Creamy Vegan Lemon Bars (GF)

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Squares of our incredible gluten-free vegan lemon bars recipe

Lemon bars.

So elusive.
So tricky.
So very not vegan (or gluten-free)…until now.

Blender with ingredients for making our creamy homemade vegan lemon bars

Friends, vegan lemon bars (!!!) made with just 10 ingredients, naturally sweetened, and gluten-free! I know, I’m excited, too.

The almond-oat crust is adapted from my Peanut Butter and Jelly Snack Bars, and somehow ends up tasting reminiscent of graham cracker crust! It’s my new favorite thing, besides this über creamy filling.

Pouring vegan lemon bar filling over gluten-free crust for our lemon bars recipe

The filling is comprised of soaked cashews, coconut cream, lots of lemon juice + zest, maple syrup, arrowroot starch (for thickening), and sea salt. That’s it!

I didn’t know what would happen if I blended it all up and baked it, but it turns out, it ends up tasting like a lemon bar with a cheesecake-like texture. SWOON!

Wood platter with squares of our gluten-free vegan lemon bars recipe
Board of homemade gluten-free vegan lemon bars sprinkled with powdered sugar

Friends, you’re going to LOVE these bars! They’re:

Creamy
Rich
Lemony
Not too sweet
Simple
Surprisingly healthy
Portable
& Delicious

These would make the perfect dessert for so many things: Bridal showers (I know), baby showers (I know!), study dates (yass girl), office gatherings (the least exciting, but still really cool). Even if you don’t have anywhere special to be, these would make a delicious treat to have around the house for snacking (but watch out – you’ll want 2 or 3).

If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment it, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a picture #minimalistbaker on Instagram! I’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends! Now excuse me while I dive into one of these magical bars.

Stack of healthy lemon bars for the perfect creamy gluten-free vegan dessert

Creamy Vegan Lemon Bars

Creamy, naturally sweetened vegan lemon bars made with 10 simple ingredients and a delicious gluten-free crust.
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Batch of Creamy Vegan Lemon Bars topped with lemon slices and powdered sugar
4.74 from 246 votes
Prep Time 5 hours
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 5 hours 45 minutes
Servings 9 (bars)
Course Dessert
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 2-4 Days

Ingredients

FILLING

  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 cup coconut cream* (the hardened portion at the top of full-fat coconut milk)
  • 2 Tbsp arrowroot or cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice (2 large lemons yield ~1/2 cup or 120 ml)
  • 1 heaping Tbsp lemon zest (1 large lemon yields ~1 heaping Tbsp or 4 g)
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup (plus more to taste)
  • 2 Tbsp organic powdered sugar (optional // for topping)

CRUST

  • 1 cup gluten-free oats
  • 1 cup raw almonds
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 4-5 Tbsp coconut oil (melted)

Instructions

  • Add raw cashews to a mixing bowl and cover with boiling hot water. Let rest for 1 hour (uncovered). Then drain thoroughly.
  • In the meantime, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C) and line an 8×8 inch baking dish with parchment paper.
  • Add oats, almonds, sea salt, and coconut sugar to a high speed blender and mix on high until a fine meal is achieved.
  • Transfer to a medium mixing bowl and add maple syrup and melted coconut oil, starting with lesser end of range (4 Tbsp or 60 g as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) and adding more if it’s too dry. Stir with a spoon to combine until a loose dough is formed. You should be able to squeeze the mixture between two fingers and form a dough instead of it crumbling. If too dry, add a bit more melted coconut oil.
  • Transfer mixture to parchment-lined baking pan and spread evenly. Then place parchment paper on top and use a flat-bottomed object, such as a drinking glass, to press down firmly until it’s evenly distributed and well packed.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, then increase heat to 375 F (190 C) and bake for 5-8 minutes more, or until the edges are golden brown and there is some browning on the surface. Remove from oven to cool slightly, then reduce oven heat to 350 degrees F (176 C).
  • Once cashews are soaked and drained, add to a high speed blender with coconut cream, arrowroot starch, lemon juice, lemon zest, sea salt, and maple syrup. Mix on high until very creamy and smooth.
  • Taste and adjust flavor as needed. I added a bit more lemon zest and maple syrup. It should be very lemony, and not overly sweet.
  • Pour filling over the pre-baked crust and spread into an even layer. Tap on counter to remove any air bubbles.
  • Bake for 20-23 minutes or until the edges look very slightly dry and the center appears “jiggly” but not liquidy.
  • Let rest for 10 minutes, then transfer to refrigerator to let cool completely (uncovered) – at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
  • To serve, slice and sift with powdered sugar (optional). Store leftovers in the refrigerator, covered, up to 4 days, though best within the first 2 days.

