Ultimate lemon meringue pie on a cake stand

Ultimate lemon meringue pie

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(287 ratings)

Prep: 1 hr, 30 mins Cook: 1 hr, 45 mins Or 40-50 mins if baking the pastry a day ahead


Serves 6 - 8

You can't go wrong with one of Angela Nilsen's ultimates and this is no exception

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal480
  • fat24g
  • saturates13g
  • carbs64g
  • sugars41g
  • fibre1g
  • protein7g
  • salt0.53g
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    For the pastry

    • 175g plain flour
    • 100g cold butter, cut in small pieces



      Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

    • 1 tbsp icing sugar
    • 1 egg yolk

    For the filling

    • 2 level tbsp cornflour
    • 100g golden caster sugar
    • finely grated zest 2 large lemon



      Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…

    • 125ml fresh lemon juice (from 2-3 lemons)
    • juice 1 small orange



      One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

    • 85g butter, cut into pieces



      Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

    • 3 egg yolks and a 1 whole egg

    For the meringue

    • 4 egg whites, room temperature
    • 200g golden caster sugar
    • 2 level tsp cornflour


    1. For the pastry, put 175g plain flour, 100g cold butter, cut into small pieces, 1 tbsp icing sugar, 1 egg yolk (save the white for the meringue) and 1 tbsp cold water into a food processor.

    2. Using the pulse button so the mix is not overworked, process until the mix starts to bind.

    3. Tip the pastry onto a lightly floured surface, gather together until smooth, then roll out and line a 23 x 2.5cm loose-bottom fluted flan tin.

    4. Trim and neaten the edges. Press pastry into flutes. The pastry is quite rich, so don’t worry if it cracks, just press it back together. Prick the base with a fork, line with foil, shiny side down, and chill for 1⁄2-1 hour (or overnight).

    5. Put a baking sheet in the oven and heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Bake the pastry case ‘blind’ (filled with dry beans) for 15 mins, then remove the foil and bake a further 5-8 mins until the pastry is pale golden and cooked.

    6. Set aside. Can be done a day ahead if you want to get ahead. Lower the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.

    7. While the pastry bakes, prepare the filling: mix 2 level tbsp cornflour, 100g golden caster sugar and finely grated zest of 2 large lemons in a medium saucepan. Strain and stir in 125ml lemon juice gradually.

    8. Make the juice of 1 small orange up to 200ml with water and strain into the pan. Cook over a medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened and smooth. 

    9. Once the mixture bubbles, remove from the heat and beat in 85g butter until melted. Beat 3 egg yolks (save white for meringue) and 1 whole egg together, stir into the pan and return to a medium heat.

    10. Keep stirring vigorously for a few minutes, until the mixture thickens and plops from the spoon. (It will bubble, but doesn’t curdle.) Take off the heat and set aside while you make the meringue. 

    11. Put 4 egg whites in a large bowl. Whisk to soft peaks, then add 100g of the golden caster sugar a spoonful at a time, whisking between each addition without overbeating.

    12. Whisk in 2 level tsp cornflour, then add the remaining 100g of the golden caster sugar as before until smooth and thick. 

    13. Quickly reheat the filling and pour it into the pastry case. Immediately put spoonfuls of meringue around the edge of the filling (if you start in the middle the meringue may sink), then spread so it just touches the pastry (this will anchor it and help stop it sliding).

    14. Pile the rest into the centre, spreading so it touches the surface of the hot filling (and starts to cook), then give it all a swirl.

    15. Return to the oven for 18-20 mins until the meringue is crisp and slightly coloured. Let the pie sit in the tin for 30 mins, then remove and leave for at least another 1⁄2-1 hr before slicing. Eat the same day.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    27th Mar, 2008
    Yummy! probably as good as my recipe that I've been using for thirty years, perhaps the addition of orange juice helped to calm the tart of the lemons a bit? the pastry is super for any sweet recipe,will use again definately,anyway a great thumbs up!
    16th Mar, 2008
    Alas I appear to be the first one to have had a few problems with this one. I think the filling was lovely BUT When next I make this I will use a handheld electric mixer as I think this will give me a better feel for when the egg whites are ready to add the cornflour!! Well I hope next time goes better I also found longlife orange juice was fine for the filling.
    1st Feb, 2008
    fantastic pie, wouldn't change anything but i was a bit confused when it came to making the pastry. it said 1 icing sugar. didn't know if it meant 1oz or what so i put i tablespoon in and it worked. pastry was nice crisp and buttery. it did make one large one and one small one. ate the small one hot and still waiting for the large one to cool!! if we can wait that long. will use pastry again for other sweet dishes. excellent pie.
    28th Jan, 2008
    This was lovely, although mine didn't look quite so spectacular as the photo. My meringue was a bit more floppy, not sure why... did I over beat it perhaps? Anyway it didn't detract from a fabulous dessert! Pastry was fantastic, but I let is cool before I did the filling (only because I wasn't ready to do the filling then!)
    hobbychef's picture
    28th Jan, 2008
    This is a very yummy recipe. I did the pastry case the night before to save time. The only little thing I'd change is reduce the 125ml lemon juice to 100ml: but this is just a question of taste. Oh and in step 3 when you add the whole egg and 3 egg yolks it took me a bit longer than a few minutes (more like 6-7) for it to thicken and "plop", so be prepared to be patient!
    2nd Jan, 2008
    Delicious! Highly recommended! We cheated a bit & used a ready made sweet pastry tart, so decided to reduce the lemon mixture by about a third & the meringue by about a quarter which makes it a lot easier!
    3rd Dec, 2007
    I tackled this for a Sunday lunch party. If you follow the recipe exactly it is surprisingly easy and the results are fantastic. Be careful not to overbeat the meringue when adding the sugar...I think i did a bit but got away with it. Everyone raved about it and they were still talking about it today at work!! Its got just the right amount of tang without being tart.


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