These Lavender Lemon Bars are a sweet twist on traditional lemon bars! Homemade lavender sugar is used in the crust and filling to add a light lavender flavor. They’re tangy, sweet, and refreshing!

Lavender Lemon Bars - close-up of lemon bars with powdered sugar and lavender buds sprinkled on top | From SugarHero.com
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I’m a simple girl with simple needs. I like my slippers fuzzy, and my gossip magazines trashy. I like my water cold and my chocolate hot, unless we’re talking about showers and ice cream, in which case, you should reverse that. And often, I like my desserts with a whiff of the flower garden about them. That’s right, I’m here to shove floral flavors into your lemon bars, and I’m not sorry about it.

I know that not everyone will be automatically excited about adding lavender to such a classic, timeless recipe. Why mess with perfection? But if you’ll give me a moment to persuade you, I think I can convince you to give it a try.

Lavender Lemon Bars - rectangular bars arranged on a plate | From SugarHero.com

How Do I Make Lavender Lemon Bars?

In this Lavender Lemon Bars recipe, lavender sugar is used in both the shortbread crust and the lemon filling, to give the tangy bars a very light floral flavor. “Lavender sugar” may sound fancy, but it’s literally something you whiz up in the food processor right before you make the lemon bars. It’s made with dried lavender and granulated sugar, for a total cost of 50 cents and a time commitment of 20 seconds (those are estimates but you get the idea.)

Lavender sugar is such a lovely ingredient. It’s very aromatic, with a woodsy, vanilla fragrance and a mildly herbal taste. I made some for Christmas gifts a few years ago, packaged in purple jars. (Pinterest wannabe, party of one.) It’s a great pantry item because it keeps for ages and is a wonderful addition to hot drinks, lemonade, or cookie recipes. So while this recipe calls for just the amount of lavender sugar you’ll need, you can always make more and keep it in your cupboard to add to coffee, cakes, or anything else that could use some flower flava!

Lavender Lemon Bars - bowl of lavender sugar with lavender buds on top | From SugarHero.com

Make sure that you’re using dried lavender intended for culinary use. It can often be found near the spices in the baking aisle of large supermarkets. I’ve had good luck finding cheap lavender at Cost Plus World Market, if you have one of those nearby. Or, of course, dried culinary lavender is also available online.

After you’ve made your lavender sugar, this recipe comes together like any other lemon bar. A simple shortbread crust, and an easy filling of eggs, lemon juice, sugar, and a bit of flour to hold everything together.

Lavender Lemon Bars - plate of lemon bars with powdered sugar sprinkled on top | From SugarHero.com

The cookies are noticeably different from your typical lemon bar, but I suspect most people probably wouldn’t be able to guess that lavender is the secret ingredient. If anything, I thought that they had a strong vanilla taste, even though there was just a bit of vanilla in the crust and none in the filling! The lavender gives them a light, fresh quality that perfectly matches the bright lemon flavor.

They’re a good way to say hello to spring, but since dried lavender is available all year long, don’t let that stop you from enjoying these any time!

🍋 More Lemon Desserts

🌺More Lavender Desserts

Seven lavender lemon bars on a round white plate with a lavender flower next to them.

Lavender Lemon Bars

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These Lavender Lemon Bars are a sweet twist on traditional lemon bars! Homemade lavender sugar is used in the crust and filling, to add a light lavender flavor. They’re tangy, sweet, and refreshing!
Prep30 minutes
Cook1 hour
Total1 hour 30 minutes
Yields20 bars

Ingredients

For the Lavender Sugar:

For the Crust:

  • 8 oz unsalted butter, (1 cup), melted and slightly cooled
  • 3.5 oz lavender sugar, (1/2 cup)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 9 oz all-purpose flour, (2 cups)

For the Filling:

  • 8 large eggs
  • 1 ¼ cups fresh lemon juice
  • 19.25 oz lavender sugar, (2 3/4 cups)
  • Zest of 2 lemons, (about 2 TBSP)
  • 2.25 oz all-purpose flour, (1/2 cup)
  • Powdered sugar, for serving
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Instructions 

To Make the Lavender Sugar:

  • Place the dried lavender in the bowl of a food processor and blend it for 10-15 seconds to chop it into small pieces. Add 1 cup of granulated sugar to the processor and blend well, for 15-20 seconds, until the lavender is finely ground and mixed into the sugar. Add the remaining sugar to the processor and pulse briefly until it’s well-mixed.

