This amazing and easy instant pot lemon curd is worlds easier than other stovetop recipes (hands off!) and tastes so fresh, bright, and delicious!

Are you in the lemon curd club? The club that loves and adores this sunshine-in-a-bowl concoction? 

For a long time I gave the side eye at anything named “curd” that everyone promised would wow me, because it just didn’t sound that appealing.

Wooden spoon dropping lemon curd into glass bowl.

I finally matured a little (a little), gave it a chance, and there was no going back. 

I’ve made a lot of versions of lemon curd over the years, but this easy Instant Pot lemon curd is brilliant, hands off, and absolutely amazing.

Glass bowl with instant pot lemon curd and wooden spoon.

What is lemon curd? 

If you aren’t familiar, lemon curd is a buttery, rich lemon dessert – most often used as a topping or filling. It kind of reminds me of a really delicious creamy lemon jam. 

It’s used for all sorts of desserts and toppings:

  • scones, muffins or biscuits
  • cake or cupcake filling
  • pie filling or topping
  • inside cream puffs (so good!)
  • cheesecake topping
  • on pancakes or waffles

The best way to enjoy it? With a spoon. It’s irresistible. 

Wooden spoon with lemon curd on wood board.

Instant Pot Lemon Curd

Making lemon curd in the Instant Pot is life changing.

There’s no need to stir over the stove or worry about curdled eggs or needing to strain it after. It’s almost completely hands off. 

The process is brilliantly easy:

  • combine all the ingredients (yes, all of them) in a blender
  • pour the frothy, bubbly mixture into a heatproof bowl or liquid measuring cup and cover with foil
  • add water and trivet to the Instant Pot or other electric pressure cooker
  • place the bowl of lemon curd in the IP and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes
  • naturally release the pressure for another 10 minutes and then quick release the remaining pressure
Step-by-step preparation of easy instant pot lemon curd.

When you (carefully) lift the lemon curd out of the Instant Pot and remove the foil, the lemon curd will appear set up, kind of like a jello or custard. 

It may have small bubbles on the top, and it’s not going to look creamy and smooth. Not yet at least. 

Grab a whisk and start whisking the warm lemon curd together. At first, it will break into tiny clumps and look a bit curdled. Decide now not to freak out. The magic has yet to happen.

Whisking lumpy instant pot lemon curd in glass bowl.

As you whisk, before you know it the lemon curd will transform from a bubbly, curdled mess to a creamy, smooth, ethereally delicious wonder.

As many times as I’ve made this, it never ceases to amaze me how something slightly worrisome can turn into one of the most decadent lemon desserts ever. 

Added note: the lemon curd will thicken as it cools (and is refrigerated); it is normal for it to look a little thin after whisking when it is still warm.

Whisking instant pot lemon curd.

Lemon Curd Variations

This recipe transitions really well to using other citrus fruits like limes, oranges or grapefruits. 

I haven’t tried it with other fruits like berries, although I probably will, because I had a raspberry curd once that was to die for. 

If you haven’t made or tried lemon curd before, set a resolution that this will be the year! 

And then promptly use it in any one of these remarkable recipes (or as mentioned above – just dig in with a spoon):

Glass bowl with lemon curd on striped napkin.

FAQs for Lemon Curd

Can I use another fruit besides lemon?

Lime works really well in place of the lemon (juice and zest). Orange and grapefruit should work great, too.

Can I double or triple the recipe?

As long as the heatproof bowl fits in the Instant Pot or other electric pressure cooker, you can increase the recipe. The mixture doesn’t expand much while cooking. The cooking time doesn’t need to change for a doubled batch.

How long does the lemon curd keep?

Once refrigerated, it should keep up to a week (possibly longer, but if it’s still around after that long, WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?). 🙂

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glass bowl with easy instant pot lemon curd and wooden spoon

Amazing Instant Pot Lemon Curd

4.73 stars (95 ratings)


  • ¼ cup (57 g) salted butter, melted
  • ½ cup (106 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1-2 teaspoons fresh lemon zest
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice, from about 3-4 lemons


  • Blend all ingredients together in a blender until smooth. Transfer to a heatproof liquid measuring cup or bowl and cover tightly with foil.
  • Place the trivet inside the Instant Pot or other electric pressure cooker. Add 1 1/2 cups water. Set the covered bowl of lemon curd on the trivet.
  • Secure the lid, set the valve to seal, and set the Instant Pot to pressure cook on high pressure for 10 minutes.
  • Let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes (this is important for the curd to fully set up!), then quick release the remaining pressure.
  • Carefully remove the bowl from the pot. Remove the foil. It should be set like jello or custard. Whisk until creamy and smooth. (At first it will look curdled, but as you whisk, it will come together.)
    Optional: strain to remove the lemon zest.
  • Refrigerate until ready to use (it will thicken as it cools). If it splits or looks curdled after sitting, whisk again to recombine.


Double: this recipe can easily be doubled; it doesn’t expand much while cooking so as long as the heatproof bowl fits in the Instant Pot, it should work. Update: I’d recommend adding 2-3 minutes to the cooking time for a doubled batch.
Thicker Curd: this homemade lemon curd will likely be a bit thinner than storebought brands you are used to (especially since many of them contain thickeners like gelatin and cornstarch), but it will definitely thicken up as it cools in the refrigerator. For thicker curd you can also decrease the lemon juice to 1/3 cup OR try adding an extra egg yolk.
Other Flavors: this recipe converts well to lime curd. I haven’t tried it with other citrus fruits like orange or grapefruit, but I’m guessing it will work just fine.

Recipe Source: inspired by this recipe (changed up ingredient amounts and method a bit)