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These light, sweet, Strawberry Custard Bars are a delicious paleo, gluten free dessert arriving just in time for Mother’s Day. They have a crunchy shortbread crust and creamy custard layer bursting with strawberry flavor. You’ll find them irresistible!

Strawberry Custard Bars on plate

In this recipe I’ve turned strawberries into a lemon-bar like dessert by substituting the sweet-tart strawberries for the citrus.  It’s then garnished with vibrant strawberry halves on top.

The recipe for these Strawberry Custard Bars is simple requiring just 10 basic ingredients. Plus, they’re gluten-freenaturally sweetened, and dairy-free. A deliciously light, fresh treat you can serve for dessert or as part of your brunch.

Strawberry Custard Bars 2 plates

The crust is a simple sweet shortbread that is easily mixed together in a bowl. It is baked first to make it nice and crispy before the filling is poured on top.

Line your pan with parchment paper leaving 2 edges long so they overhang the pan to make it easy to lift the bars out later.

TIP:  Smear a strip of coconut oil on the sides of the pan to keep the parchment in place.

Strawberry Custard Bars crust

The filling starts with strawberries simmered with a little honey or maple syrup until it breaks down into a tasty compote. You want the strawberries soft but with a little bit of texture remaining.

I use frozen organic strawberries here. They have lots of flavor and are easy to find.  If you’re fortunate enough to go strawberry picking, the fresh picked strawberries are even more divine.

If you pick lots of strawberries you can make a double batch of the compote to serve topped with coconut yogurt another time after you’ve taken the half you need for the bars.

Strawberry Custard Bars strawberry compote

After cooling a bit the compote is mixed with eggs to make it custardy. A little tapioca flour is added to help it keep its shape when the bars are cut, along with a little lemon to accentuate the brightness.

Bake the custard for 15 minutes to let it firm up a bit before you put the fresh strawberries on top. You don’t want the strawberries to sink to the bottom.  Top with fresh strawberries halves, cut side down,  then return it to the oven to finish cooking.

It’s necessary to let them cool completely in the pan.  Once cool, use the parchment paper “handles” to lift up and transfer to a plate.  Cut away the parchment and chill or serve immediately cut into squares topped with coconut whipped cream.

Strawberry Custard Bars with fork

Treat yourself and your mother to these light, fresh Strawberry Custard Bars on Mother’s Day or any day you want a healthy summertime dessert.

You’ll love the light and creamy filling bursting with strawberry flavor and crunchy crust. They’re perfectly sweet, easy to make, gluten free, dairy free and absolutely delicious.

“Mother: the most beautiful word on the lips of mankind.” —Kahil Gibran

Strawberry Custard Bars over with one plate

If you like this recipe try these other delicious Mother’s Day treats:

Raspberry Lemon Cheesecake 

Raw Chocolate Truffles

Vegan Strawberry Tart

If you give this recipe a try, please let us know what you think! Give it some stars or leave a comment. ♥

If you would like to have more of these delicious healthy recipes sent to you each week, CLICK TO SIGN UP for my email newsletter of recipes and tips for you to eat well and enjoy your wonderful life.

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Strawberry Custard Bars (Paleo, Diary Free)

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  • Author: Ingrid DeHart
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 12 servings 1x


This delicious healthy dessert has a light, creamy filling bursting with strawberry flavor and a crunchy shortbread crust. It’s gluten free, paleo & easy to make.



For the Shortbread:**

For the Filling:

  • 12 ounces organic strawberries, frozen or fresh (2 ½ cups)
  • 1/2 cup light honey, divided
  • 3 large pastured eggs
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons tapioca flour
  • 1 teaspoon organic lemon zest
  • Pinch Celtic sea salt
  • 10 fresh organic strawberries cut in half*
  • coconut whipped cream (optional)


For the Shortbread:

  1. Begin by preparing the crust. Stir together all ingredients in a mixing bowl, it will be sticky. Chill the dough for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8″ x 8” baking pan with parchment paper on the bottom and up the side so they overhang the pan by at least an inch (this is for lifting the bars out later).*
  3. Press the chilled dough into the bottom of the lined baking pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes until beginning to turn light brown. Remove from oven and set on a wire rack to cool.

For the Filling:

  1. While the crust is cooking prepare the strawberry custard filling.
  2. In a medium saucepan combine the strawberries and 1/4 cup honey.
  3. Cook stirring often over medium low heat until the strawberries release their juice.
  4. Raise heat and simmer until the strawberries are soft about 15 minutes, stirring once in awhile.
  5. Let cool 15 minutes.
  6. In a small bowl, mix the lemon juice with the tapioca until dissolved.
  7. Add eggs to the food processor. Pulse a few times until mixed.
  8. Add the strawberries, remaining honey, lemon juice/tapioca mix, zest and salt to the food processor. Pulse until the mixture is just combined.
  9. Pour into the baked shortbread crust.
  10. Bake 15 minutes, remove from the oven and top with strawberry halves cut side down.
  11. Return to the oven and bake until filling is set, another 30 minutes.
  12. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
  13. Once cool use the parchment handles to lift pastry out of the pan onto a plate.
  14. Chill for 1 hour or serve immediately.
  15. Cut into squares, serve topped with coconut whipped cream.


If you want to make this recipe nut free use the crust recipe from these lemon bars.

TIP:  Smear a strip of coconut oil on the sides of the pan to keep the parchment in place.

Additional time needed for chilling the dough and letting the bars cool.

Choose strawberries of equal size to use for topping.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: Dessert, Brunch
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Refined Sugar Free

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