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Creamy Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

This lemon meringue pie is one of my husband’s and my all-time favorite desserts. That’s probably because it has the perfect balance of sweet and tart.

slice of creamy lemon meringue pie on a plate

There are a lot of people who basically make this same easy lemon meringue pie recipe.

We enjoy this refreshing pie after eating this chili con carne. It’s the perfect balance to end your meal.

But there are also some subtle differences because everyone has specific preferences. For example, some folks prefer more sugar, while others like more lemon.

Classic Lemon Meringue

I always thought that my mother was brilliant for making this pie recipe. And I’ve met other people who thought it was an old family secret recipe. We were all mistaken.

This recipe has been popular for decades. One reason might be that it was the recipe on the back of a can of sweetened condensed milk.

Slice of lemon meringue pie on a plate with a fork

There’s a good reason that this is a classic. It’s a perfect lemon meringue pie that delivers flavors almost everyone loves. In fact, it’s absolutely delicious from the first bite to the last.


There are only a few ingredients in this pie. Since I couldn’t find gluten-free graham crackers or crumbs, I bought a ready-made crust.

I prefer making the crust myself because I enjoy having it looser and less packed. But that’s okay. It’s still delicious.

Here are the ingredients I used:

  • Ready made pie crust
  • Lemons
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Cream of tartar

The crust for your lemon meringue pie can also be made from vanilla wafers. If I can’t find gluten free graham crackers, that’s what I use.

For exact measurements of each ingredient and full directions, go to the recipe card at the bottom of the page. You can even print out the card by clicking on the “print” button.

How to Make a Lemon Meringue Pie

This pie is so easy to make, you’ll wonder why it took you so long to try it.

If you don’t have a ready-made crust, just combine a cup of graham cracker crumbs with a couple of tablespoons of butter. Mix it well and then press it into a pie pan.

Now it’s time to make the pie filling and meringue. Or as my grandma would have said, pie innards.

First, crack the eggs and separate the whites from the yolks, putting them in separate bowls. Be cautious and avoid getting any of the yolk in the egg whites, or the meringue won’t whip to the desired consistency.

Set the bowl with egg whites aside.

Next, combine the yolks with the sweetened condensed milk and stir until well mixed.

Combining the sweetened condensed milk with egg yolks for the lemon meringue pie filling

Pour the lemon juice into the mixture and stir well. You can use a mixer if you prefer.

But you’ll need to wash the beaters and thoroughly dry them before using them for the meringue.

Lemon meringue pie filling in a bowl

After you have completely mixed the pie filling, pour it into the crust, making sure it’s even.

Set it aside.

Lemon meringue pie filling in a crust

Meringue for the Lemon Meringue Pie

Next, you need to beat the egg whites to make the meringue.

Start out by beating them on a low speed until they become frothy.

I used an electric hand mixer. But you can also use a stand mixer.

Gradually turn up the speed until it is on high.

Add the sugar and cream of tartar and beat until it is mixed in.

Beat for approximately two minutes, until the egg whites form a stiff peak.

Meringue for the lemon meringue pie formed into a stiff peak

After you get the meringue to the perfect consistency, spread it on top of the pie filling.

Make sure it covers the top of the pie filling, but leave the crust uncovered.

With the back of a spoon, gently tap the meringue to make tiny peaks.

I do this because it gives the pie a less perfect appearance and adds depth as it browns.

Place the pie in the center of a preheated oven so the top can brown. Keep a close eye on it since the sugar causes it to burn quickly.

Until recently, I put the pie in a hot oven just long enough for the meringue to brown a little. However, someone was concerned about the eggs not being cooked.

For that reason, I decided to turn the heat down a bit and cook the pie for a few more minutes. The meringue will still turn brown, but it will take a tad longer.

Lemon meringue pie with browned peaks

Remove the pie from the oven and set it on the counter to cool for a few minutes. I don’t let it cool long—just enough so it’s not blasting hot. Then put it in the refrigerator until time to serve it.

