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Lemon Creme Brulee Bars

5 from 17 votes

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If you like creme brulee, you’ll love these Lemon Creme Brulee Bars! They are so easy to make- you will want to make them again and again!

Lemon Creme Brulee Bars stacked on top of each other all on a white plate

Lemon Creme Brulee Bars | Pure Addiction

These lemon creme brulee bars are ridiculous. And so devilishly easy that you will be tempted to make these time and time again. I first came up with this recipe after having an awful dessert that was this exact concept but tasted so royally disgusting that I had a hard time shelling out the seven bucks it cost. That night I’d vow to make it better. So I did. I first tested them on a baby shower crowd and they went like hotcakes. Then I made them for my sister-in-law’s birthday because she’s as much of a lemon freak as I am. Of course, she liked them too. Then I ‘tested’ them again and ate half the pan. Then I swore the recipe off because I knew if I’d make them AGAIN, I’d eat the.entire.thing.

So, I did actually forgot about them until a few days ago when I had a few lemons loitering around my crisper drawers and found a package of Philadelphia Cream Cheese hiding behind ‘x’ pounds of butter. The perfect storm. So I made them again. This time with you all in mind! {You’re welcome.} Take a peek at the step-by-step photos and experience the beauty that is this dessert.

Main Ingredients Needed

Can you believe that these amazing Lemon Creme Brulee Bars only take 9 ingredients to make? Yeah that is downright sinful. Here’s everything you’ll need:

  • Butter – this is used to hold the crust together. Be sure to plan ahead and use softened butter (not melted).
  • Sugar – to sweeten the crust.
  • Flour – to fill out the crust.
  • Vanilla – to flavor.
  • Cream Cheese – the main ingredient for the lemon cheesecake filling!
  • Sweetened Condensed Milk – I used one whole can of this stuff. Not only does it sweeten but it also makes the filling a bit runnier.
  • Egg – to add structure and richness.
  • Lemon Juice + Zest – the juice helps the cheesecake set while also providing flavor along with the zest.
  • Fine Granulated Sugar – this is used for brulee-ing these bars!
pouring raw sugar over Lemon Creme Brulee Bars

How to Make Lemon Creme Brulee Bars

For full details on how to make Lemon Creme Brulee Bars, see the recipe card down below 🙂

1. Preheat + Prep

Preheat oven. Line an 8×8 glass dish with parchment paper and lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.

2. Make the Crust

In a large bowl, combine butter, sugar, flour, and vanilla until dough forms. Press evenly into the bottom of the prepared dish. Set aside. (You’re basically making a quick shortbread).

3. Make Lemon Cheesecake Filling

In another bowl, whip cream cheese. Stir in sweetened condensed milk. Scrape sides and mix again. Pour in the egg, lemon zest, and juice. Mix until the mixture starts to thicken. Scrape sides and mix again briefly. Pour overtop cookie bottom and smooth the top.

4. Bake + Chill

Bake until cheesecake is set completely. Cool, then refrigerate. Cut into 16 squares and separate.

5. Sprinkle with Sugar + Torch

Sprinkle the tops of each square with 1 teaspoon of sugar and spread around with a finger to evenly distribute the sugar. Torch the tops until the sugar melts and turns an amber color. {If you don’t have a torch, place it under the broiler}. Return squares to fridge until ready to serve.

More Lemon Recipes to Try!

If you liked these lemon creme brulee bars, check out these related recipes 🙂

Lemon Creme Brulee Bars stacked on a white plate

Throw these Lemon Creme Brulee Bars onto a serving platter and voila! A perfect dessert everyone will love! Sweet and tart, similar to key lime pie, but a million times better!

Enjoy! 🙂

5 from 17 votes

Lemon Creme Brulee Bars

If you like creme brulee, you'll love these Lemon Creme Brulee Bars! They are so easy to make- you will want to make them again and again!
servings 16 squares
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×8 glass dish with parchment paper and lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  • In large bowl, combine butter, sugar, flour and vanilla until dough forms. Press evenly into the bottom of prepared dish. Set aside.
    Cookie dough in the bottom of a baking dish
  • In another bowl, whip cream cheese. Stir in sweetened condensed milk. Scrape sides and mix again. Pour in egg, lemon zest and juice. Mix until mixture starts to thicken, 20-30 seconds. Scrape sides and mix again briefly. Pour overtop cookie bottom and smooth the top.
    Lemon filling on cookie dough
  • Bake 20-25 minutes or until cheesecake is set completely. Cool, then refrigerate. Cut into 16 squares and separate.
    Lemon Cheesecake Creme Brulee Bars
  • Sprinkle the tops of each square with 1 teaspoon of sugar and spread around with finger to evenly distribute sugar.
    Lemon Cheesecake Creme Brulee Bars
  • Torch the tops until the sugar melts and turns an amber color. {If you don't have a torch, place under the broiler}. Return squares to fridge until ready to serve.
    Torching Lemon Cheesecake Creme Brulee Bars