Video

Notes

*If you open your can of coconut milk or cream and the cream is not separated from the liquid, that’s ok! Just try and tip out as much of the rich, firm white part and leave the liquid behind. It’s not crucial that it’s entirely cream. But the more cream, the richer the bars will be!
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without organic powdered sugar.
*Crust adapted from my Peanut Butter and Jelly Snack Bars.

Nutrition (1 of 9 servings)

Serving: 1 bars Calories: 326 Carbohydrates: 24.3 g Protein: 5.9 g Fat: 24.6 g Saturated Fat: 13.7 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 61 mg Fiber: 3.3 g Sugar: 11.4 g

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    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We haven’t tried this recipe without oats, but other readers have had success substituting almond flour for them! Hope this helps. xo

  1. Erin says

    I thought I had followed the recipe exactly, but 15 minutes into the baking I realized I had left out the arrowroot/cornstarch. I feared it would remain a tasty but gloppy mess. No, it firmed up just fine after a night in the fridge! I kept them chilled until just before serving–I didn’t want to take my chances letting them come to room temperature. Everyone, of all dietary preferences, LOVED them. I don’t care for powdered sugar as a topping, and with the pale color they looked a bit “naked”, so I think next time I’ll make extra crust to crumble over the top, along with some extra zest.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Thanks for the wonderful review, Erin. We’re so glad this was a success and that everyone enjoyed!

  2. Rachael says

    These bars are amazing! My entire family love them. I didn’t have almonds so used walnuts and sunflower seeds for yhr crust, other than that followed recipe exactly. Will make again and again ! Thank you

  3. Carmen Tullius says

    These lemon bars were absolutely divine! The crust was the best and the creamy lemon topping – yummy! I wanted to freeze, but you did not have any recommendations beyond the eat within two days or first four days!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoyed them, Carmen. Thanks so much for the lovely review! These do keep in the freezer for up to one month! Hope this helps.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you and your boyfriend enjoyed them, Crystal. Thanks so much for the lovely review! xo

  4. GM says

    I discovered that “Thai Kitchen” brand coconut milk had the nice layer of cream on top of liquid. “Caribbean Rhythms” coconut milk was thoroughly blended, so no layer of cream on top. Made it for my grand-daughter’s birthday tea party.

  5. Christa says

    Delicious! Just made this tonight. I’ve been in a rut with dessert, eating the same things, mainly chocolate. I had bought a bag of lemons and wanted a lemony dessert. And this was it. And again, so good!!

  6. Baylee says

    I have miyokos cream cheese that is about to go bad, can i replace the cashews with the cream cheese? if so, how much do you think I should replace with?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Baylee! We haven’t tried that so we cannot guarantee results, but we think it might be good. More of a “cheesecake” vibe, yum! We think ~3/4-1 cup of cream cheese would be worth trying. Let us know how it goes!

  7. Lyuba says

    These bars are amazing! I’ve made them twice already for my sister who can’t eat eggs or dairy, and she said it’s the best vegan dessert she’s ever had. I make a different crust though, because I prefer a more shortbread-like one.
    Recommendations:
    – You can usually find Arroy-D brand coconut cream in Asian grocery stores (or well-stocked other stores), so you don’t have so much of the coconut milk liquid left over.
    – I highly recommend making candied lemon peel for the topping, it takes these bars next level.
    I have a big bag of oranges to use up so I’m going to try and orange variation on these and report back.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, we’re SO glad you and your sister both enjoy them! Thank you for sharing, Lyuba! Excited to hear how the orange variation goes =)

  8. Julie says

    I want to make this recipe, but I hate the taste of coconut. I know I can substitute vegan butter and another sugar in the crust. Is there anything i can substitute for the coconut creme in the lemon layer?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Julie! The coconut is pretty essential for the right texture here. You could possibly increase the cashews by ~1/2 cup and use a bit of water, maybe 1/2 cup, to blend the filling, but we haven’t tried it and cannot guarantee results.

