© 2013 Green Kitchen Stories Lemon_bars_1

Perfect Lemon & Coconut Bars

I am sorry. I know it’s only Monday. And you are probably at work, trying to focus on numbers, stats, calculations and other important things. And here we come stealing your attention with the most delicious lemon bar recipe ever. So if I were you I would probably stop reading now. I mean it, stop now. Before I tell you that they are gluten free. And dairy free. And very quick and easy to make. Did I mention they are crazy delicious? Sorry. Get back to work now.

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The thing is that we have always loved lemon pie and lemon bars, but when you try to make them healthier – without the flour, sugar and butter – you often loose all that is good and gooey about them. So instead of making a traditional gluten free pie crust, we did something else this time. Our crust is more similar to a coconut macaroon, sweetened with maple syrup and then flattened out and pre baked. It’s perfect – sticky, sweet and gooey. And then topped with a rather tart lemon filling and powdered with … no, not powdered sugar, but coconut flour. Yep, it looks strikingly similar! But if you prefer it sweeter you can of course use powdered sugar instead.

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Lemon-bar-traditionalists might be concerned with how we tweaked this recipe. Claiming that they won’t taste like original lemon bars anymore. But they do, they really do. Sure, they have their own twist. But they still have everything that is good about a lemon bar. They are in fact better.

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A fair amount of people have been asking us about the backgrounds that we use in our photos. I took a behind the scenes photo of some them on my instagram. We often use a few different matte stone boards, wooden planks or old metal sheets. For your information, the huge stone board that we used in these photos is not my friend anymore. I was going to put it back after we used it and dropped it on my big toe! It broke. Ouch. Well, at least we got some good photos …

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Lemon & Coconut Bars
Makes around 40 pieces

This is a quite big batch, you could easily half the recipe. Also, the filling is a little more tart than standard. We think it is perfect, but if you know that you are sensitive either add more maple syrup or use a little less lemon juice.

Crust
5 tbsp (75 g) coconut oil
3 tbsp maple syrup
2 cups/480 ml (200 g) shredded coconut (unsweetened)

1 cup/240 ml (100 g) almond flour
1 pinch sea salt
2 egg whites (save the yolks for the lemon curd)

Filling
3 eggs + 2 egg yolks
6 tbsp maple syrup
1/3 cup / 80 ml lemon juice + 1 tbsp zest (around 2 lemons)
1/3 cup / 80 ml  (35 g) almond flour

Dust with 3 tbsp coconut flour (or powdered sugar)

Set the oven to 350°F (175°C). Melt coconut oil in a sauce pan on low/medium heat. Add maple syrup, shredded coconut, almond flour and salt. Stir around until everything is combined. Remove from the heat. Crack two eggs, save the egg yolks for later and add the whites to the sauce pan while stirring. Keep stirring for about a minute. The mixture should be quite sticky now. Line a 12×8 inch (30×20 cm baking dish with baking paper and pour the coconut mixture into it. Use your hands, a spatula or the backside of a spoon to flatten it out. Press it down firmly so it becomes quite compact. Bake for 10-12 minutes and then remove it from the oven. Meanwhile, start preparing the filling.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs + the 2 egg yolks with an electric mixer until frothy. Add the rest of the ingredients. Beat for two more minutes. Pour the mixture over the baked crust in the baking dish. Bake for around 16-19 minutes or until edges are light brown and center is set. Let cool for at least 10-15 minutes before slicing up the bars. You always want to dig in immediately, but it is much easier to eat after it is set. Cut into roughly 1 x 2-inch (3 x 6 cm) rectangles. Dust with coconut flour or powdered sugar. Enjoy!

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138 Comments

  1. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 16:49 | #

    these look absolutely stunning! i need to work on a veganized version of these, stat!

    • Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 00:51 | #

      I agree they look amazing, if you have any good ideas on
      how to make them vegan I’d love to hear!

  2. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 16:50 | #

    Ahhh, this looks delicious! And guilty-free. Almost (;

  3. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 16:50 | #

    Wow, I`m inspired!

  4. Eileen Carpio
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 17:14 | #

    Waow! I’m so happy I subscribed to this blog because these look so good. I was just wondering if you can substitute almond flour? I have rice flour at home but have no problem buying almond flour. I’m a novice when it comes to baking and the myriad of flours had me boggled! Thanks green kitchen.

    • Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:10 | #

      Hi Eileen, almond flour has different qualities than rice flour. You could try using it instead, but I suspect that they might turn out a little more dense.
      If you want to make them nut free you can replace the almond flour with sunflower seeds that you ground into a flour in a high-speed mixer. We often use that to replace nuts.
      Good luck!
      /David

  5. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 17:20 | #

    I just sent out a newsletter yesterday talking about how lemon (and citrus flavors/oils) are the perfect addition as they help curb sweet cravings because we correlate citrus with sweet treats and they trigger olfactory senses. SO pumped to share this on Pinterest and make it in my kitchen!

