Here’s a decadent, cool and creamy cheesecake with the sweet pucker of lemon bars: Candied Lemon Cheesecake! I’m delighted to share this outstanding cheesecake recipe from the kitchens of Southern Living.
It combines a deliciously sweet and crunchy crust, creamy cheesecake and tangy homemade lemon curd. (Or take a short cut and use store bought!)
This dreamy cheesecake is garnished with gorgeous DIY candied lemon slices. Every baker needs at least one showstopper, gourmet dessert in their summer recipe box. This is IT!
Lemon curd is one of the creamiest, most delightful culinary inventions ever. Perfection as a spread, sandwiched between cake layers, spooned on ice cream. But especially cheesecake! Or just slurp it from the spoon. (Not that I’d know anything about that.)
Lemon curd is simultaneously sweet and mouth-puckeringly tart. Eggs, fresh-squeezed lemon juice, sugar and pure butter combine to silky smooth perfection. Lemon curd is fit for royalty. (Suitable for the likes of you and me.)
I suggest you begin this Lemon Bar Cheesecake recipe a day or two in advance of when you’ll serve it. And plan to chill out. ‘Cause there’s lots of chillin’ involved in this recipe. The dough, lemon curd and baked cheesecake all need significant chill time.
Don’t hustle, bustle and rush making this dessert. Savor each delicious step! (Especially the eating!) First make the lemon curd and candied lemon slices and set aside.
Then process the dough in the food processor. Chill before rolling out and fitting in a 9″ springform pan. Chill again.
Fill with creamy cheesecake batter and swirl with homemade lemon curd. Top with remaining cheesecake batter, then bake.
Cool completely. Chill baked cheesecake, then spoon lemon curd on top.
Optional: Garnish with gorgeous Candied Lemon Slices. (May I suggest: you’ve already come this far. Just go the whole way baby.)
I loved putting this Candied Lemon Cheesecake together and adding the final gourmet touch of candied lemon slices on top.
Candied Lemon Cheesecake
- 6 lemons for 1 cup of fresh lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of lemon zest
- 1/2 cup butter softened
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup cold butter cubed
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 - 2 tablespoons ice cold water
- 4 8 ounce packages Philadelphia brand cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups lemon curd divided
Optional: Candied Lemon slices for garnish
- 2 small lemons
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 3/4 cup water
- Grate enough zest from lemons to get 2 tablespoons.
- Squeeze lemons 'til you get the 1 cup you need.
- Separately in a microwave proof bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer 'til blended.
- Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, blending just until incorporated.
- Slowly add lemon juice, beating at low speed until blended.
- Stir in lemon zest.
- (At this point, it looks curdled.)
- Microwave at high for 5 minutes, stirring once every minute.
- Then microwave a little longer, stirring at 30 second intervals, just for 1-2 more minutes.
- Lemon curd will thicken, and coat the back of a spoon, and start to mound slightly.
- Cover warm curd with plastic wrap directly on it (to prevent a film from forming) and chill a minimum of four hours or 'til firm.
- Refrigerate in airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Optional Candied Lemon Slices:
- Slice 2 lemons into 1/8 " thick rounds, removing seeds.
- Stir together sugar, lemon juice and water in large skillet.
- Heat over medium heat 'til sugar dissolves completely.
- Carefully a lemon slices, and simmer gently for 14-16 minutes.
- Keep lemon slices in a single layer, turning every so often.
- When lemons are translucent and rinds are soft, remove from the heat.
- Using tongs, place candied lemon slices in a single layer on wax-paper or parchment lined baking sheet.
- Cool completely for about an hour.
- Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 hours and as long as two days.
- Reserve syrup for another use.
- Pulse first three ingredient in food processor until blended.
- Add butter and pulse until just crumbly.
- Separately, whisk together egg yolks and 1 tablespoon ice water in a small bowl.
- Add to flour butter mixture and process 'til dough forms a ball.
- Add up to 1 tablespoon more water, 1 teaspoon at a time if necessary to hold it together.
- Shape dough ball into a flat disk and wrap tightly in plastic.
- Chill for a minimum of four hours before rolling out.
- Roll dough into a 14 " circle on a lightly floured surface using a rolling pin.
- Fit dough into a lightly greased 9" dark springform pan.
- Press dough onto the bottom and up the sides of the pan.
- With a sharp knife or kitchen shears, trim away excess dough around the top edge.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- In medium mixing bowl, beat softened cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
- Gradually add granulated sugar, beating until just blended.
- Add eggs, one at a time and beat until just mixed in.
- Beat in vanilla.
- Pour 2/3 of cheesecake batter (about 4 cups) into prepared crust.
- Spoon 1 cup lemon curd over the cheesecake batter.
- Gently swirl with a butter knife.
- Spoon remaining cheesecake batter on top.
- Bake at 325 degrees for an hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes or just until center is set.
- (Cheesecake should just be turning golden.)
- Turn oven off.
- Let cheesecake stay in the oven, with the door closed, an additional 15 minutes.
- Remove cheesecake from oven.
- Carefully run a knife around the outer edge of the cheesecake to loosen it from the sides of the pan.
- (But don't remove the sides of pan. Yet.)
- Cool completely in the pan on a wire rack, about one hour.
- Cover tightly and chill 8-24 hours.
- Remove the sides of the pan and transfer cheesecake to a cake platter.
- Spoon remaining 1 cup lemon curd over cheesecake.
- Optional: Garnish with Candied Lemon Slices
You may also like: Blueberry Pound Cake
Michelle @ A Dish of Daily Life says
I so want a slice of this! I love cheesecake and lemon anything. This wouldn’t last very long in my house and I would probably be the worst one sneaking slices!
Allie, that cheesecake looks absolutely delicious!! I am with Michelle – this wouldn’t last long in our house either!! That lemon/lime squeezer looks like a handy device to have in the kitchen, thanks for sharing. Take care. 🙂
I adore lemon curd! Need to add this cheesecake to my ever growing list of recipes I want to try!
Anu-My Ginger Garlic Kitchen says
Oh! I wish I could grab A BIG slice right away. The crunchy crust and creamy cheesecake — this is indeed decadent Allie. Love how it combines sweet and tangy flavors. So good.
Kristen @ A Mind Full Mom says
OH my Allie, my son would devour this. He is obsessed with lemon. I need that juicer just to keep up with all his lemon requests!
Dear Allie, your cheesecake is outstanding. I love cheesecake and I love lemons – a slice of this would be a bite of heaven for me. Inspired to make lemon curd and make this for my family. xo, Catherine
Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says
Beautiful cheesecake! I love everything lemon flavored so this is perfect!
Allie – I really hope you saved me a slice of this. If only I could reach through my screen. I love the lemon and cheesecake combination. Yum!
Aunt Pinkie says
Looks heavenly! Am definitely a lemon lover! And the lemon squeezer looks marvelous – mine is similar BUT without the two cup sizes!
Sissy Flynn says
I love anything lemon, and this cheesecake looks and sounds so refreshing and tasty! Thanks for all your delicious recipes!
Shashi at RunninSrilankan says
Oh dear gawsh!!! Allie – you’ve killing me with this level of decadence!!! This trifecta of Cheesecake + lemon curd + candied lemons is making me wanna climb through my screen into your kitchen …ahhhh if only THAT was a possibility!
Karen @ On the Banks of Salt Creek says
Anything that makes it easier for me to make lemon desserts is a good tool.
This looks amazing. Must try soon.
Thanx for posting.
