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+ servings

Lemon Cream Cheese Tart with Coconut Cookie Crust

Servings 12 servings
Author Si Foster, A Bountiful Kitchen


lemon curd:

  • 4 tablespoons butter softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • zest from 2 lemons
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice see notes, you may need bottled lemon juice to =1/2 cup

cookie crust:

  • 3 cups crushed cookies such as coconut cookies, lemon cookies, or graham crackers- measure after cookies are crushed
  • 4 tablespoons butter melted
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

cream cheese filling:

  • 2- 8 oz packages cream cheese room temperature or microwaved for about 15 seconds
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract

for topping:

  • fresh berries whipped cream optional


Make the lemon curd:

  1. Beat 4 tablespoons soft butter in a 2-3 quart microwave-safe bowl with 1 cup sugar until smooth.
  2. Add two eggs, beat until blended. Remove zest from lemon and juice the lemons. Add lemon juice and zest to butter mixture (mixture may look curdled) whisk all ingredients together.
  3. Microwave the mixture on high for one minute, stir with a whisk. Repeat 5 times for a total of 5 minutes, whisking after each minute. Remove from microwave and whisk again. If the mixture is not thick, continue to microwave at 30 second intervals, whisking after each until mixture is thick and smooth. This usually takes an additional minute. Scrape the curd in a clean, cool bowl. Top with a layer of saran wrap, pressing the wrap against the curd so it will prevent a film from forming. Place in refrigerator for one hour or until cooled. You may also prepare the curd using a stovetop by placing the mixture in a heavy pan and cooking over medium heat for about 12-15 minutes stirring constantly until thick and smooth. This may be done up to three days ahead of assembling the tart.

make the crust for the tart:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 and set the rack in the center of the oven.
  2. Crush the cookies in a food process or blender until smooth. Pulse together with melted butter, sugar and cinnamon. Press the mixture in a lightly greased 9-10 inch Springform pan on the bottom and up the sides about 1/2 inch.
  3. Place the pan on top of a cookie sheet and place in preheated oven. Bake at 375 for about 12 minutes.
  4. Remove to cool. The crust may be made up to a week before filling with cream cheese layer, or frozen for up to a month before filing and baking.
  5. Set oven temperature to 350 degrees to bake cream cheese layer.

make the filling:

  1. Beat the softened cream cheese, 3/4 cup sugar until smooth for about 2 minutes. Add 2 eggs and vanilla, beat for 1 additional minute.
  2. Spread mixture into baked cookie crust, and place tart back on cookie sheet.
  3. Bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees. Remove from oven and let cool for about 10 minutes. Run knife around edges of springform pan, but do not release sides. Let tart cool for at least 30 minutes before topping with lemon curd.
  4. Spread cooled lemon curd on to tart and chill for at least 2 hours in fridge.
  5. When tart is set up, remove ring from around sides of pan.
  6. Place on serving dish, or on top of paper dollie.
  7. Top and serve with fresh berries, whipped cream and sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired.

Recipe Notes

  • You may use all fresh lemon juice, or juice the two lemons and then add additional bottled lemon juice to make 1/2 cup total.
  • Remove the zest before juicing the lemon for best results.
  • Always bake the crust and the tart on a cookie sheet so the excess butter and sugars that bake off will end up on the pan instead of the bottom of your oven, causing a huge mess.
  • You may use any type of cookies to make the crust. I have used "Mrs. Thinster's" Coconut Cookies and Trader Joe's Toasted Coconut Cookie Thins. You may also use crushed graham crackers.
  • I remove the baked crust off of the cookie sheet and place it on a cooling rack. Also when the filled and baked tart is cooling, I place it on a cooling rack or on a clean cookie sheet to remove from the hot cookie sheet and allow the tart to cool quicker.
  • Don't be intimidated by the length of this recipe! You can make the curd and crust one day and let cool, and then make the cheesecake layer, fill and bake the crust the next day, top with cooled lemon curd and serve the same day. I have made this dessert all in one day, starting at about 4 pm and serving at 7.  I use my fridge to cool the baked portions of the recipe to cool at a faster speed.