Grandma Ila Nelson's Lemon Dream Bars

READY IN: 35mins
Recipe by Jennifer Rosholt

This recipe came from Whitefish, Montana and was given to me years ago by a dear friend. It had been passed down from her family for generations. I love the fragrance and flavor of lemons. This is by far the easiest and best tasting lemon bar I have come across. I have made it for bake sales, gifts, and simply to serve, and I always have requests for the recipe.

Top Review by Cindy W.

My copy of this recipe is packed away, so I figured a copy is bound to be on the net. This link came up first, and that gave me a giggle. So did the description of the recipe coming down for generations. A lemon dream bar recipe was developed in the test kitchens of Betty Crocker back in the late 40s or early 50s - my copy of the recipe if a photocopy of the page in the Christmas Cookie book printed by BC when my mother was a young bride. Dream bars track back a bit further and feture a mixture of finely chopped walnuts or pecans with the coconut. The folks at BC developed the lemon variant - and thereby geave us all lemon bar perfection. For indeed, these are the best of all lemon bars. Trust me on this, if you have enjoyed these, and if you enjoy nuts, next time you make the bars reduce the coconut to 1 1/4 cups and add 1 cup finely chpped nuts.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. For Crust: In medium sized bowl, stir together flour and powdered sugar.
  2. Cut in butter with pastry blender or the tines of two forks. Press into greased 10x15x1 pan. Bake in 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes.
  3. For Filling: Beat together eggs, lemon juice, zest and juice of fresh lemon, flour, sugar, baking powder and coconut. Mix well and pour over hot crust. Return pan to oven and bake uncovered for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely on wire rack.
  4. For Frosting: Beat together butter, lemon juice, vanilla and powdered sugar. Spread over filling when cool.
  5. Cut into bars & serve. Store covered.

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