- Dish type
If you have egg whites left over, these easy vanilla meringues are a good way to use them up.
5 people made this
IngredientsMakes: 1 tray
- 4 egg whites
- 185g caster sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 pinch salt
MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:1min ›Ready in:16min
- Preheat oven to 140 C / 120 C fan/ Gas 1-2.
- Put egg whites into clean mixing bowl. Whisk on medium setting while adding sugar bit by bit.
- Once sugar is added and while still whisking add salt and vanilla extract.
- Turn up whisking speed to full and whisk until stiff peaks.
- Line baking tray with grease proof paper. Use a few small dobs of the mixture to secure the grease proof paper to the tray.
- Using a clean spoon place dobs of mixture onto the tray.
- Place onto middle shelf of oven and bake for 1 hour.
- Remove from oven and carefully place onto a cooling rack. Let cool for a couple of hours.
To make crispy meringue to crumble over ice cream, turn off the oven and leave meringues to cool in the oven, then proceed as described above.
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Note: while there are multiple steps to this recipe, this meringue dish is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and baking.
Whisk egg yolks in a medium-sized mixing bowl and set aside.
In a saucepan over medium heat, combine cornstarch, water, sugar, and salt. Whisk to combine. Stir frequently and bring mixture to a boil. Boil for 1 minute.
Remove from heat and, while whisking briskly, add 1/2 cup of the hot cornstarch mixture at a time to egg yolks until you have added at least half of the mixture.
Return egg mixture back to the saucepan. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 more minute.
Remove from heat and gently stir in butter, lemon juice, and zest until well combined.
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
- ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
- ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
Place sugar and ⅓ cup water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium-low, swirling pan occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and syrup registers 240°F on an instant-read thermometer, 10 to 14 minutes.
Meanwhile, after about 7 minutes of cooking sugar syrup, beat egg whites with a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment on medium speed until foamy, about 30 seconds. Add cream of tartar and salt. Beat until soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes.
With mixer running on medium speed, gradually stream hot sugar syrup into whipped egg white mixture. Continue beating until meringue is glossy and forms stiff peaks and the outside of mixer bowl has cooled slightly, 3 to 5 minutes. Reduce speed to low, and beat in vanilla extract. Proceed with desired baked meringue recipe.
- One 9-inch pie crust, store-bought or homemade, unbaked (fitted in a pie plate)
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated whole milk
- 3 large eggs, separated
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place pie crust in plate on a rimmed baking sheet bake until crust is golden, about 20 minutes. Cool completely set aside.
Put a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl set aside. In a medium saucepan, off heat, whisk together 2/3 cup sugar, the cocoa powder, flour, and 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Gradually whisk in evaporated milk. Whisk in egg yolks.
Place pan over medium heat whisking constantly, cook until the first large bubble forms, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low whisking constantly, cook 1 minute.
Immediately pour mixture through prepared sieve into bowl. Stir in butter and vanilla. Pour warm filling into baked crust cover surface directly with plastic wrap. Chill at least 2 hours and up to 1 day.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites, remaining 1/3 cup sugar, and remaining 1 teaspoon cornstarch until stiff peaks form. Spread meringue on top of filling, right up to edge of crust bake until meringue is lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Serve immediately.
Quick Meringue Recipes
These quick meringue recipes are perfect if you’re looking to whip up a sweet treat fast, as they’re ready in just 30 minutes or less. From tangy lemon meringue pancakes, to lemon meringue slice and berry custard meringues, these quick meringue recipes provide plenty of heavenly desserts for you to pick from for a speedy creamy delight.
Eton mess is one of the easiest summer desserts, made with broken meringues, strawberries and fresh cream. This Eton mess recipe is summer in a bowl.
Slimming World's raspberry meringues
Meringue usually takes well over an hour to make but Slimming World’s super-speedy version cooks in less than 20 minutes and tastes great with the raspberries!
Lemon meringue pancakes
These delicious lemon meringue pancakes combine crunchy meringues mixed in with tangy lemon, sweet cream and tasty pancakes for an indulgent breakfast or delicious dessert idea.
Raspberry meringue layer cake
Our raspberry meringue layer cake is a rich and fruity summer cake that requires no cooking at all. This recipe only requires assembly and chilling - easy!
Raspberry and hazelnut Eton mess
Raspberry and hazelnut Eton mess is a really delicious take on a traditional Eton mess recipe, full of fresh and nutty flavours for a fab summer dessert.
Berry custard meringues
Berry custard meringues make a quick, cheap and easy dessert recipe that has still got the 'wow' factor
Raspberry meringue crush
On a diet but still crave desserts? Try this lower-fat raspberry meringue crush. Made with quark and skimmed milk, these tasty little puds will soon be a firm favourtie
Begin by combining all of the ingredients in a pot on the stove. Stir until a full boil.
