Hi, friends! Anyone looking for a fun little Valentine baking project? I made these Meringue Cookie Kisses for the kindergarten class except now I’m going to need another batch as we ate too many. Oops. Sorry, not sorry. And I’m not mad about it because it was soooo easy.
And because it is sooooo easy, it’s a great little Valentine’s project to involve your littles. These are my new addiction. We make them with half regular sugar and half coconut sugar which gives a gorgeous caramel flavor rather than just one-note sugar sweet. A little good Mexican Vanilla doesn’t hurt either. Oh, and then we’re going to drizzle it in chocolate. I swoon.
They are super crackly crispy and then they just dissolve in your mouth. Everyone I’ve gifted these to wants to know how to make them- so for all of us- here you go.
Meringue Cookie Candy Tips
Meringue Cookies are not difficult, but there is a very clear order of operations that you cannot stray from.
- Use room temperature egg whites. Separate them straight out of the fridge as it’s easier when they are cold- but let them hang out for at least 20 minutes before you start. Room temp egg whites will form stiffer peaks.
- Crack the eggs one a time over a ramekin or small bowl before adding to your mixing bowl to make sure you don’t get ANY egg yolk in there. Any fat at all will prevent the stiff peaks.
- Don’t try to make these on a rainy/super humid day – the meringues can soak up moisture in the air and it can make them gummy.
- Do not skip the cream of tarter- again – no peaks. No peaks=no cookies.
- Do not skip the salt- you need it to balance the sweetness.
- Vanilla is optional- but I really like it and use a good quality vanilla. Once again- this is the one I buy and love. I wrote a love letter to Mexican vanilla here if you’re interested.
- Food coloring is also optional. The coconut sugar gives it a nice tan color- so they would just look like chocolate kisses without the red coloring. I know how we all feel about red dye – but it’s 2 drops in a whole batch once a year. That falls within my parameters of reasonable. However, if anyone has a source for organic red food coloring- please share here!
You want your meringue to look like this.
Confession- I am super intimidated by a piping bag. My mom decorates my kids birthday cakes. I have no talent for it. Point is- if I can make these look like little kisses – anyone can! Use a star piping tip (or round depending on what shape you want- I played around, you can choose to add a little swirl or not. But the opening needs to be about 1/4 inch wide. You can also use a large ziplock if you don’t have a piping bag on hand. To make less of a mess- fold the bag back like so to make a cuff, and scrape your spatula along it. Fill the bag only 2/3 full.
Conventional wisdom says the cookies need to cool in the oven. I tested and left one pan in and took one out to cool. No difference whatsoever. After they cool, just melt bakers chocolate and drizzle the chocolate over with a spoon. No fancy equipment required.
Meringue Cookie Kisses for Valentines Day
The easiest Valentines’s Treat to make with your kiddos.
- 3 egg whites at room temperature
- 1/4 Teaspoon Cream of Tartar
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/3 Cup White granulated sugar
- 1/3 Coconut Sugar (can sub white sugar)
- 1 Teaspoon vanilla
- 2 ounces bakers semi-sweet chocolate (optional)
- 2-3 drops red food coloring (optional) - see blog post
- Preheat Oven to 250 degrees F
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper set aside
- In a stand mixer with whisk attachment or in a completely dry and clean glass or metal bowl (not plastic) with egg beaters- beat the egg whites with the salt and cream of tarter on high for 2 minutes or until they are foamy and soft peaks start to form.
- Add half the sugar and beat to combine. Immediately add the other half and beat on high another 2-3 minutes until mixture is glossy and stiff peaks form. (see blog post for tips and photos)
- Add vanilla and stir to combine.
- Add food coloring and stir to combine.
- Fit a piping bag (or a large ziplock with a corner cut off) with a large star or round shaped piping tip. Opening needs to be about 1/4"
- Fold the piping bag back to make a cuff and fill with half the mixture.
- Pipe out roughly 1 1/2" rounds making a little upwards motion at the end of each one for the "kiss" shape.
- Repeat with remaining mixture on the second cookie sheet.
- Place both cookie sheets in the oven and bake for 1 hour
- Remove from oven and allow to cool completely on the cookie sheets. Do not transfer to a cooling rack.
- Break the chocolate into large pieces and place in a microwave safe bowl. Melt in the microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between until melted. Either dip cooled cookies in chocolate or drizzle the chocolate on with a spoon. Allow chocolate to harden- about an hour.
- These will keep in an airtight container up to two weeks or freeze for about a month
- Preparation time: 20 minutes
- Cook time: 2 hours
- Total time: 2 hours