    Thank you!

  6. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 17:29 | #

    I have tried them and they ARE delicios!

  7. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 17:34 | #

    Hey guys, these look so irresistible! Turning complicated
    recipes into quick and easy-to-make dishes is a real talent,
    honestly! Thank you for the constant inspiration!

  8. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 17:53 | #

    Sounds so interesting and I love the combination of coconut with lemon. I always make the normal kind with egg and flour. This one, I have to try out!

  9. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:01 | #

    these are amazing, i could not believe the ingredients list! traditional lemon bars are by far one of of the unhealthiest treats you can eat but these are on my to make list for whenever i get back to austria- in 2 weeks, cant wait :)

  10. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:03 | #

    Wow I’ve been waiting for you to post the recipe for these! Sounds divine!! Defiantly trying these. Can’t wait for your book! x x

  11. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:06 | #

    Hej och tack för en fantastisk blogg! Har plöjt igenom ert arkiv några gånger nu och det inspirerar till tusen varje gång :)
    Sitter här med nygjorda “Hemp protein bars” (http://www.greenkitchenstories.com/raw-hemp-protein-bars/) som blev helt fantastiska! Smakar mer som ett bakverk än nyttiga bars, vilket alltid är trevligt. Jag har dock lite undran kring era inköpsställen mm. Det blev nämligen väldigt dyrt, speciellt hampafrönen som kostade 110 kr för 230 g som jag köpte på den lokala Life-butiken. De andra varorna var också lite väl dyra för en gymnasiestudent (hittade dock dessa på Ica kvantum). Därför undrar jag var ni köper era varor – beställer ni från internet eller finns det någon butik i Stockholm som ni kan rekommendera? Här i småstaden Vänersborg är utbudet/konkurrensen såklart mycket begränsad men jag är i Stockholm hos min pojkvän regelbundet så då kan jag ju botanisera runt i butikerna där, bara jag vet vart jag ska gå! Vidare undrar jag om ni har några förslag på frön som kan ersätta tex hampafrön och andra extra dyra produkter? Är ganska ny inom superfoods-svängen och visste fram tills nu inte ens att man kunde äta hampafrön…
    Återigen; tack så mycket för denna fina plats på internet och jag ser fram emot kommande boken!

    • Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 13:47 | #

      Hej Fröken Kajsa,
      Gryningen i Stockholm har duktig personal som är behjälpliga med att hitta de billigaste produkterna, dessutom har de ett eget märke som är billigare (kokosolja, cacao mm). Gryningen säljar oxå 1 kg hampafrön från hampvaruhuset.se billigt. Andra bra märken till ok priser är Änglamark (coops eget ekomärke), Naken, Biofood och Kung Markatta.
      /Luise

  12. ela
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:11 | #

    looks delicious and I get what you’re saying about sugar
    and flour but butter? it’s one of the healthiest things if you can
    manage to get some from pastured cows. you should look more into
    this, before you miss out too much on butter :)

  13. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:14 | #

    so lovely! I have a basket full of meyers I need to use in the next two days. Just in time!

  14. Tanja Maria
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:15 | #

    Hej, det ser virkelig lækkert ud! Jeg har lige et
    spørgsmål, som jeg håber, at I kan svare på – kan man bruge
    palmesukker i stedet for sirup? I så fald, hvor meget regner I så
    med, at man skal bruge? Ved I hvor meget palmesukker søder i
    forhold til almindelig sukker? Tak for inspirerende blog-indlæg,
    flotte billeder og velskrevne posts!

  15. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:20 | #

    These are exactly what I need!

  16. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:22 | #

    I adore lemon desserts this time of year, and love how you’ve tweaked this classic and made it better!

  17. Zala
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:24 | #

    Ouhhh… They do look perfect. I just made lemon coconut
    cake this past weekend, it was horrible. Oh, I wish I’d have seen
    it before. Loove the fact they’re gluten free, too! Best wishes
    from slovenia!

  18. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:56 | #

    Oh yum. I am looking forward to giving this recipe a try!

  19. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:57 | #

    These are stunning! I love that they are maple-sweetened and gluten-free. Yum!

  20. Helene
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 18:59 | #

    Yummy! I have to make these for my girlfriends tomorrow! I wonder if it is podsible to replace the coconut oil with something else? Butter or a different kind of oil? I

    • Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 19:24 | #

      Hi Helene, you could easily replace coconut oil with butter. Just use the same amount.
      Good luck!
      /David

  21. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 19:14 | #

    This recipe looks so tantalizing. I am blessed with having
    7 meyer lemon trees heavy with fruit, it has been on my lengthy
    list to come up with a recipe for lemon bars that are healthier as
    well as vegan for awhile now. I can’t wait to try this recipe with
    a few alterations to make it entirely plant-based.