After it boils and, let it cool for 5 minutes before you pour the pudding into your pie crust.
Here I cheat and use the store-bought frozen pie crusts. So easy but still tastes AMAZING!
Beat 3 egg whites in large bowl with mixer on high speed until foamy. Gradually beat in 1/3 cup sugar until stiff peaks for,
The meringue best part of the pie if you ask me!
Simply plop it on the top of the pie. If you can make loopy peaks it makes the pie look even better.
Bake at 350 for 10 to 15 minutes to brown the meringue.
When it comes out of the oven it is all golden and I just want to it! BUT, it must cool before you cut into it or it will just be a gooey mess.
The next picture was supposed to be a beautiful slice of pie. But I waited so anxious to have a slice that I completely forgot to take a picture of that. OOPS! But let me tell you, it was AMAZING!
Want another delicious flavor of pie? How about the classic Apple Pie. This recipe is delicious too.
Lemon Meringue Pie Video Tutorial
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What is your favorite flavor of pie? Share and leave a comment below!
Quick and Easy Swiss Meringue Buttercream (Cheater’s Swiss Meringue)
The quickest and easiest Swiss Meringue Buttercream you’ll ever make! It’s as easy as making American Buttercream but is not toothachingly sweet and doesn’t crust over. This “Cheater’s” Swiss Meringue buttercream recipe is definitely smooth, silky, and easy to work with.
A slice of a birthday cake I made – filled, frosted, and decorated using this quick and easy Swiss Meringue Buttercream. Recipe for the chocolate and vanilla funfetti cake layers can be found right here.
I love Swiss Meringue buttercream because it’s smooth, silky, and not toothachingly (if there is such a word) sweet. The traditional way of making Swiss Meringue Buttercream is whipping a mixture of egg whites and sugar that has been gently heated in a double boiler (The temperature of the egg whites should reach 160 F/ 70 C.) until the sugar dissolves and the eggs are cooked. Cubes of room temperature butter are then gradually added to the meringue, then the flavor ingredients.
Compared to the American buttercream where you just basically add the ingredients in your mixer, Swiss Meringue Buttercream can be a bit tedious to make.
What if I tell you that there’s a quicker and easier way to make it? Enter this Cheater’s Buttercream from Sugar Hero.
Boy oh boy, I’m so glad I have found this gem! The recipe uses pasteurized egg whites, which means you don’t have to painstakingly separate the egg whites from the yolks. Plus, you get to skip the step of heating of the egg whites. Pasteurized egg whites are safe to consume without cooking them. This “cheater’s version” is as easy as making American buttercream but it’s not toothachingly sweet and it doesn’t crust over. It definitely saved me a lot of time when making my birthday unicorn cake without sacrificing the taste! Sugar Hero was literally my “hero” during that time when I needed to finish this cake at the shortest time possible.
If you want to know more about how I made this birthday unicorn cake, click on the image below. =)
The eggs must be spanking fresh as this makes them easier to separate.
Separate 3 large eggs one at a time, placing each white in a cup or small bowl before adding it to the whisking bowl. You can watch how to do this in our Cookery School Video on the this page. This means that if an accident occurs with, say, the third egg and you break the yolk, the other two are safe.
The proportion of sugar is always 50 g for each egg white. So, for 3 whites weigh out 175 g caster sugar onto a plate and have ready a clean, grease-free tablespoon (see note below on conversions)
Switch the whisk on to a slow speed and begin whisking for about two minutes, or until everything has become bubbly (this timing will be right for 2 to 3 egg whites you'll need slightly more time for 4, 5 or 6). After that, switch to a medium speed for a further minute, then whisk at the highest speed and continue whisking through the soft peak stage until stiff peaks are formed. The whites should be all cloudy and foamy at this stage. Another test is to look at the whites on the end of the whisk – they should form a stiff peak without falling off the whisk. It's very important not to over-whisk the whites – this will stretch the surface of the bubbles that have formed and they will burst and collapse into liquid. You can also watch Delia's Perfect Egg Whites video on this page to see what they should look like.
Next, whisk the sugar in on fast speed, about a tablespoon at a time, until you have a stiff and glossy mixture with a satin sheen. Spoon onto baking sheets lined with baking parchment (or a liner) ready for baking.
My own method of baking has stood the test of time and, provided your oven temperature is correct, it will never let you down. You will find the exact temperatures and timings in each individual recipe. These differ according to the size of the meringues and the degree of colour called for, but the general principle is – they go into the oven at 150°C, gas mark 2, the temperature is then immediately reduced to gas 140°C, gas mark 1 for the actual baking and, once baked, the oven is turned off and the meringues are left in there, undisturbed, until the oven is completely cold.
