Meringues cookies are delicate, light, airy, oh so sweet, and are the perfect coffee time snack. They don’t have to be impossible to make, though – just use this simple recipe to enjoy homemade meringues whenever you want.
The Perfect Meringue Cookies
The biggest irritation when making meringues at home is the tendency for random bits of gritty sugar, somehow working their way into the cookie.
This recipe ensures that you will NEVER find any gritty sugar in your meringues; instead, it will be a smooth, crispy fluffiness all the way through, as long as you make sure to heat them properly!
Ingredients for Meringue Cookies
See the recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact measurements.
- Egg whites
- mint extract
How to Make Meringue Cookies
- Put your egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl
- Make a double boiler by heating a big pot of water with just enough water to cover the bottom of your egg white bowl
- Heat the egg mixture gently, whisking constantly
- Remove when the mixture is warm to the touch
- Whisk the warm egg whites and sugar using an electric mixer until stiff peaks, about 8 minutes, making a meringue
- Using a piping bag, pipe your meringue onto baking sheets covered in parchment paper
- Bake for 1 hour at 200 Fahrenheit, or until they sound hollow when tapped on the bottom. Leave them in the oven with the door ajar until they are cooled completely.
- Cool and store in an airtight container
How to Make a Double Boiler
The trickiest part of making Meringues is using a double boiler, but as long as you understand how it works, it isn’t really too hard to set up.
A double boiler, sometimes called a Bain Marie, is a way to indirectly heat a delicate mixture like your egg whites without overcooking it.
Bring a small amount of water brought to a boil in a saucepan big enough to contain the bowl with the egg whites. By placing the smaller bowl so that the bottom of it just barely touches the water means that the mixture gets slowly heated up, right than directly boiling.
This also lets you control the heating level of the mixture by taking the bowl out of the water if it starts to get too hot.
How to Tell Your Meringue Has Hit Stiff Peaks
A really common complaint when making Meringues is the difficulty in being able to tell whether or not you have whisked it enough.
Recipes love to say “stiff peaks” but don’t always explain what that means!
When you whip your egg whites, they will go through different stages over time, gradually getting thicker and thicker. If you go too long, though, they will get so stiff that they won’t be able to be pipeable.
So, the consistency you are looking for is sort of like especially thick shaving cream. A great way to test it is to pull up the whisk and see what happens to the mixture as you pull it up.
If it is stiff peaks, the mixture should cling to the whisk, eventually separating and flopping down, sort of like a soft-serve ice cream. It should be fluffy but still able to stand on its own.
The Best Way to Store Your Meringues
Another big problem people tend to have with meringues is the fact that they seem too moist and stale way too quickly.
The way to make sure they stay crisp and dry is to store them in an airtight container. Meringues go stale because they pull in water from the air, so making sure they have as little air as possible is key. Or just eat them before they have a chance to go stale or sticky lol.
Keep them in a really tightly lidded container, layered on top of each other with parchment paper. The extra protection the parchment paper provides means that even less air will touch the surface of the meringues, keeping them dry and crackly for longer.
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The Perfect Meringue Cookies
- Prep Time
- 30 minutes
- Cook Time
- 1 hour
- Christmas Cookies, Dessert
- 24 cookies
- Karlynn Johnston
- 3 large egg whites
- 3/4 cups white sugar
- 1/8 tsp mint vanilla or almond flavoring
- Put all your egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl that you use in your electric mixer, which for me is the stainless steel bowl that came with it.
- You then need to get a large pot of water warming up in the stove. This pot has to be large enough to at least contain the bottom of your heatproof bowl.
- You are going to heat up the mixture, whisking constantly until the sugar is dissolved. Watch out, do NOT cook the whites! The mixture just needs to be warm to the touch.
- Remove the bowl from the pot of water and put it on your mixer. With your whisk attachment, beat on high speed until very stiff peaks form, about 8-9 minutes.
- You will add in your choice of flavoring during this time.
- Beat it until those peaks are so stiff, you can see them curled up and holding their shape so beautifully!
- Fill an icing bag- fitted with a large round tip -with meringue or if you are like me, simply just use the disposable icing bags, cut off the tip to the size you want.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Pipe desired shapes onto the parchment paper, you can do swirls, or candy cane or even snowman shapes!
- Add the sprinkles you desire.
- Preheat your oven to 200 °F.
- Bake at 200 for an hour or so, until when you tap them you hear a hollow sound. For the first time bakers, I would test them at about 45 minutes, tap them and see what it sounds like. Then when you go around the hour mark and tap them again, you are going to hear a difference in sound if they are done. It is very distinct sounding, hard on the outside and dry in the inside makes them sound very hollow when done.
- Turn of the oven, open the door and let them cool completely in the oven.
- Immediately pack in an airtight container, before they can absorb any humidity. You can pack them in layers between parchment paper.
- These will last for months in the freezer and weeks in the fridge!
- Yield and calories depend on the size of cookies you make
All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.