An easy recipe for lemon curd made in the microwave. This Lemon Curd is simple to make, delicious, and there are so many different ways to use it!
Have you ever made your own lemon curd? If not, then today’s recipe is a great starting point! This homemade version is made right in the microwave which may seem a little different, but I promise it works really well.
Not only is it easier than making it on the stovetop, but it tastes just as good. Another great thing about this lemon curd recipe is that it uses mostly whole eggs instead of just egg yolks, so you’re not left with a ton of egg whites.
I’ve also included several different ways that you can use it as well as how to store it and freeze it for later!
This recipe uses just a few simple ingredients that you may already have on hand. Here’s what you will be using to make this easy lemon curd:
- Unsalted Butter: You will be using 1/2 cup (or 1 stick) of unsalted butter. The butter will need to be melted too, I prefer to slice it up and melt it in the microwave to make things easier. Just make sure to let your butter cool slightly first, so you don’t end up with scrambled eggs when you mix them in.
- Granulated Sugar: To help sweeten it and balance out the tanginess of the fresh lemon juice.
- Eggs & Egg Yolk: This recipe uses three whole eggs and one egg yolk. I find that the extra egg yolk makes it thicker and creamier. You can use the extra egg white for these apple turnovers or these candied pecans.
- Lemon Juice & Zest: The most important ingredient in this recipe! For best results, I recommend using fresh lemon juice. There’s also the zest of one lemon in this curd, which I find is the perfect amount. If you want it to be even more lemony, feel free to add the zest of one or two more lemons.
How To Make Lemon Curd
To make this recipe, you’ll start out by whisking together your melted butter and granulated sugar, then whisk in the eggs and egg yolk. Once the eggs are mixed in, whisk in the fresh lemon juice and lemon zest.
After all of the ingredients are mixed together, microwave the mixture in one-minute increments, stirring well after each minute. It’s best to use a large microwave-safe dish because the curd will rise some as it cooks in the microwave. I like to use a large Pyrex glass measuring cup to ensure that there’s enough room for it to expand as it’s cooking.
You will know the curd is done once it has thickened and coats the back of a spoon. If you want to get technical, you can test the temperature and it should be about 185°F (85°C). The amount of time will also vary depending on your microwave, but mine usually only takes about 4.5 to 5 minutes.
Once it’s cooked, strain it through a fine mesh strainer to remove any chunks of zest and egg. As long as you whisk the eggs in really well, you should hardly see any when you strain it. Then, place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the curd to prevent it from forming a skin, let it cool completely, and refrigerate it until you are ready to use it.
Different Ways to Use It
If you’re wondering what to do with lemon curd, here are a few of my favorite ways to use it:
- On top of pancakes
- Use as a filling for phyllo cups or sugar cookie cups, top with whipped cream, and fresh berries
- Mixed into homemade whipped cream
- Spread on top of graham crackers
- Spread some on toast or a toasted English muffin
- Use as a filling for vanilla or lemon cupcakes
- Mixed into vanilla frosting for a lemon buttercream frosting
You can store this lemon curd in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. For longer storage, I recommend freezing it.
If stored properly, this will freeze well for up to 3 months. You can either freeze it in a freezer bag or freezer-safe container, just be sure to leave a little extra room in the container so the curd has some room to expand as it freezes. To thaw it, simply place it in the refrigerator overnight.
- I strongly suggest using fresh lemon juice for this recipe. To get the most lemon juice out of your lemons, press them onto the counter and roll them with your hands before cutting into them.
- Make sure to use a large microwave-safe bowl to microwave it. I always use a large Pyrex glass measuring cup and I suggest using something similar.
- Make sure to whisk in each ingredient really well. If they’re not fully mixed together, the curd may turn out a little gritty and have some cooked pieces of eggs in it.
- The curd will not be as thick as what you see in the pictures at first, but it will thicken more as it cools. You’ll know it’s done when it coats the back of a spoon.
- Don’t forget to strain it! This will help remove any chunks of eggs or lemon zest and make it much smoother.
- 1/2 cup (115 grams) unsalted butter melted and slightly cooled
- 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 cup (240ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Zest of 1 lemon (about 1 tablespoon)
- In a large microwave-safe bowl (make sure to use one much larger than what you think you will need), whisk together the melted butter and granulated sugar. Add the eggs and egg yolk and mix until well combined, then add the lemon juice and zest and mix until fully combined.
- Microwave on high in 1-minute increments, making sure to remove the curd from the microwave and mix well after each increment. The lemon curd is done once it coats the back of a spoon, mine usually takes about 5 minutes, yours may take a little more or a little less time. Keep a close eye on it as you are microwaving it to prevent any spills too.
- Remove from the microwave and pour the curd through a fine mesh strainer into a clean, heat-safe container and place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top. Allow to cool completely, then refrigerate until ready to use.
Lightly adapted from All Recipes