Note on conversions: You may be confused and think that 3 x 50g is 150g. The truth is we are ruled by our conversion charts and when Delia started writing, meringue was always 2oz of sugar for each large egg white. Three times two ounces is six ounces but six ounces on our conversion chart is 175g as weights are always rounded up or down. It would not sound right to say 58.33g per egg white. We expect a day will come when we no longer refer to imperial weights but as Delia says, "It’s quite hard when you are in your seventies!" This recipe will work using 150 or 175g of sugar so we hope you will forgive us.
The easiest swiss meringue buttercream recipe ever!
Have you ever wanted to make swiss meringue buttercream, but ended up getting egg yolk in your egg whites in the process?
Or would you rather make swiss meringue buttercream with pasterurized egg whites from a carton?
Then this cheat’s guide to perfect swiss meringue is the recipe for you!
If there’s an easy swiss meringue buttercream, why make the original version?
The original swiss meringue buttercream is truly delicious. This cheat’s version just isn’t the same as the original because it’s hard to incorporate the same amount of air in the cheat’s version.
The cheat’s version is a more buttery, and slightly more dense version of classic swiss meringue buttercream. There are TWO methods of making the cheat’s method of swiss meringue buttercream.
It’s still a great way to use egg whites that are “tainted” with egg yolks. It’s also another way to make swiss meringue buttercream if you want to skip the pasteurization step, or if you’re using already pasteurized egg whites from a carton.
So think of this easy faux swiss meringue buttercream as a cross between American buttercream and classic Swiss meringue buttercream.
How to make easy swiss meringue buttercream
How to mimic classic swiss meringue buttercream
The reason why swiss meringue is so light and fluffy is because of the air incorporated into the meringue base.
If you’re using pasteurized egg whites (carton egg whites) or raw egg whites with egg yolks, it’s hard to get the same level of air in the buttercream without the meringue base.
Instead, for this easy faux swiss meringue buttercream, we’ll be incorporating as much air as possible into the butter to create a light and airy buttercream.
What you need to make cheat’s swiss meringue buttercream frosting
- Egg whites
- Sugar or confectioner’s sugar
- Cream (optional)
- Salt and vanilla
The egg whites and sugar form the egg base. This can be made in TWO WAYS.
Pasteurized egg whites + confectioner’s sugar
This is the easiest method to make the egg white base for this easy swiss meringue buttercream. Since pasteurized egg whites are safe to eat as they are, it’s not necessary to heat them. The confectioner’s sugar (or powdered sugar) will easily dissolve in the egg whites as well.
Egg whites + granulated white sugar
If you were planning on making classic swiss meringue, but accidentally got yolk in your egg white mixture, then this is the best way to make the egg white sugar syrup to make the faux swiss meringue buttercream.
You can also make this with egg whites without yolks.
Since raw egg whites are not pasteurized, the egg whites and sugar mixture needs to be heated in a bowl until the sugar dissolves and it reaches 160 F, over a pot of simmering water, and then cooled down to room temperature before use.
You can use salted or unsalted butter for this recipe. If you use salted butter, you may need to omit the extra salt in the recipe.
The butter needs to be really soft, so that it incorporates air easily when whipped. Ideally the temperature of the butter should be about 75 F.
Here in Ottawa, it’s next to impossible to get the butter to be 75 F at room temperature in the winter. So what I do is I place the butter in a metal bowl, over ANOTHER bowl of hot water, and then mix the butter with a spatula until it’s soft and around 75 – 76 F.
Whipping cream is not an ingredient used in the classic version of swiss meringue buttercream.
Here, the whipping cream serves to soften the butter more and allow for more air to be incorporated into the butter. This is an easy way to help achieve a creamy consistency for this faux swiss meringue buttercream.
Salt and vanilla
Both salt and vanilla add flavor to the buttercream. If you’re using salted buttercream, then skip the salt.
I prefer using vanilla extract over vanilla essence because the flavor is better. If you’re using vanilla essence, then I recommend adding only about 1 tsp or less. Too much imitation vanilla essence can yield a bitterness.
How to make faux swiss meringue buttercream
The first step is to make the egg white and sugar base.
Pasteurized egg whites and confectioner’s sugar – Whisk the pasteurized egg whites and confectioner’s sugar for about 5 minutes until the mixture is thick, white, and creamy. Scrape the egg white mix from the mixer bowl into a different bowl and set aside. The butter can be whipped in the same bowl.
Raw egg whites and granulated sugar – Heat the egg whites and sugar over a double boiler until the sugar dissolves and the mix reaches a temperature of 160 F. Let it cool to room temperature (about 75 F).
