Gluten-Free Lemon Tart with Almond Flour Crust

With an easy press-in almond shortbread crust and luscious, tangy lemon curd, this French-style gluten-free lemon tart is an easier version of the classic. This is the same recipe as my gluten-free lemon bars, just in a different shape! 

gluten-free lemon tart slices on a plate

The Heavy Stuff (and I don’t just mean this rich AF dessert)

A lot has happened since I shared what was supposed to be a two-part post (gluten-free tart crust & lemon tart filling) back in mid March. On the same day that California mandated shelter-in-place, our 10-year-old furbaby Catamus was diagnosed with cancer and given weeks to live.

Jay and I cried nonstop that week, between consultations with multiple pet oncologists, vets, and a holistic animal healer. A round of chemo, which carried a prognosis of little hope, left him horribly ill. So we switched tactics and decided to try a radical change in diet consisting of 90% human-grade raw meat combined with 10% cooked vegetables, plus some supplements formulated for felines. Overnight my career changed from recipe writer to personal cat chef.

I’m happy to share that currently Catamus is faring well. He’s loving his new diet and showing his gratitude by scratching my favorite chair, walking across the dining table when he knows we’re looking, waking us up at ungodly hours to let us know he’s ready for his breakfast, and generally being his usual sassy self. We’re enjoying every moment we get to spend with the little guy.

We’re also taking things day by day during this intense time. I’ve been experiencing high levels of anxiety and trying to take care of myself as best I can. This has meant mostly staying off of social media, lots of phone calls with friends and family, and watching New Girl on Netflix when I need a good distraction. There are Zoom yoga, pilates, and Essentrics classes, lots of cooking, naps and sleeping in. I also started a nutrition protocol with Alison of Food by Mars. Sadly this lemon tart is not on it, but that’s ok because it’s long gone!

I hope you are all staying safe and well, and taking good care of yourselves as best you can. Please let me know how you’re holding up in the comments! <3

pouring lemon curd into a tart crust for lemon curd tart

An Impractical Dessert for Unprecedented Times

I know that gluten-free lemon tart may not be the recipe you’re looking for at this moment in time. It makes enough for 10 or 12 servings. You probably don’t want to eat the whole thing yourself because it has about a zillion calories. It doesn’t freeze well. It’s full of immune system-supressing sugar. It uses eggs, which you may not be able to find.

But I figured we could all use a little edible sunshine right now, especially me. So I’m sharing the lemon curd tart recipe nonetheless.

If you’re looking for some pantry-friendlier recipes, here are some that folks have been making a lot of lately:

french lemon tart, baked and ready to be topped

Ingredients:

  • This recipe starts with my favorite gluten-free tart crust, replete with nutty almond flour, lots of butter, and a hit of vanilla and salt for loads of flavor. It tastes like a shortbread cookie. Get the recipe and how-to video here.
  • Lemons are the name of the game here, 6 big ones to be precise. Zest 2 of them first, then juice them and the rest.
  • Eggs and egg yolks help the curd thicken and set.
  • Sugar adds just the right amount of sweetness. I’ve given a version for extra-tart tart with less sugar too.
  • Butter adds richness to the curd and helps it set up in the fridge and a touch of salt sharpens the flavors.

gluten-free lemon tart with a slice cut out

How to Make Gluten-Free Lemon Curd Tart

This recipes turns out a classic-tasting French lemon tart, but it’s easier than most. It starts with my gluten-free tart crust recipe, which is made by simply whizzing all the ingredients together in a food processor and pressing it into a tart pan. Parbake the crust, press it with the back of a spoon to compress the crumb, and fill it with lemon curd.

Watch the video on how to make gluten-free tart crust and lemon tart here!

If you don’t have a tart pan, never fear – this exact same recipe makes gluten-free lemon bars in an 8-inch square baking pan.

a slice of gluten-free lemon tart ready for serving

Luscious Lemon Curd

My classic lemon curd is thick and tangy from loads of lemon juice, eggs to thicken it, lots of butter to make it rich and creamy, and just enough sugar to offset the tart lemons. Make the curd on the stovetop, stirring constantly until it thickens and registers 165ºF on an instant read thermometer if you’ve got one. Strain the hot curd, whisk in the butter, and your lemon curd is done! You can store it in the fridge to slather on toast, biscuits, or swirl into yogurt. Or proceed with this recipe and pour it into the parbaked crust.

Bake the tart until the curd is slightly puffed and wiggles like firm jello. Let it cool completely, then chill until firm. Garnish, slice, and serve your brilliant creation for a dessert that’s fancy enough for special occasions.

gluten-free lemon curd tart on a platter

Lemon Tart Love

Dip your fork into a slice of this lemon tart and you’ll cut through softly whipped cream, dreamy curd singing with lemon flavor, and tender cookie-like crust. I decorated mine with piped whipped cream and crème fraîche and a sprinkle of bee pollen, which I highly recommend! If meringue is your speed, you could also make a simple Italian meringue with the extra egg whites. Pipe or dollop it on top, and torch it with a crème brulée torch for a lemon meringue tart.

close-up on sliced easy gluten-free lemon curd tart

Variation: Meyer Lemon Tart

Got Meyer lemons? Lucky you! Make this tart with the lesser amount of sugar and use Meyer lemon zest and juice in place of the regular lemon zest and juice.

slices of lemon curd tart on a plate

Gluten-Free Vegan Lemon Tart

This no-bake lemon tart recipe is vegan, paleo, eggless, and raw. A fan favorite on TBG, it makes a nice stand in for this more traditional lemon tart, but it’s still rich and delicious.

