Classic lemon bars with a modern tropical twist. These Pineapple Lemon bars will bring back nostalgic memories of favorite childhood desserts.
Within this post you’ll make old school lemon bars with a twist. Plus you’ll learn why lemon bar recipes often call for non-reactive bowls and pans.
Remember those old school desserts you enjoyed as a kid? Favorites such as lemon bars, oatmeal cookies, crispy cereal bars and good old fashioned chocolate chip cookies. Well what’s old school is cool in my book. I’ve given a classic dessert a slightly modern tropical twist with these Pineapple Lemon Bars.
Don’t let the pineapple part fool you, these are authentic lemon bars filled with sweet and tart zest, but with an added bonus. Full of comforting flavor that reminds you of childhood wonder. And just like old school recipe, there is a bit of work involved. The recipe is detailed and easy to follow, and can be made in just under an hour. Who said desserts always had to be quick and simple?
For added lemon flavor and nostalgia I used lemon cookie thins. Remember thin cookies? A tasty treat on their own and even better in the crust of these Pineapple Lemon Bars. If you can’t find them then regular vanilla wafers will work fine.
Why do lemon bar recipes call for non-reactive bowls and pans?
Certain foods, especially acidic or salty ones react with metals like aluminium, copper or iron. If food sits too long it can dissolve the metal, imparting a metallic taste. It won’t reach dangerous levels but still safer to use stainless steel, glass or plastic bowls, and nonstick pans for acid ingredients. This recipe is loaded with lemons (acidic citrus), hence the suggestion. Learn more here from Chowhound.
Pineapple Lemon Bars recipe at-a-glance:
Flavor profiles: Tangy, citrusy, tart and very sweet.
Texture: Dense, chewy cookie crust topped with creamy lemon curd.
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Pineapple Lemon Bars
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup lemon cookie thins
- ½ cup confectioners’ sugar, plus extra for dusting
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened, cut into 1-inch pieces
Pineapple Lemon Filling
- 5 large egg yolks
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ⅔ cup fresh lemon juice, 4-5 lemons
- ¼ cup grated lemon zest
- 6 tablespoons ¾ stick unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
- ¼ cup pineapple chunks, without liquid if canned
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Line bottom and sides of a 9x9 baking dish with parchment paper or foil.
- In a food processor pulse flour, cookie thins and powdered sugar until fine. Pulse in salt and butter pieces until course, about 10 seconds. Evenly pat mixture into bottom of prepared dish and bake until set, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven.
Pineapple Lemon Filling
- While crust is baking: In a medium nonreactive bowl lightly beat together eggs and yolks. Stir in sugar, lemon juice and zest until combined.
- Pour into a nonreactive pan over medium-low heat and add butter. Stirring often, cook until mixture reaches 170° F. with an instant-read thermometer, about 5 minutes. Immediately strain through a fine mesh strainer over a bowl. Stir in pineapple chunks and pour over crust.
- Bake 15-20 minutes, until filling is shiny and jiggles slightly in center. Let cool completely on a wire rack for at least 2 hours, or refrigerate to set, before cutting into squares.