Latest Recipe Testing

Pie weights

I love sharing these behind the scenes posts with you! So far this year:

And that brings us to today. I’m transitioning my way out of winter baking into bright and fresh springtime recipes. Easter is early this year! The first recipe on my to-bake list was lemon meringue pie. This has always been a challenging recipe for me. I ALWAYS have trouble stabilizing the meringue. And if it’s not the weeping meringue, it’s the pie crust tasting soggy. And if it’s not the weeping meringue or soggy pie crust, it’s the watery and too-sweet lemon filling.

Question I asked myself: is lemon meringue pie really worth this work?

Meringue topping

YES IT IS! I began by properly blind baking the pie crust. Admittedly, I never used to blind bake pie crusts quite long enough. This always resulted in soggy central. Not the place you want to be. (By the way, here are the pie weights I always use when I blind bake pie crusts.) Additionally, I reworked the lemon filling and took a closer look at the classic meringue topping– a French meringue using just egg whites and sugar. (1) Adding cream of tartar to the meringue and (2) beginning with room temperature egg whites both helped with the stabilization issues.

I’m really looking forward to sharing the pie recipe with you. What has consistently resulted in recipe disasters has finally become a triumph. Lemon meringue pie is not difficult to prepare; it’s the proper ratio of ingredients and mixing techniques that help guarantee success. I’ll share my lemon meringue pie recipe, tips, tricks, and a helpful video in the beginning of March, so stay tuned!

(Oh and lemon meringue pie is not the March Baking Challenge! That new recipe is coming next week. How is it already March 1st soon?)

Lemon meringue pie

Also! One of my assistants, Hilari, was here this past week for some kitchen assistance. We tested 2 new cakes, a new dinner roll recipe, brownies for St. Patrick’s Day, and decorated sugar cookies together. All new recipes. All coming soon.


  • Speaking of meringue, have you ever made pavlova? It’s SO good. Lots of texture between the crisp meringue, soft whipped filling, and you can top it with just about anything. Want to share it sometime!

And Jude wanted to say hi. Have a good weekend!


  1. I love these behind the scenes posts! So interesting and fun:) can’t wait for these new recipes!
    I’ve never made (or tasted I don’t think) Pavlova, but is like to…I’m up for any new dessert 😉

  2. I am SO excited!!! I have been wanting to make lemon meringue pie for months now, however I hadn’t found a recipe that I could trust but I know I will love yours!!! Yay!

  3. Awwwww Juuuuuude❤️❤️.  Kinda glad lemon meringue pie isn’t the chalkenge  Not saying that I won’t give it a try when you post the recipe!! Looking forward to all the new recipes! Thank you Sally for bringing us together and keeping us uplifted in this crazy world. Happy Baking!  And (((hugs))) to Noelle!!

  4. I haven’t had pavlova in a looong time. My aunt used to make it, I think it’s an Australian thing?? She used to top it with whipped cream and sometimes lots of fruit or crushed toffee bits. A nice light dessert!

  5. These behind the scenes posts are my favorite. As someone whose has had their fair share of kitchen failures, it’s comforting to know that if you keep pushing through you can end up with a masterpiece (which judging by this sneak peek, you have accomplished). 

    Thanks for sharing!

  6. I love Lemon Meringue pie and frequently make it for Easter. I’m sure your recipe will be a must try!! Years ago my son went on a missions trip to New Zealand and they made lots of beautiful pavlova. I learned to make it and it was his birthday cake every year. They are delicious and the balance of the meringue, cream and fresh fruit is so refreshing! I’m certain I’ll be trying your recipe for that, as well, because what I think has been good always becomes perfected by your testing. Looking forward to these recipes!

  7. YES! so happy you’ll be posting a lemon meringue pie recipe! it is my all time favorite pie! my hubby loves it too so that’s a win-win. 
    Also, will definitely be looking forward to a pavlova recipe, they’re amazing

  8. I have seen Pavlova and often thought about making one, but never have. It’s such a pretty dessert. Your pie recipe is something that I am looking forward to. Nothing beats a good homemade lemon meringue pie! I made one years ago, but not since then. Time for another! I am looking forward to the March challenge, whatever it may be. And Jude looks like a real sweetie (who wants to eat whatever you have on the counter!).

  9. Sally can you offer an alternative using Meyer lemons?  My husband has had too many lemon Meringue pies that were too tart so he was not overly optimistic about a lemon meringue pie.  I told him we will give your recipe a try because I know you offer the very best!  

    Also, what is in the container on your counter?  The liquid is yellow?  Curious.  

    1. It’s buttermilk! My husband kept asking the same thing about the “mysterious” liquid in the fridge. The container is yellow. Looks like it would be eggnog!
      I haven’t tried my lemon meringue pie recipe with Meyer lemons, but using them would certainly reduce the pie’s tart flavor. Although we didn’t find my lemon meringue pie super tart tasting to begin with. I’ll describe it when I post the recipe!

