Why Are My Meringue Cookies So Sticky?

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If youre someone who bakes a lot, you might already know that it can be tricky to make meringue. It isnt impossible or anything, but beginners sometimes struggle to get the meringue to turn out perfectly.

One problem that newcomers commonly encounter is that the meringue turns out sticky. Meringue cookies should be delicious and easy to eat, but if the meringue is too sticky, it can ruin the experience.

Why would the meringue turn out this way? Is it an indication that you made a mistake somewhere down the line?

Below, youll learn about some reasons why meringue might turn out sticky. This should help you to troubleshoot and figure out where you went wrong.

Once you understand the problem, itll be easy to avoid making the same mistake next time. Youll have the most delicious meringue cookies that you could hope for soon enough.

Too Much Humidity in the Air

Why Are My Meringue Cookies So Sticky?

One possibility that you need to keep in mind is that the humidity level can impact how the meringue turns out. Is it very humid in your house at the moment?

If you choose to make meringue on a very humid day, itll be tougher to get it to turn out perfectly. Theres a good chance that the meringue will come out very sticky.

The sugar in the meringue attracts moisture in the air. Youll find that the meringue will be softer and stickier than it should be.

Its much easier to make meringue when the air is dry. If you live in a very humid part of the world, it might be wise to buy a dehumidifier.

Dehumidifiers can help you to solve humidity issues. Otherwise, you might want to wait until a different day when things arent so humid to make your meringue cookies.

Don’t Artificially Add Humidity to the Air

There are things that you can do in your home that will artificially add humidity to the air. For example, doing laundry can increase the humidity in the house.

Running the dishwasher also has the potential to raise the humidity in the kitchen. Itll be wise to avoid doing such tasks until after youve made your meringue cookies and stored them properly.

Some even recommend ensuring that you dont have pans with water in them in the sink. Having pans of water in the room will raise the humidity level whether you realize it or not.

Dont even boil water to make tea while youre making meringue for the cookies. If you wish to get the best results, you wont want to add humidity to the air by doing other things.

Store Meringue Cookies in a Dry Spot

Storing the meringue cookies in a dry spot will be important. If you keep the cookies somewhere that is too humid, then the meringue will get stickier.

You might want to put the meringue cookies in a container and then place them in a dry location. This will ensure that they dont soak up extra moisture somewhere along the way.

The meringue might have turned out perfectly and then taken on extra moisture because you didnt store the cookies properly. Take the time to choose a suitable dry location for the cookies.

If you make sure to store the cookies properly, youll have a much better experience. Your meringue cookies should be very tasty if all goes well.

Wait to Box the Cookies Until They’ve Cooled

Why Are My Meringue Cookies So Sticky?

Waiting to box the cookies until theyve cooled is important. Its a good idea to store the meringue cookies in a box or container, but doing so too soon can go wrong.

If the cookies are hot and you put them in a closed container, then itll trap the moisture. This can wind up making the meringue a bit sticky.

Give the cookies a chance to cool down on the counter for a while. The cookies will lose more moisture as they cool down, and that will keep the meringue from getting sticky.

Once the cookies have cooled, youll be able to box them and put them away. Find a good dry spot for the cookies and youll be able to eat them whenever you want.

Beat in the Sugar Properly

Beating in the sugar properly is an important part of the process. You want to beat the sugar in until it completely dissolves.

Failure to beat the sugar properly will leave the meringue feeling a bit gritty. This can have a negative impact on many things.

To keep this from happening, its recommended to test the meringue by rubbing a bit of it between your fingers. This allows you to check the consistency to see if it feels gritty.

Once youve made meringue several times, beating it will become like second nature. Youll have a good understanding of how long to beat the meringue to ensure that the sugar dissolves properly.

Don’t Bake The Meringue More Than You’re Supposed to

Baking the meringue more than youre supposed to can ruin everything. Sometimes you might make mistakes and bake the meringue just a bit too long.

When you bake a meringue longer than youre meant to, itll make the meringue tougher than usual. This makes the meringue cookies turn out far worse than you hoped.

