How Can I Make Lemon Curd Thicker? Lemon Curd Thickening Made Simple

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Lemon curd is a custard tart or pie filling consisting mostly of eggs, sugar, butter, and lemon juice.

A grated peel of one or two lemons and vanilla essence may also be added to the recipe.

It may be used as a morning jam substitute on toast or as a dessert filling in tarts.

There are several variants on lemon curd, most of which make it sweeter and have a softer texture.

A typical lemon curd recipe, on the other hand, calls for two parts sugar, one part egg yolks, and one part lemon juice (or the grated rind of one or two lemons).

Traditional recipes for Lemon Curd, according to some experts, call for thicker custard than typical since the acidity in the lemons causes it to thicken more than custard prepared with milk.

We will address the question of how to thicken lemon curd in this post.

However, just adding additional pectin is not as straightforward as you would expect.

In fact, if done incorrectly, this may be a prescription for catastrophe.

How Can You Make Lemon Curd?

Lemon curd is created by heating lemon juice, sugar, and butter until thickened.

It may also be used to garnish ice cream, cheesecake, and other sweets.

The conventional method for producing this delectable sauce is to bring everything to nearly boiling point before taking it off the heat.

This is because it stops milk from curdling when heated to boiling temperature.

  • To make the curd, squeeze the lemons and mix them with the sugar in a pot.
  • At room temperature, cream together the butter and sugar until light; this will make it simpler to incorporate into the lemon.
  • Stir until thickened in a saucepan over low heat (about 6-10 minutes). Refrigerate after pouring into sterilized jars.
  • Lemon curd will stay in the refrigerator for approximately a month.

A perfect lemon curd should be thick and light yellow in hue.

It should also be firm but not harsh or gritty to the touch.

Fruit chunks will sometimes stay unincorporated into the liquid mixture (typical seeds from lemons).

They should not be considered when determining if your final output is flawless.

Why is your lemon curd runny and watery?

There are a few reasons why your curd is watery and runny.

  • You did not allow the mixture to thicken sufficiently. This shouldn’t be a problem if you wait until it’s about boiling before taking it from the heat source, unless you remove your pan too soon.
  • Additionally, add heat carefully and often, since a hot pot might burn the mixture before it thickens.
  • You mixed your juice with too much water. You should never use more than one cup of lemon juice for every one cup of sugar. This will also impact the consistency of your lemon curd.
  • Some of the components in your recipe are missing. You must not leave anything out. Check that your combination has butter, sugar, lemon juice, and a bit of salt. Adding extra water will also make it runny.
  • You don’t use nearly enough butter. Lemon curd can be prepared without butter, but the flavor will be noticeably different. Butter is used to give the lemon sauce a creamy texture. If you don’t use enough butter, your lemon curd will be runny since you used too much water while mixing the ingredients.

Additional Errors in Preparing Lemon Curd?

While it might be difficult to spot, certain additional errors may cause your lemon curd to taste different.

One of the most typical blunders while preparing lemon curd is adding the butter too early.

To prevent making this error, heat the mixture before adding the butter and stirring until fully combined.

The same holds true when using a handheld beater.

Before adding the butter, beat the mixture for approximately 5 minutes.

After melting the butter, let it to cool to room temperature or slightly heated.

This is because if the lemon juice gets too heated, it will curdle, causing your lemon curd to become watery and inconsistent.

Finally, don’t substitute margarine for genuine butter, even if it’s cheaper.

Using the incorrect lemon: This may seem apparent, but using a particularly sour lemon to produce your curd can result in a bitter flavor.

If you want your curd to be sweet and mild, use less sour lemons so that the sugar can balance out the harshness.

How Can I Make Lemon Curd Thicker?

Lemon curd’s consistency may be enhanced by boiling the mixture a bit longer to remove excess water and increase its thickness.

This is sometimes done for 5 to 10 minutes over low heat.

If, after following the recommended procedure, your curd remains liquid and watery, here are a couple methods for thickening it.

1 Make use of cornstarch

If your curd turns runny after chilling in the fridge, this indicates that there is still some water in the mixture.

Adding cornstarch will help absorb extra water and thicken the mixture.

  • Stir one spoonful cornstarch into a quarter cup of water until completely dissolved.
  • Carefully pour the mixture into the lemon curd, stirring frequently over low heat until it thickens to the desired consistency.

