These raspberry lemon bars have a creamy, honey-sweetened filling and a buttery 100% whole grain crust! Can also be made with all-purpose flour.
I can’t get over it. These raspberry lemon bars are ridiculously delicious!
Nobody will have a clue that they’re made a little healthier – and loads healthier than some other raspberry lemonade bars that call for Jell-o.
I don’t think I can ever go back to boring old lemon bars. These are so creamy and that crust… it’s not a normal crust. It’s a buttery cookie crust.
I’m not normally into crusts, because they’re usually pretty bland, but this one I could eat plain. All that sugar does wonders. :)
I’d been trying to come up with my own honey sweetened lemon bars recipe since January when I was experiencing some winter denial.
They were all catastrophic disasters. It was a sad situation and much honey was sacrificed.
So when I saw this recipe from Food Doodles the other day, I pounced. If you prefer a lemon version, she also has a honey sweetened lemon bar recipe!
I could never use fresh raspberries in something baked like this. They’re just too precious. And expensive! So if you can find them frozen at a decent price, grab some and make these raspberry bars!
And I realize it’s really hot in some areas but these bars are really worth it. Just do your baking in the morning, let them chill until lunch, and then you can feast on these when it starts to warm up. That’s a brilliant plan, yes? :)
This recipe also halves wonderfully. Use a 9″x5″ loaf pan and bake the crust for 15 minutes and then the filling for 20 minutes. Having these bars just sitting in the fridge, calling my name, was a bit like torture so it’s a good thing I only made half.
Raspberry Lemon Bars (100% Whole Grain and Honey Sweetened)
- Prep Time:
- Cook Time:
- Ready in:
- Yield: 16 bars
- 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup raw sugar or granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons (141 grams) whole wheat pastry flour or all-purpose flour
- 4 large eggs
- 1/4 cup (31 grams) white whole wheat or whole wheat pastry flour or all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (160 grams) honey
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest
- 1/2 cup (120 milliliters) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- scant 1 cup (240 milliliters) raspberry juice and pulp (from approximately 2-2 1/2 cups frozen berries)
Raspberry lemon filling:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
- Line an 8"×8" pan with parchment paper or spray the pan with cooking spray.
- In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add the vanilla, lemon zest, salt and 1/2 cup of the flour. Mix well and then add in the rest of the flour.
- Continue beating until well combined (it's okay if it's crumbly).
- Press onto the bottom of the pan and bake for 15 - 17 minutes until it just starts to brown around the edges.
- Remove the pan from the oven and let cool while preparing the raspberry lemon filling.
- Thaw raspberries and then puree them in a food processor or immersion blender.
- Press the raspberries through a food mill or a small sieve. Try to remove most of the seeds.
- Measure out 1 cup of puree (slightly less than 1 cup is also okay). Set this aside.
- Place the eggs and flour in a large bowl and whisk until no lumps remain. Be sure to get out all the lumps now because it will be difficult later!
- If your honey is solid, gently warm it in the microwave so that it's pourable. Add the honey to the egg and flour mixture and stir.
- Add the lemon zest and lemon juice and whisk until well combined.
- Stir in the raspberry puree and mix until thoroughly combined.
- Pour the raspberry mixture over the crust and bake for 28-30 minutes in the 350 degree oven. The filling should be mostly set, but the middle might jiggle a little. It will continue to set while cooling.
- Cool the bars completely and then place in the refrigerator to chill for another 2 hours before cutting.
- Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Adapted from Whole Grain Honey Sweetened Raspberry Lemonade Bars – Food Doodles
62 comments on “Raspberry Lemon Bars (100% whole grain)” — Add one!
Okie dokie. Here is my autoimmune food sensitivity recipe for these bars:
For the cookie crust:
– 1/2 cup of mashed avocado
– 1/4 cup of raw orange blossom honey
– 1 tsp pure orange extract
– 1 tbsp of fresh lemon zest
– 1/8 tsp sea salt
– 1 cup + 2 tbsp of Trader Joe’s Gluten Free All Purpose Flour. Now, I’ve chosen Trader Joe’s because I’ve had so much success with it in the past. It gives gluten-free desserts a moist, fluffy, and yummy texture, and contains the most agreeable ingredients of any that I’ve found. Trader Joe’s is not sponsoring me, but I am endorsing their flour. :)
For the raspberry-lemon filling:
– 1/4 cup of ground chia seeds blended with 3/4 cup of water
– 1/4 cup of Trader Joe’s Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour
– 1/2 cup of honey (preferably orange blossom because it’s sweet and contains antibacterial properties)
– 2 tbsp of fresh lemon zest
– 1/2 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
– 1 cup of raspberry juice & pulp from approx 2 – 2.5 cups of frozen berries
1. Begin thawing frozen raspberries.
2. Preheat the oven to 325*F (160*C)
3. Line an 8”x8” pan with parchment paper or spray the pan with cooking spray
1. Mash 1/2 cup of avocado
2. In medium bowl, mix mashed avocado with 1/4 cup of raw orange blossom honey
3. Add the 1tsp of orange extract, 1 tbsp of lemon zest, 1/8 tsp of salt, & 1/2 cup of the flour.
4. Mix well, using a fork and then use your [clean] hands to massage it until it begins to feel like squishy playdough.
5. Add in the rest of the flour. (1/2 cup + 2 tbsp)
6. Continue stirring and massaging until well combined. It’s okay if it’s crumbly.
7. Press onto the bottom of the pan and bake for 20-22 minutes until it starts to brown around the edges.
8. While crust is cooking, begin preparing the filling (if you are doing everything manually, by hand, such as the puree & zesting, you’ll need an early start).
9. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool completely before adding the filling.
10. Increase oven temperature to 350*F (175*C).
1. Puree thawed raspberries in a food processor or immersion blender. I used a vitamix with the tamping attachment on the lowest possible setting and it only took about 15 seconds.
2. Press raspberry puree through small sieve (or a food mill). Try to avoid getting the seeds into the puree. We want the smoothest finish we can create. *If you don’t mind the seeds, put the leftover/remaining fiber+seeds into a glass tupperware to store in your fridge to add as a topping to this dessert or to spread on your pancakes, or anything you like! Raspberry seeds are high in ellagic acid which is super beneficial for fighting cancer and eliminating tumors.
3. Measure out 1 scant cup of puree.
4. Grind 1/4 cup of chia seeds in small grinder.
5. Blend the ground chia seeds with 3/4 cup of water.
6. Add the chia+water mixture to a large bowl along with 1/4 cup of Trader Joe’s Gluten Free flour.
7. Whisk until no lumps remain! A fork works just fine, and if you’re in the mood to use your hands again, that can also help get everything mixed together.
8. Add 1/2 cup of honey and stir however you like until totally blended.
9. Make 2 tbsp of lemon zest & 1/2 cup of lemon juice! If you have small appliances that can help with this, then, great! But if you’re doing it by hand, I’d recommend getting started on this early.
10. Add the zest + juice to the rest of our mix until well combined.
11. Stir in the raspberry puree and mix until thoroughly combined.
12. Pour everything over the crust (after you’re certain it’s no longer warm) and bake for 28-30 minutes in the 350*F oven.
13. After this, it should be mostly set, but the middle might jiggle a little, but that’s okay! It will continue to set while cooling.
14. Cool the squares completely and then place in the refrigerator to chill for another 2 hours before cutting.
15. Add leftover raspberry fiber+seeds as a topping if desired.
16. Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
NOTE: These would taste amazing with a layer of chocolate on the bottom or sandwiched in the middle. If you are a baker and can come up with a recipe that could make this happen, I say, do it! Otherwise, you could just as easily add chocolate syrup afterwards. :)
Wow! Thank you so much for sharing your healthier version. I can’t wait to try this! The crust sounds really interesting. I’ve never made an avocado-based crust before! And how awesome that you were able to make these egg-free. I’m sure your post will make the egg-free readers very happy! Did they come out looking like the ones in the pictures or do they look a little different? I’m just curious. Thanks again for taking all that time to share your version with us! It looks wonderful. And that’s great that it worked out the first time. :) I normally take very many attempts to get the recipe right when changing so many things.
