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Classic Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

Classic Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

This is the one and only lemon meringue pie recipe you'll ever need. The flaky and tender from-scratch crust is worth the effort. —Lee Bremson, Kansas City, Missouri
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake: 25 min. + chilling YIELD:6-8 servings


  • 1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 3 tablespoons cold water
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 3 egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 4 egg whites
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 1. In a small bowl, combine flour and salt; cut in shortening until crumbly. Gradually add 3 tablespoons cold water, tossing with a fork until dough forms a ball.
  • 2. Roll out pastry to fit a 9-in. pie plate. Transfer pastry to pie plate. Trim to 1/2 in. beyond edge of plate; flute edges. Bake at 425° for 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned.
  • 3. For filling, in a large saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch, flour and salt. Gradually stir in water until smooth. Cook and stir over medium-high heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes longer.
  • 4. Remove from the heat. Stir a small amount of hot filling into egg yolks; return all to the pan, stirring constantly. Bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat. Gently stir in butter and lemon peel. Gradually stir in lemon juice just until combined. Pour into the crust.
  • 5. For meringue, in a saucepan, combine 2 tablespoons sugar and cornstarch. Gradually stir in cold water. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture is clear. Transfer to a bowl; cool.
  • 6. In a large bowl, beat egg whites and vanilla until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat in cornstarch mixture on high until stiff glossy peaks form and sugar is dissolved. Spread evenly over hot filling, sealing edges to crust.
  • 7. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until the meringue is golden brown. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 6-8 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (1 piece) equals 444 calories, 17 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 87 mg cholesterol, 282 mg sodium, 68 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 5 g protein.

Reviews for Classic Lemon Meringue Pie

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Reviewed Dec. 21, 2015

"I piled the meringue on for a "mile high meringue" instead of "spreading evenly". Turned out great!"

Reviewed Jun. 22, 2015

"I made this pie for a friend's retirement party. It was a huge hit. The use of fresh lemons for the jiuce and zest made this pie outstanding. I had to immediately make another for my family."

Reviewed Apr. 8, 2015

"Lemon meringue pie is one of my favorites and this recipe lives up to the quintessential tart yet sweet flavor combination lemon meringue pie should be. It's fabulous."

Reviewed Apr. 5, 2015

"I can not review the crust as I used the one that I make all of the time, but we loved the filling and the meringue. I used a scant 11/4 cup sugar so it was quite tart as that is how we like it and it was great. The amount and taste the meringue was lovely. It made a nice high meringue. I think I would make an extra half batch of filling for my family as we really love the lemony part. An excellent recipe, Lee! Thank you."

Reviewed Mar. 25, 2015


Reviewed Dec. 23, 2014

"easy and crust turned out goodvery pretty"

Reviewed Nov. 26, 2014

"excellent recipe. Added extra lemon juice. Make sure cornstarch mix is chilled!!"

Reviewed Nov. 16, 2014

"I make this recipe for my neighbor he loves it. He says it's just like what his grandma used to make for him."

Reviewed Aug. 19, 2014

"A great recipe just like my mom used to make"

Reviewed Mar. 30, 2013

"I made this with a gluten free crust and used a gluten free pre-mixed flour blend in the filling. The family went for seconds! I do have to practice the meringue, the first time I added the cornstarch mixture it turned to a liquid. Not sure what I was doing wrong. I ended up making the meringue as I normally would (I will add cream of tarter next time as well) and drizzled the cornstarch mixture over top of the pie. Overall, delicious and simple to make."

Reviewed Nov. 27, 2011

"Very good! Made for Thanksgiving. I had never made a lemon meringue pie before and this one was surprisingly easy. Because I had already made a couple of pies and was home-made-pie-crusted out, I used a store bought crust for this, which was still good. The only thing is that I couldn't get my meringue to make the high peaks I wanted, but it peaked nonetheless. The pie was a hit with all. Will definitely make it again."

Reviewed Nov. 24, 2011

"I made this for Thanksgiving. The filling and meringe set up well and everyone loved it."

Reviewed Apr. 18, 2011

"Lemon Meringue is one of our families favorite pies, and I have been making it for years. It is definitely so much better making the filling from scratch. I have always had trouble with my meringue collapsing and shrinking away from the sides. Not any more will I be ashamed of how they look. This recipe is a lot of work, but the results are beautiful and delicious. Thanks."

Reviewed Jan. 11, 2011

"I absolutely love made-from-scratch lemon meringue pie and this recipe was a delicious way to enjoy one of my fave desserts. thank you."

Reviewed Nov. 1, 2010

"This is by far the best lemon meringue pie I have ever made. I have made quite a few considering it is my husband's favorite type pie. It is a "keeper"."

Reviewed Apr. 4, 2010

"This is a delicious pie. However, one of the steps(cooking the sugar, cornstarch and water) is given twice in the recipe. It's quite time consuming to make but the end product is very good."

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Wine Pairings

Sweet White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a sweet white wine such as Moscato or a sweet Riesling.