  22. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 19:23 | #

    These look even better than the lemon bars I make at work (at a bakery). I will try to veganize these!

  23. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 19:42 | #

    They look absolutely stunning! The lemon, coconut, almond combo sounds good and I cannot wait to try them out very soon for ourselves. What a great idea to use coconut flour instead of the powdered sugar. :-)

    PS: I’ve been drinking my warm water with lemon every morning since New Year and I love it, thanks again for the good advice.

  24. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 19:45 | #

    As you predicted, I did indeed stop my work the minute I saw the delicious looking lemon bars, and I began reading your post and clicking straight to the recipe as you promised no flour and no… but whats with the eggs. It was so promising until I saw the amount of eggs you have in this recipe. As I also love lemon pies and bars, I will try making the recipe later today with substitute egg powder, and see if it turns out good. Will let you know how it turned out.
    Thanks for the inspiration.

  25. Darby
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 20:08 | #

    I love lemon bars, one of my absolute favorite sweet treats. now when I make them everyone can enjoy since they are gluten free!

  26. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 20:37 | #

    I cannot wait to bake a batch of these! I adore lemon bars
    and am enjoying baking with almond flour lately. And sweetened with
    maple syrup? Indeed perfect. A bright spot on this drizzly, gray
    Monday morning!

  27. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 21:17 | #

    Lemon bars are my favorite! These look delectable. Thanks
    for sharing!

  28. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 21:24 | #

    I would think these are a perfect addition to a cup of tea.

  29. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 21:34 | #

    lemon and coconut are honestly one of the best combinations
    ever. these look amazing, thanks!

  30. Mona
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 21:57 | #

    Hey David. Sort to heat about Tour toe. Getvweel sono :-(

  31. Mona
    Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 22:00 | #

    Uf! Glemte iPad tastaturets ulyksaligheder….
    Sorry to hear about your toe. Get well soon :-)))
    Mona

  32. Posted 28 Jan ’13 at 22:32 | #

    Mmm, det lyder fantastisk!

  33. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 00:41 | #

    These look amazing and sound so much more delicious than
    the usual lemon bar! Thanks for sharing the recipe, great photos
    too!

  34. Danielle
    Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 00:56 | #

    Can the almond flour be sub with another type of flour? My
    sister is gluten, dairy and nut free!

  35. alyse
    Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 01:25 | #

    Heaven ♥.¸¸.♪♫¸¸.♥

  36. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 02:06 | #

    I follow you on instagram and have been watching these come
    to life, I cant wait to make them!!! Love your blog.

  37. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 02:28 | #

    Thank you! Four of my family members are super fond of
    lemon bars, and this will please them immensely!

  38. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 03:08 | #

    I had a look at your slabs of stone. How on earth do you move those around? They look heavy enough to need a forklift.

  39. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 03:54 | #

    ahhh, what a time to discover your site, just when you share the best recipe ever! Yum!

  40. Isabella
    Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 07:41 | #

    Just made these…totally delicious!

  41. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 07:59 | #

    They look delicious so I’m going to have a go at making
    them. If I can’t get hold of maple syrup could I use honey
    instead?

    • Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 11:37 | #

      Hello Davidom, sure you can use honey instead. I find that honey has a more distinct flavor than maple syrup, so it might affect the taste a little bit. But since the lemon flavor is so strong it shouldn’t be a big issue.
      Good luck!
      /David

  42. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 08:47 | #

    Beautiful photos!

  43. Laura
    Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 09:32 | #

    Oh these do look good! I’m sure they will help in the healing of your toe. I hope you get better soon.

    I’m going to try baking these tonight. I’m having difficulty buying some ingredients as I have moved country and can’t read a lot of the labels! I’ve found a really good health store so I’m sure they will help me.

  44. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 10:29 | #

    I always think lemon flavours should be properly tart and almost make you wince – these bars sound perfect.

  45. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 10:57 | #

    I want to make these so so soon. I was wondering about what would be a good substitute for coconut oil and if using an alternative would tamper with the taste too much? I hope your toe is better. xx

    • Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 11:32 | #

      Hi Sneh, you could easily substitute coconut oil for butter. Enjoy!
      /David

  46. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 11:23 | #

    Hope your toe is ok :( the photos do look amazing
    though

  47. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 15:27 | #

    The texture of these looks amazing. So soft and moist and
    zingy with lemon.

  48. Berneda
    Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 15:57 | #

    These look yummie. Do you think Stevia would work? I
    wouldn’t know how much though.

  49. Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 17:26 | #

    Oh wow, guys! This is a big accomplishment. I can’t wait to try this new riff on the old favorite!

