Basic Meringue Recipe
Meringue is a basic mixture of egg whites and sugar that whips up into a voluminous mixture of fluff that is light and airy. This meringue mixture can be used to bake individually baked little meringue cookies, as a topping to pies or pirogy’s, or even incorporated into cakes.
How to flavor Meringue
- You can also gently mix nuts into this Basic Meringue if you want to amp up this recipe and make Hazelnut Meringue.
- If chocolate is your thing, go ahead and add 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder to the mix to make it chocolate flavored just like we did in this Kiev Cake Recipe.
- Add 1 tsp vanilla extract to the meringue if you wish. I don’t usually, since it is hard to taste it once the meringue dries.
How to make SMOOTH Meringue
Start out by combining the granulated sugar and the egg whites in the bowl. This is different than slowly adding the sugar into the lightly whipped egg whites, but this way the liquid from the egg whites helps to dissolve the sugar.
This method increases baking time, but in return, you get smooth, grain-free meringue – guaranteed!
What’s wrong with my meringue
The most common problem is unerwhipping the meringue. This creates an unstable meringue that doesn’t dry well, can be sticky, or even weep syrup as it bakes. You start whipping, you see it nice and fluffy and you think this is it. In reality, though, you still need to continue whipping until the meringue changes structure and goes from just fluffy to a stiff and fluffy meringue.
The meringue needs the structure to be stable enough and not collapse when subjected to being baked in the oven. That’s why you really do need to whip this meringue for the full 15 or more minutes (increase the time if using a hand-held mixer).
Hazelnut Meringue Cookies like this one are made with Basic Meringue. Click picture for the recipe.
Tips for Perfect Meringue
- Always start with a thoroughly cleaned, grease-free bowl. Metal or glass is best as it does not absorb or hold on to fats as plastic bowls do.
- Separate the eggs as soon as they’re out of the fridge, then allow to come to room temperature or heat in the microwave for a couple seconds. This will allow the eggs to whip up to their fullest.
- Don’t leave out the salt. The salt loosens up the egg whites and allows them to whip up to to the fullest.
- If you typically have trouble with meringue, do add cream of tartar or a teaspoon of vinegar or lemon juice. They help to stabilize meringue. I do not add any of them, but it does help if meringue gives you trouble.
- Use meringue right away after whipping. You can not whip the meringue ahead of time and use it later.
Can I use Powdered Sugar instead of Granulated
Yes, use the kinds of sugar interchangeably, but make sure to measure them by weight. One cup sugar weighs 200 g.
How to store meringue cookies
- Store meringue in an airtight container at room temperature. Properly made meringue will keep for weeks, but for freshness use within a week.
Basic Meringue Recipe
Ingredients for meringue:
How to make Basic Meringue Recipe:
- Into a thoroughly cleaned, absolutely grease-free mixer bowl, separate egg whites from your egg yolks making sure that no trace of the egg yolk gets into the egg whites. Add the sugar and a pinch of salt to the liquid egg whites and whip on high speed for about 15 minutes. If using a handheld electric mixer this might take about 5-10 minutes longer.
How to bake the Meringue
- To bake individual meringues: Preheat oven to 225 F, then fit a piping bag with a plain round or a star tip and pipe the meringues onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake until the meringues are dry all the way through in the middle. For a meringue mount of about 3 tablespoons, it will take about 2+ hours for it to dry.
- To check for doneness, gently open the oven door and remove one meringue mount. Allow to cool completely and crack it open to check the middle of the meringue. If the middle is dry, the meringue is done baking.
Depending on your recipe though, you might need the meringue to be soft and marshmallowy or nice and crunchy.
Check out these other EGG WHITE ONLY recipes:
- STRAWBERRY MARSHMALLOW (ZEFIR)
- MERINGUE BASKETS WITH BLACKBERRIES
- MINI BOCCONE DOLCE
- BASIC MACARONS RECIPE
- BASIC ITALIAN MERINGUE MACARONS
Basic Meringue Recipe
Meringue – a basic mixture of egg whites and sugar that whips up into a voluminous mixture of fluff that is light and airy. This meringue mixture can be used to bake individually baked little meringues, as a topping to pies or pirogy’s, or even incorporated into cakes.
- Into a thoroughly cleaned, absolutely grease-free bowl, separate egg whites from your egg yolks making sure that no trace of the egg yolk gets into the egg whites.
- Add 1 cup of sugar and a pinch of salt to the liquid egg whites and whip on high speed for about 15 minutes. If using a handheld mixer this might take about 5-10 minutes longer. As you start whipping the egg whites, they will be very thick and runny, but as you continue whipping, slowly the egg whites will gain volume and look very luster and pearly in color.
To bake individual meringues pipe the meringue onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake in preheated to 225F oven, until the meringues are dry all the way through in the middle.
For a meringue mount of about 3 tablespoons it will take about 2+ hours for it to dry.
To check, gently open the oven door and remove one meringue mount. Allow to completely cool. Crack it open and check the middle of the meringue. If it is dry in the middle it is baked. Depending on your recipe though, you might need the meringue to be soft and marshmallowy or nice and crunchy.