Vanilla Meringue Cookie Recipe

December 17, 2023   37 Comments

This vanilla meringue cookie recipe will win your heart. Not only is it gluten-free but it only has five ingredients and 9 calories per cookie!

Vanilla Meringue Cookie Recipe

There are so many great things about these cookies except for the fact they take a bit of technique. But, if I can do it, you can! Unlike my Almond Clouds or my frozen chocolate cookie dough recipe, you have to pipe the batter (which is a step I would ordinarily avoid).

These are beautiful, they stay fresh in a tightly sealed container, and they are low in calories - only 9 calories per cookie!. That is what happens when you mix egg whites and sugar (and don’t use any flour or butter).

This is cooking alchemy at its best because beating the crap out of egg whites turns them into something else entirely – meringue.

The first step is to bring your egg whites to room temperature (I put the eggs in warm water for 15 minutes if I forget to take them out of the fridge). Then you beat them with the vanilla, cream of tartar, and a dash of salt except tuntil foamy.

You add one tablespoon of sugar at a time while you beat on high and you get the most amazing thing – a thick, shiny batter that becomes a solid when you heat it! How cool is that?

I have a stand mixer because my husband bought it but you can do this with a hand mixer – it will take longer and your hand might get tired.

I used a star tip and a disposable piping bag – both of which you can get in the baking aisle of your grocery store next to the cupcake wrappers – and made cute little circles. It really isn’t hard – I am terrible at this kind of thing and I managed to make the ones below.

Then, you bake them at 250 F for 45 minutes and leave them in the oven with the oven turned off for an hour so they get dry. Store them in an airtight container (very important).

These do take time, but they don’t take money and people love them. Especially those people who are trying to avoid the heavier stuff (I am looking at you Christmas fudge).

Vanilla Meringue Cookie Recipe

1.8 from 24 reviews

Makes approximately 60 cookies

Print  Pin


3 large egg whites, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
dash salt
2/3 cup sugar


Heat oven to 250 F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Put egg whites in a bowl and add vanilla, cream of tartar, and a dash of salt. Beat on medium speed until foamy.

Add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, as you beat on high. Beat until stiff, shiny peaks form (about 7 minutes).

Using a star tip and a piping bag, pipe 1 inch diameter cookies in small circles on the baking sheets. Bake 45 minutes until firm to the touch. Turn off oven and leave the door closed. Leave meringues in the oven for 1 hour.

Cool completely and store in an airtight container. They will remain fresh as long as they are not exposed to a humid environment for three weeks.

Nutrition Facts

For two cookies = 18 calories, 0 g fat, 0.0 g saturated fat, 4.4 g carbohydrates, 4.4 g sugar, 0.4 g protein, 0 g fiber, 12 mg sodium, 1 Freestyle SmartPt

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

Other posts you might like:

A Light Gluten-Free Cookie for Cookie Season

Do you have a party where everyone brings their favorite cookies and recipes?....

Frozen Chocolate Cookie Dough Recipe

I think you need this frozen cookie dough recipe because it will stop you from eating crappy cookies....

Get Free Email Updates! Yes please!


This recipe has been in my family for years and my grandchildren love it and make it all the time. We always add 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips. My grandmother would also add chopped red and green cherries for the holidays. I'm not sure if they were candied (dried) or not but they probably were. They were colorful but I love the chocolate chips best. She also added 1/4 t. almond extract but I think that's optional.

Have you tried using the liquid from chickpeas (aquafaba)??? :O There seems to be a movement towards doing this..I'm guessing more protein? Justwondered.…

@Ilene - I haven't tried that but I hear it works. I am fairly new to meringue making so I thought I would go with the original. Chick pea liquid next!! Thanks for the question!

Hey, Snack Girl, thank you for the meringue cookie recipe ! It sounds (and looks) easy and wonderful. Every year we make houses out of chocolate covered graham crackers ...have been doing it for more years than I care to remember. lol. They look beautiful, but, oh, so much work! I have been thinking about making something different for our friends and our neighbors next year and now I think that I have the solution!

Now, if I can only convince my husband! The houses were his idea and he made them for years while I stood by and watched.

But since he has lost his eyesight it is now my work but he still comes up with the ideas.


This sounds great, but I have a couple questions. Could you add food coloring and if using chocolatte chips, when would you add them? Thank you!

There was an interesting post recently on Fooducate about aquafaba. The gist of it was to stay with egg whites for more protein and fewer carbs.

Love meringues. Yum and thank you! I have done a bit of experimenting with chickpea liquid. 2 thoughts: Like anything else, it won't be an exact taste replica. Also, don't used canned chickpeas for sweet aquafaba projects. There's an unwanted taste for my tongue, even if I buy the insanely pricey unsalted ones.

@Phyllis - you can add the chocolate chips after you finish the meringue (stiff and glossy) - fold them in. I have seen a trick where you draw a line of food coloring down the side of your piping bag to give them a cool look. I would add food coloring after the meringue is done - quickly beating it in for a uniform color.

Thanks for your questions!!

I don't eat sugar so wonder if I can use Splenda instead of sugar. Less calories and controlled diabetes

Can Stevia be used instead of sugar? My husband has diabetes.


Thank you snack-girl for the vanilla merengue cookie . I'm going to try it.

I've wondered about stevia, too, for those who can't have sugar. I hope someone knows the answer. Snack Girl, do you?

