Tiramisu – A step by step Tutorial

One of my favorite desserts will always be Tiramisu,   It seems so long ago that Mama Jeanette taught me how to make this classical dessert from her home town of Sienna just as her mother had taught her, and her mothers mother before her.

Mama Jeanette’s version of Tiramisu is one of the most requested recipes I have on my blog, and the only complaint I receive is that so many people assume its beyond their skill level and are afraid to try making this amazing dessert.  Recently I’ve gotten quite a few emails asking that I do step by step pictures of my Tiramisu to help them through the process.

While step by step images are not a regular feature on my blog, in this instance I’m happy to oblige in the hopes that they will help everyone to understand the process more clearly.  Once you get through your first sabayon you’ll see just how easy it is to make this classic and it will become your signature dessert, requested by your friends and family.

I’d like to thank the Mid Atlantic Dairy Association for sponsoring this post, and for their continued support of my blog.  Stop by the Dairy Spot to see more of my recipes on their site as well as many more delicious dairy creations that there staff and guests share on a regular basis.

Classical Tiramisu

Classical Tiramisu

Tiramisu prep

 Tiramisu Prep

Tiramisu prep

 Egg yolks and sugar becomes your  Sabayon

tiramisu cream

 add in the Mascarpone

tiramisu and cream 1

add the whipped cream

tiramisu and cream 2

 fold in the whipped cream

tiramisu and cream

 finished mascarpone cream

ladyfinger in Espresso

 dip the Savoiardi lady fingers in the coffee-kahlua mixture

tiramisu layer with ladyfingers

 layer the prepared lady fingers in the bottom of the pan

tiramisu layer with cream

 add a layer of Tiramisu cream

tiramisu layer with cream and ladyfingers

 add another layer of prepared lady fingers

tiramisu

 add another layer of Tiramisu cream and dust with unsweetened cocoa

5.0 from 16 reviews
Tiramisu - A step by step Tutorial
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 9
Ingredients
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1¼ cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1¾ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 -12 oz packages Savoiardi Lady fingers (crunchy not soft variety)
  • 1 cup cold espresso or strong coffee
  • ½ cup coffee flavored Liquor (optional)
  • 1 tbsp cocoa for dusting
Instructions
  1. Combine egg yolks and sugar in the top of a double boiler, over boiling water. Reduce heat to low, and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring constantly.
  2. This is your sabayon, remove from the heat and whip yolks until thick and lemon colored.
  3. Add Mascarpone to whipped yolks, beat until combined.
  4. In a separate bowl, whip cream to stiff peaks.
  5. Gently fold the whipped cream in the mascarpone sabayon mixture and set aside.
  6. Mix the cold espresso with the coffee liquor and dip the lady fingers into the mixture just long enough to get them wet, do not soak them!
  7. Arrange the lady fingers in the bottom of a 8 inch square baking dish (or 6×9)
  8. Spoon half the mascarpone cream filling over the lady fingers.
  9. Repeat process with another layer.
  10. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.
  11. Dust with cocoa before serving

 

I can promise you once you’ve made your first Tiramisu with my recipe you’ll never be happy with restaurant Tiramisu again.   And definitely plan on making it on regular basis, it’s just that good!

Thanks again to the Dairy Spot for their continued support, I honestly couldn’t imagine a world without dairy products!   You can also find my Tiramisu at Food Management Magazine where I’m the featured Chef demo with  Tiramisu  done right.

Thanks for stopping by today, have a happy week my friends!

Comments

  1. I love tiramisu! Yours looks delicious I can’t wait to try the recipe. Your step by step pictures are wonderful.

  2. I absolutely love Tiramisu but never tried it at home!Thanks to you Chef I can now make it at home :) It looks fantastic!!

  3. Chef Dennis, this is awesome ! I have a bottle of Kahlua and I can make this :) Thanks for this classic tiramisu. I will make this for our Chinese New Year celebration comes February 10th :)
    Have a nice day….I am drooling for the time being!

  4. I love tiramisu, I made starting from making lady fingers, this is ultimate dessert at anytime.

  5. I have a special place in my heart for Tiramisu, but have never made it! You have convinced me, I must make it, and soon!

  6. Oh Chef… Tiramisu is my all time favourite dessert. My last meal on earth will and must end with tiramisu! This looks gorgeous.

