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The Perfect French Meringue Recipe

Use this perfect French meringue recipe to create crisp on the outside chewy in the middle mini pavlovas and meringue cookies.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 hr 40 mins
Total Time2 hrs 10 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: french meringue, pavlova
Servings: 6


For the French Meringue

  • 4 large egg whites
  • ¼ teas cream of tartar
  • ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teas vanilla bean paste

For the Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teas vanilla bean paste
  • fresh berries to finish


To make the French Meringue

  • Preheat the oven to 250°F. Make a template for 6 mini pavlovas by tracing a 3 to 3 ½-inch wide cookie cutter or bowl onto a piece of parchment paper. Flip the parchment upside down and place on a baking sheet. Set aside.
  • In the clean bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, begin whipping the egg whites on medium-low speed until they turn opaque and have lots of tiny bubbles. 
  • Increase the speed to medium and add the cream of tartar. Very slowly stream in the sugar, about a tablespoon or two at time. It should take about 1 minute to add all of the sugar. Go very slowly to make sure the sugar dissolves into the egg whites.
  • Increase the speed to medium-high and whip until stiff peaks form. Stop the mixer and add in the vanilla bean paste. Mix on medium speed until combined.
  • Fill a piping bag fitted with a star tip with the meringue. Using your template as a guide, pipe 6 meringue nests on top of the parchment paper. Hold the piping bag straight down and start piping a spiral (from the center out), then continue to pipe a ring on top of the outer edge to create a bowl shape.
  • Reduce the heat of the oven to 225°F and bake the meringue nests for 75 to 100 minutes. When done, they should feel nearly dry on the outside. Turn off the heat and allow the meringues to cool in the oven, with the door propped open with a wooden spoon (if possible). 
  • Unfilled, the baked meringues can be stored in an air-tight container at room temperature (or in the oven) overnight. 

To make the Whipped Cream

  • When ready to serve, prepare the cream. Place the heavy cream in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (or in a large bowl with a hand mixer). Whisk on high speed until the cream begins to thicken slightly. Stop the mixer and add the sugar and vanilla bean paste. Continue mixing on high until the cream holds soft peaks. This should only take 1 to 2 minutes total with an electric mixer, so keep a close eye. Do not overmix.
  • To assemble, gently spoon the whipped cream into the meringue nests and top with fresh berries.