Cheyanne @ No Spoon Necessary says
Wowza, Allie! This truly is one show stopping dessert! You had me at “candied” and the first picture! So GORGEOUS! I am totally swooning over here, I love lemon curd (I used to hate it, like you… I was just thinking of that dang rhyme), but paired with rich creamy cheese cake, that fabulous crust and those candied lemon slices?! HEAVEN on EARTH! Perfection! Pinned! Cheers, my dear! xo
Karla @SmallTownRambler says
Lemon + Cheesecake…I’m in! 🙂 It makes me think of the yummy lemon sauce my Gramma used to make to top her fresh baked gingerbread.
Barbara Child says
This is one fit for royalty! Love the squeezer too!
This cheesecake looks amazing!
This will be a hit with my lemon loving boy! He is always asking my to buy more lemons!
Christy Smith says
Might just have to give this a whirl for my mom’s belated birthday celebration! Looks fit for royalty and she is that to me….such a queen!! ?
Tina sneed says
Yum! I need to set aside some baking time!
Susie Mandel says
Oh, does this look good!!! Entering the giveaway now. 🙂
i love cheesecake all day everyday. This looks scrumptious!
Jessica Wood says
I’ve never tried lemon curd! I think you’re right – I’ve always been tripped up by “curd” even though I know what it is 🙂 This cheesecake looks so, so good and worth the two days it takes to make it!
Sherri @ Watch Learn Eat says
Hi Allie! This cheesecake looks absolutely amazing! I loooove lemons and lemon-flavored anything! Adding lemon curd and candied lemons to cheesecake is perfection!
This looks unbelievable! I love cheesecake and lemon curd! I do not, nore have I ever made cheesecake. Now I have a show stopping recipe! Thank you Allie!
Sheila @ Life, Love, and Good Food says
Allie, this lemon cheesecake looks amazing! Love the candied lemons on top!
Arman @ thebigmansworld says
That lemon curd looks amazing and I’d have so much trouble NOT faceplanting it! In a cheesecake though? Even better!
Amy Pratt says
I always thought I had the best cheesecake recipe, but now I’m so sure. Looks yummy!
Joanie @ Zagleft says
Allie, this is a gorgeous cake. The delicious lemon curd between two layers of cheesecake is just heavenly.
Danielle | The Creative Bite says
I don’t know if there are any desserts better than cheesecake, but this candied lemon version just took it to a whole new level!
Denise S says
This would really come in handy for my recipes with lemon.
Deborah Wellenstein says
That cheesecake looks incredible! Thanks for the opportunity to win a lemon/lime squeezer-I need one!
Tari Lawson says
This recipe looks amazing. I love lemon.
Monique Rizzo says
This looks amazing. I love Oreo Cheesecake, but this might be even better. Thank you for the chance.
Annamarie V says
What a fantastic recipe, it’s always fun to try something new instead of making the same old desserts.
Don’t hate me everyone, but I was one of the very lucky taste testers of this beautiful, magazine-cover-worthy cheesecake. WOW!! So delicious! Some sweet, some tart, some fabulous–a win, win, win in my book! Keep cooking, baking and treating us to beautiful bites to remember! 🙂
I adore citrus in cooking and baking, especially lemons! A cheesecake with lemon curd sounds divine. And yes, candied lemon is a must!
Mary Beth Elderton says
OMGosh! These look delicious! I love lemon anything!
kayla leadman says
This cake looks so yummy. My mouth is watering just looking at it.
kayla leadman says
This cake looks so yummy.
Ashley C says
This candied lemon cheesecake would be my husbands dream come true!
What a wonderful dessert Allie! J’aurais bien aimée gouter un morceau !
Jenna Hudson says
Wow so many steps! But by the looks of it its worth it!
Stephanie Coldwell says
That looks sooo good!! I want some now! I love Cheesecake!
Brittney House says
That cheesecake looked absolutely delicious.
this looks absolutely yummy
Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor says
I am obsessed with anything lemon and this cheesecake looks incredible. Pass me a slice, please!
paige c says
This recipe sounds amazing! I need a good lemon/lime squeezer
This cheesecake looks amazing!