  7. These photos of your tiramisu are irresistable. I can barely get up from my desk! Thanks for making the recipe easy to do with your step by step photos. Must make this soon. I had just baked your delish Torta di Mele this weekend, for the endth time since you shared it on my blog. Your recipes are 100% terrific, Chef Dennis. Thanks for generously sharing all that you know with us!

  8. This is Hubby’s favorite dessert of all time. Heck, I’m having my morning coffee right now and would love a piece of your tiramisu to go along with it. I could close my eyes and pretend I was in Florence again. :)

  9. Hello Chef!
    Thank you for your many delicious recipes! I was wondering if heating the egg yolks up for those 10 min. helps to destroy any harmful bacteria? My hubby is immune compromised. Thanks.

    • hi Irma
      that is one of the reasons for heating the eggs in this manner, to make the dessert safe to eat.

      I don’t know for sure if it’s sufficient for your husbands condition, you may want to check with his physician to see what they think.

      Dennis

  10. chef, I

    I have never made tiramisu. I Iove the step by step pics and directions, so making tiamisu, seems much easier. I will be making this soon. Thanks for sharing your recipes!

  11. Love the step by step Chef!

  12. An authentic recipe from Mama Jeanette + Chef Dennis’ how to = Tiramisu heaven!

  13. Wonderful step-by-step photos, Chef! Thanks for sharing!

  14. Again- my husband’s favorite and I haven’t attempted it at home. Great step-by-step, Dennis!

  15. Beautiful tiramisu, the step-by-step photos are so helpful!

  16. Great tutorial Dennis, I’m sure we can put this to good use.

  17. I’m with Michael, Tiramisu is my #1 favorite dessert – I haven’t made my own in about 3 years, would love to give your recipe a try!

  18. By far, my most favorite dessert ever!

  19. hello, I love to follow your blog, hope you can read and follow my blog too
    regards
    Dacya

  20. Just finished making this. Came out fabulous! This is exactly the version I was looking for. In my opinion if you don’t make the sabayon it’s not really tiramisu!

  21. Linda Brown says:

    I made this a while back, and it was absolutely delicious. Thank you so much for this incredible recipe. I’m about to make again, and, for the life of me, I cannot recall whether or not I let the eggs come to room temp prior to beginning. Perhaps it isn’t required since the yolks are cooked in the first step. Thanks again!
    Linda

    • hi Linda

      sorry my response is a little late, I’m just seeing this comment.
      While it isn’t necessary to let the eggs warm, they do seem to increase in volume more when they are not cold.
      Happy to hear that you enjoyed my Tiramisu.

  22. Jennifer says:

    Good morning Chef. I have been trolling the Internet for a classic tiramisu recipe and I just wanted to say thank you. It is my birthday and I love making my own cake. It is a gift to myself and hopefully my guests. I was wondering about using my stand mixer to make this. Will that work?

    • hi Jennifer

      you’re going to love this tiramisu, and you can use your stand mixer for the whipped cream, but you’re going to have to make the sabayon over the stove in a double boiler method, it has to be done slowly so the eggs have time to cook. There really isn’t anyway around that part of the recipe, but its a lot easier than it sounds and only takes about 10 minutes.

      let me know how it turns out!
      Dennis

  23. Hi Chef Dennis! I’ve been eager to try making Tiramisu as it is one of my favourite desserts. I have two questions about it though.
    1. A lot of other recipes ask you to use Marsala wine. Is that a substitute for Kahlua? I’ve never had marsala wine before, how will it change the taste?
    2. There appears to be custard in the Tiramisu I really like which I get from the restaurant across my house. Is this really custard or does that Mascarpone taste a lot like custard when mixed with egg yolks, whipped cream and sugar?
    I would really appreciate it if you could help me out here. I would love to make it for my new blog (www.babyinthekitchen.com)
    Thanks!

    • hi Nayantara

      I have never been a fan of marsala in tiramisu, the kahula enhances the coffee flavor which is really what you want when making this dessert, so I would say if you didn’t want to use Kahlua just to use strong coffee instead, without any alcohol.

      The tiramisu cream is the custard you are talking about, its really pretty easy to make. I have a feeling after you make your own tiramisu following my recipe, your favorite restaurant version won’t seem quite as good!

