Vanilla-Lavender Lemon Curd

October 11, 2010

Lemon curd. Oh, is this ever a Thing. How have I lived this long without making my own? Creamy-custardy, tart-sweet lemony, and my touch: vanilla-lavendery.

To make a batch big enough for canning, I quadrupled this basic recipe: cream together 3 eggs and 1/3 cup of sugar. Add 1/2 cup or so of fresh lemon juice (I bought a jug of nice organic stuff and added the additional zest and juice of a lemon) and 6 tablespoons of butter. Simmer over medium, whisking here and again until the butter is melted, then whiskwhiskwhisk over gentle heat until it is thickened and puddinglike in consistency. Pour the whole thing through a fine mesh sieve to get out the scrambled eggy bits (pictured above to illustrate that you don’t want this in your curd).

Now you have this gorgeous lemon curd, only about ten minutes after you started. Isn’t that something? It’s fine and lovely just the way it is, truly, but why not gild the lily and add a teaspoon each of vanilla extract and lavendercello? Just stir it right in.

Serve with scones, or buttermilk biscuits, or a spoon.

Editor’s note: Despite comments from the Canning Police, this curd is perfectly safe to can in a hot water bath. Even though this recipe deviates from the tested recipe on the National Center For Home Food Preservation fact sheet, the extra lemon juice and addition of liquor renders it even safer. The NCHFP instructions can be found here. I have eaten and gifted many jars of this stuff and have no salmonella complaints yet. So suck it, Canning Police.

25 Responses to Vanilla-Lavender Lemon Curd

  1. lo
    October 11, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    Oh. Dear.
    This sort of thing makes me swoon. And you canned this curd? Can I do it in a water bath canner?

  2. Heather
    October 11, 2010 at 6:29 pm

    Lori – I canned it in a boiling water bath, for 15 minutes (following USDA guidelines that I found online).

  3. October 11, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    OK, THAT’S breakfast.

  4. lo
    October 11, 2010 at 6:41 pm

    Thanks, Heather. I can handle that… now guess what I’m doing next weekend? ;)

  5. October 11, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    I made some pumpkin scones this morning so “me thinks” some lemon curd is next on the list.

  6. October 12, 2010 at 12:30 am

    this is beautiful and luscious and i want to make it immediately!

  7. October 12, 2010 at 1:29 am

    Lemon curd is the food of the gods. I think lavender may be slightly over-gilding the lily though!

  8. October 12, 2010 at 7:39 am

    Gorgeous curd! I love a good lemon curd, and the addition of lavendar and vanilla? Wonderful!

    The thought of opening a jar of this oon some gloomy afternoon for tea sounds just sumptuous, great idea!

  9. October 12, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    The spoon method gets my vote.

    I’d love to try this recipe the next time I make my strawberry lemon cake. The lavendar would add a nice touch.

  10. October 19, 2010 at 9:25 am

    This looks absolutely divine, especially since Meyer Lemon season is coming up soon!

  11. Paula
    October 19, 2010 at 10:16 am

    Please, what is Lavendercello, where do I get it or how do I make it?

  12. Connie
    October 19, 2010 at 3:32 pm

    This is NOT BWB safe!! Just so you know the USDA recommends this be frozen if you chose to store Lemon curd. Here is a link:

    Please use safe canning practices…especially when passing on info to others.

  13. Connie
    October 19, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    Evidently it will not let me leave a link…go to National Center for Home Food Preservation and click on search at the bottom of the page and type in eggs…eggs and dairy products are not safe to can…especially BWB can.

  14. October 19, 2010 at 6:12 pm

    Actually, Mrs. Nosypants, the National Center for Home Food Preservation gives directions on canning lemon curd using a BWB here:

  15. October 19, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    …and now that I’ve had time to let this stew, I’d like to ask you, Connie, why the fuck do you think I would give a recipe and instructions to can lemon curd in a boiling water bath if I didn’t have good reason to think it was safe? Have you ever read my blog before? Do you think I’m ignorant, or lack the ability to Google “canning lemon curd” before I take the time to prepare and can a lot of something that might kill me and my friends (by the way, the link to the NCHFP lemon curd canning instructions is the FIRST fucking link on Google)? I’m a scientist (in real life!) and know a little something about covering my ass.

    What is it with all these canning “experts” these days trolling food blogs to say, “you’re wrong! you’re wrong!!!”?

  16. dan
    October 19, 2010 at 9:51 pm

    spank you very much!

  17. rangichan
    October 19, 2010 at 11:09 pm

    Oh, Heather, you make me laugh so!

  18. Syd
    October 20, 2010 at 8:32 am

    Me too. I’m totally laughing.

    To quote the lovely Carrie Fisher, “put THAT in your pipe and fuck it” (Connie).

  19. October 29, 2010 at 11:36 am

    I’m wondering if the teaspoon each of vanilla and lavendercello are the amounts for the single batch or the quadruple batch?

  20. November 3, 2010 at 9:06 am


    This was so good & so easy & I’m in heaven. I feel like an idiot for liking Nutella on animal crackers. Also, I made scones & it was so easy & a fantastic pairing. Then I juiced an orange and made a tonne (that’s bigger than a ton, right?) of orange glaze so I’ve just been in heaven. I didn’t believe how easy this was until I actually did it. Sure it sounds simple, but I swear it was 10 minutes from starting to zest (1st prep I did) to finished product in my mouth. It was so tasty that I was tempted not to mess with it by adding vanilla, but I’m so happy I did.


  21. Khemasanine
    November 7, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    Ok, again you prove yourself to be one of my favorite food bloggers. All delicious recipes and foodstuffs aside, your comment above made me so very happy, and as I read it aloud to my husband in the other room, he replied with: “Scientists just got a whole lot sexier.”

    So, there you have it. Well done.

  22. kittie
    November 26, 2010 at 9:24 pm

    ok i LOVE lemon curd and make it all the time i happened upon this recipe looking up how to do a vanilla curd it sounds sooooo good i cant wait to make this thank you so so so much for a great idea

  23. Teresa
    December 13, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    I’d been contemplating making curd lately, since the lemon curd we have the gourmet food store i work in has not the best curd we’ve had. I thought it was time consuming and difficult. Well, you just totally proved my silly pre-conceived notions ALL wrong! When scientists swear, you’d better listen!
    Fresh Meyer lemons were at the market yesterday, i’d NEVER seen them here in Canada before, so i gave it a go, and in 20 mins total (prep to ready to eat time), it was complete.
    I wasn’t into the lavender, nor the vanilla, but instead added a small capfull of RoseWater. Deee-lish!
    This lemon-rosewater curd will be dolloped onto buttermilk scones for the gang at work this weekend. Thanks for making me a believer Heather!

  24. March 2, 2011 at 10:25 am

    This recipe sounds so delicious! I can’t get enough of citrus this time of year! Having looked at the pictures, I am now starving! Thanks! :)

  25. March 9, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    Awesome!! My lemon tree is bent over in half from the weight of all the lemons waiting to be picked. Now I know what I’m doing with a bunch of them!