7-Minute Lemon Curd Recipe | Kitchen Explorers | PBS Food

7-Minute Lemon Curd Recipe


If you hate using a microwave then click away from here right now because you are going to hate this recipe.  But if the rest of you are like me and do use a microwave oven, read on.

Many people use the microwave for re-heating foods or beverages.  Seldom do people actually use the microwave for cooking.  However, there are some recipes where using a microwave can really quicken the time it takes to make something wonderful.

Lemon curd is traditionally made by cooking the lemon mixture using a double boiler method where you place a bowl over an open pot of simmering water and then whisk a collection of ingredients without needing to worry about burning.  The tart custard like sauce is a popular sweet condiment, akin to jam, mostly consumed at brunches, showers, tea parties, and special holidays like Mother’s Day.  Irresistible when spread on a warm buttered scone, lemon curd can also be used as a cake filling or mixed into other recipes, such as recipes for frosting, mousse or whipped cream, to add lemon flavoring.

The problem I have with most lemon curd recipes is the large quantity of each batch.  However, I’ve simplified it for you.  Using this microwave method we cook the curd just long enough so the egg never overcooks into a scrambled egg lemony mess.  Instead, the egg aspect of the recipe cooks just long enough to help thicken the sweetened lemon juice into custard like curd that is much better than anything found in a store.  The fresh taste of homemade lemon curd cannot be beat.

The microwave method is hard to mess up and – dare I say – fail proof.  From start to finish this recipe is incredibly quick and easy to make.  It is also perfect for the days you want to make something nice for that special mom in your life (hint hint).   So if you have 7 minutes, a couple lemons, an egg, sugar, and some butter in your kitchen then give this recipe a try.


Recipe from the PBS Kitchen Explorers video for  Easy Lemon Tart Recipe

Lemon Curd

Homemade lemon curd recipe that can be made in 7 minutes using the microwave method.



  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • Optional: zest of one lemon


  1. Whisk together the sugar and egg until smooth in a microwave safe bowl. Gradually stir in the lemon juice, butter, and zest.
  2. Whisk all the ingredients until completely smooth and sauce like.
  3. Cook the mixture in the microwave for one minute, then in 45 second intervals. Make sure to stir well after each cooking period, remembering to scrape the sides well.
  4. Total cooking time should vary but shouldn’t be more than 3-4 cycles. The lemon curd is ready when it is thick enough to stick to the back of a spoon.
  5. Transfer the curd to a mason jar. Keep in mind the curd will thicken as it cools.

Prep Time: 5 Minutes

Cook Time: 2 Minutes

Total Time: 7 Minutes

Yield: 3/4 cup

Alice-Currah-169x215Alice Currah is the publisher of popular food blog, Savory Sweet Life. Her approachable everyday recipes are accompanied by beautiful step by step photos and have been featured online at Martha Stewart, Real Simple, The Pioneer Woman, Epicurious, Bon Appetit, Saveur, iVillage and many more. In March 2010, Forbes.com featured Alice as one of “Eight of the Very Best Food Bloggers.” You can find her on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.

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