  10. I love pavlova it’s my go to when I need a gluten free  dessert and am looking forward to this lemon meringue pie, my husbands fave pie 

  11. Hi, Sally.  Your pie looks awesome!  Admittedly, I’ve never been a huge fan of meringue, but I love lemon.  Maybe your new recipe will make a liar out of me.  :). I have assisted in the creation of a Pavlova.  The day after my sister’s wedding, we hosted a dinner for the bride and groom.  Since they were honeymooning in New Zealand, I was tasked with making themed desserts, so hence, a pavlova.  🙂

  12. Lemon meringue pie is my nemesis! It always gets watery after letting it set and the meringue beads up with moisture. Ive tried 3 different recipes and they’re all fails. It’s my dad’s favorite pie, so I’m looking forward to trying your recipe!

  13. Lemon meringue pie ! My favorite! My mom always made the best of everything (and I love it a little tart) but I’m always checking new recipes to see if her’s can be tweaked a little.

  14. Lemon meringue pie! ❤️ Im sure your walk through instruction will result in success. Ive never yet made a good LMP! I have never experienced pavlova , if it’s as good as the nutella babka I’ll be in 7th heaven

  15. I made lemon meringue pie from scratch once (about 25 years ago) and thought it was too tart. Before and since have always used the box of Jello mix like my mom always has. Once she made this for a dinner we went to, and a man just raved about the pie and wanted to know how she made it. She just smiled, and I told him it was a secret family recipe. This has been a joke in our family ever since, and when I complimented a coworker one day on her pumpkin bread and she said “Oh, it’s just a mix” I said “No, it’s a secret family recipe!” so now it’s kind of a joke at work too. I’m looking forward to trying your recipe. BTW, the cherry shortbread cookies I made from your recipe and took to work for our Valentine’s sweets potluck were a huge hit!

  16. Hi Sally! I read your blog in New Zealand so you are truly international :-). Pavlova is a traditional dessert here and it’s accepted that this is where it started, but the Aussies ALWAYS try and steal the credit from us! Don’t be fooled haha. It is named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova due to it being so light and airy and fluffy. It is a frequent choice for birthday desserts and an absolute must on the Christmas dessert table where the classic toppings of whipped cream, kiwifruit and strawberries berries are a perfect colour combination for the season. We would not top with anything other than fruit as it’s a seriously sweet dessert as it is. At Christmas I now make my pavs in a ring shape ie a hole in the middle to look like a wreath. It is always pretty and a real feature. Thanks for bringing this up today!

  17. I’ve had the same issues with making lemon meringue pie! No matter if I follow the recipe to a T, it still seems to weep and shrink. I would love a recipe from you to get all your tips on preventing that from happening!

    Yes! We love pavlova, but since I’m no expert on making them, I’m never sure if the texture of the pavlova turned out how it was supposed to. I would love a recipe from you on that, too!

  18. Literally had just added lemon meringue pie to my list of things to try when I saw this post! Hope I will benefit from your experience!

  19. I love the behind the scenes. I have difficulty with Lemon Meringue Pie too. I live in NJ and always wondered if it was the humidity that played a part in the pie weeping. I hope you come up with something great so I can try it. We seem to live in the same region of the country and I know climate plays a part in many things.

  20. Not a fan of lemon meringue pie so I don’t think it’s worth the extra work hehe. But if you make an Italian meringue, it shouldn’t weep.

  21. FINALLY! I have been waiting 2 years for this pie to make an appearance. One of the first giveaways I commented on was fav pie. I listed this one!
    So excited for your recipe. I always use the one out of my grammy’s BC cookbook.

    Were those chocolate cupcakes behind Jude? Bet it always smells so good in your house.

  22. Love, love, love Pavlova. My husband is Australian and I lived there for 10 years. Pavlova is my all time favorite dessert. It looks intimidating – my guests here in the States are always impressed when I serve it. But, it really isn’t that difficult. I’m interested in seeing your take on it. 

  23. Yes, pavlovas are an impressive dessert, complete with fresh fruit and whipping cream. They are surprising easy to make, and they were one of the first things my German mother taught me how to make as a child. Midwestern Germans call them “Kisses” or “Schaum Tortes”. I look forward to your take on it. I’m very anxious to try your lemon pie recipe. My attempts are always hit or miss; thought maybe NJ’s summer humidity was the reason for all the “weeping” (even with Cream of Tartar or Clear Jel stabilizer). Your recipes never fail me.

  24. Ah, love me some lemon meringue pie! My all-time favorite. Besides proper ratio, timing is also quite important. The lemon curd needs to be piping hot when topped with meringue to prevent the weeping. (Anyway, I’m sure you already know that. :))

    And always yes to Pavlova!! Just made it recently for my birthday. It’s quite a treat! (Can you tell I’m obsessed with meringue-based treats?) 

  25. I have literally been making LMP for over 50 years. I have experienced many of the same problems mentioned and worked on resolving them with recipe modifications. My original recipe came from a little cookbook my grandmother used! LMP is the birthday dessert of choice for everyone and have even made it for my own birthday. Always used corn starch over flour and water over milk but I m curious as to what you liked best. Meringues are like fudge-a lot has to do with humidity and getting the meringue on a hot filling.  So also curious as to your solutions. 

  26. Oh man – lemon merguine pie has been my baking challenge for over a year. I could not get the lemon filling right to save my life! But last month I finally succeeded!! I kept thinking “Why doesn’t Sally have a recipe for this?!” Unfortunately I’m the only one in my family who likes it, so I won’t be making it again for awhile. Still it felt great to cross it off my baking bucket list!!

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I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally