Carolyne Kauser-AbbottDessertPies & TartsProvencal RecipesTaste

This Delicious Lemon Tart is a French Classic

Author, chef, and journalist Susan Herrmann Loomis shares her recipe (below) for a delicious lemon tart. One of the recipes in her cookbook Plat du Jour: French Dinners Made Easy, this French classic tarte au citron is the perfect balance of sweet and sour. The recipe is straightforward, and the sweet result will convince a non-dessert lover to try a bite.

In addition to publishing 14 best-selling books, Susan Herrmann Loomis founded the Dancing Tomatoes website, where you can read more about this talented lady. Based in Paris, with 20 years of teaching experience, Loomis offers live cooking classes via video link and a collection of traditional six four-course menus in the Plat du Jour video archive.

The wonderful thing about a lemon tart for dessert is that it perfectly suits every season, from spring to winter. When the citrus is fresh in late fall and early winter, this recipe is a bright finish to any menu.

Lemon Tart French Classic

Classic and Amazing Lemon Tart

Susan Herrmann Loomis
A tasteful tart made with fresh lemon that is perfect for sharing!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 day 35 minutes
2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 55 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 8 people



For the Pastry:

  • 1-1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 tsp Fine Sea Salt
  • 7 tbsp Unsalted Butter chilled, cut into 7 pieces
  • 1/3-1/2 cup Chilled Water

For the Lemon Cream:

  • 7 tbsp Unsalted Butter
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice from 3 large lemons
  • 2 tsp Lemon Zest just the yellow part of the peel of one lemon, minced



  • To make the pastry, place the flour and the salt in the work bowl of a food processor and process to mix. Add the butter and process until the mixture looks like coarse cornmeal. With the food processor running, drizzle in the water and process just until the mixture comes together, but not until it forms a ball. The pastry should be quite damp. Turn it out onto a work surface, form it into a flat disk, cover and let sit for 1 hour. Roll it out to fit a 10-1/2 inch (26.5cm) tart pan, refrigerate for 1 hour, or freeze for 20 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C).
  • Prick the bottom of the pastry with the tines of a fork, then line it with aluminium foil and weigh it down with pastry weights. Bake in the centre of the oven until the pastry is golden around the edges and bottom, roughly 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, remove the aluminium foil and the weights from the pastry and return to the oven to bake until the pastry is golden (all over about 10 additional minutes. Remove the pastry from the oven and let cool.

Lemon Cream:

  • To make the lemon cream, place the butter and the sugar in a double boiler set over medium heat, so the water is gently boiling, and stir until the butter melts. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking well after each addition, so they are thoroughly blended into the butter and sugar. Add the lemon juice, whisk and cook, stirring gently, until the mixture thickens, about 6 to 7 minutes. Remove the double boiler from the heat, remove the lemon cream container from the double boiler, and let it cool to room temperature. Finally, stir in the lemon zest. If you have made this the night before, transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate.
  • If you have made this the day you’re planning to serve it, spread the pastry with the lemon mixture and refrigerate for at least 2 and up to 3 hours before serving it.
Keyword French Desserts, Lemon, Tarts
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Take a Dancing Tomatoes Pastry Class

Additional Tarts to Try:

Classic French Lemon Tart
There are three (3) steps to prepare this lemon tart: make the dough, prepare the filling, and bake. The recipe (below) is the beginner's version of a quick and easy filling that will satisfy everyone in your family.
Check out this recipe
Homemade French Lemon Tart Desserts
French Apple Tart
This dessert is lovely and "light"-ish with a crisp crust and sweet baked apples. Serve at room temperature, if you can wait that long.
Check out this recipe
Classic French Apple Tart
Lemon Meringue Tart
There's nothing better than a classic lemon meringue tart. With tart citrus and sugary, creamy meringue, these small bites of heaven are sure to impress (if you don't eat them all yourself!).
Check out this recipe
Lemon Meringue Tart Recipe
Pear Frangipane Tart
This pear tart is an excellent choice if you're looking for a delicately tart to add to a pastry table or serve with your afternoon tea. It's light, flaky, and the perfect accompaniment for a steaming hot pot of Earl Grey.
Check out this recipe
pear frangipane tart
Fig and Buttermilk Custard Tart 
The recipe makes a 1-10 inch tart, which should serve 6-8 people.
Check out this recipe
Fig Buttermilk Tart


Please share this with friends and family.

All rights reserved. Perfectly Provence articles and other content may not be published, broadcast, rewritten (including translations into other languages) or redistributed without written permission. For usage information, please contact us.
Syndication Information
Affiliate Information
As an Amazon Associate, this website earns from qualifying purchases. Some recipes, posts and pages may have affiliate links. If you purchase via these links, we receive a small commission that does not impact your price. Thank you in advance for supporting our work to maintain Perfectly Provence.
Previous post

Mont Ventoux a Protected Biosphere for Cyclists and Wine Lovers

Next post

Touch of Provence Liquid Soaps from Rose et Marius

Carolyne Kauser-Abbott

Carolyne Kauser-Abbott

With her camera and laptop close at hand, Carolyne has traded in her business suits for the world of freelance writing and blogging. Her first airplane ride at six months of age was her introduction to the exciting world of travel.

While in Provence, Carolyne can be found hiking with friends, riding the hills around the Alpilles or tackling Mont Ventoux. Her attachment to the region resonates in Perfectly Provence this digital magazine that she launched in 2014. This website is an opportunity to explore the best of the Mediterranean lifestyle (food & wine, places to stay, expat stories, books on the region, travel tips, real estate tips and more), through our contributors' articles.

Carolyne writes a food and travel blog Ginger and Nutmeg. Carolyne’s freelance articles can be found in Global Living Magazine, Avenue Magazine and City Palate (Published Travel Articles).

No Comment

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.