  50. Claudia Hurtado
    Posted 29 Jan ’13 at 23:07 | #

    These look delicious and not hard to make at all, thank you for sharing. When are you making more instructional videos? Love the last one, you did a very good job.

    Cheers from SF, California

  51. Laura
    Posted 30 Jan ’13 at 14:37 | #

    I’ve just made these and they are very dark coloured compared to yours. I think it might be the almond flour. I bought some yesterday and its brown. Is yours like this or did you make your own? I’ve also over cooked them but they were dark before they went in the oven! I will do better next time!

  52. Dalida
    Posted 30 Jan ’13 at 19:26 | #

    This has got to be the best clean dessert I have tried. Thank you so much! It tastes heavenly! Stupid me, I cut the portions in half in fear it won’t turn out good. Next time I’ll triple it! This is my new favorite dessert, it’s extremely elegant and delicious and very quick and easy as well. Very, very good job on this, thank you!

  53. Posted 30 Jan ’13 at 20:20 | #

    I have to admit, I have never tried lemon bars before. But
    after I have read now your post I seriously think about giving them
    a try. And I love the photos you made of the lemon bars! Regards,
    Eva

  54. Ursula
    Posted 30 Jan ’13 at 23:58 | #

    I am overly excited to try these as I love lemon and the
    idea of lemon treats, but they are often loaded with plenty of
    unhealthy ingredients. So glad you posted this, and thanks for all
    of your recipes. Will be making these very soon. Love what you guys
    do. Have a great day! Ursula

  55. Karin
    Posted 31 Jan ’13 at 00:41 | #

    They look amazing! Can’t wait to try them. How long do they keep for? Do you think it would work to freeze them? Thank you for a great blogg!

    • Posted 31 Jan ’13 at 20:05 | #

      Hi Karin, we store them in the fridge. We always finish a batch within a few days, but I suppose they would make it for at least 5-6 days. You could also store it in the freezer, but then it would probably taste best if you reheat it before eating it.
      /David

  56. Posted 31 Jan ’13 at 12:18 | #

    I made these yesterday, but in a slightly different version since i didnt have the special stuff at home. I used butter in the same amount as the coconu oil, and 2 tablespoons of sugar in the dough and 4 tablespoons of sugar in the lemon creme. It was fabulous and felt a bit more healthy then the traditional lemon bars. When you dont have the time (or money) to buy the most healthy substitutes this is an good “in between” way!

  57. Kiki
    Posted 31 Jan ’13 at 15:38 | #

    hey, those look delicious, i want to bake them this we for
    my birthday brunch:) i didnt find almond flour over here in shops
    germany)so i was wondering what kind do you use – can i just grind
    almonds very fine or do i need the flour which is a “leftover”
    product from pressing almond oil – ergo less oily:) greets,
    kiki

  58. Ösp Viðarsdóttir
    Posted 31 Jan ’13 at 18:17 | #

    Been browsing you blog for a while but this is the first recipe I try and it turned out to be soooo good :) Will be trying more now for sure! Your pictures are amazing btw! Can´t wait to see your cookbook!

  59. Posted 31 Jan ’13 at 21:07 | #

    I made thse today..they were reeeeeaaaalllly
    goood!

  60. Posted 1 Feb ’13 at 02:07 | #

    Ummmmmmmm….. okay. I MUST make these this weekend for Superbowl. Yes, this is happening. Thank you for this fabulous recipe!!

  61. Jo
    Posted 2 Feb ’13 at 00:38 | #

    I love your site and your recipes. I am trying to go sugar free ..and that includes honey. Ive been using date syrup as a substitute and it works with most desserts .. i will give this a try with date syrup and let you know how it turns out.
    Thanks once again and hope your toe will recover soon
    Jo ..

  62. AJ
    Posted 3 Feb ’13 at 02:36 | #

    Just made these! Absolutely delicious:) I (as usual) was too excited to check out my ingredient supply before starting and only ended up having one cup of dried coconut on hand… Ended up subbing oat flour for the other cup and they were still delicious… Even my bf who insisted he would hate a lemon square enjoy them!

  63. Posted 3 Feb ’13 at 07:42 | #

    I am seriously thrilled to see a successful, healthy spin on lemon bars. I’ve been craving them lately, but I just couldn’t justify all the refined sugar that usually goes into them. I can’t wait to try these!

  64. Sarah
    Posted 3 Feb ’13 at 13:03 | #

    When you say beat the eggs until frothy do you mean until they are like soft white peaks ? Just need to get an idea of the consistency of the liquid curd should be – and how long to wait until transferring from tib to rack to cool?
    Had a runny bunch and a bit of a fail so round 2 is in order.

