Meringue is a delicious treat that can be enjoyed on its own or as a topping on other dishes. The high sugar content in this dish attracts moisture, which can ruin the structure of your meal. If you've prepared your meringue, the last thing you want is for it to be destroyed before you can enjoy it. We've done the research and have determined how to store this dessert for extended periods!
You can store your cooked meringue in an airtight container at room temperature for two to three weeks. To preserve an uncooked meringue, move it to a covered container and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.
Now that you've got the basics, let's learn more! Keep reading to discover more about how long meringue can be stored and whether or not you can freeze it.
What Is Meringue?
Meringue is a dessert that is primarily associated with Italian, Swiss, French, and Polish cuisines. The two ingredients you'll need for meringue are egg whites and sugar.
You can also use acidic ingredients like lemon juice or cream of tartar. These elements are used to stabilize the egg whites to provide higher peaks once beaten.
You can also add flavorings to your meringue. Vanilla extract, cocoa, nutmeg, and cinnamon are some common ingredients you can add.
You can find this dessert in various forms depending on the techniques used to prepare the dish. Meringue for a floating island dish (île flottante in French) is cooked in a bain-marie. When meringue is used as a topping, it is partially baked.
Finally, you can bake this dessert on its own. In these instances, you will have a crisp shell with a softer center.
How to Prepare Meringue
To make a meringue, you'll first need to gather your ingredients: egg whites and sugar. Typically, you make a meringue with castor sugar. This sugar is more delicate than granulated sugar but less so than confectioners' sugar.
If you can't find castor sugar, then you can use granulated sugar instead. You can also make your own castor sugar by blending regular sugar for a few seconds.
Take your egg whites and mix them until stiff and frothy. You can combine your egg whites by hand or with an electric blender. Once your egg whites are mixed, it's time to mix in any acidic ingredients.
Beat the mixture until you start to see soft peaks forming. Finally, add in your sugar. Mix your sugar in slowly. If you work too quickly, your meringue will collapse. Once your ingredients look glossy, you're finished.
From here, you can store your meringue to make later, bake it in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit, or add it to any desserts then bake.
Check out this video to watch how it's done!
How To Store Meringue
You can easily store this dessert in a variety of ways. The exact storage method will change depending on whether it's cooked or uncooked and whether it is a part of a dessert, like lemon meringue pie, or baked on its own.
Storing Baked Meringue
Once you've baked your meringue, it's crucial to let it cool before removing from the oven. While simple to make, a meringue can crack if it experiences sudden temperature changes.
To avoid that, turn your oven off once the dessert is finished cooking, then wait to open the door until everything is cooled off. A meringue that is entirely cooled will be easily removed from a cooking sheet.
Now it's time to store your meringue. You can store these baked goodies at room temperature in an airtight container for up to two weeks. Meringues can be stacked on top of each other in a container. Just make sure you use a piece of parchment paper between layers. This thin layer will help preserve your dessert's shape.
If you don't plan to use your meringue within a two to three-week period, you need to freeze it. In this case, you'll use a shallow, airtight, freezer-safe container. You can still stack your dessert by using parchment paper. When stored in the freezer, meringue can last for up to a month.
Storing Meringue Topped Desserts
Storage is a little different if you've made a lemon meringue pie or other meringue topped dessert. These desserts don't store well for long periods. A meringue pie can start to weep water because of the filling and meringue interacting with one another.
A meringue topped dessert can be stored at room temperature for up to two hours at a time. After this, it needs to be refrigerated. If you need to keep your dessert for longer than six hours, you'll also need to cover it.
These types of pies can be delicate. If you place plastic wrap directly onto it, the meringue could collapse due to the weight. Before you cover this dessert, you place toothpicks around the pie. This way, the plastic wrap is supported by the toothpicks and not the pie itself.
Unfortunately, meringue topped pies do not freeze well. Once you defrost your assembled pie, it will get all soggy and won't be as good. However, if you really want to freeze your pie, it's essential to leave the meringue topping off.
You can make the meringue and the pie but freeze them individually. This method makes it easier to protect the pie as it defrosts. Adding the meringue topping is simple and can be done quickly once thawed out.
Can you make a meringue the day before you need it?
Preparing meringue beforehand can make dessert-making much easier for you. You can make this dessert the day before you need to use it. You can potentially use uncooked meringue to three days after being prepared. However, it's best to use it within 24 hours.
How to store uncooked meringue mixture
To store your uncooked meringue, move it into an airtight container, cover it, and refrigerate it. Use your mixture within the day, or you can transfer it into the freezer.
Can uncooked meringue be frozen?
An uncooked meringue mixture can be stored in the freezer for up to 10 months. When storing, it's vital to use an airtight, freezer-safe container. This will protect your dessert from other foods, contaminants, and strange fridge smells.
The airtight container will also help keep moisture away from the meringue. This is especially important when defrosting your uncooked mixture.
To defrost your meringue, put it into the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight. You can also place it at room temperature for a few hours. Don't refreeze meringue once it's defrosted. Doing so can make it dry and brittle once prepared.
Can you refrigerate a meringue overnight?
It is possible to refrigerate meringue overnight, although it can be difficult depending on how you prepared it. You can store meringue pies overnight, but you have to worry about the dessert weeping water and getting soggy.
Baked meringue doesn't need to be refrigerated, although it can be as long as it remains in an airtight container. Uncooked meringue can be made beforehand and stored overnight.
Meringue is a relatively easy dish to prepare and store once you know more about it. The key to storing your meringue comes down to the correct container! Keep this baked dessert in an airtight container for the best results. When it comes to meringue topped pies, try to finish them within two days for the best results!
You may also enjoy: