by Jan 30, 2022

When baked to perfection, these meringues are crisp, airy, sweet, and light.  The problem with that, is that you will be tempted to keep tossing them in your mouth like popcorn.   

I started trying to perfect meringue kisses when I wanted a cookie that didn’t require a lot of chewing because someone in my family had difficulty chewing.  I have to admit I got the results I was looking for.  These meringues are small enough to pop in your mouth as they dissolve easily and sweetly. 

I really haven’t made them in a few years, but had a request from son Karl, so I made them again.  I was disappointed with the first batch, because they looked slightly bumpy instead of perfectly smooth, as you can see above. Maybe I shouldn’t to admit it, but I overbeat them. You can see what happened, I baked them anyway–heck, everybody has off days sometimes.  Karl was NOT upset when I said I would need to make another batch as he happily packed them up to take them off of my hands.

The second effort was better, but unfortunately, my “I -am- so -sick -of -Covid -Brain” wasn’t.  Somehow, I set my oven on convection and didn’t notice.  When the timer went off, I realized I had tan meringues-sheesh!  Certainly not acceptable for me, although Karl and family still had NO problem eating that batch either.   Schucky darn.

For the third attempt, I had my act together.  I even added red food coloring since it is getting close to Valentine’s Day and I thought pink meringues would look nice in the photos.  I even cut some open to show how airy and light they are inside.

So, avoid overbeating the egg whites because you will get not-so-perfect-but-still-edible meringues like the top photo. And make sure your oven is at the correct temperature and is not on the convection setting. The pink ones are the ones that are perfect.  I forgot to take photos of the perfectly beaten egg whites before I put the food coloring in the best batch.  Still working on that Brain thing…

But at least you will be able to understand the important steps so you don’t make my mistakes. And I did finally succeed:

Start by separating the eggs ahead of time.  Eggs are easier to separate when they are cold, but the whites whip up higher and lighter when they are lukewarm.  If you don’t remember to separate the eggs ahead of time, or just feel like getting right to it, fill the sink with about 2 inches of hot water.  Then place the bowl of egg whites in and stir them (I just use my fingers, but you can use a fork if desired) gently until you feel that they are lukewarm. 

Whip the egg whites with a bit of cream of tartar and a pinch of salt until foamy.  Turn the speed of the mixer up to high, slowly add a very small amount of sugar and keep whipping.  My original recipe states “1 tablespoon at time”, but I just measure out a cupful of sugar scoop and sprinkle in a bit at time.  I stop the mixer when about half of the sugar is in to scrape down the sides.  You can test how well you are doing by rubbing a bit of the whipped whites between your fingers.  You shouldn’t feel any grittiness.  If you do, keep beating. The whipped egg whites should still look glossy and should hold stiff peaks.

When all of the sugar is added, I quickly and lightly stir in the vanilla and food coloring with a soft spatula until well combined.  Transfer the meringue to a piping bag fitted with a star tip. If you don’t have a piping bag and tip, use a gallon size plastic food storage bag.  You won’t have the ridges, but who cares?  Snip off a small corner and fill the bag, twist it closed.  You can put a little meringue on the corner of each pan, and then smooth down the parchment if you like.  I never bother, because I just hold down the paper with one hand and pipe with the other.

Squeeze out bite size kisses on the parchment lined sheet pans.  You don’t need to leave room for spreading because these little gems don’t spread out like cookies with flour and baking powder.

Place the pans in the oven and don’t forget to set a timer for 2 hours.  Check to make sure your oven is on the regular bake cycle on not convection!

Turn off the oven after two hours and wait for the meringues to cool.  When cooled, peel the meringues off the parchment, hide half of the meringues if you have a Karl around, and serve the rest. 


  • 4 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or other extract such as peppermint, almond, rum)
  • Food coloring, optional

Preheat oven to 200 degrees F (105C) and line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

Combine egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt in a large, completely clean, completely grease-free bowl.

Use the whisk attachment on a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer and stir on low speed until the mixture becomes foamy.

Increase speed to high.

With mixer on high, gradually add sugar, about 1 Tablespoon at a time, stirring after each addition until sugar is dissolved (about 15-20 seconds between each addition).

Beat until mixture is thick, shiny, and has increased in volume. Mixture should have stiff peaks and sugar should be completely dissolved (you can test this by rubbing a small bit of the mixture between your fingers, if it feels gritty, the sugar isn’t dissolved).

Stir in vanilla extract or any other extract you may like to use. If using food coloring, add the food coloring at this stage, too.

Fit a large disposable piping bag with a large star tip.  Or you can just snip the edge of a gallon zip-loc bag and transfer meringue to prepared piping bag. Pipe individual kisses or dollops onto prepared cookie sheet.  Since these cookies don’t spread, they can be close to each other.  

Bake at 200 degrees for 2 hours. If your oven does not bake evenly, switch the cookies sheets from top to bottom and bottom to top after an hour. Turn off the oven once the baking time has passed, and do not open the oven. Leave the oven door closed and allow cookies to cool completely in the oven (about an hour) before removing.

Peel the cookies off the parchment and serve in a pretty dish.

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  1. Sherry


    • akcooker

      Thank you, Sherry!