Key Lime Bars

Sweet and delicious key lime bars. Just like key lime pie but with a buttery biscuit base. Cut these into squares for a great summer dessert.

To recipe
key lime bars
Recipe insights & TIPS

These key lime bars are baked on top of a buttery crust and taste similar to everyones favorite lemon bars. Make a bunch of these for summer parties and potlucks!

It wasn't until I recently hd a slice of key lime pie, that I remembered how much I missed it. That creamy and tart combination makes any key lime dessert always so good. My key lime bars follow the same steps as lemon bars but I can definitely taste the difference, I think limes are much more tart or maybe it's just the amount of lime zest I added to this recipe. I'm all about the extreme tart taste.

Tips for making these easy key lime bars

  • When you press the pastry into the base of the 9 x 13 inch, make sure to craft a small lip along the sides. This will prevent the filling leaking over the sides and sticking to the pan as it bakes.
  • Use an electric whisk or stand mixer to beat the sugar and eggs together to create as much volume as you can.
  • You'll know the key lime bars are ready if you shake the pan gently and the center no longer jiggles.
  • The bars will firm up as they cool, so let them rest for an hour before slicing them into squares.
  • Line your pan with parchment paper and leave an overhang all around the pan, this will make lifting the slab out of the pan much easier.
  • Use a sharp knife to slice them making sure to clean it after every couple of cuts, otherwise the filling will stick to the knife and become messy.
  • Make sure to zest your limes before juicing them!
a stack of key lime bars on a plate

FAQ's about making key lime bars

Can I freeze my bars? Yes you can, defrost at room temperature for about a 30 minutes.

I can't find key limes, do I have to use them? Actually no. some might say yes but regular limes will work just as easily. If you see key limes, grab them but if not don't worry about it. The main difference being key limes are much smaller and have thinner skin.

Why are my bars not green? Lime juice does not color anything green like some people think. And with four large eggs in the recipe, the color remains more of a yellow.

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Delicious and sweet key lime bars with a buttery crusty base.

20 minutes
Total TIME:
35 minutes
15 minutes


  • 8 ounces unsalted butter at room temperature
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 6 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp lime zest
  • ½ cup fresh squeezed lime juice, from about 6-8 limes

Ingredient Swaps


  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. Spray a 9 ×13 inch baking pan with non stick spray and line with parchment paper making sure the paper hangs over the top of the pan.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer cream the butter, ¾ cup sugar and brown sugar until fluffy, 3-5 minutes.
  4. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  5. Add the flour and mix on low speed until the mixture just comes together to form a dough.
  6. Dump the crust mixture into the prepared pan and use your finger tips to spread it out evenly all over the base of the pan.
  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until slightly browned on top. Set aside.
  8. In the same mixing bowl whisk together eggs and remaining sugar until light and pale, about 3 minutes on high.
  9. Add the flour, lime juice, lime zest. Whisk until completely blended.
  10. Pour the filling mix over the baked crust.
  11. Return to the oven and bake for 20 minutes, until brown around the edges and set in the middle
  12. Cool completely in the pan. Cut into squares and dust with powdered sugar if desired.
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