying it, sorry.
What an awesome combination of flavors. This look good. Thanks for the recipe!
You’re welcome, Edward!
I made this with coconut oil substituted for butter, and it turned out really well! Absolutely delicious, and that was the only modification to the recipe that I made.
Great to hear, Wallace!
I made a Lime Curd and some of the egg white didn’t mix well. I had ribbons of lime flavored egg white left in my strainer. I tasted them and they were yummy.
Hello guys! I have just been employed by Peaches and Screams UK to do their onsite SEO work and I now have access to the online store. As you may now, this online store has a popular blog devoted to CBD and a few top CBD brands are already featured in this blog.
I can publish your sponsored guest posts with one do follow backlink going to cookieandkate.com on one of UK’s most popular sex toys and sexy lingerie sites! Yes! Backlinks do not get better than this.
The site has VERY SOLID domain metrics and over 150,000 to 200,000 monthly UK traffic. The site is featured in all top magazines such as Vogue, Allure, Tatler, Cosmopolitan, BBC and many others.
Please let me know if you are interested.
This opportunity will not last forever! You will need to provide me with a quality guest post of circa 2,500 words on a topic related to Peaches and Screams. They will not allow me to publish junk so the work has to be of the very highest quality and written to the very highest standard of English.
The charge for this guest post is £250. I am only accepting 10 articles per month for quality control purposes.
I will only accept links to reputable and quality sites. I cannot risk my job and the site’s reputaiton by publishing junk content.
I look forward to your response.
So creamy and delicious; this is my new go-to recipe for lemon curd. However, I added just 1 1/2 Tbsp. sugar to take the edge off the bitterness of the zest and the tartness of the lemon juice.
Your recipe sucks! Honey are you kidding. No sugar you need sugar or it tastes funny. And where is the cornstarch. Your recipe doesn’t work right.
Fantastic recipe.Thanks for sharing it.It is very easy to make and the texture is like custard yum.
Amazing recipe, great to find a refined sugar free version that works so well :)
Best lemon curd recipe! I normally chop and change recipes but this one was perfect! I used a whisk at the end to bring it all together. Sets nice and thick and I used it in lemon meringue pie, on top of yoghurt, toast, and in bliss balls. Nice work!
Done it! Loved it! It’s creamy, very lemony, delicious!
This is so good!! It was surprisingly easy and has just enough sweetness without the high sugar content I’ve seen with other lemon curd recipes. I will definitely make this again!
Love that you substitute honey for white sugar!
Do you think it would be possible to sub the butter for coconut oil? I would like to make this for someone who cannot have dairy.
Hi, See my note on dairy free below the instructions!
I just love your recipes.
I am so happy that you now have Christmas recipes up and going.
Using them for the holiday season.
Good for you to be going to India for yoga teacher training.
I am currently in yoga teacher training program here in Iceland. I am 67 years old and love what I do.
Can I substitute solid coconut oil for the butter in this recipe? I’m trying to make this completely healthy. Thanks!
Hi Gracie, I recommend this best as is. Let me know if you try it!
This was absolutely delicious and worked beautifully as the lemon curd layer in my mom’s birthday cake. I used coconut oil and refrigerated in a clean jar for 2 days before using it. 10/10 recommend!
Thank you for sharing, Mimi! I appreciate your review.