    • Pam S says

      Julie, I have a very sensitive pallet and I could not taste coconut in this recipe. When I told my daughter and son-in-law what the ingredients were, they were surprised. It honestly tasted like a lightly lemon flavored cheesecake.

  9. Pam S. says

    I made this for my adult daughter’s birthday, she can’t eat dairy but loves cheesecake. I thought this would be a great option as a substitute, and she and her husband loved it! I didn’t make any modifications at all…it was perfect as written! I put it in a round 8” Pampered Chef pan and it came out of the pan nicely and looked pretty sliced in wedges. She had some fresh strawberries that we sliced on top…tasted very good with the light lemon flavor! Thanks once again for your awesome recipes, I haven’t found one yet that I haven’t liked! I can’t have gluten or dairy and love how many options you provide.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Sounds SO lovely! Thanks so much for the great review, Pam. So glad you enjoy our recipes!

  10. Loren Gebo says

    Do these freeze well? Also planning on making them for Easter, but we are traveling, so I was hoping to make them ahead of time.

  11. Stephanie says

    I want to make these for Easter, I’m wondering about how many cans of coconut milk I need to buy to equal 1 cup’s worth of coconut cream* (the hardened portion at the top of full-fat coconut milk)

  12. Rochelle Adam says

    Hi, I’m looking forward to making this recipe for our Passover seder dessert (with an all almond crust). It sounds wonderful and the reviews are great. Can I use almonds instead of cashews because of allergies to cashews?
    Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Rochelle, almonds unfortunately won’t get creamy like cashews. The next best option would be macadamia nuts, but they won’t get quite as smooth. Hope that helps!

    • Dassi M says

      Hi Rochelle! I also want to make these for Passover. What’s your method for an almond crust? Do you just do 2 C of almonds instead of 1 C of oats and 1 C almonds? Please advise. Thank you!!!

  13. Chantelle says

    Hi there, Ive made these a couple of times and absolutely love it!
    I was wondering if there’s an alternative for the oats as a base? Unfortunately I’ve realized that I have a bad reaction to it.

    Look forward to hearing from you!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Chantelle, another reader mentioned subbing almond flour with success! Otherwise, perhaps quinoa flakes, but you may need to compensate with a little more sweetener since oats have a slightly sweet flavor and quinoa flakes are more bland. Hope that helps!

  14. AB says

    Thanks for this recipe! I’ve made this three times now, and in my opinion, the filling-to-crust ratio is off — there’s a little too much crust. for others, I recommend making about 75% the recommended crust, or 30% more filling (ish). Also, these aren’t gooey – but they are very creamy and nice while chilled. I added a little vanilla, and more zest and maple syrup. Do not overbake, *do* heed the instructions about taking them out when the edges start to look dry. I overbaked them once and they were very chewy – oops. I want to try a gooey recipe next! These would probably be great with whipped cream on top. Also, one of the times I made them, I just used the whole can of coconut milk, watery bits and all, and it was fine.

    • andy says

      Nice alternative to the sugar bomb that is a traditional lemon bar. We made a handful of modifications with mixed results:

      – mac nuts in place of cashews (due to a cashew sensitivity). It worked, but I didn’t care for how strong the mac nut flavor was. Cashews preferred.
      – added an additional lemon’s worth of juice, with extra starch to compensate for the liquid. Honestly, I could have gone for even more lemon.
      – extra 2 tbsp maple syrup. I think a full 1/4 cup extra would have been welcome.
      – just a little turmeric to help produce a yellow color.
      – we used a shortbread crust with wheat flour.

      The bars set nicely and had good texture and flavor. Almost hits the spot if you’re craving a lemon bar, without having to eat a ton of processed sugar.

        • andy says

          For sure! Thanks for the recipe. One other note – instead of buying cans of coconut milk, we found the small (~5oz) cans of coconut cream at Natural Grocers. 2 of these yielded almost exactly a cup of cream with just a little bit of liquid left over.

  15. Susan K. says

    I start craving these when I haven’t had them for a couple of months. After going mostly vegan, one of the strongest cravings I had was for lemon bars. I didn’t think it was possible to make vegan ones. Not so! This recipe is just as good as the “real” thing! Thank you!

  16. Dre says

    Easy to follow recipe! I think it definitely needs more lemon and/or citrus zest. I followed the recipe exactly and after baking, it was beige in color and not appetizing looking for my guests. IMO non-vegan lemon bars are far superior but this is an okay alternative – Just needs some tweaks to the recipe. I subbed some walnuts for almonds in the crust which turned out nice!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for sharing your experience, Dre. Did you happen to make any other modifications besides the walnuts?

