The Best Tiramisu Recipe is a creamy dessert of espresso-soaked ladyfingers surrounded by lightly sweetened whipped cream and a rich mascarpone. This Italian dessert relies heavily on the quality of its ingredients, along with strong-brewed coffee, ladyfingers, and cocoa powder for a deliciously decadent dessert.
What does Tiramisu mean?
Tiramisu, pronounced as “tir-a-me-soo” in Italian means “pick me up,” simply because it’s made with espresso. *QUICK NOTE: Espresso coffee is a key ingredient, so with that said, if you are caffeine-sensitive, use “decaf”.
For this recipe, we added mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, which provide extra crunch and a boost of chocolate flavor.
Plus, whipping egg whites and folding them into the cream mixture, not only gives the mascarpone cheese its lusciousness, but additional volume as well. And, it is DIVINE!
Be sure to try additional flavors of this lusciously dessert! Try our Easy Peppermint Tiramisu, and Irish Cream Tiramisu (with easy step-by-step photos!).
Why is this the Best Tiramisu?
- Loaded with luscious cream layers. It is an ideal dessert to serve at dinner parties, special birthdays, and holidays.
- It contains that magical sensation of melt-in-your-mouth with every bite!
- Plus, this tiramisu contains some mini chocolate chips for some additional chocolate flavor and texture.
- This dessert will always ‘wow’ family and friends every time.
How to Make the Best Tiramisu?
This no-bake luscious dessert is a simple method of a few easy steps to prepare the cream. Once the cream is ready, you can begin to assemble the dessert with 4-easy-steps. But first, let’s go over the ingredients required.
Ingredients Overview for Best Tiramisu:
For this recipe, you will need the following ingredients: (*Full printable recipe card below!)
1. Espresso Coffee: you will need to brew a large pot of espresso. If you don’t have an espresso machine at home, you can pick up the espresso at a local coffee shop, or use strongly brewed coffee.
2. Dark Brandy: any dark brandy, like dark Rum, or coffee liquor (like Kahlua), can be used to mix with the espresso coffee.
3. Eggs: you will need 6 eggs, and separate the egg yolks from the egg whites, and into 2 separate bowls. After they are beaten separately (see our notes below), they are folded together to make the luscious cream.
4. Sugar: is added to the espresso, and to sweeten the flavor of the mascarpone cream.
5. Mascarpone: mascarpone cheese is an Italian soft cheese sold in containers, similar to American cream cheese, but very mild.
6. Ladyfingers: there are a few brands to choose from, Savoiardi, or Vicenzovo. These are Italian cookies that are very light-weight, crispy ladyfinger type of cookies and work best for this dessert. But keep in mind that store-bought varieties can range from soft and spongy, to hard and crunchy. Both kinds will work here, but if you’re using the softer variety, stick to a light brushing of espresso, instead of a deep dip.
7. Cocoa Powder: choose an unsweetened cocoa powder to dust over each layer of cream. It gives an additional chocolate flavor to the dessert.
8. Mini Chocolate Chips: semi-sweet mini chocolate chips add additional texture and crunch with every bite, along with a chocolate flavor to this dessert.
Directions to Make the Best Tiramisu? (Step-by-Step)
Making tiramisu is much easier than you may think. Just follow our easy steps below:
STEP 1: BREW SOME COFFEE…
- First, you’ll need to brew a pot of espresso coffee, about 2 cups and stir in the brandy, and some sugar, then set it aside to cool. QUICK TIP: you can pour it into a bowl and place it into your freezer to speed it up.
STEP 2: DIVIDE THE EGGS…
- Next, separate the 6 egg yolks from the egg whites and in different bowls.
STEP 3: MAKE THE CREAM…
A. Start with the egg yolks. Beat the “egg yolks” with 6 tablespoons of 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 until well combined, and set aside. *NOTE: be sure to clean the beaters and dry them before beating the egg whites.
B. NEXT, in the second bowl, beat the “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!
STEP 4: Ready to Dip the Cookies in Coffee and Assemble the Tiramisu…
A.) First, pour (cooled) espresso coffee into a small bowl and set it nearby.