Rich and creamy lemon meringue pie with a slice on a plate beside the pie pan

I like to cool a lemon meringue pie for at least a couple of hours. But it’s okay to serve it after an hour or so.

How to Keep Leftover Lemon Meringue Pie

Chances are, you won’t have much pie left after everyone tastes it. But if you do, it needs to be covered and made as airtight as possible. Place it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

More Delicious Recipes

If you like this pie, you’ll also enjoy this chocolate walnut pie. It’s perfect for those times when you have to make a pie in a hurry.

Another yummy dessert is this 2-ingredient apple cake. Seriously, it only has two ingredients (not counting the frosting). It’s a yummy, dense, moist cake, and no one will believe you if you tell them what’s in it.

Anyone who needs to avoid gluten will love this 3-ingredient chocolate cake. It’s light and super delicious.

You’ll also love these pecan pie cheesecake bars that my friend Julie has on her blog, Back to My Southern Roots. She makes some of the best desserts that’ll leave you wanting more.

Anyone who likes those little chocolate sandwich cookies with the creamy filling will love this delicious no bake Oreo pudding pie. It is absolutely out-of-this-world delicious!

This chocolate earthquake cake from Out of the Box Baking is so much fun to make … and eat! It has a delightful blend of chocolate, coconut, nuts, and much more to make this one a go-to dessert for special occasions.

Another no bake dessert you’ll love is these caramel crunch bars topped with a drizzle of yummy chocolate. So good!

Yield: 8 servings

Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

Whole lemon meringue pie with a graham cracker crust

This lemon meringue pie is delicious with a delicate balance of sweet and tart.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 1 graham cracker pie crust
  • 1 can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • Juice from 2 medium-sized lemons
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar


    1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
    2. Separate the eggs with whites in one bowl and yolks in another. Be careful not to get any of the egg yolk in the egg white. Set the egg whites aside.
    3. Combine the egg yolks with the sweetened condensed milk. Stir until it is well mixed.
    4. Pour the lemon juice into the mixture and mix well. If you use a mixer, make sure you clean the beaters and dry them. Even a tiny speck of water can prevent the egg whites from forming peaks.
    5. Pour the mixture into the pie crust. Level it so you have a consistent thickness all the way across.
    6. Set the pie aside while you make the meringue.
    7. With your mixer, beat the egg whites on a low speed.
    8. Gradually increase the speed, as the egg whites get thicker.
    9. Add the sugar and cream of tartar and then beat the whites on high speed until they form stiff peaks.
    10. With a butter knife or icing knife, spread the meringue over the pie, to approximately 1/4” from the edge to keep it from sticking to the pan.
    11. Tap the meringue with the back of a spoon to make little peaks.
    12. Place the pie in the oven. Keep a close eye on it, or the meringue might burn. It typically only takes 15 or 20 minutes. As soon as it hits the level you prefer, remove it from the oven.
    13. Cool until it is barely warm and then refrigerate it until it’s ready to serve. I like to let it cool for at least 2 hours.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 192Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 71mgSodium 159mgCarbohydrates 27gFiber 1gSugar 14gProtein 4g

The nutrition information is a product of online calculators. I try to provide true and accurate information, but these numbers are estimates.

Did you make this recipe?

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Lisa G

Monday 8th of June 2020

Wow, this looks so easy and delicious! I have a question, do you not cook at all before adding the meringue on top? Just wondered about the egg yolks not getting cooked. Thank you for all your wonderful recipes, just printed out a few of your smoothie recipes!


Monday 8th of June 2020

Hi Lisa. I don't cook the pie before I put the meringue on top, and I've never had any issues. However, one person mentioned that she puts the pie in the oven on a lower temperature and on a lower rack so the eggs can cook while the meringue browns. Maybe leave it in the oven for about 20-25 minutes at 325?

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