To Make the Crust:

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 9×13 pan with foil so that it extends up the sides, and spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray.
  • In a bowl, whisk together the melted butter, lavender sugar, vanilla, and salt. Once mixed, add the flour and stir with a spatula until it is combined and no streaks of flour remain. Scrape the dough into the pan and press it into an even layer. It might seem a little greasy—this is normal.
  • Bake the crust for 25-30 minutes at 350 F, until it’s golden brown on top. While the crust is baking, prepare the filling so it’s ready to go as soon as the crust is done.

To Make the Filling:

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, lemon juice, lavender sugar, and lemon zest. Sift the flour on top of the egg mixture, and whisk it in as well.
  • When the crust is done baking, slide the rack part-way out of the oven. Pour the filling over the hot crust and slide it back into the oven. Reduce the temperature to 325 F and bake for 25-30 minutes. It’s done when the center barely jiggles when you tap the pan.
  • Once done, remove the pan from the oven and let it cool until it reaches room temperature. For the cleanest cuts, refrigerate the bars and cut them when completely cold. To cut, remove the bars from the pan using the foil as handles. Use a large sharp chef’s knife and wipe it off often between cuts. 
  • Sprinkle the top with powdered sugar before serving, and add a few lavender buds on top if desired. Store Lavender Lemon Bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Recipe Notes

Lavender. Dried lavender can often be found near the spices in the baking aisle of the market.  
Crust. This crust recipe is from Alice Medrich’s Pure Dessert.

Measuring Tips

Our recipes are developed using weight measurements, and we highly recommend using a kitchen scale for baking whenever possible. However, if you prefer to use cups, volume measurements are provided as well. PLEASE NOTE: the adage “8 oz = 1 cup” is NOT true when speaking about weight, so don’t be concerned if the measurements don’t fit this formula.

Want to learn more about baking measurements and conversion?

Nutrition

Calories: 293kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 89mg | Sodium: 85mg | Potassium: 59mg | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 380IU | Vitamin C: 5.9mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 1.1mg
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66 Comments

      1. This is by far my favorite lemon bar recipe. I’ve shared it with so many others! 🙂 I am dairy free now so I will try substituting the butter with coconut oil. If not, what do you recommend? Plant based butter?

        1. Hi Liliana! So glad you found the recipe and are enjoying it so much. I don’t have a lot of experience with dairy free options, however I think I’d try a plant based butter substitution before trying coconut oil. Coconut oil is pure fat and will likely make the bars seem too oily. I’d think that a butter substitute would bake more similary to actual butter. I’d love to hear how it goes for you and what you think turns out the best. Good luck and all the best to you!

        2. I am dairy-free and have always made these with Earth Balance Soy Free buttery sticks. I don’t have to make any changes to the recipe and it comes out perfect every time.

  1. I followed instructions exactly. Only problem is that even though I left crust in for 30 minutes at 350, when I poured the filling in, it made the crust come up because it was too soft maybe it was too thick in the middle and didn’t bake all the way through? I’m waiting on the rest to bake so hopefully it still came out good

    1. Hi Corinthia, It does sometimes happen that the edge of the crust will lift up when pouring in the filling – it doesn’t happen every time, but depending on how fast you pour, where you start pouring, etc, it can happen. If the crust was light golden and fragrant after 30 minutes, it should be baked through and not be a problem. Typically having some filling sneak under the bars doesn’t ruin anything and they turn out fine. If this wasn’t the case with you, feel free to add more details or shoot me an email about what you experienced and I’ll be happy to help you troubleshoot further.

  2. do these bars send well as gifts? if not could you suggest a bar cookie that does in the lemon field.
    thank you
    soonie

    1. Hi Soonie. I’ve never tried to send them through the mail but my gut feeling is that the top layer is too delicate. I think they’d get damaged. You could try freezing them and then sending overnight but even then they still might not hold up. I’d recommend something more sturdy like a lemon shortbread. Sadly, I don’t have a lemon shortbread on my site but I know there are lots of amazing recipes out there. I do have a recipe for Lemon Madeleines and Lemon Loaf. Good luck!