    • Posted 7 Feb ’13 at 23:07 | #

      Hi Sarah, yes perhaps soft white peaks is a better description. The mixture will actually still be quite runny when you pour it over the crust, but it will definitely stiffen up in the oven.
      After removing them from the oven you should perhaps wait a few minutes before transferring them to a rack.
      Good luck!
      /David

  65. Posted 5 Feb ’13 at 23:08 | #

    These look so yummy, and I’m usually not a fan of lemon desserts! I love the idea of dusting them with the coconut flour! I saw some comments above about veganizing the bars and the trick is to use silken tofu. I actually did a vegan/gf grapefruit version with a coconut crust that is in the winter issue of Chickpea magazine.

  66. Rachel
    Posted 5 Feb ’13 at 23:49 | #

    Just made them and they are truly delicious! I used ground sunflower seeds as I didnt have any almond flour. The lemon topping tastes really creamy but with a nice tangy touch.

  67. Posted 6 Feb ’13 at 12:20 | #

    It looks great,i would like to try them but can you explain me something: 1 cup of desiccated (shredded) coconut = 75g (3 oz)
    I already had a bad experience with one of yours recipes,so im not sure which mesurations to use.

  68. Posted 7 Feb ’13 at 22:27 | #

    Hi Martina, the size of the shredded/desicated coconut can vary between brands. I suppose that ours were smaller and therefore packed tighter in a cup measurement. This would explain why your coconut weighs less than ours. In that case, always follow the weight measurement, it is more exact. Hope you will be more successful with this recipe than the GF buns. I have made these lemon bars several times, so I am quite certain that you will be happy with them :-)
    /David

  69. Posted 7 Feb ’13 at 23:45 | #

    Thank you ,i will try them:)

  70. Posted 8 Feb ’13 at 18:02 | #

    I love lemon bars but have never thought about adding coconut, too. Thank you for the inspirational idea!

  71. Posted 9 Feb ’13 at 02:47 | #

    Thank you again Luise & David for this FABULOUS & DELICIOUS recipe. I love them so much that I made two batches already and my husband who is not a big fan of lemon bars, actually told me tonight how yours “are just perfect, a little tangy, a touch of sweetness and the coconut is a great addition!” From someone who just prefers chocolate to anything else for dessert, that was a nice compliment. They will be added to our favorite treats list for sure. Have a nice weekend, we are getting ready for another winter snow storm here- brr!!!

  72. Anya
    Posted 9 Feb ’13 at 06:55 | #

    beautiful recipe!
    for the crust, do you mean shredded coconut pieces or coconut flour? thanks!!

  73. Posted 12 Feb ’13 at 01:18 | #

    Hi there, I wanted to let you know I have make these twice! The first time with regular lemon and just as the recipe instructed. The second time I used meyer lemons and less coconut flour in both the crust and filling-perfection! Love your blog, Brooke

  74. Posted 12 Feb ’13 at 10:37 | #

    Hej!! Tack för en underbar blogg! jag bakade dessa för ett tag sedan, de blev underbara! här hittar mitt inlägg om dessa små juveler.

    http://svenssonsliv.blogspot.se/2013/02/citron-och-kokoskakor-fran-green.html

    Kramar från Malmö

  75. susanna
    Posted 12 Feb ’13 at 13:52 | #

    hej! tack för ett fantastiskt recept som ska provas snarast möjligt! en fråga: användes vanlig riven kokos från matbutik?
    /susanna

  76. Posted 12 Feb ’13 at 18:05 | #

    YUM! I have a big bowl of Meyer Lemons off a friend’s tree, waiting for something delicious. Wonder if I will need to reduce the maple syrup using the meyers? Can’t wait to make these for a friend’s birthday next week. Thank you for the Monday indulgence.

  77. Posted 13 Feb ’13 at 07:13 | #

    These look dreamy. I can’t wait to try them out — I’ve been dying for a low sugar, gluten-free, dairy-free lemon bar. You must have read my mine!

  78. Bethany
    Posted 18 Feb ’13 at 23:05 | #

    Made the lemon bars tonight. I was a bit disappointed when I cut into the bars because my crust completely fell apart, but I patched a little piece together, took a bite, and wow! They taste fantastic! I’m a sucker for lemon desserts (especially if there’s some meringue involved), but these bars really exceeded my expectations.

    Any idea why my crust fell apart? I followed the recipe exactly using the weight measurements. Wonder if I didn’t grind my almonds and coconut finely enough. Well, I’m going to put them in the refrigerator tonight to see if that helps solidify the crust.

    Thanks GKS!

  79. Maria
    Posted 20 Feb ’13 at 08:57 | #

    Made these the other week and wow…so easy to make and simply delish! My 1 yo and 5 yo fought over the last crumbs – great feeling in my mummy heart knowing I am feeding goodness rather than all other sugary treats. We all love your blog!

