Meyer Lemon Biscotti

Biscotti abundant with walnuts, lemon zest and lemon juice.

When life gives you Meyer lemons, why make lemonade when you can make “Lemon-Walnut Biscotti” instead?

Yeah, that’s what I’m talkin’ about when winter rains give way to a backyard tree full of ripe, juicy, sunshine-y lemons — finally.

Sure, you can make these crisp, crumbly cookies with regular Eureka lemons that have a sharper tang. But make them with the more floral Meyers and you’re really in for a treat. My husband’s colleagues tried some and thought for sure there was rosemary or some other herb in them. But nope, it’s just the complexity of the Meyers coming through loud and clear.

The recipe is from the hefty, new “Bon Appetit Desserts” cookbook (Andrews McMeel) by Barbara Fairchild, former editor-in-chief of that magazine who just stepped down now that the publication has moved its offices from Los Angeles to Manhattan. The 686-page tome, of which I just received a review copy, contains more than 600 recipes to keep you baking to your heart’s content.

Both lemon zest and lemon juice are incorporated into the butter- and egg-enriched dough that contains a whopping three cups of chopped walnuts. Before baking, the dough gets refrigerated for at least three hours or up to two days to firm up.Β  Shape the dough into three flattened logs for the first bake. Then, let them cool before slicing them for the second baking.

Sure, lemonade may be quenching. But lemon biscotti is hands-down, crunch-a-licious.

Lemon-Walnut Biscotti

(Makes about 5 dozen)

3 cups unbleached all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/3 cups sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons finely grated lemon peel

2 large eggs

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3 cups chopped walnuts

1 large egg, beaten to blend

Raw sugar

Whisk flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter, sugar, and lemon peel in a large bowl until blended. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating just to blend after each addition. Beat in lemon juice, then flour mixture. Stir in walnuts.

Divide dough into 3 equal pieces. Place each piece on a sheet of plastic wrap. Using the plastic wrap as aid, form dough into 8-inch long logs; press each slightly, flattening to 2 1/2-inch-wide logs. Enclose in plastic wrap and chill until firm, at least 3 hours.

Do Ahead: Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.

Position rack in top third of oven and preheat to 325 degrees. Line a heavy, large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Unwrap logs and set atop plastic. Brush tops of logs with egg. Sprinkle with raw sugar. Lift logs from plastic and transfer to prepared baking sheet, spacing evenly. Bake until golden brown and just firm to touch, about 50 minutes. Carefully transfer to rack and cool completely. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees.

Line 2 heavy rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Using long, serrated knife, carefully cut logs crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices. They are very tender, so work quickly with your knife. Arrange biscotti, cut side down, on prepared baking sheets. Bake cookies until golden brown around edges, about 20 minutes. Cool completely (biscotti will crisp as they cool).

Storing: Cookies will stay fresh for three days when stored in an air-tight container at room temperature. The cookies also can be frozen. Wrap them tightly in foil and enclose in a resealable plastic freezer bag. When you’re ready to enjoy them, let them come to room temperature. If you prefer them warm, pop them in a 350-degree oven for 5 minutes.

From “Bon Appetit Desserts” by Barbara Fairchild

Other Lemon Recipes: Preserved Lemons

More: Meyer Lemon and Vanilla Bean Marmalade

More: Emily Luchetti’s Lemon Squares

Another Biscotti Recipe: Brown Sugar and Almond Biscotti

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  • Biscotty are heavenly! That Meyer lemon version is just fantastic. I bet they are extremely fragrant.



  • These must be to die for with the walnuts also incorporated (wouldn’t have come up with that combo). Thanks for sharing your review!

  • Oh my goodness, I would take these gorgeous biscotti over lemonade any day! The walnuts are the perfect touch!

