Recipe Rehab: 80 Delicious Recipes That Slash the Fat, Not the Flavor put a healthy spin on lemon bars, a favorite dessert for summertime potlucks and parties! Next time you are invited to bring a dessert, try these Lighter Lemon Bars and see if anyone can tell the difference in this lower calorie version. I’ll bet they can’t!
Lighter Lemon Bars
(Reprinted with Permission from RecipeRehab.com)
Most lemon bars start off with a thick base of buttery shortbread that’s layered with lemon custard made with egg yolks. This lightened-up version has a thin, flaky crust topped with a velvety, airy custard made from whipped egg whites combined with freshly squeezed lemon juice and zest. Moist, zingy, and beautifully garnished with a snowy dusting of powdered sugar, these bright, refreshing bars will make you the belle of the ball at the next neighborhood gathering.
Makes 8 bars
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup powdered sugar, plus more for dusting
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons light butter, such as Land O’Lakes, cold and cut into small cubes
- 2 tablespoons ice water
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)
- 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon whole wheat flour
To make the crust, preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line an 8-by–8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, allowing the excess to hang over the sides. Coat with nonstick spray.
In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, powdered sugar, baking powder, and salt. Cut in the butter with a fork until a course meal forms. Sprinkle with the ice water and mix just until the dough forms a ball. Gather the dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
When the dough has chilled, press in an even layer into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 10 minutes, until the crust is firm to the touch.
To make the filling, in a mixing bowl combine the egg whites, egg, lemon juice, and zest. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat on medium speed until well combined. Sprinkle in the sugar and flour. Continue to beat until smooth and thick.
Pour the lemon filling evenly over the hot crust and smooth the surface with a rubber spatula. Bake for 20 minutes, until firm and the edges start to pull away from the sides of the pan.
Let the lemon bars cool completely in the pan, about 1 hour. Cut into bars and dust with powdered sugar before serving.
Per serving: 227 calories, 3 g total fat (1 g saturated), 25 mg cholesterol, 174 mg sodium, 4 g protein,
1 g fiber, 47 g carb