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May 2, 2021

Blackberry Lemon Bars

These Blackberry Lemon Bars are the perfect spring and summer dessert.

Lemony summer blackberry bars

These blackberry lemon bars have a lemony cookie base topped with a tangy lemon custard, and then swirled with a sweet blackberry reduction.

The blackberry sauce that is swirled through these lemon bars is easy to make with either fresh or or frozen berries, and it is the perfect contrast to the tart lemon flavored custard.

Blackberry lemon bars

Shortbread crust, lemon custard, and blackberry filling. What's not to love?

How to make these blackberry lemon bars:

These blackberry lemon bars begin with a shortbread cookie crust that is infused with lemon zest. Combine butter, sugar, lemon zest, and flour and press it into a 9 by 13 inch cake pan and chill it for about 15 minutes. Next, bake the crust first and let it cool. 

After that, you make the blackberry filling by cooking blackberries, sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice until the sauce has thickened. 

To make the lemon custard, whisk together eggs, sugar, lemon zest, and flour, which you pour over the cooled crust. 

Finally, dollop the blackberry sauce over the filling and swirl it with a toothpick and bake for about 15 minutes. 

Blackberry lemon bar servings

The combination of the lemon and blackberry flavors is amazing. You will end up with about 24 bars, which will quickly disappear. 

Keep any leftovers, if you have them, in the refrigerator in a covered container. 

Blueberry lemon bars on a serving platter

When Eliza Cross, the author of the cookbook, Berries: Sweet & Savory Recipes, contacted me about reviewing this book, I jumped all over it. First, I luuurve cookbooks, and second, I love the everything berries concept of this book!

Eliza, who also blogs at The Yolo Blog, has put together a gorgeous collection of recipes using berries, including blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, and cranberries.

Photos from the book Berries

 I love that this book includes recipes for both sweet and savory dishes, including a recipe for Cranberry Glazed Meatballs, and a recipe for Grilled Flank Steak with Blackberry Sauce.

I also seriously need to make those doughnuts in the upper right photo on the back cover.

The book is divided into the following sections:

  • Beverages and Sweets
  • Jams, Preserves, and Sauces
  • Muffins, Breads, and Pastries
  • Salads and Starters
  • Main Courses
  • Cakes and Cookies
  • Pies and Tarts
  • Desserts

P.S. If you like your cookbooks to have gorgeous photos, you won't be disappointed. 

Sunday Funday logo

This week, the Sunday Funday group is posting fruity dessert recipes. There are plenty of delicious recipes from which to choose. 

Blackberry lemon bars with a shortbread crust

Updated post from August, 2017. 

Blackberry Lemon Bars

Blackberry Lemon Bars
Yield: 24 servings
Author: Karen's Kitchen Stories
These Blackberry Lemon Bars are the perfect summer dessert.


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • 2 tablespoons, plus 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest, divided
  • 3 cups (13 ounces) all purpose flour, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 1/4 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice, divided
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen (thawed and drained) blackberries
  • 7 large eggs
  • Powdered sugar for sprinkling


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and lightly oil a 9 inch by 13 inch baking pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the butter, 1/2 cup of the sugar, and 1 teaspoon of the lemon zest. Beat with an electric mixer on medium until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 cups of the flour and the salt. Add this mixture to the butter mixture and stir by hand until just combined.
  4. Press the dough into the bottom of the prepared baking pan, and refrigerate for 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the refrigerator and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack.
  5. To make the blackberry sauce, combine 2 tablespoons of the granulated sugar, the cornstarch, and 1/4 cup of the lemon juice in a small saucepan. Whisk to blend. Add the blackberries and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly while mashing the berries with the back of a wooden spoon.
  6. Let the mixture simmer until it slightly thickens, 6 to 7 minutes. Strain the mixture through a wire mesh strainer into a clean bowl. Discard any solids and reserve the sauce.
  7. To make the filling, whisk together the eggs, the remaining 3 cups of granulated sugar, the remaining 2 tablespoons of lemon zest, and remaining 1 cup (4.33 ounces) of flour. Gradually add the remaining 1 cup of lemon juice and whisk until combined.
  8. Pour the mixture over the cooled crust. Dollop the berry sauce over the filling. Drag a toothpick or chopstick through the sauce to create swirls.
  9. Place the pan into the preheated oven and bake until the filling is set, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Sprinkle the top with the powdered sugar and cut into bars. Keep leftovers in the refrigerator.



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blackberries, lemon
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Would you like to comment?

  1. My favorite berry recipe? I would say it is a cobbler....

    what a great cookbook, Karen... and the recipe you picked to showcase: PUUUURFECT!

  2. I love blackberries, this look absolutely wonderful and delicious Karen, P.S. I signed up for the recipe books, I hope I get, I'm in Canada, I hope you can ship it to me I must have lovely recipes in it.����

  3. Those layers!! These looks delicious. My favorite berry recipe is a cherry crisp/crumble.

  4. I'm always looking for different berry recipes - savory recipes using them? Wonderful!

  5. I love ALL berries, so ANY recipe with berries is a favorite for me!!! Karen, THIS looks amazing and I can't wait to try it. I hope I can make it as week as you would!!

  6. Honestly, while I love to bake and cook with berries, I can't go wrong with some market fresh berries + whipped cream.
    But if I had to pick my favorite recipe with berries... I'd probably go with pancakes!

  7. I have many favorites, but I like Berry Vanilla Layered Chia Pudding a lot!
    digicats {at} sbcglobal {dot} net

  8. Favorite berry recipe...the one I am eating! Love berries. A blackberry pie is always a treat I welcome.

  9. Did have a question about the recipe here. Three cups of sugar to three cups of flour sounds like an amount that would be very sweet? Not the sugar police here, just trying to get feedback on result, lol.

    1. That's okay! That number is correct. There's 1/2 cup of sugar in the base cookie with the flour, The other three cups are mixed with the rest of the flour, all of the lemon juice, and all of the eggs. They definitely are a sweet treat. I cut mine in half =)

  10. totally delicious cakes. Blackberries are such a wonderful inclusion

  11. My favorite berry recipe is blueberry thyme jam! I also love strawberry shortcake!

    1. Oooh. Blueberry thyme jam sounds delicious.

  12. My mouth is watering!Just my kind of dessert! Pinning to try later! Thank you for sharing!

  13. Lemon and blackberry sounds like a delicious combo!

  14. Wish I could get a slice of these delicious blackberry bars!

  15. These bars look scrumptious and I cannot wait to take a look at that cookbook

  16. These blackberry lemon bars are just too tempting. I wish I could reach out for one bar. I can image the combined flavors of blackberries and lemon. Every spoonful, a burst of flavors.

  17. These are absolutely STUNNING!! What an amazing combination of flavors and colors!

  18. Wow these are so delicious! I was worried about the custard but they turned out perfect. I used wild blackberries from my yard. What a treat!


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