Lemon Brownies are dessert bars that are dense and moist with a lemony flavor and topped with a simple glaze. If you love lemon desserts, be sure to try my Strawberry Lemon Blondies and Lemon Bars.

Lemon Brownies

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 sweet glaze that pairs perfectly with the lemon flavor.

Lemon Brownies from Overhead with Vanilla Glaze

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 make sure that they are at room temperature. Add the eggs 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.

Spreading Lemon Brownie Batter Into Pan

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, 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.

Stack of Lemon Brownies on Plate

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 for a beautiful presentation. However, if you don’t care about how the brownies look, you can add the glaze to warm brownies, 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 base 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!

Close up of Lemon Brownies

Looking for More Lemony Desserts?

Lemon Loaf

Lemon Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

Easy Lemon Mousse

Ooey Gooey Lemon Cookies

4.67 from 9 votes

Lemon Brownies

Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Lemon Brownies are dessert bars that are dense and moist with a lemony flavor and topped with a sweet glaze.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks or 226g) unsalted butter, melted
  • cups (350g) light brown sugar, packed
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • cups (285g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

Glaze (Optional)

  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water, or lemon juice (if want more lemon flavor)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare a 9x9-inch pan by lining it with parchment paper (or lightly grease and flour). (You could use a 9x13-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 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 35-45 minutes, or until the edges are turning golden brown. (If you are using a 9x13-inch pan, bake for 25-30 minutes.)
  • Allow brownies to cool before glazing.

Glaze

  • In a medium bowl, combine the confectioners' sugar and water and whisk until smooth.
  • Pour the glaze over the cooled brownies and serve.

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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

    1. I haven’t. But if you do the brownies will be thinner and the cooking time will be less.

  1. Just wanted to know if you can freeze the lemon brownies with a good result?

    Since there is only 2 of us we like to freeze deserts for a later date, I don’t like baking something and then throwing most of it away

  2. So delicious!!! They came out perfect!!!. For more of a lemony flavor I did use lemon juice in the glaze. Will definitely be making again.

  3. Thieve turned out horrible. Despite following the recipe exactly, it had a dense, playdoh like consistency and the taste wasn’t any better.

    1. Hi Kristin- So sorry you experienced that. Sounds like they were underbaked. Every oven is different and unfortunately, I can’t account for hot spots or different temps. However, the taste is something I can guarantee, as it was approved by over a dozen diverse taste testers. Maybe there was an ingredient off?

  4. In your directions for Lemon brownies you say to add the eggs and the egg yolk, but you don’t have an egg yolk in the ingredients. Is there actually an extra egg yolk?

    Enjoy your recipes so much.

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