  • Wait a minute. The phrase is ‘when life gives you lemons, make lemonade?’ I always thought it was ‘when life gives you lemons, have an emotional breakdown and find solace in a bottle!’ The lemonade way is so much better! As is the Lemon-Walnut Biscotti way! It looks very, very good, Carolyn.

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  • I’m looking miserably into my cup of coffee…nothing to dip! I need some of your biscotti πŸ˜› Love the lemon flavour.

  • I love meyer lemons, but haven’t really seen them at the markets yet. You’re so lucky to have been in your backyard. Is your tree producing a lot?

  • I usually make tons of lemon bars but this is a great idea. Wish I had a tree full of Meyer lemons too. πŸ˜‰

  • Single Guy Ben: I only started growing my dwarf Meyer tree a year and a half ago. But yes, quite a few bright yellow lemons on it right now. If you’re ever in the neighborhood, let me know and I’ll send you home with some. That goes for you, too, Tami. πŸ˜‰

  • Lovely biscotti with meyer lemon! This is just the thing for me to make with my daughter this weekend! Thanks!

  • Gorgeous Carolyn! I would love it if stores would start stocking Meyer lemons. As it is I have to beg, borrow or steal them! πŸ˜›

  • These look amazing. Unfortunately Meyer lemons are pretty impossible to find in my neck of the woods, but I may try it with regular lemons.
    *kisses* HH

  • Yum! And just in time, too. Here in Phoenix the lemon trees are loaded down with ripe fruit. I think there are some lemon biscotti in my near future.

  • crunchalicious, eh? i’m inclined to agree. πŸ™‚

  • Meyer lemon biscotti sound heavenly! I think I will have to make do with regular lemons though πŸ˜€ How nice to have a whole tree in your own backyard!

  • This is causing biscotti cravings! It’s also making me wish my meyer lemons had been more productive this year. All those walnuts in these sound delicious too.

  • I just love Meyer’s lemons – to me they are one of the reasons California rocks. I’ll take a bagfull of extra Meyer’s lemons any day.

  • I want some Meyer Lemons and Meyer Lemon Biscotti too! Is this the season for these lemons?

  • Great combination of flavors. Very dainty, too. I love that about biscotti — a hearty, rustic “cookie” that can still keep its sweet appearance next to a cup of tea or coffee!

    If you have more Meyer lemons, I highly recommend these Meyer lemon kisses:



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  • Beautiful! I’m tempted to lick my screen, that close-up is just mouthwatering. Lemon desserts are a perfect way to brighten up gloomy winter days, too.

  • I’m absolutely jealous hearing about Meyer lemons from all of you guys. I haven’t seem them for sale here, but I’m sure I can find them eventually at some Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s. I mean I live by the nation’s capital! These look so yummy though that I may have to try them with normal lemons.

  • My mom is pretty much obsessed with making biscotti. This sounds like a good recipe to add to her repertoire!

  • I love biscotti, and this version sounds wonderful. I planted a meyer lemon bush last year and am amazed that it is producing fruit in our cold winter weather! The lemons are tiny though, but since the recipe only requires 3 tablespoons I think I must try this.

  • Yum! And I just acquired a bunch of lemons from my sister’s prolific tree! Wheeeee!

  • I have made these multiple times and they are absolutely amaazing..the only change I made was to cut the amount of walnuts down to 1.5 cups..and it was still plenty! Also, I forgot to sprinkle with raw sugar… But it didn’t matter…thank you so much for the recipe!!

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  • I made these for Christmas. I wanted something I had not tried before for my Christmas goodies to give to friends and family. These were the hit of the entire basket. I just made another batch to have for me. Thank-you so much for the recipe. I found your site because of these and I see that you have so many recipes that I want to try. Thank-you and Happy New Year.

  • I make these with regular lemons and they have become a staple in my house!! My favorite biscotti recipe !!!

  • Elizabeth: These would absolutely be wonderful with Eureka lemons, too. In fact, they probably have a more pronounced tang. So glad these biscotti are such a favorite with you and your family.

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