B.) Open a package of Italian ladyfinger cookies, dip each cookie into the coffee, and create the first layer of them on the bottom of the dish. You can break the cookies to make them fit, and complete the first layer. You can use an 8 x 8-inch, 9 x 9-inch dish, or an 8 x 12-inch dish.
- NOTE: Do not oversoak the cookies or let them get soggy, it will ruin the dessert. Only need to “lightly dip” and allow the excess coffee to drip back into the bowl.
C.) NEXT, Spread about 1/2 of the cream mixture over the coffee-dipped cookies, and spread it evenly.
D.) Lightly dust on top with cocoa powder, and scatter lightly with mini chocolate chips.
E.) Add the second layer of coffee-soaked cookies on top and spread the remaining cream over the cookies.
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.
FINAL STEP: 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 dessert can be made one day ahead!
It takes about 25 to 30 minutes to complete this dessert – and well worth it!
If you want our additional Step-by-Step Tutorial to make tiramisu, CLICK HERE.
Questions & Answers…
1. Can we Make-Ahead? Tiramisu is a great dessert to make ahead, even up to two days in advance, allowing the layers to infuse together and create an even more delicious treat.
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.
3. If Frozen, How To Thaw? Allow this dessert to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or more if needed. Or thaw in your refrigerator the night before. Then serve.
4. 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.
5. Can we Make Tiramisu in a Larger Dish? Yes, you can! Use a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish. (See our notes below)
- Keep in mind, for a 9 x 13 dish, you will need to increase the amount of ladyfinger cookies (about 500g, 17.5 ounces) and an additional cup or more of coffee for dipping.
- Plus, you will have enough cream to make 3 layers of coffee-dipped cookies with 3 layers of cream. Just divide the cream into thirds.
- Also, if you plan to use a “smaller size” dish, your cream layers will be thicker and higher, and that’s OK too!
6. How Many of Ladyfinger Cookies Will I Need? We recommend using the Italian brand of ladyfingers called Savoiardi, they have a crunchy texture and come in a large package, about 1 pound (500 grams). You will need approximately 33 to 36 ladyfinger cookies to make this dessert.
7. Can we OMIT the Brandy or Liqueur? Yes, you can! We have made tiramisu many times and made it without brandy.
8. Can we Omit the Mini Chocolate Chips? Yes, you may. No need to add them if you prefer not to. This dessert is amazing all the same!
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!
- 6 eggs - divided whites and yolks into separate bowls
- 7 Tbsp. granulated sugar - divided
- 2 (8-ounce) containers of mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
- 2 cups of espresso coffee, cooled
- 1.5 Tbsp. of any dark brandy or any liqueur
- 33 or more 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 large pot of espresso coffee. Set it aside and allow the coffee to cool completely.
- Pour 2 cups of espresso into a bowl and stir in the brandy. Stir in 1 Tbsp. of sugar into the coffee to sweeten it a little. Place it into the refrigerator if the coffee is still warm. NOTE: 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 6 egg whites.
- Second, beat egg yolks with 6 tablespoons of sugar using an electric mixer, on high speed for 5 minutes, until it's creamy smooth and turns a very 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, and set it aside. Then rinse and wipe clean the beaters with paper towels.
- In the second bowl, beat egg whites on high speed for 5 minutes, and beat until they form stiff peaks. TIP: you can add in some powdered sugar to help reach stiff peaks.
- Gently "fold" in the stiff egg whites into the creamy mascarpone cream mixture. Do it slowly and 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. If you need to, you may break one or more cookies to fit and cover the entire bottom of the dish.
- Next, take about 1/2 the cream mixture and use 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 coffee-dipped ladyfinger cookies on top of the cream, until you cover the entire layer of cream.
- 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.
- When ready to serve. Remove from the refrigerator. Use a spatula to 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
Finally, additional No-Bake Desserts…
- No-Bake Blackberry Cheesecake
- 5 -Minute Mixed Berry Pie
- Classic Panna Cotta
- Vanilla Toasted Almond Panna Cotta
- Silky Chocolate Cream Pie (No-Bake & Dairy-Free)
- No-Bake Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies (Gluten-Free)
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xo anna and liz
Welcome! From Anna and Liz
We believe the kitchen is the center and the heart of the home. It is where we cook, eat, and unwind with family and friends, creating memorable traditions! Read more…
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