Also, baking meringue for too long will cause the egg whites to release moisture. This can wind up causing the meringue to be a bit stickier than it should be.

You wind up having a much worse experience when you bake meringue for too long. Be sure to only bake the meringue for the recommended amount of time.

Always follow the meringue recipe to a tee to get consistent results. Double-check the meringue cookie recipe to ensure that youre doing everything as intended.

Its recommended to use a kitchen timer to keep track of the time. Also, you might want to stay in the kitchen and wait for the meringue to finish baking so that you can take it out immediately once the timer goes off.

Cornstarch Might Help

Using cornstarch in the meringue recipe might help to prevent moisture from becoming a problem. Cornstarch can stabilize the meringue by preventing proteins from breaking down while cooking.

Youre meant to bring one tablespoon of cornstarch and one-third of a cup of water to a boil for every four egg whites in the meringue recipe. Keep this in mind to make a meringue that will turn out properly.

Add one tablespoon of this solution into the meringue at a time after beating in the sugar. Every time you add a tablespoon of the solution, youre meant to beat the meringue until it has stiff peaks.

For many, this idea is going to have a positive impact. It might not always be necessary to bother with cornstarch, though.

Final Thoughts

You should now understand why meringue becomes sticky. Typically, meringue becomes sticky because it gets exposed to moisture.

Making meringue cookies on a humid day will make it hard to get the cookies to turn out properly. Youll need to avoid adding humidity to the air artificially as well.

Follow the advice above and itll be much easier to get good results. Youll be eating tasty meringue cookies before you know it.


How do you fix sticky meringues?

You can store your meringues in an airtight container for four to five days at room temperature or up to a month in the freezer. If they seem sticky or chewy, Jackson and Gardner suggest baking them for 10 minutes at 200 degrees to restore crispness.

How do you fix chewy meringue cookies?

Chewy meringues are the result of two possible situations, under-baking and humidity. If they are under-baked they might always be a little chewy. For humidity, you can try popping the meringues back into the oven on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet at 200°F for 10 minutes to try crisping them up a bit.

Why are my meringue cookies not hardening?

Meringues are not supposed to harden completely in the oven. While low heat will dry them out, meringues do not become hard and crisp until they have had a chance to cool for five or ten minutes.

How do you keep meringue from sweating?

How To Keep A Meringue Pie From Weeping
Choose a Dry Day.
Use Superfine Sugar.
Try a Swiss or Italian Meringue.
Make Sure the Pie Filling is Hot.
Spread Meringue to the Edges.
If All Else Fails, Use a Paper Towel.

Is meringue meant to be gooey?

Meringues are ready once they appear dry and are easily lifted from the parchment paper with their bases intact. Sometimes, though, especially for large meringues, it’s hard to know if the center has baked properly. It’s ok if it’s quite soft and marshmallow-like, but it shouldn’t be sticky.

Should meringue be sticky inside?

Meringues will always get sticky if they’re not kept nice and dry. I always let my meringues cool down in the open, then put them in a box once they have cooled down. That way, they may lose more moisture before boxing. The outside is always crisp and dry (the inside depends on how long you bake them).

Can you over whip meringue cookies?

Over whip the egg whites and you risk making them too firm and they will risk losing the moisture that they hold. This will affect your meringue’s crispness, as well as making it more likely to collapse or weep beads of sugar.

Can you overcook meringue cookies?

Overcooking meringue can sometimes cause beads of moisture to form on the surface, especially if it’s a hot or humid day. To prevent this from happening, don’t take your meringue too far; let it cool completely in the oven (with the door closed or slightly ajar).

What does over whipped meringue look like?

The foam bubbles in over-beaten egg whites become too big and cannot maintain their structure. When folded into a batter, the bubbles lose their bond and look lumpy. In the oven, they pop and deflate. Over-beaten meringue takes on a coarse and grainy appearance.

Can you put too much sugar in meringue?

Make sure to add the sugar slowly, allowing it to dissolve before adding more. If you dump too much sugar in, it’ll deflate all the air bubbles, compromising the structure. Also, if you leave sugar granules undissolved, your meringue will weep later on.

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