Ultimate lemon meringue pie on a cake stand

Ultimate lemon meringue pie

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(271 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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    10th May, 2014
    Fabulous! I made this last night for a dinner party and everyone said it was the best lemon meringue pie ever. It was lovely and light and just lemony enough. There is just one piece left which I shall have to eat to see if it can be made the day before you need it...... all in the cause of research you understand!!
    24th Apr, 2014
    Made this Lemon Meringue Pie yesterday and my husband said it's the best he's ever had. Will be a regular in my household!!. Very lemony. Meringue wasn't so peaked as picture but tasted so good anyway.
    14th Apr, 2014
    Just brilliant, really easy to follow recipe and the results were fantastic. Makes a great spectacular desert without a crumb left at the end!
    12th Apr, 2014
    Fabulous version of this classic pudding. I was slightly unsure about the addition of orange juice but it didn't taste "orangey" and gave the filling a wonderful rich colour. Will definitely use this recipe again (and have already passed it on).
    6th Apr, 2014
    Definite 5 star pudding. Made mine the day before needing it but didn't do the meringue until I was ready to cook it. Wondered if the orange juice might detract from the lemon but it was just delicious and added to the rich colour of the lemon layer. (I think it would have been fine with a 3 egg white meringue).
    27th Mar, 2014
    First time I've attempted to make LMP let alone meringue and it was perfect!!
    16th Feb, 2014
    Made this today with gluten free shortcrust pastry (readymade) and it was delicious. I also halved the sugar in the meringue as husband doesn't have a sweet tooth, I do, but I think it was plenty sweet enough with half the amount. Tangy filling and fluffy meringue.
    26th Jan, 2014
    Perfectly titled recipe, I've made a few different versions of this over the years but this was by far the best. The lemon filling was just the right balance of sharpness and thickened perfectly, meringue was lovely and crispy. I didn't bother waiting too long to eat it and that didn't matter. Tastes even better warm and no problems with the filling going runny. Even my two children that initially insisted they didn't like lemon meringue pie managed to 'force' a slice each down. Great recipe.
    18th Jan, 2014
    I made this pie for the first time the other day for a birthday meal. Making it was easy as pie. Though be careful to whip the meringue mixture properly otherwise...
    16th Jan, 2014
    for the 2nd time doing this cake and cannot get the meringue right - there needs to be more explanation how powerful the whisking is needed, what thickness the whites should be when they are ready.The rest is perfect, but the meringue ruins the whole tart - so frustrating. My recent one was leaking, because the meringue didnt communicate to the lemon curd. I dont know how to deal with it - I wil just give up and stick with lemon tart only.


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