Lemon Brownies are dessert bars that are dense and moist with a lemony flavor and topped with a vanilla glaze. If you love lemon desserts, be sure to try my Lemon Bars.
Brownies don’t always have to be chocolate. These lemon brownies have the consistency and texture of a fudgy brownie but made with lemon juice and lemon zest! Plus, they are topped with a vanilla glaze that pairs perfectly with the lemon flavor.
Lemon Brownies Ingredients
It’s all about the lemon flavor in these brownies. And, I will let you know how you can add even more lemon flavor to the glaze!
Lemons: I used both lemon juice and the zest of a lemon in the brownies. Make sure you wash the lemon before zesting it. For the lemon juice, you can use fresh lemon juice or storebought juice. You could even add lemon baking chips to the batter if your store carries them.
Eggs: Make sure when adding the eggs and egg yolk that they are at room temperature. Add the eggs and yolk one at a time, mixing well after each addition so it emulsifies with the butter.
Glaze: For the glaze, I went with a vanilla-flavored glaze, mixing confectioners’ sugar with water. However, if you crave more lemon flavor in the dessert, use lemon juice in place of water for the glaze. You can also enjoy the brownies with no glaze at all if you prefer.
How to Make Lemon Brownies
This recipe was adapted from my Blondies recipe, and with a few additions and omissions, I ended up with these delicious lemon brownies. I used a 9×9-inch baking dish because I like a thick, dense crumb to my brownies. However, you could use a 9×13-inch baking dish, but the brownies will be thinner and baking time will be less.
To get started, combine the melted butter and brown sugar in a large bowl. Next, add the eggs and egg yolk, one at a time, stirring well after each addition. Then, add the lemon juice and lemon zest. Set this aside for a moment as you mix the dry ingredients.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. Gradually add this mixture to the egg mixture until completely combined. Spread the batter into a parchment paper-lined baking dish and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until the edges just begin to turn golden brown. Allow the brownies to cool completely before adding the glaze.
How to Make the Glaze
The glaze for these lemon brownies is optional, but there are a couple of different flavor options. The glaze I made was made with confectioners’ sugar and water. It was the perfect complement to the lemon flavor of the brownies. However, if you love lemon and want an even stronger lemon flavor, it’s easy to make the glaze with lemon juice instead of water! This will turn these lemon brownies into a lemon sweet-tart, one that will make your lips pucker!
PRO TIP: Make sure the brownies have cooled before adding the glaze. If you don’t care about how to brownies look, you can add the glaze warm, it will just soak in more.
Store the brownies in an airtight container, in the refrigerator, for up to five days. You could also freeze the brownies for up to three months. When ready to enjoy them, let the bars thaw in the refrigerator overnight.
Lemon Brownies vs. Lemon Bars
There is a difference between these lemon brownies and lemon bars. Lemon brownies have no crust and the texture is dense and fudgy (like a traditional chocolate brownie). Plus, there is the optional glaze added on top of the brownies. Lemon bars, on the other hand, have a buttery crust with a lemon filling. Be sure to make both recipes if you are a fan of lemon desserts!
Looking for More Lemony Desserts?
- 1 cup (2 sticks or 226g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1¾ cups (350g) light brown sugar, packed
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2½ cups (285g) all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
Vanilla Glaze (Optional)
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tablespoons water, or lemon juice (if want more lemon flavor)
Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare a 9×9-inch pan by lining it with parchment paper (or lightly grease and flour). (You could use a 9×13-inch pan for more servings, but the bars will be thinner.)
In a large bowl, combine the melted butter and brown sugar. Stir well.
Add the eggs and the egg yolk, one at a time, stirring well after each addition.
Stir in the lemon juice and lemon zest.
In a separate, medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt.
Gradually stir the flour mixture into the butter and egg mixture until completely combined.
Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake 45-50 minutes, or until the edges are turning golden brown. (If you are using a 9×13-inch pan, bake for 25-30 minutes.)
Allow brownies to cool before glazing.
In a medium bowl, combine the confectioners' sugar and water and whisk until smooth.
Pour the glaze over the cooled brownies and serve.