      Cheers
      Dennis

      • Thank you! I like my Tiramisu to be moist and creamy and a little alcoholic. This seems to be exactly that! If all goes well, I’d love to post your recipe on my blog, if you don’t mind. Full credit will be given, of course! :)

  24. Definitely! The whole point is to make it myself. And since I’m a photography enthusiast too, I take great pride in showcasing my own pictures. AAAAHHHHHH all this talk about Tiramisu has got me so eager to make it. It’s 1 AM in Singapore where I am, and I wish the grocery store was open so I could buy the ingredients right away and make it now! And then perhaps wake up in the morning and have Tiramisu for breakfast. Now wouldn’t that be a great start to the day? ;)

  25. Hi Chef Dennis, do you happen to have the recipe in grams? Tried converting them using some online conversion tools – and they all turned out different.

  26. calgary cook says:

    i love this version of the tiramisu whitout raw egg white no danger of sallmonella

  27. Linda Lee says:

    Love this recipe. Impressed my fellow classmates at our potluck. Will make again, thanks

  28. This is the most fantastic recipe. Thankyou so much. Made it for a friends birthday and we all loved it. Used Baileys as the liquer (not traditional but oh soooo good !!). Has always been one of my favourite desserts and now I can make it myself. Deceptively easy and like the fact that eggs are not raw.
    Thankyou again
    Gina

  29. Have just made 3 of these for mine & my husbands 50th celebration today. I am feeding 80+ people & can’t wait! I’ve made Tiramisu many times before but yours was very easy & the pictures help. Thanks so much. I’ll let you know how we go.

  30. Hi Chef,
    My MIL gave us some pffernusse as a gift. They are like little stones. They taste good, but they’re not really edible (they’d be excellent diet cookies). Anyhow, I thought, “I need a recipe where I soak the cookies and make them into something else”, and Google helped me find this recipe. I thought Tiramisu would be a wonderful Christmas dinner dessert.
    So, given that these cookies are significantly harder than ladyfingers, but also much smaller, do you have any ideas about how long I should soak them? Or maybe a better question, to what consistency?

    • hi Jill

      I wouldn’t soak much longer if any because as they sit in the tiramisu they should continue to soften up. You may want to test one by soaking it and then leaving it sit for an hour and seeing how soft its gotten. You want the cookies soft but not mushy, which is what can happen with over soaking.

      Good luck!
      Dennis

      • I tested the pfeffernusse as you suggested and came up with a soak time of five minutes (really – they were the consistency of pumice). It worked perfectly! The dish was a hit, and it held up over the long haul, as our Christmas dinner was three adults and one infant, so we were eating the Tiramisu for a week, and enjoying every minute of it. The bitterness of the spice of the pfeffernusse was a nice foil for the sweet and coffee flavors – thanks so much for the recipe and the advice! I’ll be making this when I want to show off!

  31. It looks great and I am planning to make it for .Christmas. Can I make 1 1/2 times the recipe in a slightly larger dish?

  32. Paul A Bell says:

    Dear Chef D. I’ve made this recipe twice now. Do you know what it tastes like? Tiramisu!!! Like I had brought it home from a fine Italian restaurant! Thank you, so much for sharing it.
    I too checked out many recipes before trying this one. One thing that I like about yours’ that you cook your eggs. That makes me feel a little safer. Especially when serving family and friends.

  33. I made this for Christmas and it was truly spectacular. I served it with rainbow slices, lemon ricotta cookies and cocoa pignoli cookies. After it was assembled, I realized the Alessi ladyfingers were only about 7.5 ounces per package but they still worked out well. I found that I used more soaking liquid (strong espresso and Kahlua Especial which is 70 proof) than the recipe called for. Buying 12 packages from Amazon was a bargain at $23. I made 11/2 times the recipe, but and had so much left over, that I decided to freeze it. I served it with rum cake, rainbow slices, lemon ricotta cookies and cocoa pignoli cookies. It freezes and is even delicious frozen. Thank you, Chef Dennis, for this wonderful recipe.

