Lemon meringue pie (Italian meringue)


Hello, gourmets,

Lemon meringue pie is one of my favorite desserts. I love the balance between the acidity of the lemon and the sweetness of the meringue, and the crisp, creamy, melt-in-the-mouth texture.

Lemon meringue pie ID card

Let's peel the lemon meringue pie.

1/ The dough: it can be shortbread, shortbread or sweet, it's up to you, I prefer it with the shortbread dough. The dough must be crunchy to obtain this crunchiness, it must be spread as thinly as possible.

2/ The creamy lemon: call him lemon curd or creamy, basically, it's the same thing.

. The lemon taste will come mainly from this creamy.

3/ The meringue : The best meringue for this dessert is Swiss or Italian meringue. Choose instead a cooked meringue that will stand without giving back water.

Tips and tricks about lemon meringue pie (or how to make it always more beautiful, always better)

A lighter creamy lemon

Some great pastry chefs, such as Philippe Conticini or Cyril Lignac, "lighten" their lemon creamy texture with the addition of gelatine. A sheet of gelatine added at the end of cooking allows them to reduce the amount of egg, sugar and even butter. As a result, the lemon taste is much clearer and the texture less rich.

For more acidity

Do you like acidity? Spread the cooked tart base with a thin layer of lemon confit. Made from lemon juice, possibly zest (for thrill-seekers) and a little sugar, this mixture is cooked in a saucepan without colouring and takes on the consistency of a jam. Pay attention to the dosage

A crispy pie crust

What's wrong with a lemon meringue pie prepared in advance? To avoid this, before the end of the cooking of the tart base, put a little bit of golden browning on it with a brush and finish baking. This is a waterproof protection which will be enough to preserve the beautiful sanded texture of your biscuit. Thank you Mr. Conticini!




For sweet dough

  • 140 g butter sweet
  • 90 g confectioner's sugar
  • 1 zest yellow lemon
  • 40 g almond powder
  • 1/2 pod vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 230 g flour
  • 1 pinch salt

For the lemon garnish

  • 4 yellow lemon
  • 4 eggs
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 30 g butter

For the meringue

  • 100 g sugar
  • 30 g of water
  • 50 g egg whites (2 small eggs)


The dough

    • Sift flour and icing sugar separately
    • Mix in a large bowl the soft butter, icing sugar, vanilla sugar, salt, beaten egg, almond and hazelnut powder.
    • Add the sifted flour and work the dough with your fingers until you get a smooth and homogeneous dough.
    • Form a ball of dough, wrap them in cling film and place them in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
    • Preheat your oven to 180°.
    • Spread the ball to the thickness that suits you on a floured worktop.
    • Arrange the dough in the pie pan.
    • Put the shortbread back in the fridge for 15 minutes to allow the dough to harden again.
    • Bake your dough: cover it with a disc of baking paper where you will place cooking pits (or dried vegetables, coarse salt, etc... anything that can make a weight).
    • Bake for about 20 minutes (depending on the thickness of the dough, the dough should not colour). Leave to cool.

    The filling

    • Zest and squeeze the lemons. Put the juice with the sugar and eggs in a saucepan and cook over medium heat while stirring. Bring the mixture to the boil (it should thicken).

    • Remove from the heat, add the butter in parcels and mix vigorously.
    • Pour the lemon cream over the cooled tart base and leave to crust for about 15 minutes.

    • Place in the oven at 130°C for about 15 minutes (cooking time to be monitored, the cream should not colour). Leave to cool.

    The meringue

    • Pour the sugar into the centre of a small saucepan and gently add the water on top.
    • Heat over medium-high heat, while monitoring with a thermometer.
    • When the syrup reaches 114°C, start beating the egg whites at full speed.

    • Once the syrup has reached 118°C, remove the pan from the heat.
    • Gently pour the syrup in a thin stream over the side of the bowl while continuing to beat but at a low speed (to avoid splashing, among other things).
    • Whip at high speed until completely cooled. Your meringue should be smooth and shiny.
    • Pocket your meringue on your pie, entremet, etc.
    • Burn it with a blowtorch


    • Don't try to make an Italian meringue with too little white, it won't work. 
    • If you have sugar on the sides of your pan during cooking, use a damp brush to remove it.
    • You start beating the egg whites when the syrup is at 114° C so that they are sufficiently stiff when you pour the syrup. You should see the whip marks in the egg whites. If your egg whites are not stiff enough, wait a little while before pouring the syrup (which you will have removed from the heat). And if the whites are already stiff but the syrup is not yet ready, turn the power of your robot to minimum.
    • If your egg whites have risen too high when you pour your syrup, they may become grainy (or even partly fall off afterwards). On the contrary, if they have not been beaten enough, they will fall back once the syrup has been added.  
    • Sugar syrup should not be allowed to exceed 121° C. You risk having sugar lumps forming in your bowl or syrup freezing on the branches of your whisk.
    • Pour your syrup well in a single stream (all the syrup must flow in the same place). To do this: place your pan against one of the edges and let the syrup flow against the wall of the bowl while lifting your pan (the edge always against the top of the bowl wall).
    • You can colour your meringue with a blowtorch or put it in the oven at 230°C. The aim is not to cook it but to colour it.  
    • You can freeze a cake that contains Italian meringue, but do not freeze it if you still want to work or poach it. You will not get the desired result. 
    • To make a successful meringue: there should be no traces of yolk (fat prevents them from rising) and it is better if the whites are at room temperature. 


    Here's the lemon meringue pie you know all about. 
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