Danielle Marie says
that looks amazing. i am drooling on my keyboard. i love lemon things.
Kat Bills says
I <3 all things lemon!
This is gonna be what I make the hubs!!
The hubs loves a lemon cake on his birthday, this would make it even easier to make!!
Debbie Welchert says
Oh my, the cheesecake looks so delicious. I wish I could have a piece.
Taylor Closet says
This look soooooo good!!!!!
Sarah Morris says
The tartness of lemon with the sweetness of cheesecake – sounds right up my alley!
Neha Kaul says
I’t’s really hard to resist taking a bite out of my laptop screen 🙂
Great recipe! Looks delicious!
I’d love to try this and I would hoard it all to myself since my hubs is not a fan of lemon anything. That and mint are where he draws the line.
Stephanie Liske says
I’m glad you decided to go with a cheesecake recipe. Cheesecake is my favorite.
Erica B. says
Looks so yummy!
Dorothy Deakyne says
My hubby loves anything with Lemon in it
susan smoaks says
i really am excited to try that recipe
karen mayernick says
This looks Delicious! I want to make this! Thank you for the opportunity!
liz l says
Looks fancy but easy to make
Patrycja Chudziak says
I LOVE lemon desserts and cheesecake..I MUST TRY THIS!! It looks sooooo good I sadly can admit I probably could eat the whole thing by myself! I would love to make this for family for Thanksgiving.
elizabeth peck says
Lemon is my favorite flavor. Thanks for the chance.
This recipe looks amazingly YUMMY!!!
Allison L says
this looks super handy to have around!
Penny Snyder says
LOVE cheesecake – would love to win this “gadget”!!
I’d love to try this recipe!
I’ve always wanted one of these squeezers. Thanks for the opportunity.
Francine Anchondo says
this looks really good.
Rajee Pandi says
I always love to try lemon cheese cake
Looks like a great recipe! I love lemon everything.
Laura Dembowski says
Making lemon curd in the microwave is genius! Love that you used traditional pie crust too.
This looks so delicious !!! I am a sucker for ANYTHING lemon and this looks so yummy. I can’t wait to try it.
Kelsie | the itsy-bitsy kitchen says
I’m thinking the only thing better than lemon curd slathered on buttered toast is a big slice of this cheesecake! Have a great weekend, Allie!
Louise Achor says
Still haven’t made this but it sure looks great!
Susie Mandel says
Me neither, Pinkie–probably because I’m too lazy to go through all these steps…horrible, aren’t I! But lemon and lemon curd are at the top of my list for pure yummy-ness, so, Allie, I will just have to get out my apron and roll up my sleeves. 😉
Luci's Morsels says
Stunning photography! Lemon is the perfect accompaniment to cheesecake that keeps it from becoming too heavy. Looks tasty!
Luci’s Morsels | fashion. food. frivolity.
That is beautiful and looks delicious. I need to make it.
Shashi at Savory Spin says
Every time I see this, I get weak in the knees! What a stunner this is! I hope you guys have settled in some what to your new home and are enjoying this summer! Happy Monday – hope your week is wonderful, sweet friend! XOXO
Wow, what an awesome ‘presentation’! This looks soooo good, and deliciously decadent!
This is one incredible cheesecake! Loads of fabulous lemon flavor–love it!!!
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CakenGifts.in Ghaziabad says
wah!!! I think this is the best cake which will be the best for christmas as well as all other occasion. Today i will try to make it by this recipe. Thanks!!!
How long will this keep in the fridge? Looks amazeballs.
Thank you, this will definitely keep for a few days in the refrigerator Kashanna, or freeze it for longer. I make it and cool, then refrigerate, then wait to put the lemon curd and candied lemons on until the day of, or right before serving. (I wouldn’t freeze with the lemon curd or candied lemons on top either, I would add the lemon curd and candied lemons on top after it has thawed.) Hope you enjoy it!
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