Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (2023)

This post may contain affiliate links. See our disclosure policy.

Lemon Meringue Pie is one of my all-time favorites. Smooth, tart lemon filling with light and fluffy meringue that melts in your mouth. The best lemon pie you will ever taste!

Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (1)
Jump to Recipe
Featured with this recipe
  1. Ingredients in Lemon Meringue Pie
  2. How to Make Lemon Meringue Pie
  3. Making Homemade Crust
  4. For The Perfect Meringue…
  5. Frequently Asked Questions about Lemon Meringue Pie
  6. More Delicious Pie Recipes
  7. Mom’s Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

This Lemon Meringue Pie is definitely one of our more treasured family recipes from our mom. We grew up on this dessert; it’s been a favorite in our family as far back as I can remember. Our dad always requests it to be one of the pies served at Thanksgiving dinner, many Sunday dinners and it has replaced his birthday cake on more than one occasion. You just can’t beat the tangy lemon curd pie filling, homemade pie crust, and the light and airy meringue on top. Perfection in every bite!

Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (2)

Ingredients in Lemon Meringue Pie

Fresh lemon juice and lemon zest give the filling an irresistible tart lemon flavor. The meringue gets light and fluffy from whipped egg whites that turn a gorgeous golden brown in the oven. It really is the best lemon meringue pie recipe. A store bought pie doesn’t even come close to the deliciousness of this homemade treat. Here’s what you need:

  • Baked pie shell – You can buy a frozen pie crust at the store (they usually come two to a package) or make your own! Ourhomemade pie crustis easy to make and tastes so delicious!
Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (3)


  • Sugar – regular, white granulated sugar
  • Cornstarch – this helps thicken the custard
  • Salt – to taste
  • Water
  • Grated lemon zest – use a zester or a grater to get about a tablespoon of lemon peel
  • Egg yolks – when you separate your eggs, save the whites for the meringue topping!
  • Butter – salted or unsalted butter both work great
  • Lemon juice – about half a cup of juice, or the juice of one whole lemon
Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (4)


  • Egg whites – you’ll need about five to six large egg whites. Make sure they’re at room temperature
  • Cream of tartar – you’ll find this ingredient in the spices section of the grocery store.
  • Sugar
Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (5)

How to Make Lemon Meringue Pie

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the sugar, cornstarch, salt, water, and lemon zest a boil, stirring constantly.
  2. The secret to a silky smooth pie is stir stir stir! Stirring the filling constantly with a rubber spatula will ensure a flawlessly smooth texture.
  3. Remove from heat and whisk in the egg yolks. Let it simmer over medium heat for one minute, stirring constantly.
  4. Once again, remove from the heat and whisk in the butter and lemon juice.
  5. Pour into your baked pie crust and let it cool.
  6. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar together until foamy. You can use an electric mixer with the whisk attachment or a hand mixer.
  7. Then, add sugar slowly to the mixture, whipping until stiff peaks form.
  8. Top the pie with the light meringue and bake at 325 degrees for about ten minutes or until the soft peaks are lightly browned.
  9. Finally, let the pie set until it’s time to serve.
Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (6)

Making Homemade Crust

For this recipe we almost always make our crust from scratch using our perfect pie crust recipe. If you are going to put the time in to making a great lemon meringue pie, it’s worth it to add a few extra minutes and make a great crust. Granted, we realize that sometimes time is of the essence and sometimes store-bought is the way to go. Either way, whether you are making homemade or using store-bought be sure to poke holes in the bottom of the crust or use pie weights to keep the crust from bubbling up. This will help the pie to fill more evenly.

Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (7)

For The Perfect Meringue…

Whip egg whites on high speed to create egg bubbles. Those bubbles will get trapped inside as the meringue cooks. This gives it the light fluffiness that complements the creamy lemon filling to perfection.

Frequently Asked Questions about Lemon Meringue Pie

Should I refrigerate lemon meringue pie?

If you put the pie in the refrigerator too soon after baking, it can cause weeping (or liquid under the meringue layer) so let the pie sit at room temperature just until it’s set and before serving. After a few hours, you will need to cover it. Place toothpicks in the pie and gently drape with plastic wrap or cover with aluminum foil. Store in the fridge.

Is this pie best hot or cold?

You can serve it either way! Some really prefer a chilled lemon pie, but it’s really delicious served slightly warm, so the meringue melts in your mouth.

How can I make my custard thicker?

If your custard isn’t thick enough, you can add extra corn starch to some water and slowly stir it in. Flour, tapioca or potato starch are also often used as thickening agents.

