There’s nothing easier than a simple, zesty homemade vegan lemon curd. Delicious as a dessert topping, or spread, this buttery, yet dairy-free lemon curd is sweet, with a tart, sour lemon flavor.
I have shared my famous vegan custard recipe in the past, but nothing is better than a curd. Since I was preparing a vegan lemon meringue pie, I thought I should also share this easy vegan lemon curd recipe with you.
Traditionally, lemon curd is not vegan as it contains eggs and butter. But, it’s easy to make vegan lemon curd, compared to vegan custard, which is higher in liquid and slightly thinner than custard, with a bold, tart, and sour lemon taste.
However, you can easily add more thickener to turn this curd into vegan lemon custard.
Why You Will Love This Vegan Lemon Curd Recipe
- Rich, bold, tart lemon flavor
- Quick and easy to make in 5 minutes
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Fresh Lemon Juice – It is the best to enhance the curd’s sour, tart lemon flavor. Bottled lemon juice is often less potent. Fresh lime juice works as well to make lime curd.
- Plant-Based Milk – You can use any non-dairy milk. I use almond milk for this curd. It’s a blend and won’t add any flavor to the curd compared to soy milk or coconut milk
- Cornstarch is the thickener in egg-free desserts. Arrowroot starch works as well but the texture is not as thick and jiggly, it’s rubbery.
- Granulated Sugar or unrefined sugar, but if you use a darker sugar, the curd won’t have the same vibrant yellow color. You can use allulose as a sugar-free sweetener to cut down on carbohydrates.
- Vegan Yellow Food Coloring, turmeric, or both. Depending on how much you like color in your food, you may want to use natural yellow food coloring, liquid, or paste that works the same. Turmeric on its own won’t add a strong yellow tone.
- Vegan Butter – This adds a buttery texture to the curd. It’s optional, but it creates a bold, rich texture that mimics regular lemon curd so well. You can also choose to use full-fat coconut cream for the recipe to add a bold, buttery texture and avoid plant-based butter. But watch oil. This adds a strong coconut flavor to the curd. Coconut oil works, but it does add a coconut flavor to the curd.
- Lemon Zest grated from a fresh, organic lemon.
- Salt to enhance the flavors overall
Making Vegan Lemon Curd
- In a non-stick saucepan whish cornstarch, sugar, and salt.
- Whisk in lemon juice, plant-based milk of choice, and food coloring. Bring the small saucepan over medium-high heat, whisk constantly, and bring to a light boil. Immediately reduce to low, medium heat, switch to a silicon spatula, stir, and cook for 4-5 minutes or until the vegan curd thickens and looks glossy.
- Remove from the heat and stir in lemon zest and vegan butter.
- Stir to melt the butter until the texture turns buttery and shiny. Transfer to a glass container or glass bowl to gently cool it to room temperature before bringing it to the fridge.
Expert Tips To Make Egg-Free Lemon Curd
- Don’t whisk the hot curd. Switch from a whisk to a wooden spoon or silicon spatula as soon as the liquid has boiled. This prevents from adding air and forming bubbles all over the curd. Stir in an 8 shape to prevent the curd from sticking to the pan’s bottom and gently thickening.
- Add vegan butter. Don’t skip this part for a bold, rich, buttery vegan curd.
- Don’t swap cornstarch for arrowroot powder. The texture will be terrible. You must use cornstarch as a thickener.
- Add more cornstarch for pies or filling desserts. This curd is thickening in the fridge, but if you like your curd thicker and avoid a runny vegan lemon pie filling, increase the cornstarch by two tablespoons.
- Be patient. The curd thickens after 3 hours in the refrigerator.
Serving Lemon Curd For Breakfast
Lemon curd is a dessert topping that is also perfect for breakfast as a rich, thick, fruity, jam-like spread. Add this on top or as a filling to:
It’s a must to serve as a side to
- Toast like a slice of my Vegan Gluten-Free Bread
- Vegan English Muffins
- Vegan Scones
- Vegan Blueberry Scones
- Vegan Pancakes
- Vegan Crepes
- Vegan Waffles
Lemon Curd For Dessert
The best way to use lemon curd for your vegan dessert is to:
- Fill a pre-baked vegan pie crust and make a lemon pie.
- Stuff puff pastry to make Danish pastries.
- Fill choux pastry and make vegan eclairs.
- Fill almond flour thumbprint cookies, instead of jam.
- Frost any cakes to make a vegan lemon cake for example.
- Drizzle on top of ice cream
- Stir in plain yogurt for flavor
More Creamy Vegan Desserts
Did You Like This Recipe?
Vegan Lemon Curd
- Add sugar, salt, and cornstarch in a non-stick saucepan – use 6 tablespoons for a lightly thick curd and 8 tablespoons for a firmer texture closer to custard. Whisk well to combine.
- Whisk in lemon juice, plant-based milk of choice, and turmeric.
- Bring the saucepan to medium-high heat and whisk constantly and gently, until a light boil forms. Reduce to medium heat, switch to a silicone spatula, stir, and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the mixture thickens, bubbles form on the sides of the pan, and it looks glossy.
- Remove from heat and whisk in vegan butter and lemon zest.
- Transfer the lemon curd to a glass jar, cool down at room temperature for an hour, then store it in the fridge for up to 4 days.