Thick, chewy cookies with crisp edges stuffed with tart lemon curd and rolled in sweet, subtly crispy poppyseeds.
Once again, I am inspired by a trending cookie. And once again, I’ve yet to try said cookie! But the image is enough to get my wheels a ‘turnin’. If you are looking for a copycat recipe, I couldn’t tell you how these match up, but I can tell you this recipe makes a wonderfully lemony cookie with crisp edges and soft middles, stuffed with sharp lemon curd.
P.S. if you are interested in a copycat crumbl cookie check out these by lifestyleofafoodie (she’s got a few others too!).
Ingredients for Lemon Curd Stuffed Cookies
Lemons: You’ll want lemons that aren’t covered in any wax or chemicals, if they are non-organic rub them under running water to remove anything on the skin. Two large lemons will yield enough zest or 3 smaller ones.
Flour: I used KAF AP flour here which has a higher protein content. If you use a brand with a slightly lower content, the cookies may be more tender and spread a bit more (might not be a bad thing but watch out for the curd seeping out!)
Butter: Unsalted and at room temperature. If you are using salted butter, omit the salt in the recipe or add just a pinch. The butter should not be overly melty when making the dough.
Egg: I have not attempted this recipe egg-free.
Lemon Curd: You want to use a really good curd here as it’s the stand out part of this cookie. If you aren’t making your own, buy a really good quality curd that you know tastes good.
Poppy Seeds: There are a few different types of poppy seeds but the ones that are blue/black (almost grayish in color) are the best for sweet applications. If you see little brown bits in the can they will taste a bit bitter so get a brand that doesn’t have those.
How to make Lemon Curd Stuffed Cookies
This recipe is based on my lemon sugar cookie recipe but I make the dough a little differently: I melt the butter and make the dough the night before. It isn’t necessary to do this but I find that a dough left to rest will intensify in flavor – exactly what I want for this cookie which is designed to be very lemony.
So, the butter is melted then the sugars, vanilla and salt are stirred in and lastly the flour and baking soda. This also makes it easy for those who don’t have a mixer for creaming.
Once the dough comes together like in the photo below, I’ll put it in an airtight container (or wrap it in plastic wrap) and leave it in the fridge overnight or at least for 2-4 hours. When it’s time to shape and bake the cookies you’ll want it to soften a bit, to make it scoop-able so take it out of the fridge 30 minutes before (or more if you’ve left it overnight).
The other thing you’ll want to do before you begin shaping and baking is to dollop the curd onto some parchment paper and freeze it. You want it frozen solid before beginning otherwise you’ll have a mess on your hands when you try to shape the cookies. I like to freeze it for two hours before.
Prepare two cookie sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven.
Once the cookie dough is softened, use a 1.5 tablespoon ice cream scoop or a measuring spoon to portion it into 3 tablespoons (one for the top half one for the bottom).
Then flatten out one of the halves with your thumbs and place a lemon curd dollop in it. The other half will go on top – it’s okay to leave a little lemon curd peeking out on the top (but not the sides or it will burst out). Seal the bottom and sides of the cookie dough.
If you can, work near the freezer. The curd will thaw quickly so by the time you are halfway through (less if you are working slowly and carefully) it will become messy and difficult to deal with.
Lastly you’ll roll the tops of the cookies in the poppy seeds. If the seeds aren’t sticking it’s likely because the dough got dry/hard but you can just gently roll it into the palm of your hand to warm it up and then try dipping it in the bowl of poppy seeds again.
Then bake! These are best cool so don’t chocolate chip cookie them and eat them right off the pan (hot curd is not appealing to me)
Could I stuff these lemon cookies with a different curd?
Yes! Here’s a few other curds that I think would work well:
- Raspberry Curd (keep the lemon zest in the cookie)
- Orange Curd (use orange zest in the cookie)
- Pomegranate curd (use lime zest in the cookie)
- Cranberry Curd (orange zest)
- Blueberry Curd (lemon zest)
How far in advance can I make these lemon curd stuffed cookies?
You can make your dough and lemon curd (if you are using homemade curd, I hope you are) ahead of time by a a day for the dough and up to a week for the curd.
How best to store the lemon curd stuffed cookies? And how long do they keep?
An airtight container will keep them for a good 3 days I’d say.
What’s the best recipe to use for these lemon curd stuffed cookies?
I may be biased but I used and think this lemon curd is the absolute best. There’s a ton of step-by-step photos in the bars recipe (you’ll only need the curd) and I spent about a year tweaking it until I decided it couldn’t be better.
Lemon Curd Stuffed Cookies
- 1 cup butter, unsalted 226g
- 1 cup granulated sugar 220g
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar 55g
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- zest of 2 lemons
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 large egg
- 3 cups all purpose flour 360g
- lemon curd homemade or store-bought
- poppy seeds for rolling
- Make the dough ahead of time, this will allow the lemon flavor to develop and the flour and powdered sugar to hydrate: melt the butter, then whisk in sugars and lemon zest. Add the vanilla, salt and baking soda and beat to combine. Add the egg, whisk until combined then sift in the flour and stir with a rubber spatula until you have a cohesive cookie dough. Set in an airtight container in the fridge for a few hours or overnight.
- Portion the lemon curd on a parchment lined cookie sheet, about 2 teaspoons a dollop and set in the freezer for a few hours.
- When you are ready to make the cookies, bring the cookie dough back to room temperature so it’s easier to shape - keep the curd in the freezer as it thaws quickly. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Portion all of the dough into 1 ½ tablespoons and set the poppyseeds in a bowl and remove the curd from the freezer. Use your thumbs to flatten the dough, as pictured, to make space for the curd then place a frozen dollop of curd inside and cover it with another portion of dough (so each cookie will have about 3 tablespoons of dough). Pinch the sides so the curd doesn’t seep out. If you want, shape them so a bit of curd peeks out at the top (it unveils the center and the cookies will look like my photos). Roll the cookies in the poppyseeds to coat them. If the poppies aren’t sticking, wet your hands and try rolling again. Repeat with all the dough.
- Stick the cookie tray in the freezer while the oven preheats, at least 10 minutes (this will help them from spreading too much).
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden on the edges and bottom. Avoid overbaking these unless you want a crunchy cookie and an overbaked curd.
- Cookies will keep at room temperature for 2-3 days.