  17. Britt says

    I made this but realized after starting that I was missing a few ingredients. Here’s my subs:
    Tapioca flour instead of arrowroot (used 2TBS)
    Pecans, almonds, and walnuts in the crust. The walnuts were pretty oily so I used half the amount of coconut oil.
    Limes instead of lemons! Same amount of juice.
    So good! As someone else commented it is a little jelly like instead of creamy, but very delicious.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! Thanks so much for the review and for sharing your modifications, Britt. So glad you enjoyed!

  18. Hilary says

    I made these for some vegan friends and they were just ok. It would be more accurate to describe them as lemon cheesecake-ish adjacent. Blended them to the death and still didn’t love the texture…just a personal preference.

    For a vegan option, they’re a fine dessert, but they taste nothing like actual lemon bars. The texture and punch of traditional lemon curd is what makes a lemon bar and these don’t have that.

    I think for next time, I’ll try a vegan lemon curd from another website, but pour it over this crust and top with a little powdered sugar.

    The search for vegan lemon bars is indeed elusive…and still ongoing!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Sorry to hear you didn’t love this recipe, Hilary. We so appreciate you sharing your honest experience! Did you happen to make any modifications to the recipe?

  19. Nicole B says

    Hi! Does this call for raw almonds? It mentions raw cashews but then doesn’t mention raw for the almonds. Thanks!

  20. Rachel Keng says

    I made these lemon bars for my sister’s birthday, and they were amazing! I followed the recipe as written. My can of full-fat coconut milk only yielded about 3/4 cup of cream. Using ~1/4 cup of liquid did not negatively impact the creaminess of the bars. These were perfect, and I will make again!

  21. Julie says

    It is important to use a coconut milk that does not contain emulsifiers. The emulsifier prevents the coconut water from separating from the coconut fat and therefore you cannot skim off the coconut “cream”.
    Buy coconut milk that is only coconut milk and water.
    Excellent lemon bars!

  22. Megan says

    Wow!! These came out perfectly. I subbed walnuts for almonds due to an almond allergy and it worked great. So delicious and rich!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Susana! We haven’t tried making this crust with soaked dates, but we think it might work! Let us know how it goes if you give it a try! xo

  23. Meg says

    I made these last night for my mom’s birthday and they are so lemony and creamy and delicious! They were easy to make and everyone loved them!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! We love to hear this. Thanks for the lovely review, Meg, we’re so glad everyone enjoyed! xo

  24. Anjali says

    This was yummy, not the usual eggy heavy lemon bar.!I couldn’t get enough from cream from the coconut cream can so I did add a bit of potato starch in there. I didn’t love that, but if I had to do it again I would just put more coconut cream. Loved it and my guests loved it too. Ooh and I doubled the zest.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you and your guests enjoyed them, Anjali! Thank you so much for sharing! xo

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We don’t think the lemon bars taste too coconutty, but there is definitely a hint of coconut flavor. Let us what you think if you give them a try! xo

  25. Emily says

    Oh my gosh. DELICIOUS! I doubled the recipe and prepared it in a 9×13. I extended the second baking time by about 8 minutes to accommodate the extra filling. The bars were devoured at the omnivore party I took them to. Will *definitely* be making these again. My picky kids even loved them.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Awesome! Thanks for the lovely review and sharing your experience, Emily. We’re so glad everyone enjoyed them! xo

  26. Anina says

    Absolutely delicious!
    I made the recipe as it was, it’s just the perfect summer treat.
    I decided to put them in the freezer and took one out at a time. Just letting it thaw for a few minutes.

  27. Mikayla says

    I LOVE these lemon bars. I’ve made them twice now and they are always a hit. I call them lemon cheesecake bars because that is what the texture reminds me of. Each time I replaced the almonds for pecans in the crust. Amazing!!!

  28. Marcel says

    I made this recipe with a couple modifications and it is AMAZING! I used regular brown cane sugar instead of coconut sugar and agave syrup instead of maple syrup, same quantity as suggested. I did use lime but I will try with lemons to experience the difference.

    I also used a smaller container so both my layers where thick giving it a cheesecake-like feeling.