They look a little different. For one, because I used an 8″x11″ pan, so they’re slightly thinner, but the color is a little different, too. Is there a way I can attach a picture? Or send you one? I took a fancy one yesterday. :)
I’d love to see it! There’s no way to upload it here but if you have a chance, you could send it to me at email@example.com. Thanks! :)
I love these bars so much, I’ve made them a few times now. I have some guests coming soon and some of them are Celiacs. Do you have a GF crust recommendation that I could use with this filling?
And I forgot to mention that I have used arrowroot for the filling and it worked.
I’m so happy that you enjoyed them! I haven’t tried this raspberry filling with this crust but I think this lemon bars crust would work. Another commenter tried making this raspberry bar recipe with almond flour in the filling for a GF version and it didn’t work out well so I’ll let her know about the arrowroot for the filling. Thanks so much! Did you use 1/4 cup? Thanks a ton for your feedback. :)
Yes I just used 1/4 cup and it worked great! Thanks for your suggestion, I will try that out!
Great! Thanks so much and good luck with the other crust. :)
Kristen, I don’t know if it has posted, yet, but if you’ll return to the comments, I have added a gluten-free recipe that was adjusted from this one. :)
This recipe is to a tee!! Thank you so much! My tarts ended up absolutely scrumptious on my first try!
So happy that it came out well for you! Thanks for the feedback. :)
These look so mouth-watering! I can just taste them looking at the pictures….
There’s just one thing that bothers me, which is discarding the seeds. I had a hunch they were probably super-healthy, just as so many other fruit seeds are (e.g. grape seeds), so I did a quick search and found this on Livestrong:
“Raspberry seeds contain antioxidant-like phytonutrients including ellagitannins and anthocyanins that may help fight cancer, viruses, inflammation and a number of other conditions.”
Maybe it would be okay to leave these in and just have a slight “crunchiness”? ;)
Thanks, Chris. :) It’d definitely be okay to leave the seeds in! I think I tried making these with the seeds the first time but the crunchiness was just too much for me. But maybe that’s just because I don’t really like little crunchy things in my food. ;) I hope you’ll enjoy the bars if you decide to try them!
I’m not a baker, by any stretch, but I followed this recipe with replacements due to a health issue. Avocado for butter, chia for egg, orange extract for vanilla extract, gluten-free flour for regular, etc. I have been searching *everywhere* online to try and figure out what to do with the leftover fiber/seeds of the raspberries. They’re way too nutritious to toss. So I decided to try adding it as a topping to one of the bars. AND IT WAS AMAZING!! Also – have you considered putting a layer of dark chocolate in between the cookie crumble & raspberry filling (or even as a bottom layer)? I think it would compliment the flavor nicely. :)
Hi there! Thanks a bunch for your comments. :) I haven’t tried putting a layer of chocolate in these bars. It sounds interesting, though! I’m so happy that your allergy-friendly recipe came out well. And I love your idea of using the raspberry seeds!
I have a bunch of fresh raspberries. Do you have any idea how to substitute them for the frozen?
Use the same amount of fresh raspberries. Hope you’ll like the bars! :)
I am kind of ashamed to admit I have never made lemon bars before. They are on my to do list, but haven’t made it to the top yet. Now I think they have officially been replaced with these – love the raspberry idea!
You so have to make these instead! So much better than a normal lemon bar. I really can’t get these out of my head.
These are beyond gorgeous, Erin! What a vibrant color! And healthy too? I have no excuse not to make them asap :)
Indeed! So how’d you like them? ;)
Love this raspberry and lemon combination!
Thanks, Kathryn! :)
Erin, these bars are gorgeous. I love the vibrant red color. Yum!
Isn’t it crazy?! Sooo pink and pretty. :)
These lemon bars are beautiful! I may just have to break down and turn the oven on!
