In this Lemon Curd Cookie recipe, creamy lemon filling is spooned into buttery shortbread. Total melt-in-your-mouth cookie bliss for lemon lovers.

Lemon Curd Cookies on a plate.
  • The the tart creamy goodness will send a little shiver down a lemon lover’s spine.
  • The buttery cookie base totally melt in your mouth. The base is a shortbread thumbprint cookie, with a meltaway dough similar to these delicious Greek Kourabiedes Cookies.
  • Super easy, 30 minute recipe to make.

Lemon Curd Cookie Ingredients

Ingredients for lemon curd cookies laid out on a kitchen countertop, including all-purpose flour, lemon curd, vanilla extract, butter, salt and confectioners sugar.

All-purpose flour: Regular all-purpose flour is perfect for this recipe; give it a quick sift if there are any significant lumps in it.

Confectioner’s sugar: The soft, powdered sugar will give the cookie a lovely, tender crumb.

SaltHelps to bring balance to the cookie. You can leave it out if you’re using salted butter in this recipe.

Unsalted butter: The butter should be a bit softer than you’d usually have it for a regular cookie recipe. See this article on softening butter quickly. The high ratio of butter in this recipe results in these totally melting in your mouth.

Vanilla ExtractWorks to balance the recipe as a steer away from the tart lemon taste.

Lemon curd: You can make your own using the lemon curd filling from this delicious Lemon Curd Cake recipe or use a good quality store-bought lemon curd to save time. It definitely tastes best homemade but you can alternatively buy a good quality one from the store – I like Bonne Maman lemon curd.

Homemade lemon curd filling for lemon curd cookies.

How To Make Lemon Curd Cookies

Here are the steps to whipping up these lemony beauties:

Flour, confectioners’ sugar and salt being stirred together on low speed in the bowl of an electric mixer in preparation for a recipe. And then the butter is beaten on low until it breaks up.
  1. First, heat your oven to 350ºF.
  2. Next, on a low speedstir together the flour, ½ cup of the confectioners’ sugar, and the salt in the bowl of an electric mixer.
Add vanilla extract to the flour mixture and increase the mixer speed to medium-low. Beat until the mixture is evenly moistened and resembles coarse crumbs.
  1. Add in the butter and cream it on low until it breaks up, then add vanilla and increase to medium-low speed; beat until the flour mixture is evenly moistened and resembles coarse crumbs. Grabbing a small handful and squeezing it will easily hold together.
  2. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and knead the dough together into a cohesive ball. Scoop dough by heaping tablespoons and roll between your palms to make a smooth ball.
  3. Place cookies on parchment-lined baking sheets about 1” apart. Bake for 10 minutes. Immediately after taking the cookies out of the oven, carefully use a tablespoon measuring spoon to press an indent in the hot cookies.
Cookie dough is shaped into balls and placed on a parchment-lined baking sheet. The cookies are baked in the oven for 10 minutes. After baking, a tablespoon measuring spoon is used to press an indent into the hot cookies.
  1. Let the cookies cool 5 minutes on the pan then transfer to a wire rack. Once cookies are are cooled completely, add them one at a time to a bowl with remaining confectioners’ sugar and toss gently to coat. Spoon 1 tsp lemon curd into each cookie just before serving.

Make Ahead Instructions

The cookie base is freezer-friendly and can be made in advance. Freeze in a single layer before packing between sheets of parchment paper in an airtight container. Dust with sugar again just before serving.

If you’re making homemade lemon curd, you can make this up in advance and freeze it until you’re ready to bake your cookies. That it in the fridge until ready to use.

Several cookies are arranged on a plate. A bowl of confectioners' sugar and a spoonful of lemon curd are also shown in the image. One cookie is being coated with the sugar mixture while others are waiting to be coated. Another cookie has a dollop of lemon curd on top.

Storage Instructions 

Store your cookies in an airtight container in the fridge. I like to space mine apart so that they don’t mash up against one another, as they are relatively delicate.

Variations 

  • You can pile two cookies together to make a lemon curd sandwich cookie.
  • For almond lemon curd cookies, toast 1 cup of sliced almonds, finely chop them, and incorporate them into the batter after the vanilla.
  • For a tropical feel, sprinkle over a little toasted coconut. 
  • Try making these with raspberry or passionfruit curd. 
  • Top your finished cookies with a few poppy seeds for a classic combo.

