What Is Meringue?

I know that meringue is a light and airy dessert mixture that can be used in a variety of ways, like meringue cookies or as an essential element in desserts like baked Alaska or cakes—but I will always think of it as the key ingredient in comedy pies, the ones you go to throw at your buddy but end up slapping right in the face of the maitre’d. Today, we’ll learn a little bit more about this sweet sensation, and hopefully duck at the right times to dodge any wayward splatter! Let’s take a closer look at meringue and meringue powder, shall we? 

What is meringue made of?

Though the ratio can differ depending on the exact type of meringue (French, Italian, or Swiss), meringue is made primarily from egg whites and sugar. Additionally, some recipes may include a pinch of salt or cream of tartar to stabilize the egg whites and help achieve the desired consistency. It’s crucial to whip the egg whites to get those classically stiff peaks while gradually incorporating the sugar to create a glossy and stable final product.

What is meringue powder?

Meringue powder is a dry, powdered substitute for fresh egg whites in recipes that require meringue. It is a convenient alternative, especially in situations in which using raw egg whites is not recommended, such as in recipes that will not be cooked or heated. Meringue powder is often used in royal icing for decorating fancy cookies.

What is in meringue powder?

Typically, meringue powder is composed of dried egg whites, sugar, and sometimes other stabilizing agents. Some variations may include cornstarch or cream of tartar. To reconstitute the powder you just add water (so make sure there are no Mogwai around when you do it).

Does meringue powder go bad?

Meringue powder can go bad over time, so check that expiration date. To ensure the best results, store meringue powder in a cool, dry place, and seal the packaging tightly after each use,

We hope you’ve got a bit more appreciation for meringue now that you know more about it…so the next time you get walloped in the face with a meringue pie, you can consider it a culmination of your research, and not grounds for retaliation! 

About the Author

Joe Rumrill

Joe Rumrill is a fictional one-eyed spinach-loving sailor created in 1929 by E.C Se- Wait, no, that's not right... Joe Rumrill is a stand up comedian and writer currently based in Los Angeles. His favorite thing about food is a close tie between the taste and the nutrients one gets from it. His least favorite thing about it is the "gritty, dirt-like quality some food has", but he's most likely referring to the time in third grade he was dared to eat playground sand.

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