strawberry lemonade bars


One of the best parts of summer are the long and lingering days. I’ve been walking (or attempting to run) most evenings after dinner, timing my workouts to coincide with fiery sunsets (confession time: my iPod shuffle is filled with The Black Eyed Peas and Michael Jackson; here’s hoping no one ever judges me based on my workout playlist!). Upon returning home, I cool my feet in the pool and refuel with a slice of watermelon and a strawberry lemonade bar.

Strawberry Lemonade Bars | Tutti Dolci

These bars are the cousin to my Meyer lemon-brown butter bars. Here, the impossibly rich brown butter crust is topped by a strawberry lemonade filling (think sweet summer strawberries kissed with tangy Meyer lemon).

Now it’s your turn to confess: what’s on your workout playlist?

Strawberry Lemonade Bars | Tutti Dolci

Strawberry Lemonade Bars | Tutti Dolci

Strawberry Lemonade Bars
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup flour
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups strawberries, hulled and halved
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp Meyer lemon zest (zest of 2 lemons)
3 Tbsp fresh Meyer lemon juice
3 Tbsp flour
pinch of salt
Powdered sugar, for dusting

Cook butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly until it foams, turns clear, and then turns a deep brown, about 6 minutes. Pour browned butter into a glass bowl and chill in the freezer until solid, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F and line an 8-inch baking dish with parchment paper. Whisk together flour, powdered sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Dice solidified brown butter into 1/2-inch pieces; sprinkle over flour mixture and use a pastry cutter to cut in evenly until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add dough to prepared baking dish; use a piece of parchment to press dough into an even layer. Bake for 23 minutes, until crust is lightly golden.

Meanwhile, prepare filling. Place strawberries in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until strawberries are broken down into a sauce. Remove from heat; strain sauce through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl and discard solids (yield should be 1/4 to 1/3 cup). Cool slightly.

Lightly whisk eggs in a medium bowl. Whisk in sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, cooled strawberry sauce, flour, and salt until smooth. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F and slowly pour filling over hot crust; return dish to oven and bake until filling is firm, about 25 minutes. Cool completely in dish on wire rack, then cover and place in the refrigerator until chilled.

Carefully lift parchment to remove bars from dish and place on a cutting board; cut into squares using a sharp knife and dust with powdered sugar just before serving. Store leftover bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days.

Yield – 12 bars
Calories – 178 (per bar)
Carbs – 23

  1. These are beautiful bars – what a pretty shade of peachy-pink!
    My workout playlist, which, btw, isn’t used very often, is a smorgasbord of artists including Bob Marley, Bon Jovi, Gorillaz, and maybe Katy Perry. Maybe.

  2. I adore the pairing of summer strawberries and Meyer lemons! And the spectacular pink filling is enchanting! I must exercise first thing in the morning or I find a millon reasons not to. When I walk or swim I prefer quiet!

  3. Oh so luscious, Laura! A perfect summer dessert! When I feel like I’m fizzling in my routine, I need a song to pump me up and make me laugh at the same time. My music can be as retro as my baking…and Super Freak usually fits the bill! Ha! : )

  4. You and brown butter desserts… I’m easy sold by you guys. 😉 These bars look so good. My kids are strawberry monsters so I can see them happy face. Now they are so hooked on brown butter (not just me!) that they request “brown butter” desserts. I guess we cannot go back anymore. 🙂 Hope I can make this later this summer.

  5. Love everything about these bars! I have to confess to not having a playlist…
    But I do like country western music so that would be on mine 😉

  6. I love listening to the Black Eyed Peas when I’m walking or running. There’s also Maroon 5 and Coldplay and Train. 🙂 The only thing I’m missing from the picture are these gorgeous bars! I’d love to come home to these after a workout!

  7. These are so pretty and indeed remind me of summer, which is long gone from here. Today is so cold and it’s raining outside. I can’t imagine cooling off in the pool. But congratulations on your running/walking routine.

  8. What a great variation on lemon bars. I love the combination of strawberries and lemons. Love the brown butter idea as well. Great post!

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