How To Make Italian Meringue + Tips To Get It Right

June 13, 2019 4 Comments

how to make italian meringue

Over in the Bakestarters’ blog, we’ve talked about the different types of meringues, the French meringue, and its Swiss counterpart. The Italian meringue, which I’m going to be touching on today, is considered to be the most stable of all meringues, making it suitable for baked Alaskas or as a base for mousses. However, I would consider it to be the most complicated meringue to whip up.

italian meringue

What Is Italian Meringue?

Meringue in itself refers to a whipped egg white and sugar mixture baked to a crisp. Of course, sometimes instead of baking it, you may use the whipped mixture as a base for buttercream or mousses. 

The Italian meringue is a method of preparing meringue that involves cooking a sugar syrup (really hot!), and whipping it into egg whites till stiff peaks. This results in the most stable meringue, and it also means that it’s safe to eat as it is.

While it’s optional, adding an acid such as lemon juice or cream of tartar can help the meringue to stabilise better. As mentioned, Italian meringue is one of the most complicated to whip up as you’ll have to cook a sugar syrup while your egg whites are getting beaten. Therefore, I would recommend you to use a stand mixer when making Italian meringue! 

Besides a stand mixer, you’ll also need a kitchen thermometer to measure the temperature of the sugar syrup. You won’t be able to use your fingers like the Swiss meringue as the sugar syrup is very, very hot!

Ready to try it out? Here’s a simple, basic recipe for Italian meringue. 


4 large egg whites (~140g)

280g granulated sugar

70g water

1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar (optional)


  1. Sugar syrup: In medium saucepan, combine the sugar and water, and set it on medium heat. Give it a quick stir to dissolve the sugar. Boil the sugar mixture until it reaches the soft ball stage, where the kitchen thermometer reads 115°C.
  2. While your sugar syrup is cooking, beat the egg whites in a clean, grease and oil-free bowl of a stand-mixer, using the whisk attachment. Add in cream of tartar, if desired. Beat your egg whites on medium speed until it reaches soft peaks. 
  3. Adding sugar syrup: At this point, the sugar syrup is VERY HOT, so you want to take extra care here. While your mixer is beating the egg whites on low speed, stream in the hot syrup slowly.
  4. Once all the syrup has been added, increase your mixer speed to medium-high, and beat until stiff peaks. 

Italian Meringue Tips

  • Use room temperature egg whites - These whip up faster, and you want your sugar syrup to come up to the right temperature at about the same time as your egg whites whip up to soft peaks.
  • Don’t skimp on sugar - The sugar, as with all meringues, is essential in stabilising the meringue, and a ratio of 1 part egg white 2 parts sugar is generally ideal for meringues.
  • Use a clean, grease & oil-free metal, glass, or copper bowl - Plastic bowls retain grease and fat easily, and this in turn makes it harder to whip up egg whites, because the fat prevents the proteins from bonding with each other. Which brings us to the next point!
  • Use a wedge of lemon to clean your mixing bowl - Before beginning, rub the bowl with a wedge of lemon, and then use a paper towel to clean the bowl. It’s a bit of work, but it helps to ensure that there isn’t any grease in the bowl to derail your meringue.

For more tips on making meringues, visit our article on the three different types of meringues.

4 Responses

Bakestarters Admin
Bakestarters Admin

January 27, 2021

Hi Caroline! Yes, you can use Italian meringue instead of raw whipped egg whites in a tiramisu.


January 26, 2021

Thanks for the tips. Can I use this as a subsitute for the whipped egg whites in a tiramisu recipe?

Bakestarters Admin
Bakestarters Admin

December 10, 2020

Hi Elizabeth! If you’re referring to using the Italian meringue to frost your cake, yes, it’s totally possible. Just make sure to whip until it turns opaque white, which means the eggs are cooked and safe to eat.

For a prettier look, torch the top of your meringue! You can also beat in some butter to make Italian Meringue Buttercream, a delicious frosting that works well for decorating and frosting.


December 10, 2020

Can I use this to cream a cake as it is

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

About This Blog

The Bakestarters blog features tips and lessons to baking in Singapore, along with useful tips when using our signature baking kits.

Our Socials

Also in The Big Bake Theory | Bakestarters

February 09, 2021

Making a less sweet version of baked goods is more than just cutting the sugar you add. Without the appropriate amount of sugar, your cakes and cookies might turn out dry, rubbery, and pale. Find out the right way to reduce sugar in all the different types of baked goods in this guide!

Continue Reading

January 26, 2021

Some of our favourite CNY treats are actually very easy to make. With 6 ingredients or less, you can whip up delicious home-baked treats to share with your loved ones! Try your hand at these easy recipes and make any gathering more meaningful than ever.

Continue Reading

December 21, 2020

Daunted at the thought of frosting your first cake? Read this article to find out everything you need to know—tools you'll need, types of cake frostings, types of fillings, different ways to frost cakes, and more!

Continue Reading