Oh my word, say hey to this Easy Lemon Meringue Pie, friends! A perfectly tart, sweet, and lemon-loaded filling sitting on top of a graham cracker crust. This pie is so lusciously creamy, delicious, and topped with dreamy, mile-high meringue!

easy lemon meringue pie in glass pie plate on beige surface

Whew, I’m real excited about this new recipe, peeps. Like over the moon, doing the most, type of excited. If you’re new here, I am obsessed with lemon-inspired recipes, both savory and sweet tings. A lovely reader sent me a message (hi!) not too long ago about me developing a lemon meringue pie. Much to my dismay, I couldn’t believe we didn’t already have one in the BBR roster.

I mean, nothing at all screams classic lemon recipes like lemon meringue pie! I developed this number off the strength of it hitting every single one of my favorite things about this famed pie. With a few differences from the classic, you will love this one! It’s the perfect Springtime bake and so wildly easy!

Easy Lemon Meringue Pie! 🍋

Real talk, this pie looks intimidating because it contains 3 main components: a pie crust/base, a filling center, and then a meringue topping. I know it has some of you like nahhhh. Lol. But listen, my lemon meringue pie is super simple and chill without a whole ton of fuss, promise. Here’s what’s going down:

  • Crust: Instead of a pastry pie dough as the crust (although nice, it’s time consuming), we’re using a graham cracker piecrust. This eliminates the need to make a homemade piecrust and then blind-bake and yadda yadda. Additionally, I love the added texture and taste of a graham cracker crust!
  • Filling: Traditional lemon meringue pie requires you to cook the filling and then temper the egg yolk mixture. While this is great, you’ll appreciate that this recipe does not need any of that to get a great-tasting filling…YES!
  • Meringue: There’s no needing to cook the meringue in the oven and all that jazz here. This is my signature meringue that yields a cloud-like, tasty meringue. It’s able to be spread right onto the chilled pie after making.
marshmallow meringue on top of lemon pie in glass pie plate

BBR fan-favorites: lemon sweet rolls, these lemon pepper chicken wings, this savory stunner, lemon herb butter ravioli and these lemon butter scallops with risotto, along with this chicken with caper cream sauce– delicious!

Ingredients For Lemon Meringue Pie

(Note: the full ingredients list, including measurements, is provided in the recipe card directly below.)

  • Crust: graham cracker crumbs, packed brown sugar, salt, and melted butter.
  • Filling: egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, and vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract.
  • Meringue: egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar, salt, and vanilla paste/extract.

This lemon meringue pie is an absolute dream, y’all! Whether you’re a lemon lover or not, the flavors going on here will win over everyone. I’m gonna be dramatic for a hot second and say that a bite of this pie is like pure sunshine in edible form, ha!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe ♡

  • Sooo easy! As I said earlier, this lemon meringue pie is one of the easiest that you’ll ever make, friends! Each of the three steps comes together so quickly, the entire thing is dang near foolproof. You’ll find the filling to be a mix together, dump, and bake situation. No cooking, tempering, and monitoring the curd. Also, whipping up the meringue is a breeze, don’t fret, you got this!
  • Perfect flavors + textures! This pie features a bright, zippy, and tart flavoring from *fresh* lemon juice and lemon zest. [Side note: do not even think about asking me if you could use that bottled lemon mess here!]. Then complimented nicely with the warm bite of a graham cracker piecrust. Lastly, the meringue topping sends this pie over the edge. It’s smooth and on the creamier end of meringues with its marshmallow consistency.
  • Creamy filling! I love that this lemon meringue pie has a filling that, to me, strikes a harmonious balance between tart but with a creamy mouthfeel. Some recipes I’ve tried are too tart and that’s all you taste. Not this one, nah. It has a lemony punch with a sort of pudding-like vibe, beyond luscious.
  • No-waste involved! Idk about you but I hate when a recipe calls for an unequal amount egg parts, and then you’re forced to discard or find another way to use leftovers. One thing I appreciate about this recipe is that it involves no waste at all. The entire egg (both whites + yolks) are used in different aspects for this lemon meringue pie…#teamnowaste 🙌🏾
easy lemon meringue pie in glass pie plate with lemon halves on the side

Tips + Tricks For The Best Lemon Meringue Pie

  1. Use fresh lemons. Listen, I know pre-bottled lemon juice has its convenience when needed for some things. Friends, this pie is not one of them. For the best lemon filling, go and get you some actual lemons from the store. That signature, all-natural lemon taste is the ingredient spotlight in this recipe. Both the fresh lemon juice and lemon zest make this lemon meringue pie what it is. I said what I said, please don’t upset me.
  2. Separate the eggs when cold. Separating the egg yolks and egg whites are easier to do when the eggs are super cold. Trying to do this when the eggs are room temperature is harder and you run the risk of them not separating beautifully. This is crucial especially for the meringue- any trace of egg yolks in the meringue is not good. Refrigerated eggs, perfect!
  3. Bake until just set. The filling after baking should be generally set but give off a slight jiggle. The sweet spot is baking for about 17-20 minutes.
  4. Cool and then refrigerate. After baking, allow the pie to cool down. Then transfer the pie into the refrigerator to set for at least 4 hours or more preferably, overnight. This process allows for the pie to not only chill, but also for the flavors to further meld and deepen.
lemon meringue pie in glass pie plate with flowers on the side

Meringue 101: What Is Meringue? ☁️

The most prominent aspect of lemon meringue pie is, well, the meringue. It’s the fluffy, glossy, and billowy topping that completes this pie. Meringue is a combination of mainly egg whites and sugar that is cooked/warmed together over a water bath. That mixture is then vigorously beaten and whisked together (using a stand mixer/handheld mixer) until it achieves a stiff consistency.

It’s light, airy, and one of the most amazing things for cakes, pies, and other bakes alike. Check it out on my sweet potato pie and these s’mores cupcakes, too! Furthermore, you can surely enjoy meringue as it is on its own or use a kitchen torch to get that swoon-worthy, toasted look, as shown in the images.

Can I Make This Pie Ahead Of Time?

Yes! The lemon pie can be made up to 2 days ahead of time. After baking, let it cool down. Then cover with foil and refrigerate. For the meringue, I recommend making this on the day you plan to serve the pie. Meringue has a very delicate nature and can weep (the texture collapses) when refrigerated for long.

Storing + Serving Lemon Meringue Pie, & Additional Recipe-Making Notes

  • When making meringue, I find it handy to use a thermometer to gauge the precise temperature. You can absolutely get by without one though!
  • For the meringue, I like to use a spoon to create little swoops when spreading the meringue onto the pie. Not entirely needed but gives a dreamy aesthetic. Feel free to use an offset spatula or any other utensil to spread the meringue.
  • After assembling, run a large knife under water. This helps to get cleaner slices of the pie, helps to prevent the filling/meringue from sticking.
  • Don’t keep the finished pie out on the counter for longer than an hour. After cutting and serving, place any remaining leftovers back into the refrigerator.
  • Store the finished pie in the refrigerator and it will keep for 1-2 days. Because this pie is topped with meringue, freezing is not recommended. Meringue is comprised of eggs and sugar, as such freezing will affect the overall texture.
  • Alternatively, make this lemon meringue pie into bars if you’d like! Use an 8×8-inch square baking pan to make this pie into a bar-type dessert. Yay.
  • For the graham cracker piecrust, some grocery stores sell “graham cracker crumbs.” These are graham crackers already pulsed into crumbs for you!
lemon meringue pie in glass pie dish on beige surface with squeezed lemons on the side

Y’all, this Easy Lemon Meringue Pie is a classic, must-make dessert. Lemon fanatics, I love this one for us ♡… Be sure to tag @butterbeready in your BBR recipe creations, I sure love to see it when you do. Until next time! 🤟🏾

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lemon meringue pie in glass pie plate with flowers on the side

Easy Lemon Meringue Pie

  • Author: Quin Liburd
  • Prep Time: 15m
  • Cook Time: 20m
  • Total Time: 35m
  • Yield: 6
  • Category: Desserts & Sweets
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American, Southern

Description

Oh my word, say hey to this Easy Lemon Meringue Pie, friends! A perfectly tart, sweet, and lemon-loaded filling sitting on top of a graham cracker crust. This pie is so lusciously creamy, delicious, and topped with dreamy, mile-high meringue!


Ingredients

Scale

For the crust:

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 16 crackers)
  • 1/4 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

For the filling:

  • 5 large egg yolks (save the whites for the meringue)
  • 14-ounce canned sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the meringue:

  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1 cup caster sugar or granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Prep the crust: In a medium bowl, combine the crushed graham crackers, brown sugar, salt, and melted butter. Mix until a wet, sand-like texture is formed. Then empty the mixture into a 9-inch pie plate. Use the bottom of a flat glass (or measuring cup) to evenly press the crumbs onto the bottom and up the sides of the pie plate.
  2. Bake the crust for 10 minutes. After baking the crust, set it aside to cool while you make the filling- do not shut off the oven.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks together. Then stir in the sweetened condensed milk and lemon zest. Whisk in the lemon juice, salt, and vanilla bean paste/extract until everything is thoroughly combined. Carefully pour the lemon filling onto the cooled pie crust. 
  4. Bake the lemon pie for 17-20 minutes, or until the filling is mostly set but gives the slightest jiggle/wobble.
  5. Place the pie onto a wire rack to cool down completely. Then carefully place a sheet of foil over the pie and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight for the best results.

For the meringue topping:

  1. Fill a small saucepan with a few inches of water and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Using a small, heatproof bowl, place the egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar, and salt into the bowl. Place the bowl over the saucepan, creating a double boiler- make sure the water in the saucepan is not touching the bottom of the bowl.
  2. Continuously whisk the mixture together until the sugar dissolves and the mixture goes from thick to thin, about 5-6 minutes. As you continue to stir, look for the mixture to get somewhat frothy and warm. Carefully, test the mixture by dipping a finger in, you should feel no sugar granules when rubbing between your fingers. To be precise, use a thermometer to check for a temperature of the mixture to reach 160°F.
  3. Turn off the heat and remove the small bowl from the top. Stir in the vanilla bean paste/vanilla extract, whisk to fully combine.
  4. Beat the mixture: Add the meringue into the bowl of a stand mixture (with whisk attachment) or use a handheld mixer; beat the meringue on high speed until fluffy with stiff peaks, about 5-7 minutes. Lift the beater and look for the meringue to stand tall without weeping. 
  5. Evenly spread the meringue onto the chilled lemon pie. Serve as is or use a kitchen torch to lightly toast the meringue, as pictured. Slice the lemon meringue pie into wedges and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Notes

  1. Please read the blog post in its entirety for more tips + tricks.

Keywords: lemon meringue pie, lemon meringue, marshmallow meringue, graham cracker crust, lemon meringue dessert