  80. Posted 20 Feb ’13 at 12:12 | #

    Hi there,

    I hate coconut flakes (though I love the oil…). Could I substitute them with ground nuts (almonds or hazelnuts? Or would you have another idea? I’m not vegan and have no allergies so I could use almost anything.

    The recipe looks delicious and something I would like to try out!
    Thanks!
    Karin

  81. Anouk
    Posted 21 Feb ’13 at 11:01 | #

    If anyone was wondering: yes, you can have these for breakfast.

  82. harry
    Posted 24 Feb ’13 at 23:27 | #

    I always wonder about that angst concerning butter .. do you know that coconut oils isn’t that healthy really? It contains high amounts of saturated fat and “a large proportion of lauric acid—a saturated fat that raises blood cholesterol levels” (see Wikipedia).

    • Posted 25 Feb ’13 at 22:20 | #

      Virgin coconut oil is processed from fresh coconut meat and is considered stable. Saturated fats have gotten a bad reputation because they’re believed to contribute to heart disease, weight gain and higher levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol (not HDL which is good cholesterol the body needs). But not all saturated fats are created equal. They’re distinguished by their molecular makeup; specifically, how many carbon atoms they contain. There are short, medium, and long-chain fatty acids (or triglycerides), and each is processed differently by the body. Coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides. And it is a good and safe choice to cook with, because it has a higher burning point and doesn’t go rancid as quickly as some other fats.

  83. Cathy
    Posted 4 Mar ’13 at 01:44 | #

    So so delicious! I am on a sugar-free diet and thought I could never have lemon squares (my favourite!) again!! I am going to make these A LOT. yumm.

  84. Isa
    Posted 11 Mar ’13 at 19:40 | #

    Love the healthier version of one of my favorite desserts! I am going to make this in the next couple of days. Could you substitute the almond flour with coconut flour or would it change the texture too much?

  85. Polishko
    Posted 11 Mar ’13 at 20:39 | #

    Hi! I judt tried these, they’ve tourned out quite tasty, but don’t really look anything close to yours :/ The filling was too liquid and I have no idea about the reason. So I didn’t get the thick, sticky looking filling you got, it’s almost incorporated to the crust. I used honey instead of maple syrup, don’t know if this makes too much difference. and well maybe the pan was too wide. anyway, I’ll try again :)

  86. Isa
    Posted 15 Mar ’13 at 18:57 | #

    So, I tried the recipe using coconut flour as a substitute for the almond flour (though I did use about 1/2 of a cup of almond meal in the crust). It seemed to make the curd layer dry & less lemony. However, the crust was delicious! Mine turned out more like lemony macaroon bars. Yummy, but not as moist and tart as I would like. Is it necessary to put flour in the curd layer? I might try again with 1/2 as much coconut flour int curd layer & more lemon juice.

  87. Posted 20 Mar ’13 at 21:25 | #

    These look absolutely amazing! I have been following your blog for a while, and it is by far my favorite food blog! I wanted to ask you a question, I see that you use coconut oil in many posts. However everywhere I have looked I have found that coconut oil is high in saturated fat (especially heated), and therefore bad for your heart. I have noticed how healthy your recipes are, so I sense that there must be something to coconut oil. However, I can’t find any source that indicates the health benefits of coconut oil. Could you please enlighten me?

    • Posted 20 Mar ’13 at 21:45 | #

      Hi clotilde. Virgin coconut oil is processed from fresh coconut meat and is considered stable. Saturated fats have gotten a bad reputation because they’re believed to contribute to heart disease, weight gain and higher levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol (not HDL which is good cholesterol the body needs). But not all saturated fats are created equal. They’re distinguished by their molecular makeup; specifically, how many carbon atoms they contain. There are short, medium, and long-chain fatty acids (or triglycerides), and each is processed differently by the body. Coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides. And it is a good and safe choice to cook with, because it has a higher burning point and doesn’t go rancid as quickly as some other fats.

      All the best
      Luise

  88. Posted 21 Mar ’13 at 09:39 | #

    I’m usually not a big fan of messing around too much with classic sweets like lemon bars, but these look and sound unusually delicious. I’ll have to try them.

  89. Kata
    Posted 30 Mar ’13 at 17:30 | #

    Hi,
    I tried the recipe, followed the instructions, but the filling absorbed into the crust. Do you have any idea, why this happened? Did i not bake the crust long enough?

    • Posted 31 Mar ’13 at 16:20 | #

      Hi Kata, perhaps you didn’t press the coconut crust firmly enough? If it is too loose, the filling won’t stay on the top.
      Hope you liked them anyway.
      /David

  90. Irena
    Posted 31 Mar ’13 at 00:04 | #

    These look amazing! Can one use Raw Agave Nectar instead of the Maple Syrup? Does it make a huge difference? Thanks!

