A thick cookie crust and bright green key lime filling make these sweet and tart Key Lime Bars a must make recipe this summer.
It has taken me some time to come around to liking citrus desserts. The past few years I have made and eaten more lemon and lime desserts and have come to an appreciation of their flavors. Of course, if I’m given the choice of only one dessert, anything chocolate is going to beat out the citrus.
Key lime has a special place in my heart though because my hubby and I went on our honey moon to Key West many years ago. It was there that I had my first slice of key lime pie. Chocolate dipped, of course.
Key lime pie is one of my hubby’s favorite desserts. He also loves these mini strawberry pies. Oh, my word! I totally need to mash those two desserts together. What do you think?
Last year I had a friend ask me to come up with a lemon bar recipe for her to make at her bakery here in town. After some fun testing in the kitchen, I came up with the best lemon bars, in my opinion. Even my chocolate loving self was digging those lemony bars.
I do think the thick cookie crust is what helped me fall in love with them. It’s my preference to have a sweet crust that is the same or thicker than the filling. You could totally make a smaller crust if you want the filling to stand out more. Just do half the crust ingredients and bake it for 12-14 minutes.
Last month I was cleaning out the fridge and I found a bottle of key lime juice from when I made these blueberry key lime cheesecake bars last summer. Of course that bottle was too old, so it got pitched right away. But that got my brain going in about 10 different directions for fun key lime summer desserts.
The first thing I wanted to do was make those lemon bars with key lime juice. I added a little bit of green gel food coloring to make the filling bright. That’s totally up to you. If you do not add the food coloring, your filling will be a much lighter color. Maybe even slightly yellow.
The color does intensify as the bars bake, so add your food coloring sparingly.
The hardest part of these bars is the waiting period. I couldn’t wait to cut into these key lime bars, but they need to be completely chilled before you slice into them. I like to use a hot dry knife to make my slices perfect. A dusting of powdered sugar and some lime zest makes them ready to be devoured.
They would be the perfect dessert to bring to picnics and parties this summer. The bright green color makes them so fun and cheery!
Still craving more key lime inspired desserts? You have to check out this Key Lime Pound Cake. I’m loving the key lime drizzles over the top! And this Tequila Key Lime Bundt Cake is absolutely gorgeous too! The swirls of fruit in this Raspberry Key Lime Pie are calling out to me. I know my husband would love that for sure!
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For the crust
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 3/4 cup butter, softened
For the key lime filling
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 Tablespoons flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup key lime juice
- 2 Tablespoons lime zest + extra for garnish
- 2 eggs
- green gel food coloring
- powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8x8 baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick baking spray.
- Mix together the flour, powdered sugar, and butter until it is crumbly. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 20 minutes.
- While the crust is baking, place the sugar, flour, salt, key lime juice, zest, and eggs in a blender. Pulse until frothy. Add a little bit of green gel food coloring to brighten the color more.
- As soon as the crust is finished, pull it out and pour the key lime filling on top. You may need to pulse it one more time before doing this. Bake again for 25 minutes.
- Remove and let cool completely. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut into 16 bars.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 225Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 46mgSodium: 111mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 0gSugar: 23gProtein: 2g