Do it, do it! You won’t be disappointed. :)
These look amazing Erin! I love the fact that they’re packed full of real fruit and honey. Gorgeous combination, vibrant colours… makes me happy just looking at them! And your photography is great! x
Aww, thanks Laura! That’s how I feel too. How can you not be happy looking and eating these?! They’re so… cheery! :)
These look great Erin! I love making my favorite baked goods a little more healthy ;)
And you do a great job of it! :)
Raspberries and lemons are two of my favourite ingredients! These bars look like heaven…sheer bliss. :D
Mhmm! Very accurate comment this is. :)
Okay Erin, you’ve just taken lemon bars to a whole new level! I would never have thought to add raspberries but I LOVE it!
You have to try them! Or you know what would be great?! With blackberries! I think it was you who went blackberry picking. If not – ignore me. ;)
These are beautiful – raspberry is one of my favourite flavours and I love finding recipes that call for frozen ones, since I can get those very affordably here :)
Same here! I just can’t use fresh raspberries in something like this, even if I get them cheaply. The fresh ones have to be eaten fresh. :)
Oh my gosh, these sound wonderful. I can’t imagine anything better on a hot summer’s day! (Obviously, having someone else make them for me would be best, but making them myself is a close second.)
Oh! Agreed. It’d be the best when the husband could make them, right?! :D
I came upon this recipe today and made these bars with black raspberries from our garden and they are absolutely DIVINE! Thank you for a creative, more nutritious version of the classic lemon bar. Now let’s see how long they last :)
Black raspberries?! I’d never heard of that until now. I looked it up and I bet that made some amazing looking bars. A surprise for anyone who bit into one, for sure. And now you have me craving black raspberries. ;) Thanks so much for the rating and your feedback! Good luck on making these last. :)
Erin these bars are so bright and cheery and I love raspberries and lemon together. I would be in trouble too with a whole batch of these.
Thank you, Suzanne! And although these are trouble, I can’t wait to make them again. I think I need to have a party. Just so I have a reason to make them!
Oh I adore the color of the filling! It’s so pretty and summery :)
Thanks, Becca! :) And yes. These are like a burst of summer. But only more awesome. :D
Loving the fruity side of this dessert. I have yet to get in the kitchen and bake with this heat in Spain but I will for sure be pinning this to make in the near future when the hot temperatures get to be more manageable :-)
No baking at all?! Well, I guess you do have much better stuff to do. I hope you’re enjoying Spain! :)
Erin – these bars are simply dreamy! I adore raspberries and lemon and in a bar cookie all together, now that is perfection! Pinning now!
Thanks, Lisa! And dreamy is right. I should have added that to the description. ;)
These look delightful. I have to make these today! My dear hubby loves raspberries and I love lemon. It’s a win win for us.
Thank you, Janet! I really hope that you and your husband will enjoy them. Happy baking and let me know how they come out. :)
Hello Erin! Just wanted to stop by & say how much I love your blog & recipes! I have been following along for a while now & always look forward to seeing your posts.
These bars look amazing! I have some raspberries in the freezer & lemons on the tree just waiting to come together like this. Can’t wait to try them!
Thanks for sharing!! :)
Oh, what a nice comment, Jodie! Thank you so much. :) And a lemon tree?! Oh, man. That’s a dream of mine. Thanks for saying hi and I hope that you’ll get a chance to make these. If you do, let me know how they come out! Happy baking. :)
These bars are so, so pretty! I’d love one (ok 3, if I’m being honest ;)).
I think 3 is a reasonable number. The two of us ate them all within 24 hours. ;)
Wow, Erin, your bars look beautiful. I could not decide if I should eat it or keep looking. Beautiful picture.
Thank you, Marta! And funny you say that about the picture. I’m feeling really frustrated with my photography skills. I’m thinking about taking a class or something. :(
Looooove that these are honey sweetened! I’m all over these bars!
these look so amazing!! I LOVE raspberies and I think i’ll have to pick up some extra next time i’m at the store just for this ;)
Yay! That’s the spirit. Now go put it on your list so you don’t forget. ;)