Why does my lemon meringue pie get watery?

The crust of the pie can get watery if the crust has not been pre-bake. We recommend always using a pre-baked crust when making lemon meringue pie. The top of the pie can get watery (or weepy) by forming little beads of water when the meringue is overcooked, undercooked, or cools too quickly. We recommend letting the pie cool to room temperature before refrigerating.

Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (8)

Read More:The BEST Traditional Easter Dinner Ideas

More Delicious Pie Recipes

Whether you’re baking up pies for the holidays, Sunday dinner, or a celebration, here are some traditional and unique pie recipes you will love!

Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (9)
Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (10)
Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (11)
Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (12)
  • Key Lime Pie– A traditional southern pie in a graham cracker crust. It is creamy, sweet, and tart all at the same time.
  • Easy Berry Pie – This pie is full of plump, juicy blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries and tastes delicious with vanilla ice cream. An easy pie recipe for any occasion!
  • Island Pecan Pie– Loaded with coconut, pecans, and pineapple, this pie is creamy and full of flavor.
  • Coconut Cream Pie– Coconut Cream Pie is a dreamy island dessert with a flaky crust, coconut filling that is made from scratch, and toasted coconut sprinkles.
  • Creamy Lemon Pie– This Creamy Lemon Pie is packed full of tart, lemon flavor and creamy goodness. This recipe is super easy to make and is always a crowd pleaser!
  • German Chocolate Pie– This pie recipe comes straight from Amish country. The rich, gooey, chocolate filling is to die for!

Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (13)

Mom’s Lemon Meringue Pie

4.81 from 21 votes

Lemon Meringue Pie is one of my all-time favorites. Smooth, tart lemon filling with light and fluffy meringue that melts in your mouth. The best lemon pie you will ever taste!


Prep Time 20 minutes mins

Cook Time 15 minutes mins

Total Time 35 minutes mins

Course Dessert

Cuisine American

Servings 8





  • In a medium-sized saucepot, bring sugar, cornstarch, salt, water, and lemon peel to a boil, stirring constantly.The secret to a silky smooth pie is stir stir stir!

    Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (14)

  • Remove from heat and mix in with wire whip 4 egg yolks. Return to heat for 1 minute stirring constantly. Remove from heat and whisk in 3 tablespoons butter, then ½ cup lemon juice.

    Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (15)

  • Pour into pie crust and cool.

    Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (16)

Meringue Topping:

  • In a mixing bowl or stand mixer, beat egg whites and cream of tartar in high speed until foamy. Gradually add ½ cup sugar beating until stiff peaks form.

    Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (17)

  • Top pie with meringue. Using the back of a spoon, press lightly into the meringue and pull up to form little peaks.

    Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (18)

  • Bake at 325 about 10 minutes or until meringue is lightly browned.

    Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (19)

  • Chill until set.

    Mom's Lemon Meringue Pie (20)


  • Before baking the crust, use the tines of a fork to press down the edges or the pie around the edge or use your fingers to crimp the crust into a pretty design.
  • Also using a fork, gently poke little holes in the bottom of the crust before baking to prevent the crust from bubbling up. You can also prevent the crust from bubbling up by using pie weights or even dried beans.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 401kcalCarbohydrates: 69gProtein: 5gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 109mgSodium: 237mgPotassium: 92mgFiber: 1gSugar: 51gVitamin A: 260IUVitamin C: 6.8mgCalcium: 20mgIron: 0.8mg

Love this recipe?

We want to hear from you! Please leave a review.

Rate and Review


What is the perfect meringue secret? ›

Strong and stable

It's not necessary, but if making meringues makes you nervous, a little pinch of cream of tartar or a few drops of lemon juice added to the whites help to strengthen their structure and prevent overwhisking.

Why does my meringue slide off my lemon meringue pie? ›

If the meringue is swirled onto a cool filling and baked, steam in the reheating filling just reaches the meringue. As the pie cools, the steam condenses to form the sweet weeping (sometimes a pool) under the meringue. And when the pie is cut, the meringue is inclined to slip off the wedges.

Did Mrs Edwards stop making lemon meringue pie? ›

Edwards discontinued her lemon meringue pies..

How do I make my bottom pie crust crispy? ›

Brush Your Pie in Egg Wash

Once you've pre-baked your pie, brush the bottom and sides of the crust with egg wash, then reheat at 400° for 4 minutes to set the glaze. This creates a seal between the crust and the filling so that your crust stays crispy and golden once the filling is added.