    These are BY FAR the best lemon bars I’ve tried. I cut it in small sample squares for my coworkers and some of them are willing to even buy. Recommended 100%!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! We’re so glad you and your coworkers enjoyed them! Thank you for the lovely review, Marcel! xo

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jen, Yes! Keep for up to one month in the freezer, and thaw fully in the refrigerator before enjoying. xo

  29. Jen says

    I’ve made these before and they are delicious and really lemony. I want to make it into a cheesecake. Can I just double the recipe and bake a bit longer? I won’t to make it into a birthday cake for my Mum as she loves them!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jen, That could work! We probably wouldn’t increase the first bake time (for the crust) because it might burn, but once the filling is in there, a little extra time should be okay. Let us know how it goes!

      • Jen says

        This was great! I wasn’t sure how it would hold up in the middle as a proper cheesecake until it was actually cut but everybody loved it! Both carnivores and vegans. I made an extra third of the base (omitting the coconut oil) as for some reason it was looking too wet 🤷🏻‍♀️.

        I made twice the filling mixture and baked it for about 35 minutes but I did turn down the oven towards the end as it was beginning to brown.

        I wanted to top with a passionfruit agar agar jelly but in the end time and waning creativity made me leave it naked.

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Thanks so much for the update, Jen! We’re so glad to hear it turned out well. That passionfruit idea sounds incredible by the way! xoxo

  30. Clare says

    These. Are. Phenomenal.

    I did add extra lemon juice and zest but otherwise followed the recipe exactly and they are so delicious.

  31. Paula says

    I love all your recipes but so sad about this one I think the crust baking time should be less, my entire crust burn and I followed the directions to the letter. it was too much to raise the temp to 375 and I baked for 5 mins and just burned it, then baking again with the filling.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so sorry that happened, Paula! Is it possible you were using a larger pan? That can cause the crust to be too thin and burn. We only ask because so many other readers have had success with this one!

  32. Dawn says

    I made these lemon bars for mothers day and they were absolutely wonderful. I substituted almond flour for the oats 1:1 to make them even lower carb and grain free and the results were excellent. Like another post, I cut them into 16 bars which I found totally satisfying. Such a great recipe, I will definitely be making them again and again.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, yay! We’re so glad they turned out well. Thanks for the lovely review and for sharing your modifications, Dawn! xo

  33. Tam says

    Has anyone made this with dates? I think the sweetness would be a good substitute for even the maple syrup… Looks like great recipe.. must try!!!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Tam, we think that could work for the crust, especially if you opt for a no-bake version like this one. But for the filling, we don’t think it would get creamy enough. Hope that helps!

  34. Jill Parker says

    I need a sub on cashews and it cannot be tofu either.

    I have made this recipe many times but this time cannot use cashews nor can I use any tofu as suggested. Would extra coconut cream work, would that be overwhelming? I also have super creamy oat milk. Could that work or would it not set well? Ugh I am at a loss and have not time. Taking this on a trip.
    Jill

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jill, the next best option would be macadamia nuts, but they won’t get quite as smooth. We think extra coconut cream might make it too runny, unless it’s very thick. Hope this reaches you in time!

  35. Sue Adrianza says

    Hi! I would love to make this but my daughter is allergic to cashews and peanuts, what would be a good substitute?

  36. Liv says

    Is there anything I could yous instead of coconut cream? I’m quite allergic and although these look lovely I’m not prepared to die for them 😂.

    Liv x

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Liv, For the coconut cream, you can sub in homemade almond milk that’s thicker than your usual batch (use less water). You can also add in a little olive oil to make up for the fat lost from the coconut. It won’t be the same, but that should help! Let us know if you give it a try.

  37. Cami says

    Loved these so much that I want to use this crust everywhere else I’ve been using graham cracker crumbs! I had to make one change based on what I had on hand (greek yogurt for the coconut cream) and added one more lemon’s with of juice and zest in the end. A few drops of natural food coloring got me closer to a classic lemon bar color. I found the kcal in the nutritional info for 1 of 9 bars a little off-putting but an 8×8 pan makes, IMO, 16 good size bars. Completely hit the spot for a summer dessert — and my partner, who doesn’t like traditional lemon bar texture, loved them too. Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! We’re so glad you both enjoyed them. Thanks for sharing, Cami! xo

  38. Josie says

    These bars are delicious! They taste like 40% lemon meringue and 60% cheesecake and it is incredible. The only bad thing is that I want to make them all the time and then eat the whole lot at once right away. >_<

