Lime curd is a great tasting variation of the traditional lemon curd. This lime curd is creamy, thick, and tart; and it tastes like you're eating an actual lime. And the best part - it takes less than 30 minutes to make. See the list at the end of this post for links to the other fruit curd recipes.
Since I started the blog I have the goal to make as many fruit curds as possible. So far I've made lemon, kumquat, strawberry, and rhubarb. You can do almost any citrus fruit in addition to raspberries and blueberries.
Why This Recipe Works
Fruit curd is an indulgent, luscious, tart, creamy fruit spread that is good as a dessert topping, spread on toast, or as a filling for tarts and cakes. This recipe works because it uses almost a cup of fresh-squeezed lime juice to create a curd that tastes like limes. Egg yolks and butter create a creamy and thick texture.
Lime Curd Ingredients
The basic recipe for this lime curd consists of four ingredients:
- Fresh Lime Juice
- Lime Zest
- Whole Eggs and Egg Yolks
- Unsalted Butter
- Granulated Sugar
Not shown in this picture is the lime zest. Lime zest is the thin outer skin of the lime and contains the oils that carry the flavor the lime flavor. Use a microplaner to zest the fruit and be careful to only zest the green part not the white bitter pith.
For the best curd, use real fresh limes and not bottled lime juice. You'll need enough limes to get 3/4 cup of juice, which can be 3-5 limes depending on their size and juiciness,
Eggs are used to thicken the curd. The combination of sugar and eggs is needed for thickening and butter makes it extra creamy.
How to Make Tart and Tangy Lime Curd
The first time I made lime curd I made it as the filling for my Coconut Cake with Lime Curd Filling. I was thrilled with how well the lime curd paired with coconut buttercream and coconut cake. It's one of my favorite flavor combinations.
The recipe starts by whisking the egg yolks and sugar together in a 2-quart or 3-quart non-reactive saucepan until the mixture is well blended the sugar starts to dissolve.
TIP FOR SUCCESS
A nonreactive pan is a pan that doesn't react with the food being cooked. Stainless steel and enamel coated cast iron are non-reactive, aluminum and cast iron are reactive. Reactive pans will react with the acid in the juice and change the flavor of the final dish.
Next add the lime juice, egg yolks, and whole eggs, and whisk the ingredients together.
Place the saucepan over medium heat and whisk the curd constantly making sure to cover the entire bottom of the pan. Do not walk away from the curd while you are cooking it or it will burn. If you have to walk away for some reason, remove the pan from the heat.
When the curd has thickened and reached the temperature of 185 degrees F strain it through a fine-mesh strainer to remove any solids (little bits of cooked eggs) so it is extra smooth.
The temperature is listed to ensure that you have cooked the curd enough so it will thicken as it cools. As the curd starts to thicken and steam rises from the surface, check the temperature often. Don't let the curd boil. Boiling curd will cause it to curdle and create a grainy texture.
The directions call for a non-reactive saucepan, which is a pan that will not react with the acid in the limes. Do not use an aluminum pan, use stainless steel. Using an aluminum pan will produce a metallic taste.
Chill the curd immediately to keep bacteria from forming. Cover the surface of the curd with plastic wrap to keep a skin from forming on the surface of the lime curd.
How Long Can Fruit Curd be Refrigerated
The lime curd is good in the refrigerator for 2 weeks and can be frozen for up to one year. If you freeze it, allow it to thaw in the refrigerator about 24 hours before you're ready to use it.
- Use it as a topping for pancakes, waffles, ice cream, yogurt, cheesecake, other cakes and even just plain toast.
- Use it as filling for layer cakes, tarts, crepes or sandwich cookies.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, the lime curd can be frozen for up to a year. Allow it to thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours before you're ready to use.
Unfortunately, if the curd is allowed to boil it will curdle the eggs and make the curd grainy. You can try straining it twice through a fine-mesh strainer, but that not remove all the grainy bits.
Yes. If you are allergic to dairy you can make the curd without butter. It will be a little less creamy, but still taste delicious.
No, you cannot make lime curd without eggs. Eggs are a signature ingredient of fruit curds. Eggs thicken the curd and provide the creamy texture. You can make a lime filling which consists of lime juice, sugar and cornstarch. In this case, the cornstarch is the thickener.
Other Fruit Curd Recipes
For other delicious fruit curds and recipes using fruit curd, check out these recipes on the blog:
- Seville Orange Curd
- Coconut Cake with Lime Curd Filling
- Homemade Lemon Curd
- Blackberry Lemon Curd
- Meyer Lemon Tart
I hope you try the recipe for this luscious lime curd. If you do make it please leave a comment or tag me on Instagram @bakesbybrownsugar. If you're looking for ideas on how to use besides eating it by the spoonful check out my recipe for Meyer Lemon Tart.
- 5 (100 grams) large egg yolks
- 2 (100 grams) large eggs
- 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
- 6 tablespoons (85 grams) unsalted butter room temperature (65-68°F)
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons lime zest
- Place a strainer over a large bowl, near the stove. Use a 2 or 3-quart non-reactive saucepan for this dessert.
- Place the eggs yolks, whole eggs and sugar in the saucepan and whisk until it is well blended. Stir in the lime juice, and salt.
- Cook the mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture is thickened and is 185 degrees F. It should coat the back of wooden spoon and leave a visible trail when you run your finger through it. When the mixture has thickened and reached temperature remove the saucepan from heat and whisk in the butter 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Pour the lime curd into the strainer and press it through the strainer with a spatula. Zest the lime directly into the curd and gently stir the zest into the warm curd.
- Cover the surface of the curd with plastic wrap, gently pressing the plastic wrap onto the surface of the curd. Place the curd in the refrigerator and chill for at least 2 hours.
- The curd is good in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. It can be frozen for up to one year. When ready to use, thaw it in the refrigerator for 24 hours before ready to use.
Katelynn Robinson says
Why is there more butter in the lemon curd than in the lime curd recipe?
Cheryl Norris says
Adding more butter to the lemon curd is a matter of taste. Since the lemon juice is more tart than the lime juice the little bit of extra butter helps smooth out the flavor. The amount of butter can be reduced without changing the flavor too much.
Explosion of flavours!!! Highly recommend!
Cheryl Norris says
Thank you so much for trying this recipe and leaving such a lovely review. I appreciate it.
Lisa Osborn says
I made this curd today for a lime tart with a coconut cookie crust turned out beautiful and no hassle to make
Cheryl Norris says
Thank you so much for visiting the blog and making this recipe. I'm so glad you enjoyed it. That coconut cookie crust sounds amazing. I might try that.
Roger Kocher says
Could I add extra yolks if I need thick curd?
Cheryl Norris says
This recipe makes a pretty thick curd. If you want it thicker I recommend adding one extra egg yolk.