Pucker up, buttercup! This Gluten Free Lemon Meringue Pie has the perfect amount of tart and sweetness to send your tastebuds into overdrive!
I never thought I liked lemon meringue pie. I didn’t like the texture of those lemon meringue pies that are somewhat Jello like, if you know what I mean. They wiggle and jiggle and not that I have anything against Jello, but sometimes I’m grossed out by the texture of certain wiggly, jiggly things. Haha! And don't get me started on the weeping meringue part of lemon meringue pie. If not made right, it weeps and forms little puddles of water on top of the pie, which is just gross.
I tried many recipes that were just like what I describe above, sometimes being so "rubbery" that it would almost make me gag. But then I made this lemon meringue pie and all those horrible feelings changed. It manages to hold its shape when cut without being wiggly, jiggly and rubbery. It's more like a thick lemon curd than Jello. And the meringue on top is like icing on a cake. It really completes the pie, balancing out the tangy, sourness of the lemon with its sweet, marshmallow-like qualities And no weeping!
HERE’S WHAT YOU’LL NEED
- Gluten free pie crust – if you have yet to make my gf pie crust recipe, now’s the time to give it a go. It’s probably the best pie crust you’ll ever have, gluten free or not. Just sayin’.
- Lemons – juice AND zest. No bottled stuff here. Fresh is best.
- Granulated sugar
- Egg yolks
- Egg whites for the meringue
- Cream of tartar
let's make lemon meringue pie
Bake the pie crust
- Roll out crust to fit into pie plate and transfer to pie plate using your rolling pin. Unroll and press into corners. Crimp or fold the dough around the rim and refrigerate the pie crust for at least 30 minutes.
- Line the pie dish with foil or parchment (I prefer foil as it holds its shape nicely). Fill the foil with pie weights, beans, rice, or sugar (sugar is my new go-to for blind baking pie crusts as it gets slightly caramelized and can be used again for any kind of baking).
- Bake the crust for 25-35 minutes, or until the crimped edges of the pie look completely dry.
- Remove the foil and pie weights of choice and continue to bake the crust until golden brown and it no longer looks shiny and wet, about another 20-25 minutes.
- Cool to room temperature before filling.
Cook the filling
- Combine the sugar, salt, and cornstarch in a medium saucepan. Add the lemon juice and water and bring to a boil.
- Slowly temper the hot liquid into the egg yolks while whisking constantly.
- Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and place it over low heat. Whisking constantly, bring it back to a boil.
- Once boiling, allow it to boil for one minute, which will activate the cornstarch and thicken the mixture.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the butter and lemon juice. Pour the filling into the prepared pie shell. Place plastic wrap directly onto surface of filling and cool to room temperature for 30 minutes. Then refrigerate for 1-2 hours, or up to overnight.
Whip the Meringue
- Fill a small saucepan with one inch of water and begin simmering.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add egg whites and sugar, followed by the salt and cream of tartar. Place the bowl over the simmering water (the bottom should not touch the water) and whisk. Continue whisking until the sugar has melted and you don't feel any granules of sugar when rubbing the mixture between your fingers (this will be to at least 140° and up to F on a thermometer).
- Remove bowl from the simmering water and place it on the mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whip over high speed until stiff, glossy peaks form. This will take anywhere from 5-10 minutes. Add vanilla at the end and whisk to combine well.
- Pile the meringue on top of the pie organically, using a large spoon to create swoops. Use a kitchen torch (affiliate link) to toast the meringue.
lemon meringue pie faq's
Yes, it should be refrigerated. However, don't cover it as the meringue will begin to weep.
Making Swiss meringue, which is already cooked, allows you to put the meringue on a cold pie and torch it with a kitchen torch. You can also put it under the broiler just to toast the meringue.
No, there usually is not gluten in the filling of a lemon meringue pie. However, the crust always has gluten, unless you make it with a gluten free pie crust.
You can toast the meringue under the broiler for a very short time (a minute or less), but keep a close eye on it so it doesn't burn.
more gluten free lemon desserts
If you don't think you like lemon meringue pie, give this Gluten Free Lemon Meringue Pie a try. My husband exclaimed this to be the ONLY lemon meringue pie he'll eat!
Gluten Free Lemon Meringue Pie
- 1¾ cups (375 g) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅔ cup (81 g) cornstarch
- 1 cup (240 ml) fresh lemon juice
- 2¾ cups (660 ml) water
- 8 large egg yolks, at room temperature
- ½ cup (1 stick or 113 g) butter, cold and cut into cubes
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 5 large egg whites, at room temperature
- 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
Make and Bake Pie Shell
- Make crust for single pie crust according to recipe instructions and blind bake it. Set aside to cool completely.
- Combine the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan and whisk to combine.
- Add the lemon juice and water and bring to a near boil, whisking occasionally. Meanwhile, add the egg yolks to a large bowl and whisk to combine.
- When the sugar syrup just begins to boil, remove it from the heat and slowly pour it into the egg yolks while whisking constantly to temper the egg yolks. Continue pouring and whisking until all the syrup has been added to the egg yolks.
- Pour this mixture back into the medium saucepan and place over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until mixture begins to boil. Boil for one minute, again whisking constantly. Remove from heat.
- Add lemon zest to filling and whisk to combine. Add cold butter, one chunk at a time, until fully incorporated.
- Pour filling into cooled pie shell. Cover with plastic wrap, completely touching the surface of the lemon filling. Let cool at room temperature for 30 minutes. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours, preferably overnight.
Make the Swiss Meringue
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (or large heat proof bowl) set over a small saucepan filled with one inch of water, whisk egg whites, sugar, salt, and cream of tartar.
- Place over medium heat, allowing water to simmer but not boil, and whisk constantly until mixture reaches at least 140° F (or up to 170° F). If you don't have a thermometer, you can test for doneness by rubbing a little bit of the mixture between your fingers. If there are no noticeable sugar crystals present and the mixture is completely smooth, it is ready. Mixture will be white and opaque.
- Remove from the heat and begin whisking the mixture over high speed until doubled in volume and stiff peaks form (if you lift the whisk attachment from the bowl and turn it upside down, a "peak" will stand straight up).
- Spread meringue over chilled pie, making organic swoops with a large spoon (if desired). Use a kitchen blow torch to toast the meringue all over. Serve immediately.
- Pie will keep, uncovered, in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Adapted from Basics with Babish's Lemon Meringue Pie