    • Posted 31 Mar ’13 at 12:18 | #

      Hi Irena, yes you can use agave instead of maple. It shouldn’t make a big difference.
      /David

  91. Hena
    Posted 10 Apr ’13 at 19:56 | #

    Hi, these look great and I can’t wait to make them but I don’t have almond flour on hand, I only have whole wheat flour….can I replace it with whole wheat flour as-is or do I have to tweak the recipe? Thanks!

  92. Betsie
    Posted 23 Apr ’13 at 00:05 | #

    I just tried this last weekend and they are delicious and easy + fun to make ! Definitely a keeper.

  93. Britt
    Posted 13 May ’13 at 21:39 | #

    Love lemon bars, but not so much a fan of shredded coconut and don’t have it on hand. Anything else I could use in its place?

  94. Britt
    Posted 13 May ’13 at 21:44 | #

    Any ideas on what I could use in place of the shredded coconut?

  95. Posted 10 Jun ’13 at 23:01 | #

    Hello!
    If I half the recipe will i have to change temperature and cooking time?
    Will i also have to change to a smaller baking dish?
    Thanks!

    Daniella

  96. Posted 10 Jun ’13 at 23:05 | #

    Whats the measure quantity of the filling for the original recipe that makes 40 pieces?

  97. Gerta
    Posted 4 Sep ’13 at 12:30 | #

    I wonder, what you mean with shredded coconut? do you mean the inside of a fresh coconut? Or dried dessicated coconut, just as you can buy them anywhere?
    Thanks for sharing tis; I will try soon :)

    • Posted 4 Sep ’13 at 12:36 | #

      Hi Gerta, we mean dried dessicated coconut (unsweetened). Sorry for the confusion, it’s called different things in different parts of the world.
      Happy baking!
      /David

  98. Georgia Rae
    Posted 15 Sep ’13 at 13:36 | #

    Hi there! I’ve been wanting to make these for the last couple of weeks and finally I have the perfect occasion..rainy day here in Milan, Italy. Anyways, I couldn’t find coconut oil in the supermarket so my question is: is it possible/good to make it with olive or corn oil?

  99. Vitolinka
    Posted 1 Oct ’13 at 23:54 | #

    Just made them today. They are super delicious!!!

  100. AJ
    Posted 2 Oct ’13 at 21:52 | #

    Hi, finding it hard to buy almond flour. Is at actually the same as ground almonds?

    • Posted 3 Oct ’13 at 00:40 | #

      Hi AJ, yes you can use a blender or high-speed food processor to ground regular almonds into almond flour. It’s as simple as that.
      /David

  101. Posted 6 Oct ’13 at 13:09 | #

    I would like to make a Tarte out of your receipe. If it works I’ll let you know.

    Greets Franziska aka In der Tarte

  102. Danielle
    Posted 11 Oct ’13 at 18:59 | #

    I love this recipe. The first time I made it, I wished there was more filling. The second time around, I increased the filling by 1.5, and also halved the amount of maple syrup (just in the filling) and substituted with fresh squeezed orange. I increased the lemon zest for more tang and even added a little orange zest to make the flavor a bit more complex. Huge hit. More filling + orange juice/zest – a little maple syrup = creamy, tart, perfectly sweet addition to the macaroon-like crust. LOVE this.

  103. Anouk
    Posted 23 Oct ’13 at 22:23 | #

    I got your website from a friend just the other day. What a lucky day! THANK YOU, MANOU! I don’t tolerate gluten and lactose and appreciate all these healthy and yummy looking recipes, I will definitely start trying very soon. VERY inspiring, great pictures!

  104. Mona
    Posted 24 Oct ’13 at 21:40 | #

    I love the sound of this recipe as I am a big fan of lemons. I am just not sure if the almond flour is the same as ground almond or they can’t replace each other?
    another thing is, are these bars freezable ?
    Thx guys

  105. Edamommy
    Posted 18 Dec ’13 at 19:39 | #

    A little coconut goes a long way, so I swapped the almond flour and coconut quantities in the base: 2 c. almond flour / 1 c. coconut. It worked beautifully and toned down the coconut flavor more to my liking.

    I also garnished each bar with a kiwi slice for a birthday party and they looked so fresh and cheery! Very tasty without any refined sugar or gluten.

  106. Posted 25 Jan ’14 at 15:41 | #

    These bars are heavenly! Thanks a lot for your great recipes! Here you can see a picture of the lemon bars I’ve made: https://www.facebook.com/pages/De-groene-prinses/125798944120223?ref=hl

  107. sascha
    Posted 7 Feb ’14 at 02:30 | #

    These looked so amazing I had to try them!

    I think I screwed up the filling somehow though.

    I didn’t have a mixer and tried my best my hand–still, once baked, the lemony part turned out more like scrambled lemony eggs than a lemon curd :( Still tastes pretty good, but any suggestions for next time?

