Easy Lemon Meringue Pie

My Easy Lemon Meringue Pie recipe has a tart, lemony custard inside with the fluffiest meringue topping. It’s a perfect spring and summer time dessert!

slice of lemon meringue pie on white plate with fork next to lemons and blue checkered towel

Homemade Lemon Meringue Pie

Lemon meringue pie is just one of those desserts that’s like happiness in a pie tin. It’s absolutely beautiful with it’s fluffy white meringue topper, toasted lightly golden from baking on top. And the bright yellow lemon custard inside is a sight to behold. It’s like spring and summer mixed up into a dessert, and it sure tastes good after particularly warm days.

I think that a lot of people suspect that lemon meringue pie is a finicky dessert to make, but it’s actually easier than you might expect! That being said, you do want to make sure you follow the instructions and don’t get too “creative” when baking it because it responds well to the steps being followed carefully. That’ll insure you don’t get a runny custard, or a weeping meringue (tragic!). Enjoy a slice of happiness!

collage image of lemon meringue pie slices with lemons and blue checkered towel

Lemon Meringue Pie Ingredients:

You don’t need too many ingredients to make this pie! First you’ll need to blind bake and cool a pie crust. Then, for the lemon filling, you’ll need:

5 egg yolks: Yolks not only add to that beautiful bright yellow color, but they also help to thicken the filling.

Sugar: Sugar cuts all the tartness from lemon and adds a nice sweet balance.

Cornstarch: Cornstarch acts as a thickening agent.

Lemon zest and juice: Lemon gives the filling its signature citrus flavor.

Water: Water is used to cook the filling; it starts saucy thanks to the water and thickens thanks to the cornstarch and yolks.

For the meringue topping, you’ll need:

5 egg whites: It’s important not to let ANY yolks, grease, or fat get into these or else they won’t whip up into peaks properly.

Cornstarch: Cornstarch again is used to thicken the meringue topping.

Water: Water helps everything cook down and combine together.

Cream of tartar: Cream of tarter adds a little bit of tart flavor to the meringue.

Sugar: Sugar brings a bit of a sweetness factor.

how to make lemon meringue pie collage showing pie crust lemon custard filling and meringue

How to Make Lemon Meringue Pie:

Lemon meringue pie has a lot of steps, but it’s really easy when you break it down! And totally worth the process. 🙂

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Separate the egg whites from the egg yolks.
  3. Combine sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest, lemon juice, and water in pot over medium-high heat.
  4. Bring mixture to a boil, and cook for 5 additional minutes, stirring continuously. Take off heat.
  5. Add a spoonful of hot lemon mixture into the egg yolks.
  6. Stir and repeat with one more spoonful of mixture.
  7. Add tempered eggs back into lemon mixture; cook for 90 seconds.
  8. Pour lemon mixture into prepared crust, and set aside.
  9. Make meringue by combining cornstarch and water in a small pan over medium heat.
  10. Bring to a simmer; whisk frequently until thickened. Set aside.
  11. Combine the sugar and cream of tartar in separate bowl. Set aside.
  12. Whip the egg whites until they become frothy; add in sugar mixture one spoonful at a time. Beat for about 20 seconds after each sugar addition.
  13. Add in cornstarch mixture one spoonful at a time.
  14. Beat until egg whites form stiff peaks, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  15. Spoon meringue onto lemon filling.
  16. Use a spatula to create peaks in the meringue.
  17. Place pie in oven, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden-brown.
  18. Let cool at room temperature, and then refrigerate for 3 to 6 hours before serving.

collage image of how to make lemon meringue pie

How do you keep the lemon meringue pie from weeping?

It’s not uncommon to have a weepy lemon meringue pie, but there are things you can do to prevent it from happening. This would include:

  • Make you lemon meringue pie on dry, low-humid days.
  • Don’t overbake your meringue. Wait until the meringue gets a lovely golden-brown, and then take it out of the oven.
  • Make sure to completely dissolve sugar in the egg whites. Undissolved sugar can cause weeping. I test this by rubbing some of the whipped meringue in between my fingers. If it feels gritty, then the meringue still needs to be whipped. It should feel smooth and silky between your fingers.

How do you thicken runny lemon meringue pie filling?

If you have cooked the lemon pie filling for the 5 minutes called for in this recipe, you shouldn’t have any problems with a runny pie filling. If your pie filling is runny, add in one additional tablespoon of cornstarch to the lemon filling, and stir over medium heat. It should thicken in 1 to 2 minutes.

slice of lemon meringue pie on white plate with blue checkered towel and lemons

How do you fix runny meringue?