Psst. If you love lemon desserts, you must also try my Easy Lemon Tart recipe.

FAQs

Can you buy lemon curd at the grocery store?

Yes, you can absolutely buy lemon curd at the grocery store – there are some brands to choose from. I prefer Bonne Maman.

Can you freeze Lemon Curd Cookies?

You can freeze lemon curd cookies before filling them, but I recommend to add the lemon curd only just before serving to ensure the moisture doesn’t seep into the shortbread cookie base making it soft.

Pro Tips

  • 1 heaped tablespoon of cookie dough balls should weigh around 25 grams if you want to be precise with your cookie sizes.
  • For an extra lemony cookie, add 1 tsp lemon zest along with vanilla extract.
  • Chill the dough: Chilling the cookie dough before baking will help the cookies hold their shape and prevent spreading. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill it in the refrigerator for at least an hour before baking.
  • Use parchment paper: Line your baking sheets with parchment paper to prevent the cookies from sticking and to make clean-up easier.

Other Cookie Recipes You Won’t Want to Miss

 

Lemon Curd Cookies on a plate.

Lemon Curd Cookie Recipe

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 21
Dessert
American
Keyword Lemon Cookies, Lemon Curd Cookies, Lemon Filling for Cookies, Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Ingredients
 
 

  • 1 ⅔ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ teaspoon fine salt
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter softened and cut into 2” pieces
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For Coating & Filling

  • 1 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ cup lemon curd

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  • Use low speed to stir together flour, ½ cup of the confectioner’s sugar, and the salt in bowl of electric mixer.
  • Add the butter, and beat on low until it breaks up; then add vanilla and increase to medium-low speed; beat until it flour mixture is evenly moistened and resembles coarse crumbs. If you grab a small handful and squeeze, it will easily hold together.
  • Remove bowl from the stand mixer and knead the dough together into a cohesive ball. Scoop dough by heaping tablespoons and roll between your palms make a smooth ball.
  • Place cookies on parchment lined baking sheets about 1” apart. Bake for 10 minutes. Immediately after taking cookies out of the oven, carefully use a tablespoon measuring spoon to press an indent in the hot cookies.
  • Let the cookies cool 5 minutes on the pan then transfer to a wire rack. Once cookies are are cooled completely, add them one at a time to a bowl with remaining confectioners’ sugar and toss gently to coat. Spoon 1 tsp lemon curd into each cookie just before serving.

Video

Notes

To make lemon curd from scratch, use this excellent Lemon Curd from my Lemon Curd Cake recipe.
TIPS: 
    • If the dough feels crumbly at first, that’s okay! As the butter melts, the moisture is released, and the cookies are melt-in-your-melt soft.
    • There is no egg in this cookie base, which is why the dough feels a bit crumbly, but this gives the cookies their heavenly melting texture once baked.
    • If you make the indent before baking the cookies, the indent disappears as the cookie puffs up and flattens out.  
 

Nutrition

Calories: 110kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 1gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 18mgSodium: 73mgPotassium: 2mgFiber: 1gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 206IUCalcium: 8mgIron: 0.4mg
Keyword Lemon Cookies, Lemon Curd Cookies, Lemon Filling for Cookies, Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Last Updated on April 2, 2023 by Jennifer Pallian BSc, RD

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Sophie
Sophie
7 months ago

Our lemon curd cookies are a match made in culinary heaven, combining the perfect ingredients for an unforgettable treat!

veenaazmanov
7 months ago

5 stars
Citrus flavors are my favorite. Lemon curd is one of my best dessert. I can enjoy it for any meal time too.

Cathleen
Cathleen
7 months ago

5 stars
I love lemon curd so much, but why have I never thought of putting it in cookies yet?? This is so good thank you so much 🙂

Sean
7 months ago

5 stars
So I always have tons of lemon curd in my fridge and these cookies made good use of it!

Sharon
7 months ago

5 stars
These lemon curd cookies were so sweet and zesty and full of lemon flavor. The perfect cookie for spring!

Malvika
Malvika
8 months ago

Great recipe!! Everyone loved it and it was gone in a day! I used a couple of teaspoons of milk since my dough was dry and it came together wonderfully. I also dusted it with powdered sugar instead.

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