The Best Tiramisu recipe is an Italian classic dessert made with layers of coffee-dipped ladyfingers, creamy mascarpone custard, and mini chocolate chips. This no-bake tiramisu gets its optimal flavors from dark brandy, coffee flavor, and cocoa powder. YUM!
Reasons for the Best Tiramisu…
- no baking is involved.
- lusciously creamy and smooth.
- it is a perfect dessert for dinner parties, special birthdays, and holidays.
- it will always ‘wow’ family and friends every time.
- melts in your mouth with every bite!
- plus, we added some mini chocolate chips to this recipe.
There are so many different versions of this classic Italian dessert.
Although we have tackled this dessert in so many different ways; making it with whipped egg yolks and whipped egg whites.
In case you prefer it made without eggs, then try our Easy Peppermint Tiramisu, and our Irish Cream Tiramisu (with easy step-by-step photos!), just to name a few.
But we can honestly tell you, this recipe is by far the Best Tiramisu we have ever made!
What is Tiramisu?
Tiramisu, pronounced as tir-a-me-soo, is a no-bake Italian dessert made with layers of coffee-dipped ladyfinger cookies and luscious cream, topped with cocoa powder, and chilled before serving.
Tiramisu in Italian means “pick me up,” simply because it’s made with espresso.
*QUICK NOTE: Keep in mind, espresso coffee is one of the main ingredients in the recipe. So with that being said, if you are sensitive to caffeine, then I suggest using “decaffeinated” espresso.
This recipe for Tiramisu versus other recipes…
We added mini semi-sweet chocolate chips. The mini chocolate chips add extra crunch and additional chocolate flavor.
Plus, we gave the mascarpone cheese some volume by whipping egg whites and folding them into the cream mixture.
How to Make Tiramisu?
Ingredients Needed for this Tiramisu:
*Espresso Coffee: you will need to brew a large pot of espresso. It is the base for soaking the ladyfingers. Don’t have espresso? No worries, you can brew a pot of your favorite coffee for this dessert.
*Dark Brandy: any dark brandy, like dark Rum, or coffee liquor (like Kahlua), can be used to mix with espresso coffee.
*Eggs: you will need to divide egg yolks and egg whites. They will be blended separately to make the luscious custard/cream.
*Sugar: to sweeten the flavor of the mascarpone cream.
*Mascarpone: mascarpone is an Italian cream cheese that’s similar to our cream cheese, but very mild.
*Ladyfingers: Savoiardi, or Vicenzovo, both Italian brands, are very light-texture cookies, and work best for this dessert.
*Mini Chocolate Chips: semi-sweet mini chocolate chips add additional texture and crunch with every bite, along with a chocolate flavor to this dessert.
*Cocoa Powder: unsweetened cocoa powder is used to dust over the cream layer and it gives an additional chocolate flavor to the dessert.
(*Full recipe card below!)
How to make the BEST Tiramisu?
Making tiramisu is much easier than you may think. Just follow our easy steps below:
1. First, BREW SOME COFFEE…
- First, you’ll need to brew a pot of espresso coffee and set it aside to cool, or pour it into a bowl and place it into your freezer to get it COLD.
2. Second, DIVIDE THE EGGS…
- NEXT, DIVIDE THE EGGS: Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites in different bowls; however, you will need 6 egg yolks and only 4 egg whites for this recipe.
3. Now, MAKE THE CREAM…
A. FIRST, Beat egg yolks with sugar for a few minutes and beat them until they turn into a light pale yellow color and a creamy thick mixture. Then beat in the mascarpone cheese and set aside.
B. NEXT, Beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks, about 5 minutes or more. Then gently fold the egg whites into the creamy cheese mixture. *NOTE: You have to take your time and slowly incorporate the whipped egg whites. You want to keep as much of the air in the whipped cream as possible.
This process creates a very light and airy cream for this Tiramisu. Making it a luscious cream that is truly sensational!
4. Assembling the Tiramisu…
A.) First, pour (cooled) espresso coffee into a small bowl and add dark brandy. Open a package of Italian ladyfinger cookies, dip each cookie into the coffee, and layer them at the bottom of the dish.
- Do not oversoak the cookies or let them get soggy, it will ruin the dessert. Only need to lightly dip them.
B.) Make a single layer of coffee-soaked ladyfingers on the bottom of your baking dish. You can use an 8 x 8-inch, 9 x 9-inch dish, or an 8 x 12-inch dish.
C.) Cover your first layer of cookies with the cream mixture ( about 1/2 the cream mixture), and spread it evenly.
D.) Then dust on top with cocoa powder, and scatter lightly with mini chocolate chips.
E.) Add the second layer of coffee-soaked cookies on top. Cover the cookies with the second layer of the cream (the remaining half of the cream mixture).
F.) Finally, dust on top with some cocoa powder and sprinkle with mini chocolate chips. I prefer to lightly dust the cocoa, but you can give it a thick layer of cocoa powder if you prefer.
5. COVER AND CHILL…
- Cover with clear wrap and chill this dessert in the refrigerator for a few hours, at least 6 hours or more before serving.
- Overnight is BEST! This leads me to tell you -YES! …this dessert can be made one day before.
It takes about 25 minutes to complete this dessert – but well worth it!
And if you are looking for our easy Step-by-Step Tutorial to make tiramisu, CLICK HERE.
