Lemon meringue pie can be a tricky thing to conquer — these lemon meringue pie cookies are the perfect solution. Better yet, the recipe is made for two so you don’t have to worry about overindulging!
Remember how I said that Irish Coffee Ice Cream Pie (with whiskey ganache!) was one of the desserts we made to help us celebrate my dad’s birthday this past weekend?
Well, meet the other one, Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies.
My dad’s favorite dessert is lemon meringue pie. My mom and I love to cook and bake together, so last year we decided to make my dad a lemon meringue pie. Great idea, right? I whipped the beautiful meringue BY HAND using an egg beater because N was napping in a nearby room. She slaved over the lemon curd while I beat those egg whites until my arms were about ready to fall off.
Well, somehow, we were left with lemon meringue soup hidden under those carefully whipped egg whites. I won’t blame it on you, mom, I promise. It was most definitely the recipe we were using. I’m sure we’ll attempt it again some day, but this wasn’t the year for a pie.
Fast forward a year: Dad’s birthday again, folks here for the weekend. I
told asked my mom nicely to cook with me all day Saturday while they were visiting. We wanted to make something special for my dad, but I also had a lot of recipes I wanted to tackle that day.
On that list was a recipe from a beautiful new cookbook called Dessert for Two by Christina Lane of the fabulous blog called, you guessed it: Dessert for Two. Although Christina and I haven’t yet met in person, I consider a her a friend and I’m so happy for her — she knocks it out of the park with this cookbook.
My mom and I spent a good long time browsing the cookbook Friday night over a glass of wine.
What we found were beautiful photos — my mom even asked if Christina took the photos herself (she did!). We also found countless great recipes — all pared down to two servings. Perfect portion control if you’re anything like me and can’t resist a sweet treat.
We found small batch cookies, bars, cakes, and candy. Scaled down recipes for snickerdoodles, sugar cookies, mini cheesecakes, devil’s food cake, vanilla pudding, biscuit whiskey bread pudding, pretzel honey caramel corn, and so many more.
But what really caught our eye on the eve of my dad’s birthday were these lemon meringue pie cookies. We knew we had found the solution to our pie problems.
Homemade lemon curd layered on top of an airy meringue — a dollop of whipped cream and some graham cracker crumbs land these cookies in perfection territory. And MUCH easier than pie.
I have to give my mom credit for these – she pretty much made these herself as I sat at the kitchen counter and typed up the other recipes we had worked on that day.
Make a double batch of these if you are serving more than two. If you’re lactose-intolerant, replace the whipped cream with a non-dairy whipped topping. Omit the graham cracker crumb topping to make this recipe gluten-free.
I know my mom will be coming back to this recipe — a simplified (yet just as delicious) version of my dad’s favorite dessert. Lower in calories, and enough for just the two of them.
Craving more citrusy desserts? Try:
For the Meringue:
- 1 large egg white
- 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
For the Lemon Curd:
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg + 2 large egg yolks
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- pinch of salt
For the Whipped Cream:
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
- 1 graham cracker, crushed
To make the meringue:
- Preheat the oven to 200°F. Line a small sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
- In a medium-size bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the egg white and cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Then, slowly stream in the sugar while beating. Beat until the mixture has stiff peaks.
- Using two spoons or a piping bag, make four equal-size disks about 4 inches in diameter of the meringue mixture on the prepared sheet pan.
- Bake for 40 minutes, and then turn off the oven and let the meringues cool inside the oven for 1 hour. Do not open the oven door.
To make the lemon curd:
- In a medium-size bowl, using an electric mixer on high speed, beat together the butter and sugar until well combined. Add the egg and egg yolks one at a time while beating constantly. Finally, stream in the lemon juice and salt. The mixture may look a bit curdled – it’s fine.
- Pour the lemon curd into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat to thicken. Stir constantly to avoid burning. Once simmering, remove from the heat and let cool.
To make the whipped cream:
- In a separate medium-size bowl, using an electric mixer on high speed, whip the cream with the powdered sugar until soft peaks form. Set aside.
- Dollop the lemon curd on top of each meringue, add a spoonful of whipped cream, and sprinkle graham cracker crumbs on top before serving.
- Recipe used with permission from Dessert for Two by Christina Lane.
- Make this recipe gluten-free by omitting the graham cracker crumbs on top.
- Make this recipe lactose-free by omitting whipped cream. Use a non-diary whipped topping instead.
- Recipe is easily doubled.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
Husband’s take: I think he opted for the ice cream pie, but the rest of the family loved these cookies, even E.
Changes I would make: None are necessary. I will say that we cheated and used pre-made whipped cream. Totally worked, but homemade is always better.
Difficulty: Slightly time consuming, but easy. Much of the time is hands-off.
Disclosure: I received a copy of the book from the author at no cost. I was not required or pressured at all to write this review. All opinions are as always my own. Some cookbooks live in my office, others live in my kitchen. This one has a spot in the kitchen.