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Lemon Meringue pie

Lemon Meringue Pie

This pie is delicious. The lemon flavor is perfect.  The meringue is light and compliments the pie exquisitely.  However, the recommended times for chilling, baking, and allowing it to set after browning the meringue, are CRUCIAL.  Do not bypass any of these steps.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Custard, desserts, Lemon Meringue Pie, Lemons, Meringue, Pie
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Resting Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 36 minutes
Servings 8 slices
Author Cook's Country


  • 1 9" frozen pie crust prepared according to package directions

For the custard filling

  • 1 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup freshly squeeze lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp table salt
  • 8 large egg yolks at room temperature reserve 4 egg whites for the pie meringue
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened but not melted

For the meringue

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 4 large egg whites at room temperature reserved from the yolks used in the custard
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  • Par-bake the 9" pie crust according to package directions and allow it to cool completely.

For the custard filling

  • Whisk together the sugar, lemon juice, water, cornstarch, and salt in a large saucepan until the cornstarch is completely dissolved.
  • Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer, whisking occasionally, until the mixture thickens about 5 minutes.
  • Make sure your egg yolks are at room temperature.
  • Off heat, whisk one egg yolk at a time into the mixture. Stir in the lemon zest and butter.
  • Place back on medium heat and stir constantly until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Using a fine-mesh strainer, pour the mixture into another bowl, then pour the mixture into your cooled pie crust and scrape the filling off the underneath side of the strainer.
  • Place a sheet of plastic wrap over the custard, making sure it makes contact with the surface of the custard. Refrigerate until the custard has completely set, at least 2-3 hours.

For the meringue

  • Heat your oven to 400ºF and place a rack in the upper-middle position.
  • In a small saucepan, stir the water and sugar together. Place on medium-high heat and bring to a vigorous boil.
  • Once the syrup comes to a rolling boil, cook for an additional 4 minutes. The syrup will thicken.
  • Remove from the heat and set aside.
  • Using an electric mixture on low speed, beat the egg whites until frothy, about one minute.
  • Add the salt and cream of tartar, beat at slow speed but gradually increase the speed to medium-high until the whites have formed soft peaks, about 2 minutes.
  • With the mixture running, pour the hot syrup into the whites, avoiding the moving beaters.
  • Add the vanilla and beat until the meringue has cooled and becomes thick and shiny about 10 minutes.
  • Use a spatula to mound the meringue over the filling, making sure the meringue touches the edge of the pie crust.
  • Bake until the meringue begins to brown on the peaks - about 6 minutes.
  • Allow the pie to cool on a wire rack, at room temperature, until the filling has set - at least 2 hours.
  • Serve