Poppy Seed-Lemon Bars

The bright flavor of lemon combined with poppy seeds really kicks the traditional lemon bar up a notch. They're vibrant, fresh tasting, and pleasantly sweet. I like to use black poppy seeds for a pop of color and just a little more eye appeal.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
50 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 5 mins
16 bars



  • cooking spray

  • ½ cup butter, softened

  • ¼ cup confectioners' sugar

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • teaspoon ground cardamom (Optional)

  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds


  • 1 ½ cups white sugar

  • 3 large eggs

  • cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar, or as needed


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Coat an 8-inch square baking dish with cooking spray.

  2. Combine butter and confectioners' sugar in a bowl; beat with an electric mixer until creamy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add flour, salt, and cardamom; mix until just combined. Stir in poppy seeds until evenly distributed. Press dough evenly into the prepared baking dish with floured hands.

  3. Bake crust in the preheated oven until edges are just starting to brown, about 18 minutes.

  4. While the crust is baking, combine sugar, eggs, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Add flour and stir until just combined.

  5. As soon as the crust comes out of the oven, pour the filling into it and return to the oven.

  6. Bake until filling is puffy and lightly browned around the edges, about 30 minutes. Place on a wire rack and cool completely before cutting into 16 squares. Dust lightly with confectioners sugar.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

193 Calories
7g Fat
31g Carbs
3g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 16
Calories 193
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g 9%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 50mg 17%
Sodium 91mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 31g 11%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 21g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 3mg 14%
Calcium 17mg 1%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 38mg 1%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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