Lemon Crunch Bars are a no-bake dessert that harkens back to simpler days, and less complicated food — you probably already have everything on hand to make these tangy treats.
These lemon crunch bars have an easy going, vintage vibe
They can be prepped for the fridge in the time it takes to melt a little butter and whip up the cream. The ‘crunch’ comes from the crushed gingersnaps that make up the crust. The combination of the cool fluffy topping and the ‘snappy’ crust is wonderful.
Ginger and lemon is a striking flavor combination
You see more often in savory dishes than you do in desserts. Neither ingredient plays second fiddle here, the peppery gingersnaps hold their own with the lemon, and the two are quite a zesty pair. The topping has a full 1/3 cup of fresh lemon juice in it, so it’s no slouch in the citrus department.
A gingersnap crumb crust makes these lemon bars extra special
As for the gingersnaps, use any you like — I discovered Tates and fell in love, but they ‘disappeared’ before I could use them in this recipe. Plain old gingersnaps work fine, too 😉
This is a great choice for entertaining because you can make them ahead of time, and they’re light and refreshing even after a big meal. Nobody will push these away, for sure.
- The combo of ginger and lemon is what makes these simple Lemon Crunch Bars so special, so I don’t recommend substituting graham cracker crumbs in the crust.
- These have a soft creamy consistency. Keep them refrigerated until ready to serve.
- Ever wonder about the difference between ‘heavy’ and ‘whipping’ cream? Heavy cream is just slightly higher in fat, but both can be whipped.
- This would make a nice pie, as well. I would use a 7 or 8 inch pie plate, increase the butter to 1 stick, and the crumbs to 2 cups.
Reader Rave ~
“These are insanely delicious!! They were the perfect thing for dessert after a heavier meal.” ~ Linda
Lemon Crunch Bars
- 3/4 stick (6 Tbsp or 85 grams) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 1/2 cups gingersnap crumbs, this is about 8 ounces of cookies
- 1 1/4 cups heavy cream, you can also use ‘whipping cream’
- slightly more than 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
- 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1 small drop yellow food coloring, optional
- gingersnap crumbs
- Spray an 9×9 square baking dish. I like to line mine with parchment paper with long ends hanging off so I can lift it out after chilling for neater cutting, but that’s optional.
- Toss the melted butter with the gingersnap crumbs until the crumbs are completely saturated. Press the crumbs evenly into the bottom of the pan. Press firmly, but no need to steam roller them 😉 Set the pan in the fridge while you make the filling.
- Whip the cream until you get firm peaks. don’t whip it too long or it will get grainy and eventually turn to butter. Fold in the condensed milk, lemon juice, and drop of food coloring.
- Spread the filling into the pan and spread out evenly.
- Set the pan in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours before serving.
- Garnish with a few gingersnap crumbs.
Questions and Reviews
Can these lemon Crunch bars be frozen
Hi! Can you make these ahead of time and freeze them? I’ve made them before and love them. Thanks!
I’m not sure how these would fare for a long period in the freezer, I’d be worried about the texture deteriorating.
I can’t wait to try these ans was wondering if you have the conversions for a 9×13 pan? Thank you for this recipe??
I haven’t done this, but you should be able to double the recipe for a 9×13 pan.
Hi! Your photography is so beautiful! I just want to grab everything out of the pictures and eat them! I am gluten free and have to be. Purchased gluten free gingersnaps are fine but have a slightly off taste. They are so much better when baked for a crust. Do you think I could just do that and proceed with the recipe? I usually, when I use them, bake the contents of a pie along with them. Just not sure about alone. Thank you!
Hi Alene ~ sure, I don’t see why you can’t bake the crust, then cool and proceed with the recipe.
Don’t have all the ingredients on hand but this looks delicious!!! Thank you for the recipe 🙂
You’re so welcome. I know you’ll enjoy these…
My mouth is seriously watering looking at these photos! I can’t believe how deliciously creamy they look! Yum!
Thanks Melissa, these are so good on a hot day :))
Just a question regarding the quantity of Butter as making this in Portugal and can pick the lemons straight off the tree 🙂 but the butter sold here in 250 gram packs and not sure how much is needed for recipe.
That would be about 85 grams, Vanessa.