Rhubarb Lemon Bars

Have you ever tried rhubarb?! Our mouth-watering Rhubarb Lemon Bars are a delicious introduction to this colorful spring vegetable. In this recipe we’ll make a classic, rich shortbread base topped off with a fresh custard made of lemon, raspberries, and — you guessed it! — chopped rhubarb! The mix of textures and flavors in this sunny sweet treat is definitely worth a celebration.

Makes:

6-8 servings

Hands-on time:

30 minutes

Start-to-eat time:

2 hours

Ingredients

  • shortbread:
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup cold butter
  • cut in 1-inch cubes
  • filling:
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ tablespoon vanilla extract (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups diced rhubarb
  • 1 cup raspberries

Kids kitchen skills:

  • whisking & mixing
  • making shorbread
  • making a custard
  • baking

Tools:

  • measuring cups & spoons
  • knife & cutting board
  • 8-inch square pan
  • 2 medium bowls & whisk
  • 2 forks
  • spatula

Step-by-step

Grown-up steps: This is great chance for kids to practice basic skills like whisking and baking, while stepping a little bit outside the box! Explain to kids that shortbread is baked twice to give it that hard crumbly texture we all know and love. If you're not sure the custard is set, move the pan gently and if there is little to no "jiggle" in the center, the bars are done.
  1. Heat the oven to 325° F. Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper, making sure the parchment extends all the way to the upper edges of the pan. (This will help you remove the bars more easily later.)
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 ½ cups flour, ⅓ cup sugar, and salt.
  3. Add the butter using two forks, a pastry cutter, or a food processor, and blend until the mixture feels like coarse sand.
  4. Press the dough into the lined pan in an even layer.
  5. Bake crust until the shortbread is golden at the edges, 35-40 minutes, rotating halfway through. Transfer to a wire rack.
  6. Turn the oven heat up to 350° F.
  7. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and 3/4 cup sugar. Add the heavy cream, lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla (if using) and mix well.
  8. Add 3 tablespoons of flour and mix until just combined. With a spatula, gently fold in the chopped rhubarb and raspberries.
  9. Pour the custard mix onto the cooled shortbread crust.
  10. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until the custard is completely set.

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