Meyer Lemon Meringue Pie

One of the best things about winter and early spring in south Louisiana is the abundance of fresh citrus, including the Meyer lemon. Thought to be a cross between a regular lemon and a mandarin orange, this variety of lemon is a favorite backyard tree in this region due to its cold hardiness. Meyer lemons can be used whenever you want a burst of sweet citrus flavor without the acidic bite of regular lemons, and it’s a wonderful addition to both savory and sweet dishes, including a traditional lemon meringue pie.

Meyer Lemon Meringue Pie
Yields: 1 (9-Inch) Pie
Topped with an easy Italian meringue, this gorgeous pie highlights the slightly sweet flavor of fresh Meyer lemon juice.

  • Pie Dough (recipe follows)
  • 2¾ cups sugar, divided
  • 1½ cups plus ⅓ cup water, divided
  • 4 egg whites, room temperature
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 egg yolks
  • ⅓ cup cornstarch
  • ½ cup Meyer lemon juice
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest
Pie Dough
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 5 tablespoons ice water

  1. On a lightly floured surface, roll Pie Dough to a 12-inch circle. Transfer to a 9-inch pie plate, pressing into bottom and up sides. Trim dough ½-inch beyond edge of plate, if needed. Fold edges under, and crimp as desired. Prick bottom with a fork. Freeze until firm, 20 to 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 400°.
  3. Top dough with a piece of parchment paper, letting ends extend over edges of plate. Add pie weights.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes. Carefully remove paper and weights. Bake until crust is golden brown and dry, about 15 minutes more.
  5. In a small saucepan, combine 1¼ cups sugar and ⅓ cup water. Heat over high heat until an instant-read thermometer registers 240°.
  6. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites and cream of tartar at medium speed until soft peaks form.
  7. With mixer running, slowly pour hot sugar syrup into egg white mixture. Increase mixer speed to high, and beat until bowl is cool to the touch, about 8 minutes. Beat in vanilla. Set aside.
  8. Place a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl. Set aside. In another medium bowl, slowly whisk together egg yolks, ½ cup sugar, and cornstarch.
  9. In a medium saucepan, stir together lemon juice, salt, remaining 1½ cups water, and remaining 1 cup sugar. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until steaming. Slowly pour hot lemon juice mixture into egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Return mixture to saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly; cook for 1 to 2 minutes to cook out cornstarch flavor. Remove from heat, and strain through prepared sieve.
  10. Stir butter and lemon zest into mixture. Immediately pour into warm piecrust. Top with meringue, making sure to push meringue to edges.
  11. Using a kitchen torch, lightly brown meringue. (Alternatively, place pie on a rimmed baking sheet, and brown under broiler on middle rack of oven, 1 to 2 minutes, turning pie frequently.) Let cool to room temperature before slicing.
Pie Dough
  1. In the work bowl of a food processor, place flour, sugar, and salt; pulse until combined. Add cold butter, and pulse until mixture is crumbly. With processor running, pour 5 tablespoons ice water through food chute in a slow, steady stream just until dough comes together. (Mixture may look crumbly. It should be moist and hold together when pinched.)
  2. Turn out dough, and shape into a disk. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Dough may be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.
Make-Ahead Tip: Make the crust and filling, then cover with plastic wrap on surface and chill overnight. Wait to make and torch meringue until ready to serve.