  39. Jen S. says

    These bars are incredible! The recipe is simple, healthy, and by far the best cheesecake alternative I’ve ever made. This tops my list of WOW recipes to make for potlucks, special treats, and making plant-based vegan look sexy to the doubters and haters out there. When life hands you lemons, just make these lemon bars…

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! We’re so glad you enjoyed this recipe, Jen. Thanks so much for the lovely review! xo

  40. Nikki says

    This recipe is fantastic!! I used a mix of walnuts and almonds for the crust and blended in some vanilla extract to the filling. I also topped it with toasted coconut – delicious!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoyed it, Nikki! Thanks so much for the lovely review and for sharing your modifications! xo

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi there! You could try walnuts or pecans, but we’d suggest reducing the oil since they naturally have more fat in them.

  41. Brittany H says

    I’ve made these twice now and they’re amazing! I served them to group of people and they had fun guessing what they were made of. Most said “graham cracker crust” and “cream cheese filling”. They were shocked when I disclosed the true recipe :)
    Thanks for creating such a wonderful recipe!

  42. Daniela says

    These were really quite extraordinary. Pretty simple ingredients and didn’t take up very much time. I did add more zest and juice and a little turmeric powder for color. So good!

  43. Holly says

    Absolutely love these! I’ve tried making them a couple times in the past, but I didn’t have a blender and tried using a food processor for the filling. It sort of worked if I strained the cashew bits out (I think I used So Delicious Coco Whip once instead of coconut cream), but now that I have a NutriBullet Select it’s a game-changer! I soaked the cashews in cool water for 6 hours and it did the trick to make the filling so smooth and silky. To the filling I added some extra zest of 1 lemon and juice from 1/2 a lemon, and 1 tbsp extra maple syrup. For the crust, I actually used your recipe from your 7 layer bars – I find the dates/maple syrup combo help it stick together well. My bars baked in the oven for an extra 10 minutes to get to the “jiggly” consistency. These bars truly melted in your mouth! The filling was perfectly set and the crust held together well that you could pick them up like bars. The next day, the filling was a little firmer but still soft, like cheesecake. So delicious and an amazing recipe with wholesome ingredients!

  44. Brenda Wallick says

    I plan on making this recipe soon but I am confused. It states that the prep time is 5 hours. I see the cashews need to soak an hour, but I don’t see anything that would take 5 hours. Can you help me with this?

    Thanks!

  45. Kiawna says

    **For the lemon lovers who like the extra zing in all lemony recipes: I think I found the perfect proportion! I added the juice AND all the zest of three large lemons, and it satisfied my tang-seeking palate :) **

    These are truly a treat! I can’t stop opening the fridge to munch on them some more….for breakfast, snack, dessert—they satisfy at any time of day. We love that they are not overly sweet and pack just the right among of tang. Added a bit of ground turmeric too and they came out a nice yellow color. No more non-vegan lemon bar cravings!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Tammy, we like freezing it in ice cube trays for adding to smoothies. You can find more inspiration by searching by ingredient (coconut milk) in our recipe index. Hope that’s helpful!

  46. Michelle says

    Not sure if others had this issue, but for me I found that after the 15 min at 350 F for the crust, my crust was done! I put it in for an extra 3 min at 375 F just to watch it and see if it needed more time, but it got a little burned at the edges.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Michelle, thanks for sharing your experience! Is it possible you were using a larger pan or the crust was thinner for some reason?

      • Jillian says

        These were delicious! Love the fresh lemony zing. The recipe was easy to follow and came out beautifully. I placed my can of coconut milk in the fridge overnight to help solidify the coconut cream and I ended up with the exact measurement needed when I made them today. Love the idea of trying another citrus like lime that someone else suggested or even grapefruit :)

  47. Robyn Estabrook says

    These are delicious and not overly sweet. They are very satisfying in flavor but not very lemony in looks.

    I am wondering if it would be alright to freeze the bars?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you enjoyed them! Yes, you can freeze them. Another reader mentioned adding a tiny bit of ground turmeric for enhanced color. Let us know if you try it!

  48. Lisa says

    I love this recipe. I’ve made this as the lemon bars. But I have also used it to make a key lime pie. I just used a pie dish, no parchment. And added enough lime zest and juice for the zing we like.
    Wonderful recipe! :D

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Elise, We haven’t tried it, but quinoa flakes might work. You may need to compensate with a little more sweetener since oats have a slightly sweet flavor.