Questions and Answers…
1. Can we Make-Ahead?
Tiramisu is a great dessert to make ahead – even up to two days in advance if needed. It allows the layers to infuse together and make it even better!
2. Can we Freeze Tiramisu?
Yes, you can freeze this dessert. Allow the dessert to chill for a few hours, then cover with clear wrap and then cover with foil wrap. Then place it in your freezer. The dessert can be frozen for up to one month, but I prefer two weeks, max.
*To defrost, let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes or more if needed.
3. How Long Can I Keep Tiramisu in the Refrigerator?
From our experience, you can only keep tiramisu for up to 3 days, if it lasts that long. Any longer, and it will get too soggy and not taste fresh.
4. Can we Make Tiramisu in a Larger Dish?
- Yes, you can! Use a 9 x 13-inch dish.
- Keep in mind, you will need to increase some of the ingredients. Including the amount of coffee needed (it’s always good to have extra on hand anyway), and you can use the other 2 egg whites (use all 6 egg whites) to make extra cream.
- Plus, extra cookies will be needed to fit a larger 9 x 13-inch dish.
- Also, when you use a smaller size dish, your cream layers will be thicker and higher, and that’s OK too!
- Besides, if you have extra or some leftover cream, you can use the extra cream to make one or two individual tiramisu parfaits and have them for breakfast the next morning! YUM!
5. What kind of Ladyfinger Cookies do we need?
- We recommend using the Italian brand of ladyfingers called Savoiardi, they have a crunchy texture and come in a large package, over 1 pound (500 grams).
- Or you can buy two smaller packages, containing 24 cookies in each. You will need approximately 33 ladyfinger cookies to make this dessert.
6. Can we OMIT the Brandy or Liqueur?
- Yes, you can! We have made tiramisu many times and made it without brandy.
- But you will need to sweeten the espresso a little, so stir in 1 tablespoon of sugar into the coffee and that will do the trick!
Every time I serve our Best Tiramisu to family and friends, I hear only the oohs and ahh’s from them… and that’s music to my ears!
Tiramisu is such a delicious dessert. So insanely good, everyone may even request a second piece.
But don’t take our word for it – you’ll have to try it!
And, for a delicious frozen treat, try our favorite Tiramisu Ice Cream with Chocolate Chips!
Finally, additional No-Bake Desserts for you to try…
- No-Bake Blackberry Cheesecake
- 5 -Minute Mixed Berry Pie
- No-Bake Carrot Cake Bites
- Vanilla Toasted Almond Panna Cotta
- Silky Chocolate Cream Pie (No-Bake & Dairy-Free)
- No-Bake Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies (Gluten-Free)
- 6 egg yolks
- 6 Tbsp. sugar
- 2 (8-ounce) containers of mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
- 4 egg whites
- 1 + 3/4 cups espresso coffee, cooled
- 1.5 Tbsp. of orange flavored brandy or any liqueur
- 33 crisp Italian ladyfinger cookies ( 2 packages of 24)
- 1 to 2 Tbsp. cocoa powder - divided
- 1/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 8 x 12 deep dish
- Brew a pot of espresso coffee. Set it aside and allow the coffee to cool completely.
- Pour 1 and 3/4 cups of espresso into a bowl and stir in the brandy. Place it into the refrigerator if the coffee is still warm. The coffee needs to be cold before assembling this dessert.
Make the cream:
- First, divide all the eggs into separate bowls, you will need 6 yolks and only 4 egg whites. Reserve the remaining 2 egg whites for a different recipe or use them to make an egg-white omelet in the morning.
- Second, beat egg yolks with the sugar using an electric mixer and on high speed for 5 minutes, until it turns a light yellow color. Next, add in the mascarpone cheese and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes and then on high speed for 2 minutes, scraping the sides with a spatula until it's creamy and smooth, set it aside. Then rinse and wipe clean the beaters with paper towels.
- In the second bowl, beat egg whites on high speed for one minute, then sprinkle in 2 teaspoons of sugar while beating, beat until they form stiff peaks, about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Gently fold stiff egg whites into the creamy cheese mixture, in small batches, until well incorporated. The cream should be light and airy and double its volume. Set it aside.
Dipping and Assembling the Dessert:
- Dip ladyfinger cookies one by one into the coffee mixture and lay them flat, side by side in your 8 x 12 deep dish. Continue until you make one single layer of cookies on the bottom of the dish. You may need to break one or more cookies to fit and cover the entire bottom of the dish.
- Next, take about 1/2 the cream mixture and using the spatula to smooth an even layer of cream over the ladyfingers, covering the cookies.
- Then scatter some mini semi-sweet chocolate chips and dust on top with cocoa powder.
- Continue to add the second layer of ladyfinger cookies on top of the cream, dipping each one into the coffee. Add the remaining cream on top. Dust again on top with cocoa powder and scatter on top with mini chocolate chips. Here is where you can dust with more cocoa powder on top of your preference.
- Cover with clear wrap and chill for at least 2 hours or more, and overnight is best.
- Cut into squares and serve.
- Yields: 8 to 10 servings
To Help Speed Prep Time: You can brew a pot of espresso the night before and keep it chilled in the refrigerator until you are ready to make this dessert. It's extremely important the coffee is cold before assembling this dessert to ensure the cream will stay intact and not break down.
Yield:8 to 10 servings
Serving Size:1 serving
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 303Total Fat: 10.5gCarbohydrates: 40.7gFiber: 1.4gSugar: 23.1gProtein: 11.9g