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World’s Best Lemon Pie

Total Time

Prep: 25 min. Bake: 15 min.


8 servings

Updated: Nov. 30, 2022
Mother's pies were always so wonderful, with tender, flaky crusts. Throughout the year we enjoyed berry and apple pies, but in summer the order of the day was this lemon pie recipe—so light and refreshing! —Phyllis Kirsling, Junction City, Wisconsin


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 large egg yolks, beaten, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 pastry shell (9 inches), baked
  • 3 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar


  1. In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch, flour and salt. Gradually stir in water. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes more. Remove from the heat. Gradually stir 1 cup of hot mixture into egg yolks; return all to saucepan. Bring to boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the butter, lemon juice and zest until smooth. Pour into pastry shell.
  2. In a bowl, beat egg whites and salt until stiff (but not dry) peaks form. Gradually beat in sugar until soft peaks form. Spread over pie, sealing edges to pastry. Bake at 350° until meringue is golden, 12-15 minutes. Cool. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

World’s Best Lemon Pie Tips

How do you keep lemon meringue pie from getting soggy?

Refrigeration can make this pie get soggy more quickly. Let it stand at room temperature before serving. Also, make sure your lemon filling is still hot when you spread the meringue on top. This will help prevent it from "weeping" into the rest of your pie. Learn more about perfecting pie crusts.

Does lemon pie need to be refrigerated?

Lemon pie can be set at room temperature for a couple of hours, but it should go into the fridge after that. Can't get enough lemony goodness? Try these homemade recipes for your citrus fix.

Can I make this lemon pie recipe ahead of time?

Lemon meringue pie is definitely best served fresh, but you can keep your pie in the refrigerator for up to three days, loosely covered with aluminum foil. You want to avoid smashing those beautiful stiff peaks! Here's more on how to master meringue.

Research contributed by Elizabeth Harris

Nutrition Facts

1 piece: 334 calories, 10g fat (4g saturated fat), 89mg cholesterol, 286mg sodium, 57g carbohydrate (38g sugars, 0 fiber), 4g protein.