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Gingersnap Mini Lemon Curd Tarts

Buttery smooth lemon curd in a gingersnap crust makes an elegant dessert that is perfect for holiday entertaining.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4


  • 1 cup gingersnap cookie crumbs
  • 10 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick + 2 1/2 tablespoons)
  • 4 ounces fresh lemon juice + zest of the lemons from about 2 large or 4 small lemons, (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Melt 2 1/2 tablespoons of the butter. (Set aside the remaining stick/8 tablespoons, keeping it cold.)
  3. Mix the melted butter and the gingersnap crumbs, until they are well combined into a buttery mixture. Put 1/4 cup of the mixture into each of the four mini tart or tartlet pans (or ramekins if you don't have the tart-shaped pans.) Press it down firmly against the bottom and sides of each pan. Bake them on a cookie sheet for 8 minutes, then cool the shells to room temperature. If the bottoms have puffed up or the sides have shrunk down a bit during the baking, press them back into shape.
  4. Combine the lemon juice, lemon rind, sugar and eggs in a heavy saucepan. Bring them to a boil under medium heat, whisking constantly. Once they come to a boil, lower the heat slightly and continue to boil the mixture, whisking constantly, for one minute.
  5. Take the saucepan off the heat and pour the mixture into a blender or deep container if using an immersion blender.
  6. One tablespoon at a time, add the stick of cold butter, blending after each addition.
  7. Pour the mixture into a non-reactive bowl (Pyrex or similar heatproof glass bowl), then let the mixture cool down to room temperature or just barely. Cover it tightly with plastic wrap, making sure that the wrap is pressed against the top of the mixture. Refrigerate for at least several hours, until the lemon curd in well chilled.
  8. Spoon the lemon curd into the mini tart or tartlet pans and smooth it out. I use a bit of candied ginger in the middle of each mini tart/tartlet, but that's not necessary.

Recipe Notes

When zesting the lemons, use a fine grater or zester and go only as far as the outside yellow rind. Do not deeper to the white pith inside the lemon, as that is bitter.
If you're careful, you could use a spoon instead of a whisk to stir the lemon curd, but a whisk is preferable. Keep whisking constantly as the mixture heats (this is no time to check your phone for messages) or or you'll get scrambled eggs.
The total time listed above does not include the chilling time for the curd - it keeps well in a covered container or jar, so you can make the ingredients a day ahead and fill the mini tarts at the last minute.