The ultimate makeover: Lemon tart

The ultimate makeover: Lemon tart

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(39 ratings)

Prep: 35 mins Cook: 55 mins Plus chilling

More effort

Cuts into 12 slender slices
Enjoy an incredible half-fat version of this classic dessert, which tastes every bit as good as the original

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal186
  • fat9g
  • saturates4g
  • carbs24g
  • sugars15g
  • fibre0g
  • protein4g
  • salt0.14g
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    For the pastry

    • 50g butter, cut in pieces



      Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

    • 140g plain flour
    • 1 tbsp icing sugar
    • 1 tbsp extra virgin rapeseed oil
      Rapeseed oil

      Rapeseed oil

      If you want a light alternative to other cooking oils, rapeseed is a great choice and has…

    • 1 medium egg yolk

    For the filling

    • 3 medium eggs, plus 2 medium egg whites



      The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

    • 140g icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
    • 2 tbsp finely grated lemon zest (about 4 lemons)



      Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

    • 125ml lemon juice (from 4-5 lemons)
    • 200ml tub half-fat crème fraîche


    1. Rub the butter into the flour until the mix looks like fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the icing sugar, then make a well and use a round-bladed knife to stir in the oil, egg yolk and 1½-2 tbsp cold water until dough comes together. Without overhandling, gather into a ball. On a lightly floured surface, roll out so it fits a 23 x 2cm loose-bottom flan tin. Ease the pastry into the tin, then trim the edges by rolling the rolling pin over the top. Press the pastry into the flutes so it sits very slightly proud of the edge (this extra height helps in case of any shrinkage). Lightly prick the pastry base with a fork, then chill for about 10 mins. Heat the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5.

    2. Meanwhile, make the filling. Beat the eggs and egg whites together with a wooden spoon until well mixed. Sift the icing sugar into a bowl, then gradually beat in the eggs. If the mix is at all lumpy, simply beat with a wire whisk. Stir in the lemon zest and the juice. Leave to stand so the lemon flavour can develop.

    3. Sit the chilled pastry case on a baking sheet. Line with baking parchment and baking beans and bake blind for 20 mins until well set. Carefully lift out the beans and paper, then bake the pastry case for another 3-5 mins until the base is cooked and pale golden.

    4. Strain the lemon mixture through a sieve. Beat the crème fraîche in a medium bowl until smooth, then slowly stir in the lemon mix until well blended. Transfer to a jug, then carefully pour two thirds into the warm pastry case. Place in the oven with the oven shelf half out, pour in the rest of the filling, then carefully slide the shelf back in. Reduce the heat to 150C/130C fan/gas 2. Bake for 25-30 mins until barely set with a slight wobble in the middle. Cool for about 1 hr, then serve with a light dusting of icing sugar. Best eaten the same day.

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    Comments (58)

    carts003's picture

    This was my first tart and it was amazing!!
    Got loads of great coments and friends loved it at a recent bbq. Must admit, cheated with the pastry and used shop bought but it was just as good.
    Also, when it says to let the lemon mixture sit i would do so for as long as possible to get maximum lemon flavours.
    Great recipe, cant wait to do it again :D

    trying2babravecook's picture

    YUMMY YUMMY loved this tart ans yes if you have a really sweet tooth it will be too tart for you. The amounts given for the pastry is not enough. I had to make more as it did not fit the 9" tin and NO WAY would there have been enough to go up the side of the flan tin. So my advise is make more and it will be easier to handle as you wont have to roll it out so thin to make it fit. I also just used a veg oil instead of rapeseed it was fine. Also found that the oil was really enough because when i added the water the pastry was too sticky I added a bit more flour I did use the rind and juice of a lime instead of all the lemon it really gives it a wonderful taste. As for the cracking I did as some others did and give it longer to cook but there is really no need . I think that is why it cracked but dust with icing sugar and who cares!!!!! So for those who had problems try it again.

    6868sarahc's picture

    Fantastic recipe. Family and friends loved it. Quite tart, excuse the pun, but just right. Pastry was a nightmare but will try the ready made cases next time. Really yummy!! 5 stars.

    annachickpea's picture

    My 12 year old daughter made this tart for a family dinner. It was by far the loveliest lemon tart I have ever tasted. The pastry was crisp and the filling was delicious. We took the tart out of the oven when the timer went off and although it still wobbled it set perfectly in the fridge. Will definitely make again.

    jessalys's picture

    Really really tasty, had a bit of a problem with the pastry but it all turned out good in the end.

    wilsonm6's picture

    While, I like the recipe, I think it is a bit of a con to call it lower-fat and lower-calorie. The only reason its 186 calories per portion is because one tart is meant to be sliced in 12 slices! They're tiny slices No one has slices that small... well, me and my family don't.

    lindabyrne's picture

    Very good and easy recipe, elegant dessert it does tend to split as it cools but no harm done there. This was my second time making it and its definitely part of my repertoire now :)

    lhmg09's picture

    Really struggled with this one. The french style pastry was the issue. First time, the pastry cracked around the edges so that filling would have worked it's way underneath the pastry. Tried again, but this time I couldn't roll the pastry out to make it big enough for the tin without it tearing. Needless to say, the pastry was launched and I threw a tantrum as I was making this for a birthday meal. Opted for cheese and biscuits in the end.
    Real shame as I would have loved to have tried it!

    reddale's picture

    Fabulous. Everyone loved it so much I had to make it twice in a week!! Just enough tang... perfect

    nebraska's picture

    Have made this twice and going to make it again this weekend, absolutely gorgeous, would also suggest decorating the top with some raspberries. Really nice.

    mrsg59's picture

    FABULOUS !!!! All of my friends thought this was great AND asked for the recipe. You must try it.

    barnesbinder's picture

    This is the best lemon tart I have tried. Pastry good but must chill. When the cooking time was up it didn't seem cooked so I gave it a bit longer, however, the top cracked so perhaps gave it too long in oven. Still managed to serve up nicely despite the crack and I think it has just the right amount of tartness to it.

    emmab2010's picture

    so easy to make and really yummy i make it every week :)

    fashionista25's picture

    Was still very wobbly in the middle when the oven time was up, so i gave it longer. It then took overnight in the fridge to properly set, but it was worth the wait. Very easy to make too. A little too tart for my taste, but my boyfriend said it was perfect, and polished off several slices!

    tonykerr's picture

    Excellent flavour. Have to be honest and cheated... bought a case as it was quicker. (had other things to made too) Easy to do. Nice and light lemon tart. Will be making fully in the future. Only critism was the top cracked, possibly because it had too long to rest?

    joycegrimshaw's picture

    No Myra, it probably is rapeseed oil.

    myrascarola's picture

    hi I think it is grapeseed and not rapeseed oil

    bostonstuart's picture

    | made this from the GoodFood magazine and it was amazing! I only had 2 small tins so I made 2 smaller tarts but this was great because I made one for home and took the other one to work for my colleagues who all loved it. Really recommend this.


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