Friday, July 8, 2011

Lemon squares with blueberry sauce...summer's best friends

I love lemon and blueberries together; it's the perfect summer pairing. However, when I had it in mind to make the lemon squares I saw on Food Network, it didn't occur to me to make a blueberry sauce to go with them until the squares came out kind of dry. I love that a simple sauce can rescue a tasty dessert and turn it into a spectacular treat. Okay, I think I may have overcooked my lemon beauties just a tad which would account for their dryness, but still... The contrast of the rich purple hue of the blueberries over the creamy yellow of the lemon square made me happy. I added a little vanilla ice cream too, which made me want blueberry cobbler. But that's for another day.

The desire was something fast and easy and these were just that. I knew they would be since they came from Sandra Lee (semi-homemade maven) but I wondered if the delicious would still be there given my gluten free adaptations. It was, my friends! Treat it more like a cheesecake and I think you'll have a good result. Here's the rundown.

Lemon Cream Squares (adapted from Sandra Lee's recipe)

For the crust:
1 box Betty Crocker gluten free yellow cake mix
1 stick of unsalted butter (softened)
1 egg

For the filling:
16-oz. cream cheese (I used Philadelphia 1/3 less fat)
1 3-oz. package lemon jello (Jell-O brand)
1/3 cup sugar
2 eggs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Stir together the crust ingredients and press into 9x13 pan. (I sprayed mine with cooking spray first.)
3. Set crust aside.
4. Mix filling ingredients together until smooth. Poor over crust. Give it a little whack on the counter to get any air bubbles out.
5. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 40 minutes or until center is set. I baked it too long so really keep an eye on it.
6. Serve with blueberry sauce (see below).

Blueberry sauce:
2 cups fresh blueberries (use frozen if they're not in season)
1/2 cup sugar (use less if you like more of a tart sauce)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 teaspoons cornstarch

1. Combine all ingredients in saucepan, bring to a boil
2. Cook for several minutes or until thickened.
3. Take off heat and stir in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.

Some ideas...
  • I think it would be fun to play around with different kinds of jello in this recipe. My daughter would love it to be pink--strawberry jello would do that, I imagine. 
  • The crust would be great in lots of different bars--pecan pie bars, etc. I'm going to experiment with that.
  • Add some lemon zest to kick up the lemon flavor and elegance. My kids don't like "those chunks" in it, so I opted not to add that this time.


  1. Greetings from Scotland! I enjoyed reading your articles.

  2. Thanks gf banana bread! What are you eating in Scotland today? Bellying up to some gf pancakes as I type.

  3. OMG - Lemon for me is like chocolate for others I'm going to try this one!!! Thank you so much for this blog!!! Karen R.

  4. Please do! It was soooooo easy--that's almost my favorite part! I'm going to do it with lime jello next time. : )

  5. I was just about to make blueberry pancakes for your dad when I read your blog and decided to add lemon juice and zest to the batter. Turned out wonderful!! Thanks for teaching me new tricks! Mom

  6. Thanks, Mom! (That was my mom signed in as me. : )) I'm going to try that in my next batch of pancakes!