Lemon and lime, their scent just says spring, doesn’t it? There are few things I love more than lemons and limes. I squeeze lemon juice in fruit, salads, soups, you name it. When I was pregnant with my second one, I would suck on lemons all day to get rid of morning sickness, that’s how much I love them LOL!
When it comes to lemon desserts, you guessed it, I absolutely love a tangy key lime pie, or a tart lemon square. These squares are so fantastic! Lemon AND lime perfectly combined with the freshness of basil. The perfect spring dessert. Best of all? So easy to make!
One of the most fun things about this recipe is all the little gadgets and cooking tools I got to use! I loooove to have little gadgets for the kitchen. They make me happy, and sometimes they are not essential but they are cool to have!
These are all the cooking tools I used to make these squares:
How I made these delicious Lemon Lime and Basil Squares:
Let’s start with the crust:
Line a baking mold with parchment paper and spray with nonstick spray for extra precaution. I like to cut the paper so it’s like 5 inches wider on each side of the baking mold.
Then I cut a corner directly parallel and horizontally to each corner of the baking pan. It will look like flaps almost.
After that, I fold the “flaps”into the center square and place the square right at the bottom of the baking mold.
Unfold the flaps and fold over each side of the mold. It should fit in nice and clean.
Tip! Watch the video at the bottom to see exactly how I did it.
Crunch up the graham crackers into a large food processor on in a large ziplock bag. Pulse the crackers until they are finely crushed, like breadcrumbs if you will.
Add the melted butter through the feeding tube of the food processor and combine. Add a pinch of salt and combine once more.
Tip! Because the crackers are so finely crushed, the butter will help bind the crust together.
Pour the graham cracker mixture into the bottom of the baking mold lined with the parchment paper.
Using the back of a measuring cup, start leveling the graham crackers and packing them into the bottom of the pan. Make sure that the graham crackers are nicely packed in the corners and spread out evenly.
The filling of the Lemon Lime Basil Squares:
Zest the lemons and limes. Chop the zest finely along with the basil leaves. Set the mixture aside.
I particularly love using this zester for thicker zest strings:
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and the yolk together.
Add the two cans of condensed milk and combine well.
Add the juice of one lemon and the juice of one lime. Whisk the juices in well.
Lastly, add the zest and basil mixture and once more, mix in well.
Pour the filling mixture on to the packed crust. Make sure the corners are covered with the filling.
Bake in a 350° oven for 30 minutes. The center will be firm and the sides will be a bit golden and a bit puffed up.
Let the squares cool completely and then transfer to the refrigerator to cool and firm up for at least 2 hours.
When completely cold, grab the parchment paper by the overlapping flaps and pull out of the mold.
Cut into even squares. This tool helps mark where to cut the squares so they are all even. It’s a game changer my friends!
Use a knife to follow the lines marked by the wheel divider.
Tip! Run your knife though warm water in between cuts to help keep it clean.
Tip! I like to cut the edges off just off of the sides so that all squares look the same.
Serve cold. Enjoy!
- 9×9 baking mold
- Food processor
- bar zester/peeler
- Wheel adjustable dough divider
- 15 whole graham crackers 1 1/2 packs
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1 pinch salt
- 2 14 oz cans condensed milk
- 2 whole extra large eggs
- 1 extra large egg yolk
- 2 lemons zested and the juice of 1
- 2 limes zested and the juice of 1
- 6 medium size basil leaves
For the crust:
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- In a large food processor, crunch up the graham crakers into large chunks.
- Pulse the crackers until they are almost pulverized, like breadcrumbs.
- Add the melted butter. Combine.
- Add a pinch of salt and mix in.
- Line a baking dish with parchement paper and spray nonstick spray to it.
- Pour the graham cracker mixture on to the bottom of the baking dish.
- Spread the crackers evenly on to the bottom of the baking dish and pack the mixture evenly with the bottom of a measuring cup.
- Set aside.
For the filling:
- Zest all lemons and limes.
- Finely chop the basil leaves and the lemon and lime zests.
- Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and the egg yolk.
- Add both cans of condensed milk and combine well.
- Add the juice of 1 lemon and 1 lime.
- Whisk in well.
- Add the lemon, lime, basil mixture into the condensed milk mixture.
- Mix in well.
- Pour the filling mixture onto the crust.
- Make sure all corners are covered evenly.
- Bake the dessert for 30 minutes.
- Let cool completely and then refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- Cut into squares and serve cold.