Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Kellie Gerber Kelley
Hands-on Time
15 Mins
Total Time
3 Hours
Serves 16 (serving size: 1 square)

Tender, short cookie crust meets a delectably bold, tart lemon filling in these luscious treats.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°.

Step 2

Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Place flour, 1/4 cup powdered sugar, pine nuts, and salt in a food processor; pulse 2 times to combine. Add butter and canola oil. Pulse 3 to 5 times or until mixture resembles coarse meal. Place mixture into the bottom of an 8-inch square glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray; press into bottom of pan. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Reduce oven temperature to 325°.

Step 3

Combine granulated sugar and next 5 ingredients (through egg white) in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Pour mixture over crust. Bake at 325° for 20 minutes or until set. Remove from oven, and cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours. Sprinkle squares evenly with 2 tablespoons powdered sugar.

Chef's Notes

MyRecipes is working with Let's Move!, the Partnership for a Healthier America, and USDA's MyPlate to give anyone looking for healthier options access to a trove of recipes that will help them create healthy, tasty plates. For more information about creating a healthy plate, visit

Ratings & Reviews

sabrinatheo's Review

July 06, 2014

Renee5732's Review

May 24, 2014
Amazing! My brother said they were the best dessert ever and the whole pan was gone in less than three hours. Tangy, sweet, and crunchy- the perfect combination for a sweet summer treat. I also used .5 ounces white whole wheat flour and could probably even add more next time. A new favorite!

tbrenner's Review

January 01, 2014
Delicious!! Tastes decadent even though its a healthier version. YUM!

CLFan52's Review

December 28, 2013
The pine nuts elevate these lemon bars to a special treat. The flavor is amazing. Now this is my go to lemon bar recipe.

Wejo82's Review

November 18, 2013
Fairly easy recipe.i just made it for a middle of the night sweet crave and worked perfectly for me I made it with a 9" dish which turned it thin, brown and crispy much more than I think it should, it broke up alittle bit when I tryed to cut it to squares . For the next time I will remove it from the over alittle under 20 mints , and will remove the pine nuts as they tasted stronge for a lemon dessert. Overall am happy that it's a healthy and super easy dessert.

jenmax's Review

October 26, 2013

tiggsmom's Review

September 26, 2013
To AnthonyCe - LOL The squares are 2". The 16 referred to the total number of bars, not how many you cut on each side. Every 2" is 4x4 which is the 16. You had me going for a minute!

EllenDeller's Review

August 08, 2013
Always loved my mom's lemon squares from J of C--but 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup sweetened coconut? Just not okay anymore, if it ever was. These are delicious, and the flavor is so pungent and tart that one is satisfying enough for me. They're not the same texture as the high fat variety, but they are good as themselves! I used 1/4 cup whole wheat flour in the crust, which gave it a pleasant textural effect, but otherwise followed the recipe exactly. The pine nuts are delicious, but almonds could certainly substitute for budgetary reasons.

nwilker's Review

March 27, 2013
I thought this recipe was great! I love the pine nuts in the base. (i made pesto all the time so i buy the big bag at costco and leave it in the freezer). I would definitely cook it a bit more to get a smidge more brown. I didn't have all fresh lemon juice, so some was from the bottle, but i thought it all turned out great! I cut them into 16 peices and put them into muffin liners to make them a bit more festive and easier to handle, since they were not "stiff".

CarolineG2's Review

March 27, 2013
@Anthony- your math is off; these squares are 2x2" once the 8x8 dish is cut into 16 squares. Great recipe, subbed almond meal for pecans and upped the zest.