Nutrition

Calories: 252kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 132mg | Potassium: 130mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 449IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 90mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Lemon Creme Brulee Bars

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Recipe Rating




105 Responses
  1. Audrey

    I made these, and they looked just like the photo. The only problem was that the base was completely raw when I was finished – does it not have to be baked a little prior to adding the cream cheese mixture? Tips anyone? The topping was delish by the way…

  2. Pam

    These are cooling on my counter right now. I couldn’t wait and ate a square and they’re delicious even without the crunchy top! Thank you for your simply delicious recipes.

  3. Meg M.

    5 stars
    WOW! You were right! These are indeed: Evil. And amazing. And addicting. And life changing.

    My family & boyfriend were completely obsessed with these, and even went as far as to say they could be served in a restaurant! Amazingly decadent & delicious. Thanks for this recipe. Will be making again and again!

  4. Julie

    5 stars
    Hi! These look awesome. I actually made these last night, but with Meyer lemons. The filling I LOVE, but my crust was very dense and hard. Is it supposed to be like that?

  5. David Head

    I can’t believe how yummy these look, want one now ,this is the way things should look. Yummy looks will always sell your products.We cater for variouse tastes,and a lot of what we do is ,sorry to say ,bought in.Its great to make these things,you’ve done a marvellous job .Well done.
    Kind Regards
    David Head

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  7. Paula

    5 stars
    I made this a few days ago and they´re everything you claim them to be and more!! and I didn´t even brulee them!! Imagine that
    They will become a classic in no time. Thanks for a great recipe

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  10. Rachel

    Hi Lauren,

    I stumbled upon this recipe and your site and these look like the perfect little treat I was looking for! I have one questions for you first though-why didn’t you pre-bake the shortbread crust? Every lemon bar recipe I’ve used or read always pre-bakes the crust, and I am a little nervous to leave it “raw” under the cream cheese mixture. What was the reasoning and result of not pre-baking the crust? Thanks!

    1. Lauren

      I just never thought to. If you’d rather prebake it, then go right ahead! But baking it all together cooks it all just the same!

  11. Evie

    I was actually looking for Creme Brulee cupcakes and found this recipe instead. This is so cute & looks good! Looks easy to make too. I will try it out. I have never made cheese cake. Now this will be a cool dessert for family parties during the holidays!

  12. UtterlyPurple

    Hey, the recipe looks great, is there something I could substitute for the sweetened condensed milk? Something nondairy, if possible. Thx!

  13. Connie

    Looks yummy. Been looking for torch, but can’t find one. Found pen like one but looks complicated so I didn’t bother getting it. Where did you get yours?

  14. Kathy, The Chicken Chick

    Hello, new follower here! I would love to have you link up with my Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week!

    I hope to see you there!
    Cheers!
    Kathy
    The Chicken Chick

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  17. Julie W

    5 stars
    Hello,
    This recipe is gorgeous. I made them once and the base was raw, 20-25 minutes with a wet layer on top was not enough time. The second time I prebaked at 350 for 15 minutes and the base is fine, but still too soft for my liking. I like a good crust, not tough and hard, but solid and with substance. I will try pre-baking for 20 minutes the next time, or upping the temp to 375 for the 15 minute crust baking. Also, the second time I did lime instead of lemon and it is just as delish!! Yummmm….. I used a broiler to get the sugar topping crust and it worked great. This recipe will definitely be a part of my regular dessert rotation. Thanks.

  18. Nathell Slater

    5 stars
    Hi
    I have made these and love them. I need to make them for a party of 250 people.
    If i make them in an 11 x 17 sheet pan do you think that would work and how many times to I need to x’s the recipe

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  22. Crystal

    Love this–everything about it from the shortbread crust to the crispy brulee top. But, I have to say: “No! No! No!” The point of “brulee” is to have a crispy ‘shell.’ Sorry, but if you refrigerate these after you torch them, you will have a runny, gooey mess! Save the sugar and torch until just before you serve them!

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