If the meringue became runny after the addition of sugar, don’t add any more sugar until it firms up, and then you can add more. The key is to whisk up the egg whites and sugar every time between each addition. If the meringue is runny, just keep beating it until it firms up.

Can you over-beat meringue?

Sugar acts as a stabilizer for the egg whites. That means that the egg whites with sugar can be mixed much more than egg whites alone. Don’t be afraid to mix after each addition until it thickens, or else you will be left with a runny meringue.

lemon meringue pie with slices cut on round white plates with forks lemons and blue checkered towel

How long does lemon meringue pie last?

Store in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days. Do not leave out at room temperature. Theoretically, you can freeze your lemon meringue pie. However, the consistency of the meringue will change once it thaws. I recommend that if you plan on freezing this pie, to make and add the meringue before serving and only freeze the lemon filling. You can freeze for up to 1 month for best quality.

slice of lemon meringue pie being removed from the pie tin

If you are a lemon lover, you might also like these recipes:

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closeup of lemon meringue pie on white plate with fork next to lemons and pie

Bright Lemon Meringue Pie


  • Author: Melissa Griffiths - Bless this Mess
  • Prep Time: 45 minites
  • Cook Time: 20 minites
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Yield: 1 pie or 8 servings 1x

Description

My Easy Lemon Meringue Pie recipe has a tart, lemony custard inside with the fluffiest meringue topping. It’s a perfect spring and summer time dessert!


Scale

Ingredients

For the Lemon Filling:

  • 5 large eggs, yolks and whites separated
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons lemon zest
  • 3/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 cup water

For the Meringue Topping:

  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Separate the egg whites from the egg yolks, and place the yolks and whites in separate bowls. Take care to not break any of the yolks or let any yolk get into the whites. The whites won’t whip up if there’s any fat from the yolks in them.
  3. Begin making the lemon filling by combining sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest, lemon juice, and water together in a small pot over medium-high heat. Bring mixture to a boil, and cook for 5 additional minutes until thick and creamy, stirring continuously. Take off heat.
  4. Temper the egg yolks by adding a spoonful of hot lemon mixture into the egg yolks. Stir and repeat with one more spoonful of mixture.
  5. Add tempered eggs back into lemon mixture, and cook for 90 seconds, or until mixture is thick with large bubbles bursting at the surface, stirring constantly.
  6. Pour lemon mixture into prepared crust, and set aside.
  7. Make meringue by combining cornstarch and water in a small pan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer. Whisk frequently until thickened. Once the mixture is translucent, remove from heat. It should be thick and have a gel-like quality. Set aside.
  8. In a separate bowl, combine the sugar and cream of tartar. Set aside.
  9. Whip the egg whites (with whisk attachment if using a stand mixer) until they become frothy. Once frothy, add in sugar mixture one spoonful at a time. Beat for about 20 seconds after each sugar addition.
  10. Once you have added all the sugar, add in cornstarch mixture one spoonful at a time.
  11. Beat until egg whites form stiff peaks, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  12. Spoon meringue onto lemon filling.
  13. Use a spatula or butter knife to create peaks in the meringue.
  14. Place pie in oven, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden-brown.
  15. Let cool at room temperature, and then place in the refrigerator to cool for 3 to 6 hours before serving. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Egg whites don’t like fat or grease, so be sure to not let any yolk break into the whites, even a little. And when whipping the whites, be sure your bowl and beaters are well washed and free from any grease or oil residue.
  • Category: Pie
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American
Nutrition Information: YIELD: 8
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 240.7 Fat: 6g Cholesterol: 232.5mg Sodium: 91.6mg Carbohydrates: 39.5g Sugars: 32.1g Protein: 8g Vitamin A: 100.1µg Vitamin C: 11.8mg

Keywords: lemon meringue pie, how to make meringue for pie, lemon pie. best lemon meringue, homemade, easy

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This bright, cheery, and light lemon meringue pie is the perfect warm-weather dessert and may be simpler to whip up than you expect!

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about me

About Melissa

I have a lot going on, and I’d much rather spend my time enjoying my messes than fretting about what I’m going to make for dinner. Over the past few years, I’ve nailed down a few strategies that helped me keep my kitchen running like a well-oiled machine, so I started Bless This Mess to help other mess-loving parents solve the nightly dinner delimma—no stress, no drama, just really great food your whole family will love. Read more...

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Bless This Mess - About Me

I’m Melissa, and I want to help you feed your family wholesome food.

As a hobby farmer and mom of five, I’m all about keeping it simple in the kitchen. I want healthy meals that feed my family well, and then I want to get back to my (messy) life. Let’s work together to find something yummy for your dinner table.