  34. I just made this for our New Years dinner. Absolutely “delicioso”, everybody liked it and my brother-in-law thought it came straight from the Italian Restaurant…..ha. Even my father-in-law, who used to be a chef in big hotels here on the island, said it was one of the best Tiramisu he ever had…….I think that is quite the compliment. Thank you so much for sharing with me. Happy New Year

  35. Hi chef, Im wondering about the sabayon and the mascarpone. Do you let it cool before putting it in? What consistency should it have once the mascarpone is incorporated? Also can you use whipped cream or do I have to whip the whipping cream? I don’t have an electric mixer. Thank you!!

    • hi Monica

      as you’re whipping it the sabayon will cool slightly. I would get your mascarpone out and let it start to come to room temp. The consistency will be fairly thick and creamy. If you look at the images in the post it will give you some idea of the consistency
      I hate to say it but you may want to whip the cream by hand, it will be well worth the trouble, I would not use the canned whipped cream it will never hold up, but if you had too something like cool whip could be used, although the taste and consistency will never be as good as using real whipped cream and the cool whip will add extra sweetness to the finished product so you’ll have to cut back some of the sugar in the sabayon.

  36. Hi Chef,
    I tried to make a “low calorie version” using Cool Whip (which I hate) and sugar free instant pudding. I have it in the freezer and it is passable but nothing like your original recipe. If you recall, I made it for Christmas and froze the leftovers. I made it in a plastic container so it was easy to store in the refrig and the freezer. Unfortunately for me and my waistline, I discovered that it was slightly different when eaten frozen, but unbelievably delicious.
    The Cool Whip would hold up with the saboyan, but I agree that it will probably change the flavor.

    • this is going to have to be one of those special occasion desserts Elaine, make it full calorie when you do make it and make sure you have plenty of friends around to help eat it! I feel your pain on this dessert, I will eat it 3x a day until its gone..lol!

  37. Utterly delicious!! Great instructions. Cannot wait to try your other recipes. Thanks for sharing.

  38. Thanks for the great recipe! I love tiramisu and have been wanting to try making my own. Just did it with your recipe. However, being a amateur, I ended up with a runny liquid that had yellow spots (from the egg yolks I suppose). I have no other what I should do the next time I try so that the mixture will not have yellow spots and the end product will not be watery but nice like your pictures. Any advice to help me improve? Thanks!

    • CW from what you describe you are not heating the eggs enough or whipping them long enough. This process needs to be followed very closely using a double boiler method to heat with continuous whipping. That is the only way you’llget that thick rich cream to form. The same goes for the whipped cream stage as well, whipped cream needs to be whipped slowly and get fully thickened.

      • Thanks Chef for the tips! I shall take note the next time!
        Pardon me, but I whipped using the highest speed on the electric mixer. Is that correct or should I do it on slow/ medium instead? For the egg yolks & sugar, I double boiled for 10min stirring constantly but only beat the mixture after it came off the stove as i could not use the electric mixer on the pot…

        • Oh and just wanted to say that husband said it tasted good though there was the sugary “sandy” taste and the cake was not “solidified” enough :). Somehow the sugar didn’t get incorporated well…

          • that again is from not whipping it while in the double boiler, that will help the sugar to dissolve. Glad your husband liked the flavor! If it ever comes out runny again, you can freeze it and will firm up enough to eat it as a frozen dessert.

        • you want to beat the whipped cream slowly on slow then medium and then finally fast. As for the eggs and sugar you need to whip that by hand with a wire whip the entire time its on the double boiler, not afterwards. The yellow spots you are seeing are cooked eggs, from not keeping the mixture moving.

  39. I see! Thanks Chef! Can’t wait to try it again soon!

  40. I am making this for the first time for a lasagna dinner we are having sunday night. Would it be ok to make saturday evening or should i make it sunday morning. My boyfriend loves this dessert and I am going to do my best to make sure he still loves it after I make it.

    • Hi Melanie
      this dessert will hold up great for days, and you should make it on Saturday to give it enough time to set up. Please let me know how your BF likes it
      Dennis

      • I made this Saturday for dinner Sunday evening. It was a BIG hit with everyone. I can’t believe how easy your recipe is to follow. Thank you for sharing and look forward to many more of your recipes.

