Lemon Meringue Pie (Make Ahead!)

Wonderfully fresh and full of vibrant flavors, this classic lemon meringue pie is a show stopping dessert. Make it ahead of time to wow your friends and family!

lifting up slice of lemon meringue pie

Make Ahead Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

You can not go wrong when you serve up a homemade lemon meringue pie.

It’s rich and tangy filling is covered in soft and chewy meringue for a dessert everyone will love.

Be sure to try my Lemon Meringue Cookies and Sour Cream Lemon Pie!

Why you’ll love this Lemon Meringue Pie recipe:

  • MAKE AHEAD: You can make the components of this recipe a couple of days ahead of time and assemble it the day of serving.
  • PERFECT FOR OCCASIONS: This traditional pie is great to serve at any celebration meal. It’s great for Easter, Christmas and any other time you fancy a treat!
  • GREAT FOR A CROWD: This pie will easily serve 12, so it’s great for family feasting!
lemon meringue pie on cake stand
overhead image of make ahead lemon meringue pie

How to make Lemon Meringue Pie (The Best!)

Be sure to see the recipe card below for full ingredients & instructions!

  1. Blind bake the crust.
  2. Whisk sugar, lemon juice water, cornstarch and salt and simmer.
  3. Whisk in the egg yolks, zest and butter.
  4. Strain into the pie shell and let cool.
  5. Heat the water and sugar to a boil. Set aside.
  6. Beat the egg whites and add the salt and cream of tartar and form soft peaks.
  7. Pour in the sugar syrup and add vanilla and beat until thick and shiny.
  8. Place the meringue on top of the lemon filling.
  9. Bake.
lifting up slice of lemon meringue pie
inside of lemon meringue pie

How long does it keep?

The assembled Lemon Meringue Pie will keep a few days in the fridge, but the meringue and/or the lemon filling will begin to weep. It is best eaten the day it is assembled. If perfection isn’t necessary (ie: if not making to share) the pie will still be delicious – just not ideal.

You can make the filling and bake the pie crust a day or two ahead of time and assemble on the day of serving.

How do you keep the meringue from defalting?

When you are whipping the egg whites, wait until they have formed soft peaks until you add the sugar. Don’t whip them on full speed, lower it a little so small, rather than large air pockets form.

How do you brown the tips of the meringue?

Use a cook’s torch to toast the meringue peaks for a more dramatic presentation. Be very careful to be ready to blow out any meringue that catches fire and to go slowly!

slice of lemon meringue pie next to whole pie on cake stand
slice of lemon meringue pie on grey plate


  • This pie, like all Lemon Meringue Pies, is best the day it is assembled. Unlike most lemon meringue pies, the lemon filling can be made one day ahead and stored refrigerated in an airtight container.
  • The pie crust can be cooked and stored (in the pie tin) in an airtight container (or zipper-style bag) up to two days before.
slice of lemon meringue pie with bite out

This classic lemon meringue pie is such a wonderful dessert. I love that the components this version can be made ahead of time for less stress in the kitchen!

If you make this recipe be sure to upload a photo in the comment section below or leave a rating. Enjoy!

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