Classic Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

Classic Lemon Meringue Pie is exceptional and is absolutely beautiful to behold!  The lemon flavor is a sweet and tangy slice of heaven.  

In this perfect Lemon Meringue Pie, a tart lemon filling is piled high with fluffy meringue for a dessert that is impossible to resist.  This is the perfect recipe and you will ever need – It is easy to make and so good!

Many families enjoy serving this pie as one of the desserts on their Thanksgiving table.  This Classic Lemon Meringue Pie recipe is exceptional as it tastes like a sweet and tangy slice of heaven.  We also provide tips on how to make perfect meringue.


Lemon Meringue Pie


Check out more great Pie Recipes.



Classic Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe:
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
40 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: Classic Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe
Servings: 8 servings
Lemon Meringue Pie:
  • Pastry for 9-inch one crust pie
  • 2 tablespoons graham cracker crumbs (optional)
  • 1 cup sugar (granulated)
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 5 large eggs (yolks and whites separated into individual bowls), yolks slightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest, grated
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed (approximately 2 to 3 lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
Meringue Topping:
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 5 large egg whites, room temperature (reserved from pie recipe)*
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup sugar (granulated)
Lemon Meringue Pie Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Adjust oven rack to center of oven.

  2. Prepare pie pastry; dust lightly with flour, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate 30 minutes before rolling.

  3. Sprinkle work area with 2 tablespoons graham cracker crumbs or some flour.  Roll refrigerated pastry with floured rolling pin, sprinkling additional crumbs underneath and on top to heavily coat dough.  Roll pastry 2 inches larger than an inverted 9-inch pie pan.  Fold pastry into quarter-folds and ease into pan, pressing firmly against bottom and side; flute edges.  Prick crust at 1/2-inch intervals before baking.  Bake 15 minutes; reduce oven to 350 degrees F. and bake another 10 minutes or until crust is golden brown.  Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

  4. Reduce oven to 325 degrees F.

  5. Lemon Curd FillingLemon Curd Filling:  In a large saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, salt, and water; simmer until translucent and just begins to thicken, approximately 1 minute.  Remove from heat.

  6. Slowly and gradually, whisk in egg yolks.  Return egg mixture to low heat and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 more minute.  Remove from heat and gently stir in lemon zest, lemon juice, and butter until well combined.

  7. A trick to make sure the lemon curd is ready, is to use a digital thermometer and reach an Internal Temperature of 170 degrees F.  

  8. Pour the prepared lemon curd filling into a baked and cooled pie shell.

  9. If you need to let the Lemon Curd Filling sit before using, cover with plastic wrap to keep it hot, as you want to add hot filling to the cooled pie crust.

  10. Prepare Meringue Topping (see below); set aside.

  11. Lemon Meringue PieMeringue Topping:
      Spread prepared Meringue Topping over hot pie filling, being careful to spread the meringue to the edges of the pie pasty to prevent shrinkage during baking.

  12. Baking:  Bake approximately 20 minutes or until meringue is golden brown.  NOTE:  If meringue start to brown too quickly, covering top loosely with foil after the first 5 minutes.  Remove from oven and cool completely, approximately 3 hours, on a wire rack before cutting and serving.  To cut baked meringue into serving pieces, use a knife dipped in cold water.

  13. The pie may be refrigerated up to one day, but this pie is best served the day it is made.

  14. Makes 8 servings.

Meringue Topping Instructions:
  1. Check out my hints and tips on making a Perfect Meringue.

  2. In a small saucepan over low heat, combine cornstarch and water; bring to simmer, stirring until mixture thickens and turns translucent.  Remove from heat and let cool.

  3. In a large bowl of your electric mixer, beat egg whites and vanilla extract until frothy.  In a small bowl, combine cream of tartar and sugar; add to egg whites, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until soft peaks form, approximately 2 minutes.  Slowly add cornstarch mixture, 1 tablespoon at a time; continue to beat until stiff peaks form.

Recipe Notes

* Use fresh eggs to make meringue, and these fresh eggs should be at room temperature.  Old eggs simply will not produce the fluffy volume required by meringue.


Thermapen Internal Temperature Cooking ChartI get many readers asking what cooking/meat thermometer that I prefer and use in my cooking and baking. I, personally, use the Thermapen Thermometer. Originally designed for professional use, the Super-Fast Thermapen Thermometer is used by chefs all over the world.  I only endorse a few products, on my web site, that I like and use regularly.

You can learn more or buy yours at: Super-Fast Thermapen Thermometer.

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Lemon Meringue Pie




Baking    Fruit Pies & Tarts    Lemons    Meringue    Pies   

Comments and Reviews

17 Responses to “Classic Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe”

  1. Lorene B. Doyle

    You gave ingredients for Graham cracker crust; but, gave instructions for flour pastry.

    • Linda Stradley

      The recipe asks you to sprinkle some graham cracker crumbs on the bottom of the regular crust.

    • Ashley lynn

      Very runny. I followed the directions exactly and the lemon did not set.. I wasn’t too happy,

  2. Delores Mitzel

    You must have a smaller pie pan then mine – mine is 9″ pie pan and the recipe only filled half the inside of the pie and the meringue just barely covered the top of the pie. So there was no height to my pie. I was a bit disappointed with that. However the flavors are awesome. The only thing I will change is double the recipe for my pie pan. I didn’t use the Graham cracker crumbs either I didn’t understand why you used them.

  3. Rose Horn

    Love this recipe. Thanks for recipe

  4. Jim Wood

    I’m rather a new kitchen chef and I, too, was wondering why the graham cracker crumbs on top and bottom of the pie? Also, would ready made pie crusts, either flour or graham cracker, work? Thank you for posting. Looks delicious.

    • Linda Stradley

      That was a typo. Thank you for letting me know. I made the change.

  5. Deborah

    Very tasty pie!

  6. Janelle

    This was my first attempt at lemon meringue pie and it turned out great!

  7. Gloria P. Brown

    This recipe is easy to follow and end product was delicious especially it being my first time making a meringue pie!!

  8. Lori Testa

    I know nothing….NOTHING…about baking, but I love lemon meringue and wanted something new for Thanksgiving. I am amazed at the taste! I cut a small piece out and it seems to be sticking together, but as I tried to pull the piece out I could see the pie is a bit runny. I’m sure I overcooked the filling. I was most worried about the meringue, but it is so good. Thank you – I will make again and again!

  9. Jean K.

    I have made Lemon meringue pie many times, but this was the most complicated recipe. I must have dirtied every dish In the house. And 5 eggs! Don’t know why it didn’t fill one lady’s pan. All that said, it was the best lemon meringue ever. I think the graham crumbs kept the crust crisp. Sometimes lemon filling soaks into plain crust making it soggy I think I will try that for a custard pie too. Thanks for the recipe.

  10. Hunter Staley

    I really loved this recipe the only few flaws are that I didnt understand the gram cracker crumbs and the meriengue needs more sugar about 1/2 a cup more

  11. Lynn

    I have made many pies and this one sounded great. Unfortunately the lemon came out very runny. I had to dig out my older recipes and remake the pie the following day.

  12. Stacey

    The lemon curd did not set. Very funny and had to eat with a spoon. Very flavorful though.


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