About Stevia - I don't know because I haven't tried it - but my guess would be 1/2 and 1/2 might be better than going totally sugar free.

Here is a recipe that I found but I can't vouch for it.…

I have been asked about Stevia often - I need to get a better understanding of how/when to use it.

Great questions!

Splenda?? I don't use Stevia. Years ago I'd substitute Splenda in muffins, frosting, cupcakes, etc. and it worked. The finished product was softer but delicious

Great cookies. Bad me: I added 1/4 C each chocolate chips, bourbon-soaked raisins, and pecans. Oh my. But I did make them small and still only got 52 cookies.

Hi! If you don't have a piping bag with a star tip, is there another way to make these into some type of cookie shape? Thanks!

These look great! I have lost a lot of weight and gave up sugar. I think I will try with stevia or Splenda. Just not sure of how much to use.

I used to make these all of the time when I lived up north. It's a little bit harder now that I have moved to Florida. (Humidity is the enemy of meringues!) You can use any kind of granulated sweetener instead of sugar. I would not use any liquid sweetener as it will change the texture considerably and your egg whites may have the proper texture that is needed. You can add in all sorts of things. I like to use different extracts, for example, a few drops of peppermint and some mini semi-sweet chocolate chips. Then sprinkle crushed candy canes on top before baking. You don't need a star tip, although it does make them look pretty. You can put them in a ziploc bag and cut off a corner and drop little blobs (as if you're making an ice cream cone at Dairy Queen.) However they are shaped, they will bake exactly the way they are placed on a cookie sheet, they do not expand. To dress up the blobs, sprinkle a little pinch of colored sugar on top of them. You could also make them into little mushrooms! Thanks for the healthy recipe reminder, Snack girl. Love your posts!

Thank you for posting gluten free recipes! This and the Almond Clouds. Good way to use left over egg whites.

I used to make meringue cookies all the time. Now I live in Florida. For whatever reason, might be humidity, egg whites don't go into the right consistency regardless of how long you beat them. Any suggestions?

I love these - where I come from we call them soopies.

I make meringues although I am in north Florida. You have to pick a low-humidity day, as you would if you want to make nougat. (first time I did that in the summer I had nougat soup!!)

But Splenda might give you styrofoam instead of meringue. Try a small batch first.

We always added ground almonds or ground pecans; oh, yum, and almond flavoring instead of vanilla. When Mom added chocolate, it was cocoa or ground chocolate. Just dump it in gently after the meringue is beaten, just before putting onto the cookie sheet. Just until you have enough that it's the right color, or tastes good.

Also, I do them the old-fashioned (lazy, that is) wsy, just drop blobs off a spoon.

Then you beat them with the vanilla, cream of tartar, and a dash of salt except tuntil foamy. What does "except tuntil foamy" mean?

I have this recipe from my mother and love it! Also put sprinkles on top before baking for the holidays!

My kids and I had so much fun making these last night. They turned out beautifully -- even on the first try -- and they taste waaay better than the store-bought ones. I imagine they might be fun to float atop a cup of hot cocoa. What an easy, yummy recipe. Thanks, Lisa!

I made these last weekend . They're pretty AND delicious! I also do a peppermint version where it's essentially the same recipe, minus the vanilla, with crushed candy canes sprinkled over the meringues before they're baked. They're the perfect item to balance out some of the more decadent cookies I make this time of year, and my family loves them! (For anyone wondering if you can do meringues without a piping bag - yes, you can. I just dolloped my peppermint ones onto the baking tray with a small spoon for years. They weren't quite as pretty, and it's trickier to control the size of the meringue, but it worked fine in a pinch. Snack Girl gave me the courage to try the piping bag this year!)

My mom used to make these every year at Christmas. I believe she added crushed pecans. I'm making these today using your recipe; hoping they come out good! With only having a hand mixer, I had to beat about 25 minutes. We live in Florida and have never had a problem making meringues. :)

I have made these for years and it works ok without piping. I just spoon the batter onto the tray and it look cute with the little meringue peaks. Not as pretty as the piping, but I am a lazy cook. :-)

Like the question above - I don’t have a piping bag either. Can you just drop by teaspoons on the parchment paper and bake? I know they won’t be as pretty but they would be for me after an afternoon of baking for others.

That's what I do and it's fine.

Thank you Snack Girl for the easy to follow recipe for Meringue Cookies. They turned out better than I expected. Not much preparation time, will add to my "Bake Often" batch of recipes.

LOL!! These are the best cookies ever - cookies of my childhood. SO good, in fact, that I once ate half the batter thinking my mother would not know. Ha. We called them Cloud Cookies.

I also live in Florida. Meringues don't like humidity. However, if you make these and then work very quickly with your oven door open and you popping these into the container and sealing it, it works. You however must choose the lowest humidity day you can, or else turn on the air conditioning. Meringues here actually work better in summer, when your AC is drying out the house.

I have made these with my gluten-free dairy free granddaughter and we use mini dairy free chocolate chips and just drop them by teaspoonfuls onto the cookie sheet. She loves to make them.

Cream of Tatar, hate the stuff, what can I substitute it for?

Can't wait to make these as Christmas gifts

These look great! any way to add cocoa powder instead of vanilla? and granulated splenda?

Add a comment:


(required, never published)

© 2024