All the Citrus Tarts (plus a couple of pies):

slice of lemon tart with a bite taken out

Got extra egg whites from making this gluten-free lemon tart? Here are some recipes that use them:

Slices of lemon curd tart recipe on a plate, overhead

*Bojon appétit! For more Bojon Gourmet in your life, follow along on Instagram,  Facebook, or Pinterest, purchase my gluten-free cookbook Alternative Baker, or subscribe to receive new posts via email. And if you make this gluten-free lemon tart recipe, I’d love to see. Tag your Instagram snaps @The_Bojon_Gourmet  and  #bojongourmet.*

4 from 6 votes

Gluten-Free Lemon Tart

Print Recipe  /  Pin Recipe
With creamy, tangy lemon curd and a salty-sweet almond flour shortbread crust, this French-style lemon curd tart is easier than the classic.
Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Chilling time: 4 hours
Total: 5 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 10 -12 slices

Ingredients

Filling:

  • 10 tablespoons (140 g) unsalted butter, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon firmly packed finely grated lemon zest (from about 2 large lemons)
  • 1 ½ cups (340 g) organic granulated sugar (or 1 ¼ cups / 275 g for extra tangy bars)
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 cup (235 ml) strained lemon juice (from about 6 large lemons)
  • Optional garnishes: heavy cream and crème fraiche whipped to firm peaks, bee pollen for sprinkling

Instructions

Crust:

  • Prepare, parbake, and press the tart crust as directed.

Filling:

  • Lower the oven temperature to 325ºF.
  • Place the butter and lemon zest in a heatproof bowl. Place a mesh strainer over the bowl and set aside.
  • In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk together the sugar, salt, eggs, and egg yolks to combine. Gradually whisk in the lemon juice.
  • Place the pot over medium-low heat and cook, stirring constantly with a heatproof silicone spatula, until the mixture thickens slightly and reaches 160-165ºF on an instant-read thermometer, 5–10 minutes. As you stir, be sure to scrape the entire bottom and corners of the pan, so that the mixture heats as evenly as possible. It will start out thick and cloudy from the undissolved sugar, then will turn thin and translucent, and finally begin to thicken and turn cloudy again as the eggs cook. Lower the heat to very low as it gets closer to being done. If the mixture starts to curdle or bubble, immediately remove it from the heat and proceed to the next step.
  • Immediately pour the curd through the strainer and into the bowl of butter to stop the cooking. Whisk to incorporate the butter and lemon zest, making sure there are no clumps of lemon zest.
  • Pour the cooked curd over the baked and pressed down crust. If you have extra curd, you can save it in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. It's delicious swirled into yogurt or slathered on toast or biscuits.
  • Bake the tart at 325ºF (don’t forget to lower the oven temp!) until the sides are barely puffed and the center wobbles like firm Jell-O when you give it a gentle shake, 15–25 minutes. It should not be wet or watery looking (underbaked), nor should it be puffed in the center or cracking (overbaked). Remove the tart from the oven and let cool to room temperature for about an hour, then chill until firm, 3-4 hours or overnight.
  • When the tart is cold, loosen and remove the sides of the tart crust and slide it onto a cutting board. Cut into wedges with a large, sharp chef's knife. For the cleanest cuts, dip the knife in very hot water and wipe the blade clean between cuts.
  • Just before serving, dust the tart with a bit of powdered sugar or garnish with lemon wheels and/or whipped crème fraîche if you like.
  • The tart keeps well, refrigerated, for up to 3 days, though the crust is the crispest within the first 1–2 days.

Notes

Gluten-Free Lemon Bars:
No tart pan? No problem! Bake the same recipes as lemon bars following the recipe here
Meyer Lemon Tart:
Use the smaller amount of sugar and make the tart with Meyer lemon zest and juice.
Make-Ahead:
This lemon tart is best within two days of baking when the crust is crisp. It keeps well in the fridge for up to 4 days. I don't recommend freezing the bars once baked since it might make the curd grainy or watery. 
However, you can make the crust ahead and freeze it – baked or unbaked – until you're ready for tart. You can prepare the lemon zest and juice a day or two ahead and refrigerate them until you're ready to bake. You can also cook the curd ahead of time, chill it for up to 3 days, and soften it in a bain marie before pouring it into the baked crust and proceeding with the recipe. 
Nutrition values are for 1 of 10 servings of the filling only. 

Nutrition

Calories: 259kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 135mg | Sodium: 156mg | Potassium: 53mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 497IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 19mg | Iron: 1mg
Making this? I'd love to see!Tag your snaps @The_Bojon_Gourmet and #bojongourmet!

easy lemon tart recipe, sliced on a plate

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16 thoughts on “Gluten-Free Lemon Tart with Almond Flour Crust”

  1. I’ve made this into Lemon Bars (using Meyer Lemons, lucky me!) and subbed a xylitol/erythritol sugar substitute 1:1 (have white sugar sensitivities) and it was AWESOME! Ate all of it in no time at all 😋😬
    I 💞 your encouraging blog, your inspirational cookbook, variety of great GF recipes, beautiful pix – your newsletter is one of the few I subscribe to. Thx for being there for us!
    So happy Catamus is feeling better and you too! My guys seem to respond well/heal/feel better with CBD oil (K9 Medibles is the best I’ve found) tho dosing MollyKat often has me wearing the stuff instead 🙄
    I live in NoCA too, Wine & Cannabis Country (Sonoma Cty) so am under same restrictions, am bored and lonely just like everyone else. But by staying indoors (making your recipes!!!) we’re respecting, showing our love to our 1st responders, medical staff and each other the best way we can.
    Stay safe and sane. Binge responsibly. We’ll get thru this too. Together. 😘

  2. I can’t know how you are thinking about cooking for humans with Catamus having his sickness and the coronavirus. I hope and pray he continues to do well. My 16y year old Chessie is the other love of my life, although I spoil her more than my husband.

    Since my husband has celiac, I’ve found your blog and your cookbook to be wonderful resources. This looks like a great recipe, that I might try the crust with custard and use frozen fruit to make into a compote to top it. I’m not going out to buy lemons, but I do have grapefruit. I may try that and use some bottled lemon juice.

    Thanks for giving some ideas and inspiration in these hard times.

  3. I send you big hugs and extra pets to Catamus – this difficult time has clearly been even harder to bear! I go through periods of anxiety, too — the beginning of our sheltering in place was especially tough, but I agree that minimal/only necessary news, little to no social media and lots of distractions are good. I’m looking forward to the finale of Schitt’s Creek tonight, baking cookies, and all the exercise I can fit in a day! Thinking of you and hang in there!

  4. So odd – I was just wandering about deciding what to do with almond and coconut flour for desserts, ended up here (shocker!), was thinking about Catamus and it all came together.

    Have been feeding Tom (RIP), Felix and Eevee ground turkey with chicken liver, eggs, vitamin B, E, fish oil, bone meal and taurine.

    Today is shopping day – lemons it is :)

  5. I’m so sorry to hear about Catamus–been there with two kitties and it is the hardest thing.
    Thank you for being here–how the @&*((*%# have I not heard of Essentrics!

  6. I am just so happy to hear that Catamus is doing better.
    We all need more love and encouragement during these difficult days. For me, there is nothing better than lemony goodness like this. As always, your photos are breathtaking.
    Love from VT. Ice

  7. First, I was so sorry to hear about Catamus, and I am still sending good thoughts your way. I am so thankful for the love and joy and hilarity that our pets bring to our lives. It is never long enough. And it isn’t easy on us when they are sick. I am glad Catamus is enjoying standard cat hijinks *and* your delicious food.

    This looks amazing! And I just harvested all of the meyer lemons from my mother-in-law’s tree that needed to be removed. I spent yesterday snipping them off, and reveling in the delicious smell – the tree is again covered in blossoms, it must be one of the most productive trees ever. I drove around boxes of the overgrown lemons and deposited them at friend’s houses while staying 10 feet apart. It was like delivering sunshine – the car smelled amazing, and thankfully no longer like the fake lemon scented Lysol wipes that I’ve been using post-grocery and pharmacy trips.

    Anyhow, I hope there is some sunshine in your days now, although I know it is a grey time. Hugs and cat cuddles being sent your way.

    1. Thank you so much for the sweet note Kim, it really means a lot to me. “Joy and hilarity” really sum up Catamus – he’s a ray of sunshine in our lives.

      Speaking of sunshine, meyer lemons! What a sweet delivery for your friends, I’m envious. :)

      Big hugs to you too friend. <3

  8. Hi Alana, I’m so sorry to hear Catamus has been unwell. Such a stressful and heart wrenching experience 💔 Glad to hear he has some treatment options and that it sounds like he’s perked up! Sending healing vibes his way 💗

  9. I am so relieved Catamus is doing better. Today is my Didi’s 8th birthday (or so we assume, more or less). Yea, my screenname is Didi’s full name. I wish for him to live as long as 20!

    1. Thanks for the kind words. Catamus isn’t doing so well anymore sadly, we’re just trying to give him everything he could possibly need right now and keep him as comfortable as possible. I do hope that Didi lives to a ripe old age and that you get many years together!

  10. Sorry to hear about your cat. Glad you’re taking some breathing time. I too, have enjoyed some distance from social media as well. 💕