Do you cover a lemon meringue pie when you put it in the refrigerator? ›

Yes, lemon meringue pie should be refrigerated. To prevent foodborne illness, never let it sit at room temperature for more than two hours. To store lemon meringue pie without messing up the meringue, place two toothpicks in the pie. Loosely cover it with storage wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to two days.

What are the three rules for making a successful meringue? ›

Use eggs at room temperature. Cold egg whites tend to reduce meringue volume. Never let any yolk get into the whites. Don't overbeat egg whites.

What must be avoided when making meringue? ›

  1. Adding the Sugar Too Quickly.
  2. Skipping the Cream of Tartar.
  3. Using a Dirty Bowl.
  4. Not Bringing Eggs to Room Temperature.
  5. Beating the Egg Whites for Too Long.
  6. Squeezing All the Air Out.
  7. Baking the Meringues Too Low.
Aug 17, 2022

Should you whisk meringue fast or slow? ›

Low and slow is the way to go. Slow and steady is the fast and hard rule for any meringue. Start slow when whipping the whites for small and stable bubbles, slowly up the tempo so you don't over beat and then slowly add the sugar.

Is cream of tartar necessary for meringue? ›

The bottom line: For smooth, stiff beaten egg whites that keep their shape, don't skip the cream of tartar. If you don't have cream of tartar, substituting 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice or white vinegar per egg white works almost as well. To avoid meringues that weep, don't skip the cream of tartar...

Should meringue be put on hot or cold filling? ›

A: Meringues can be so problematic because they are foams made with egg whites, which are mostly water and particularly sensitive to heat. Make sure you're spreading your meringue over a hot — not cooled — pie filling.

Is it OK to leave a lemon meringue pie out overnight? ›


Bacteria grow rapidly at temperatures between 40 °F and 140 °F; lemon meringue pie should be discarded if left out for more than 2 hours at room temperature.

Can you leave a lemon meringue pie overnight? ›

The pie crust can be cooked and stored (in the pie tin) in an airtight container (or zipper-style bag) up to two days before. The assembled Lemon Meringue Pie will keep a few days in the fridge, but the meringue and/or the lemon filling will begin to weep. It is best eaten the day it is assembled.

What nationality is lemon meringue? ›

What many folks don't know is that lemon meringue pie is actually a Philadelphia invention born out of the Victorian-era, courtesy of Mrs. Elizabeth Goodfellow, a 19th century pastry shop proprietress who ran America's first cooking school. This classic pie of contrasting sweet-tart layers evolved from one of Mrs.

How do you avoid a soggy bottom? ›

A metal pie pan placed on a preheated surface will set the bottom crust quickest; once cooked, the liquids from the filling above won't soak in, and as a result: no soggy bottom. (Using metal is crucial: Glass or ceramic pans don't transfer heat as efficiently, so they can be accomplices to a sad, soggy bottom.)

How do you keep meringues from getting soggy? ›

Keep baked merengue in a dry environment.

As a result, if you can help it, it's best not to bake meringue on a humid day. If you do, make sure your meringue has cooled completely—ideally on the baking sheet in the oven—before transferring it to an airtight container.

How do you keep a pie crust from getting soggy overnight? ›

  1. Using Less Water in the Dough. The moister your dough is, the more likely the pie is to get soggy when baked with a fruit filling. ...
  2. Toss Fruit with Sugar. ...
  3. Make a Thicker Bottom Crust. ...
  4. Use Dried Breadcrumbs. ...
  5. Use a Beaten Egg to Seal. ...
  6. Add Slits to Double Crust Fruit Pies. ...
  7. Bake on Preheated Baking Sheet. ...
  8. Bake on Lower Rack.
Mar 7, 2022

Why did my lemon meringue pie go watery? ›

A lemon pie may become watery when put in the oven to brown the meringue, if it is left in the oven too long; or it may water because the filling was not sufficiently cooked before putting into the pastry shell, or it may be from an insufficiency of flour being used in making the filling.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Margart Wisoky

Last Updated: 02/10/2023

Views: 6338

Rating: 4.8 / 5 (58 voted)

Reviews: 81% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Margart Wisoky

Birthday: 1993-05-13

Address: 2113 Abernathy Knoll, New Tamerafurt, CT 66893-2169

Phone: +25815234346805

Job: Central Developer

Hobby: Machining, Pottery, Rafting, Cosplaying, Jogging, Taekwondo, Scouting

Introduction: My name is Margart Wisoky, I am a gorgeous, shiny, successful, beautiful, adventurous, excited, pleasant person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.