  49. Leah says

    These are next level 😍 next time I’ll double the lemon and maybe add a lime for a different kick. Otherwise they were perfect, better than non vegan lemon bars!

  50. Emanuela says

    Interesting recipe!! I made a few changes: oatmilk instead of coconut cream, applesauce for coconut oil and 1/3 of the almond grounds for protein powder. I had to add also more cashews and cornstarch to make it creamier but it was still quite liquid. I was worried it wouldn’t have worked but it actually firmed up in the oven really well!! I also added more lemon juice and the taste was perfect. Maybe not my favourite recipe here (the healthier changes come at a price!!), but I really enjoyed these bars :)

  51. Margarte says

    I love this recipe! It came out perfectly the first time making it! Have you ever tried limes? I bet it would be delish too.

  52. Mary says

    The was absolutely delicious!!! Super easy and super tasty! I really do recommend everyone try this recipe (I added a bit more lemon and some tumeric for color)
    Great recipe, I‘ve already sent it to my friends! :)

  53. Kristy says

    Made exactly as described, and as always with these recipes, it came out great! Perfect for my gluten free son and vegan husband! Ooh, there was one addition that I made… I wanted them a bit more yellow, so I added maybe 1/4 tsp of turmeric. Didn’t affect the flavor, but they are a beautiful yellow now ❤️

  54. Adele says

    I enjoyed these lemon squares. I will be making them again soon. I followed recipe given. Next time I will add more lemon juice and peel as I love lemon!

  55. Korynn says

    So incredibly good!! I made a few modifications: half pecans/half almonds, vanilla, vegan becel instead of coconut oil, and a bit of shredded coconut in the base, then extra vanilla and maple syrup in the top. Served them slightly frozen (oops, left them out in the Canadian winter too long), and they were a hit with the whole family! Even my brother who only likes things that include whiskey and steak thought they were amazing.

  56. Chealsy says

    Everyone hated it. My mom was disgusted and my dad said it was mediocre. I thought it was ok. And my family made me cry because the said it was bad and I spent 2 hours making this

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Chealsy, we’re so sorry to hear that. This recipe is a fan favorite, so we’re wondering if something went wrong? Would you mind sharing what they disliked- flavor, texture? We’d love to help troubleshoot, if possible.

  57. Karly says

    These were disappointing to me. They were good but not amazing (and usually MB recipes are amazing). I would describe these more as a lemon cheesecake bar. I wish they were 3x as lemon-y, and that’s after increasing the lemon juice and doubling the zest after an initial taste of the filling. The amounts were a bit off to me; it took me an entire bag of Trader Joe’s (small) lemons to get the 1/2c juice, and my full-fat can of coconut milk from Trader Joe’s only yielded half a cup of coconut cream. The crust, however, was amazing. I would make them again with adjusted expectations of what they are and way more lemon.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Karly, thanks for the feedback! We’re sorry to hear it didn’t turn out as expected, but glad you enjoyed the crust. We aren’t fans of Trader Joe’s canned coconut milk. It tends to be oily and not have much coconut cream. We wonder if that could be part of the issue. As for the amount of lemon juice in lemons, it will depend on size and growing conditions. Some are more dried out than others and we find Trader Joe’s produce can be a bit hit or miss!

  58. Helen says

    I really enjoyed these bars, and they were pretty quick and simple to make. My only downfall was the crust- it was delicious, but super crumbly for me. The filling holds its shape when I pick up a bar, but the crust fell all over the place. I didn’t think about this in advance, but the filling tastes a lot like lemon cheesecake filling! Yum.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Sounds like it just needed a bit more moisture – a little more maple or coconut oil would’ve helped bind better!

  59. Yvonne says

    Very delicious! I did have trouble getting the fine meal texture described for the crust with my Vitamix. Part of the mixture was about to turn into almond butter, so I decided to just proceed with the recipe with no further blending.The crust was still very good, but with some larger chunks of almond. I am curious…have you tried this with a food processor? Alternatively, would it be possible to just use pre-ground almond meal and blitz the oats separately?
    On another note, I thought the lemon/sugar balance was lovely. Reminded me of a lemony cheesecake bar.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, it should work in the food processor but we do find it gets slightly finer in the blender! Thanks for sharing – glad you enjoyed these, Yvonne!