2 Make use of gelatin

Restaurants that sell lemon curd employ this approach. To thicken your lemon curd using gelatin, follow these steps:

  • Stir one spoonful of powdered gelatin into a quarter cup of cold water. Let it to remain for at least 10 minutes to enable the mixture to thoroughly dissolve. The gelatin will not entirely dissolve if the mixture is placed in boiling water.
  • Carefully pour the mixture into the lemon curd, stirring frequently over low heat until it thickens to the desired consistency.

3 Make use of egg yolk

This is another another do-it-yourself technique. Follow the instructions below to thicken your lemon curd mixture using egg yolk:

Beat one egg yolk with a quarter cup of water until smooth.

Carefully pour the mixture into the lemon curd, stirring frequently over low heat until it thickens to the desired consistency.

While employing this procedure, however, you must ensure that the egg yolk is fresh.

Otherwise, owing to its inclination to harden fast, the mixture will not thicken.

4 Stir in the butter

If you’ve already added butter to your lemon curd, the simplest way to thicken it is to add extra butter and stir thoroughly.

This will aid in the mixing of some of the surplus water that causes the sauce to runny when cold.

It will also make the lemon curd creamier. If your curd is lumpy or not as solid as you would like, it might be too thin.

Add to a saucepan and simmer, stirring constantly, over medium-low heat.

The water should evaporate, and the curd should thicken like jam.

You may alternatively strain the curd using a cheesecloth-lined fine-mesh strainer.

Why does my lemon curd have a metallic taste?

Using a metal bowl is one of the most common blunders while creating lemon curd.

Lemon juice and butter will react with the metal, making your curd taste metallic.

All tools and utensils should be made of plastic or porcelain to prevent this.

Add orange zest, candied ginger, or even walnuts to your lemon curd to make it more flavorful.

If you want to make your card hotter, add a few drops of hot sauce.


Finally, lemon curd is a simple dish that can be created at home with a little patience and the correct skills.

The processes are simple, but attaining the perfect consistency, like with any other sort of curd, may be difficult.

The thickeners described above may assist enhance the consistency of the lemon curd, preventing lumps and clots when cooled in the refrigerator.

Thus, the next time you make lemon curd, try applying the tips above.


How do you make lemon curd thicker?

To produce a thicker curd, add an additional egg yolk or a teaspoon of cornflour combined with a tablespoon of water and simmer until thickened.

What to do if lemon curd doesn’t thicken?

Adding cornstarch will help absorb extra water and thicken the mixture.
Stir one spoonful cornstarch into a quarter cup of water until completely dissolved.
Carefully pour the mixture into the lemon curd, stirring frequently over low heat until it thickens to the desired consistency.

How long does lemon curd take to thicken?

Cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. This might take anything from 10 to 30 minutes.

How long does curd take to thicken?

Place the bowl on top of the pan of simmering water (not boiling). Cook, whisking constantly, until the curd thickens and registers 180oF on an instant-read thermometer. The whole procedure might take 10 minutes.

Why is my curd not setting?

The temperature of the milk usually impacts how well your curd will set. Temperatures that are too chilly or too hot might make the curd setting process more difficult. First, thoroughly boil your milk and turn off the heat. After the boiling milk has cooled to 20% of its original temperature, it is ready to be set.

What temp does lemon curd thicken?

Place the mixture into a 2 quart saucepan and simmer over low heat, stirring regularly, until thickened (approximately 10 minutes). Around 170 degrees F, or slightly below simmer, the lemon curd will thicken. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool or chill.

What makes curd thicker?

*For a thicker curd, use full milk. Simmering the milk for an additional 10 minutes ensures that the curd thickens when it sets. But, avoid burning the milk. * Use fresh, high-quality curd culture and let it to come to room temperature before adding it to the milk.

How do you make curd not watery?

“You may avoid watery curd by heating the milk for a bit longer, which will assist evaporate the water content. If the milk is too hot when the culture is added, the collection will be watery. As a result, let the milk to get to room temperature “Chef Chawla advises.

How do you tighten curd?

Important moments
MINIMUM TEMPERATURE (90 C) Time limit of 30 minutes.
Mar 12, 2018

How can you tell when lemon curd is done?

When the curd has thickened significantly and coated the back of a wooden spoon, it is ready. If you stop whisking the curd before it comes off the heat, the eggs will scramble and become lumpy.

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