  108. Posted 11 Feb ’14 at 21:56 | #

    Just made these and they are yummy, but my coconut layer is much thicker than my lemon layer. Thinking something is amiss. I want more lemon, like in your picture. Nothing very exciting happened with my eggs. Maybe I did not beat them long enough? Maybe my eggs were smaller than yours? Any advice for round 2 is appreciated! Thanks!

    • Posted 11 Feb ’14 at 23:52 | #

      Hi Angie, One thing I have noticed after having made quite a few batches of these, is that it’s important to make the coconut layer rather compact. That way, the lemon layer stays on top instead of dripping down into the coconut layer. You should also put it in the oven as soon as possible after having lured the lemon layer on top.
      Trying it with larger eggs is probably also a good idea.
      Good luck!
      /David

      • Posted 12 Feb ’14 at 02:48 | #

        Thank you! That’s what I suspected.
        They are really great, but more like a lemon macaroon.
        They are going fast over here regardless.
        I will try those tips next time, as there will definitely be a next time!
        Thanks for the great recipe!

  109. marta
    Posted 21 Feb ’14 at 19:26 | #

    I just made mine, they are cooling down now, i can not wait to try!

  110. Jackie
    Posted 23 Mar ’14 at 21:25 | #

    Could I substitute the maple syrup for agave or raw honey?

  111. Kathie
    Posted 28 May ’14 at 14:47 | #

    I made these this weekend with a few tweaks. Forgot to get parchment paper at the store, so directly into the pan with cooking spray. Mixed, orange, lemon, and lime juice together. Added zest from all three to crust and juice. Thought everything tasted terrific prior to cooking and then something funny happened in the pan and the crust rose up in the middle. Then the crust fell apart some after cooking when cutting up and they didn’t taste sweet enough to me, but I still liked them. I figured I had messed up the recipe with my changes, dusted with confectionery sugar to sweeten up a bit and brought to a party of foodee friends anyway. They were a huge hit, everyone loved, loved, loved them! I will make again for sure (with parchment).

  112. Jean
    Posted 20 Jun ’14 at 01:35 | #

    These are AMAZING! I will bring them to every outing ever this summer. Thanks for the recipe! I can’t believe how simple they are!

  113. Claire
    Posted 7 Jul ’14 at 19:33 | #

    Hi, we have recently become vegetarian and are actually enjoying it, years ago I would never have imagined. I have made some of your recipes and they are fantastic :)

    I am British and living in Canada and I’m not certain what you mean when you say a tablespoon? In England it is a small serving spoon but here in Canada it is what we called in England a desert spoon, so I’m confused!

    My second question is what could I use instead of coconut oil? It is really expensive here. I don’t mind using butter sometimes but it would be nice to have another alternative. Could I use sunflower oil?

    • Posted 9 Jul ’14 at 10:45 | #

      Hi Claire, a tablespoon is like a soup spoon and is equal to 15 ml. A teaspoon is only 5 ml. The simplest way to replace coconut oil is actually butter, as they have similar consistency. Sunflower oil might work in some recipes but will sometimes be too liquid. In this recipe I recommend either butter or coconut oil.
      /David

  114. horrypop
    Posted 22 Jul ’14 at 05:19 | #

    ive bald these twice now and both times the topping mixed with the shortcrust to become a bitterly disappointing amalgam. are you letting the crust cool completely before baking topping? i need help x

    • Posted 23 Jul ’14 at 10:00 | #

      Hi, it’s important to press down the crust firmly before pre-baking it. That way the topping won’t mix with it. Also, after you have poured over the topping you should immediately put it in the oven. Good luck!
      /David

  115. francesca
    Posted 30 Jul ’14 at 00:39 | #

    Hi, I love the look of these lemon bars and have been dying to try them but after getting round to reading the recipe I’ve seen that you use coconut oil and almond flour… do you have any recommendations of a replacement for either of these? … Recently finding out I’m allergic to coconut oil has been devastating as its been a big part of my diet, so versatile!
    Thank you.

  116. Maddison
    Posted 6 Sep ’14 at 11:28 | #

    I made this recipe as single serving tarts and they were lovely :-) however i made one mistake, i halved the recipe but forgot to halve the egg whites in the crust so made up by adding coconut flour gradually until it made a playable dough. still worked out perfectly!!! Thank you x

  117. Melissa
    Posted 21 Sep ’14 at 19:01 | #

    Hi there! I’m going to give these a try… Have you ever drizzled a bit of dark chocolate across the top of these? Or would that add too much to the bitterness? What about dairy free chocolate? Suggestions?

  118. nae
    Posted 28 Sep ’14 at 03:05 | #

    it looks like a really yum recipe and im going to make it today, can you use almond meal rather than almond flour?

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