101 CALORIE Lightened Up Lemon Bars means indulging with less guilt! These lemon bars are the perfect dessert and taste so sinful, you won’t believe they’re only 101 calories each or 5 Weight Watchers Smart Points!
Gooey, soft and custard-textured lemon curd bakes on top of a soft and buttery shortbread cookie crust, with HALF the amount of butter compared to most recipes, using a secret weapon I have on hand in my kitchen cupboard for these type of craving emergencies! The perfect ratio of lemon-custard and cookie.
I happily made these four times before getting this right. The perfect amount of lemon with the perfect amount of sugar without adding too many calories. Plus, the perfect amount of butter AND apple sauce for a delicate cookie base that still TASTES like a sinful dessert without being one.
One tip I do have: do not use a granulated sweetener in place of the caster sugar in the lemon filling. The sweetener just creates a ‘layer’ of granules in the middle somewhere, and tastes awful when biting into them. Powdered sweetener works a lot better to cut the calories down even more if you need too, but I have to say that caster sugar (or super fine sugar) works even better and melts right through the curd.
These lemon bars are so easy to make with minimal ingredients! I will plead with you not to alter this recipe if you can help it.
It’s just a matter of baking your cookie base, whisking your lemon filling while the cookie base is in the oven, so you can pour it straight over while the base is still hot.
Then, bake your lemon bars until they are just set and perfectly golden!
Waiting for these to cool down is absolute TORTURE, but so worth it! When cutting through them, the lemon sticks to your knife and you just know these are going to be so deliciously gooey and addictive. So, it’s REALLY convenient that they’re only 101 calories. Believe me.
Dust on powdered sugar (or sweetener) over the top…..
And be prepared for your minds to be blown into a million pieces.
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Weight Watchers Smart Points: 5 per bar
- 4 tablespoons light or reduced fat butter, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened apple sauce
- ¼ cup powdered sugar (or powdered sweetener)
- 1 cup plain | all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch (corn flour)
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 3 extra large eggs
- 1 cup superfine or caster sugar (or powdered sweetener)*
- ⅓ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (from 2-3 lemons)
- 2 level tablespoons plain | all-purpose flour
- 2-3 tablespoons confectioners, powdered or icing sugar (or powdered sweetener)
- Preheat oven to 350°F | 175°C. Line a 8x8-inch pan with baking / parchment paper; set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine together the butter, apple sauce, sugar (or sweetener), flour and cornstarch. Using a fork or your hands, blend ingredients together until sandy in consistency.
- Pour into lined pan and press down evenly to form a base; bake for 20 minutes, or until firm and slightly golden.
- While the base is baking, whisk the filling ingredients until well combined. As soon as the base comes out of the oven, give the filling one more whisk and pour the filling over the base.
- Return to the oven and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes, or until just set.
- Allow to cool for an hour before refrigerating for about 2 hours. Dust with confectioners, powdered or icing sugar (or powdered sweetener).
- Cut into 20 squares and serve.
For lemon bars with the same thickness, bake them in an 8-inch pan. If baking in a 9-inch pan, the layers will be slightly thinner.
Nutritional information is based on the ingredients I have used.
© 2016, Karina. All rights reserved. CAFE DELITES. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to share this recipe, please provide a link back to this post for the original recipe.