      • Colleen says

        These were delicious!!! As the directions stated, I needed to add more lemon juice and a tad more maple syrup to the mix. I added about 1/2 cup more lemon juice than the directions called for in addition to a large pinch extra of zest. I prefer the bars to be extra lemony so that they are almost like a lemonade cheesecake bar.
        Thanks for the recipe and I will be looking through all your recipes that are healthy-er. 😋

        • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

          Thanks so much for sharing your experience, Colleen. We are so glad you enjoyed them! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  60. Ken says

    Hi, How many cans of coconut creme does it take to make 1 cup? And do you have any recipes that use the liquid remains? Thanks a lot, this recipe looks great!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Ken, it depends on the brand, but it should only take 1 can. Maybe buy 2 just in case! The remaining liquid can be used in smoothies (or frozen in an ice cube tray for later use). Hope that helps!

  61. Katie says

    I made this with limes, amazing! I make this with Meyer lemons only usually, so much better than with regular lemons, but using limes pushes it over the top. Kind of a crazy question but I love love love this crust, so I’m wondering if you have any musings on how to use it as the crust for a kind of “pumpkin pie square” type dessert? Seems like the cashew amount or the coconut cream amount (or both) would need to be reduced and pumpkin puree substituted in (also pumpkin pie spice added in of course)? Maybe maple syrup also reduced? Seems like I already have a head-start…

  62. Ash Paul says

    I have a corn allergy, which makes dairy free and gf pretty difficult, and LOVE lemon bars. have you tried this recipe using psyllium husk or ground flaxseed? Or even flour?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Ash, can you use arrowroot starch? That would be our top recommendation! Otherwise, maybe flour? But we haven’t tried it!

  63. Jessica says

    Amazing recipe for a bar that tastes exactly like cheesecake, or even better. Definitely a go-to for impressing all my non-vegan friends. The cashews turn out so creamy and rich. The crust is to die for and complements the filling so well. I can second adding more zest and lemon juice if you like extra tang. Weirdly, sometimes the filling seems to curdle for me, which makes it look like mixing wet concrete. It still tastes absolutely amazing, just not as pretty. I wonder if this has something to do with over-blending?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jessica, we’re so glad you and your friends enjoy them! Yes, that could happen with over-blending.

  64. Reni says

    I have come to really trust the Minimalist Baker and know that even if I’m trying a recipe here for the first time it will be great.
    No exception here. These bars were so easy to make. I made them on Sunday and now it is Thursday and I have to say, they are every bit as delicious today and the texture is still excellent. The bar is creamy and the crust is still a little crunchy (I used ghee). I also froze a small piece to see how it freezes and it thawed perfectly. Even gluten and dairy loving people would love this!

  65. Elaine Bellew says

    Absolutely delicious. Couldn’t wait for it to cool down for 4 hours. It’s like an Italian lemon torte.

  66. Andie says

    Sooo delicious! I LOVE lemon so I knew I had to make this. The recipe is perfect and I don’t feel guilty after eating 3 squares…ahem, I mean 1 square ;) I added extra lemon zest just because I like them super zesty.
    Thank you for this new addition to my favorites!

  67. Diana says

    Hello dana may i know 1 cup of almonds equals how much almond meal ? And same goes for oats cuz i have them all ground up but dont know how to measure .. thanks

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Diana, we’re not sure on exact amounts, but probably just slightly less than 1 cup each.

  68. Advita Nergis Karan says

    It was easy to make and turned out delicious. Next time I would put more lemon zest.
    Thank you for the recipe.

  69. Kimberley says

    These were amazing and very easy to put together!
    I made them for dessert for a friend who is very allergic to dairy and he was so excited he hadn’t had a lemon bar in years.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  70. Riane says

    I doubled the lemon zest in this recipe hoping for extra lemony flavour.. and even with double, and I was disappointed that they still came out with a very mild lemon taste. The bars themselves have a great cheesecakey texture and are delicious, but it just wasn’t exactly what I hoped for. I was concerned about upping the lemon juice and having the filling be too liquidy. How much lemon juice could be added next time without affecting the texture of the bar?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Riane! So these aren’t AS potent as your typical lemon bar that’s basically all lemon juice, egg yolks, and a starch. The cashews and sweetener definitely dilute the flavor a bit. But you could try upping the lemon juice next time as long as you add a bit more starch to help it thicken as it bakes. Let us know if you try!