Next, whip the butter with salt and vanilla, at medium high speed in your stand mixer with the whisk attachment. Whisk for 5 – 10 minutes, until the butter is light and very fluffy.
Add 2 – 3 tbsp whipping cream to the butter and whip further to make the butter softer and fluffier.
Pour the egg white and sugar mixture, while the butter is being whipped. Keep whisking until the mixture looks like a fluffy, creamy buttercream.
If you live in a warm climate, the buttercream will be soft enough to use. But if the buttercream still looks and tastes too much like butter, add another couple of tablespoons of cream and whip until smooth and creamy.
Switch from a whisk attachment to a paddle attachment, and mix the buttercream again. This will help make the buttercream frosting smooth, and remove any air bubbles.
While this is a sweet buttercream, you can make it even sweeter by adding extra sifted confectioner’s sugar if you like.
You can also use a hand mixer instead of a stand mixer for this recipe.
Aaaand that’s it! It’s so simple to make. And you can use this easy swiss meringue buttercream frosting recipe in the same way you’d use any buttercream!
Can I add the butter directly into the egg whites?
You can. You just have to make sure the butter is really soft, so that you don’t end up with chunks of butter in the final buttercream.
That’s why I prefer to whisk the butter separately. This ensures the butter will disperse well throughout the buttercream. It also ensures the incorporation of more air in your buttercream, making the final product very fluffy and creamy.
You can store this buttercream at room temperature for about 2 days. In the winter, I’ve stored this for 3 days at room temp without an issue because our kitchen is quite cool at night (O Canada!).
Cover the buttercream and store it in the fridge for up to one week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Then let the buttercream thaw out to room temperature, and re-whip to make it creamy again.
How to use this buttercream recipe
You can use it to frost cakes and cupcakes. It’s a fantastic birthday cake frosting, just add some colorful sprinkles on top!
You can also add cocoa powder to make a chocolate buttercream version too, but I prefer adding melted chocolate instead for a richer and smoother taste.
You can also add different flavors like coffee, almond, mint, and others!
Here are some great cake and cupcake recipes that you can make, and frost with this incredibly light, fluffy, buttery, easy swiss meringue buttercream!
This wedding cake I made in 2017 for a friend was filled and frosted with this easy faux swiss meringue buttercream!
Tips to remember
Make sure the butter is very soft, but not melted, so that you can whip as much air as possible into it.
Use pasteurized egg whites and confectioner’s sugar for the quickest and easiest swiss meringue buttercream version.
If you use raw egg whites and sugar, make sure they are heated and then cooled to room temperature.
Whipping cream helps keep the buttercream soft.
Use good quality vanilla extract to flavor the buttercream.
You can get the recipe for the cheat’s chocolate swiss meringue buttercream here.
Looking for more recipes? Sign up for my free recipe newsletter to get new recipes in your inbox each week! Find me sharing more inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram.
Basic Italian Meringue Recipe
The science of meringue is easily explained, but no matter how many times I watch watery, viscous egg whites inflate into glossy white peaks, it always feels like alchemy. How could a simple egg white whipped with sugar transform into the voluminous lovechild of marshmallow and whipped cream? From mousses to buttercream to the toasted finish of a baked Alaska, it's one of the fundamental building blocks of pastry and a technique that provides fluffy, sweet aeration to hundreds of our favorite desserts.
Remarkably, the only ingredients needed to make meringue are egg whites and sugar, though an acid—usually lemon juice or cream of tartar—is often included as well.
Here's how it works. Egg whites consist of water and proteins. As you whip the whites, you force egg proteins to unfold and bond around air bubbles, creating a new type of structure. As you continue to whip, the bubbles get broken down while the protein mesh gets stretched out thinner and thinner. Eventually, as the bubbles become so small that an individual bubble is not observable to the human eye, the whipped whites take on a glossy, shaving cream-like texture.
This basic concept remains the same for all meringues, but there's more than one way to skin a cat the various methods to create meringue can be categorized into three different groups: French (made by simply whipping egg whites and sugar), Swiss (the whites and sugar are gently heated in a double boiler while cooking), and Italian (a hot sugar syrup is drizzled into egg whites as they whip). All three are useful in their own way, but today we're going to talk about Italian.
Italian meringue lends itself to a large range of uses. Whipping a hot (240°F/115°C) sugar syrup into foamy egg whites doesn't just make it the most stable of the meringues—it's also safe to eat without additional baking, which is why it's traditionally used to make buttercream frosting, or "Italian Buttercream." Italian meringue is also the most involved of the meringues because it requires a little bit of sugar cookery, but once you understand some meringue basics and have a good thermometer, it's as easy as meringue pie.