Beauty shot of Molly Yeh's Mandarin Meringue Pie as seen on Girl Meets Farm, Season 11.
Recipe courtesy of Molly Yeh

Mandarin Meringue Pie

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 3 hr 30 min (includes cooling time)
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
Molly’s family goes hard (eating food) at Thanksgiving, so they have to have an epic dessert. This is loosely inspired by a combination of don tot, Chinese egg custard tarts, and the classic lemon meringue pie, but flavored with mandarin oranges, for subtle extra sweetness. Molly also likes to use a shortbread crust to make the pie extra buttery and indulgent for the holiday.






  1. Arrange oven racks in both the upper third and lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. For the crust: In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment, add the cookies, sugar and salt. Process to make fine, even crumbs (but not a paste). Pour in the melted butter and pulse until thoroughly combined.
  3. Transfer the crust to a 9-inch pie plate (see Cook's Note) and press to compact and coat the bottom and sides. Bake until the crust is set, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack.
  4. Decrease the oven temperature to 325 degrees F.
  5. For the custard: In a small saucepan over low heat, combine the orange zest and juice and sugar. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is fully dissolved. Let cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
  6. Thoroughly whisk the whole eggs and yolk, evaporated milk, vanilla and salt in a large bowl (or large spouted measuring cup, which will make it easier to pour into the crust later). Whisk in the cooled orange juice mixture.
  7. Put the crust on a baking sheet and place on the bottom rack of the oven. Pour the custard in while the pie plate is on the rack to avoid spills. Bake until the custard is just set but the very center is still just a bit jiggly, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool completely. (The pie could be made a day ahead and chilled before topping.)
  8. For the meringue: Once the pie has cooled, preheat the oven to broil.
  9. Bring a medium saucepan with about an inch of water to a simmer over low heat. Into a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Set the bowl over the simmering water and whisk until light and foamy and the mixture reads 135 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. (The mixture should no longer be grainy if you rub it between your fingers and will be very warm/almost hot to the touch.)
  10. Transfer the egg mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium speed until the mixture begins to cool and forms soft peaks, 1 to 2 minutes. Increase the speed to medium high and whisk until the meringue just forms medium-stiff peaks (don’t overwhip), 1 to 2 minutes more.
  11. Spread the mixture over the pie and make swoops and peaks with the back of a spoon. Broil in the oven for 1 to 2 minutes (watching carefully so as to not to let it burn) until golden brown and toasty. (Alternatively, you can use a brulee torch to toast the meringue.) Set aside to cool.
  12. The meringue will be the best the day it is made, but leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 2 days, though the meringue may weep a bit.

Cook’s Note

If you plan on using the broiler for the meringue, make sure your pie dish is flameproof (do not use glass).