  41. That I will have to try next.

  42. I just made it for a dinner party, and this was my third time making it. It always comes out perfectly, and I love that the eggs are cooked. Some people had two servings and my hostess insisted on keeping the rest, which was just fine, as I already have some in the freezer since the last time I made it. I have already told you about how good it tastes frozen,

  43. I just made it for a dinner party, and this was my third time making it. It always comes out perfectly, and I love that the eggs are cooked. Some people had two servings and my hostess insisted on keeping the rest, which was just fine, as I already have some in the freezer since the last time I made it. I have already told you about how good it tastes frozen, The mascarpone I use comes in 1 cup packages, so I just cheated and use a tiny bit of cream cheese for the remaining 1/4 cup. I was pleased that it came out a little firmer this time, but I wouldn’t dare use any more cream cheese, as it contains salt.

  44. I tried this recipe for Easter 2014. My first time. making Tiramisu. I followed the recipe step by step and it turned out awesome. A reall hit and loved by everyone. Thank you.

  45. This tiramisu is delicious, and it really does only take 30 minutes. Made it for guests and everyone asked for the recipe. Would give it 6 stars if I could.

  46. Hi Chef Dennis,
    I am planning on making your tiramisu for a friend’s farewell party next week in small individual dessert containers. I was hoping to be able to stencil some designs on the tops of the tiramisu with the cocoa, How far in advance do you think I could dust the designs on? I’m worried they might soak into an ugly mess if I do them too far in advance but it will be difficult to do it close to serving time. Any suggestions?
    Thanks!

    • hi Eliza

      I have not had a problem with the cocoa bleeding once on the tiramisu, I would just suggest putting down a good amount when you stencil. I probably wouldn’t do it more than 8 hours ahead of time just to be on the safe side.

      Cheers
      Denns

  47. Hello Chef Dennis,

    I’ve been looking for a great recipe for tiramisu and I am so glad I stumbled to your site. I will be making this in a few days for our first anniversary, and I am kinda nervous (I want to impress him since he loves tiramisu!). I used to have problems making buttercream because of the whites getting scrambled, is it possible that this could happen here too? And how about the temperature of the ingredients, does the mascarpone have to be at room temperature when being mixed to the egg mixture? The heavy cream really cold when about to whip? The ingredients are pretty expensive in my place that’s why I want to make sure of some stuff before I make it. This will be my first time, hope it will be a success! :)

    • hi Jaun

      you just have to be careful using the double boiler technique when making the Tiramisu, and the sabayon will be fine. As for the mascarpone room temp is good for it and very cold cream as well as the mixing bowl being chilled for the best results. I did a video on making tiramisu and if you have time to check it out it may answer more of your questions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GfDbYx7_4Go&list=PLDYDMh-1yU34_ZSjIVqmZ1vUiKHzqRDAK

      Dennis

      • Hello Chef Dennis!

        I’d just like to say that tge tiramisu was a huge success! My zabaglione wasn’t as fluffy but it wasn’t runny either, so it didn’t nelt when I took it out of the fridge. I was so nervous about my boyfriend’s reaction but when we got to taste it… Heaven! It tastes just right, not too sweet (I used 1/2 sugar) and not too bland. He keeps on requesting me to make it again! Tomorrow I’ll make one for the family.

        Thank you so much for your wonderful recipe.
        God bless!

  48. I just got done making the filling. Can I assemble tomorrow? Or should it be today?
    I made the sabayon/mascarpone mixture and folded in the whip cream. Right now that is chilling in the fridge.
    I’m making 2.5 ounce dessert cups for Saturday and am just afraid of assembling too early.
    thank you!

  49. Chef,
    I cannot tell you how much I appreciate this tiramisu recipes of urs. I’ve been making it for so many occasions. Whenever I have guests coming over for dinner, no matter how full they are, when they hear my tiramisu is on the menu, they will stay back and wait patiently for dessert and everytime, this recipe is a hit! I am a cookery student and I made once in school and it received so many “wows”
    Thanks chef!

Trackbacks

  1. […] like to thank Mid Atlantic Dairy Association for sponsoring this post, and for their continued support of my blog. Stop by my site and DairySpot to see more of my […]

  2. […] Chef Dennis gets credit for the base tiramisu, I loved his recipe and would recommend you check out his blog. If you don’t have a Starbucks near you, just make it with strong coffee mixed with pumpkin spice or a homemade pumpkin spice latte. There are probably recipes online for that but I’m scared to look. […]

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