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This tiramisu recipe is a classic no-bake Italian dish that combines layers of ladyfingers drizzled with a flavorful espresso, topped with creamy mascarpone and whipped cream and dusted with cocoa.
You can’t go wrong with this easy dessert.
I have to admit tiramisu is one of my favorite “pick me up dishes.” There is something about the creamy layers of mascarpone, and the espresso drizzled ladyfingers that have a way of putting me in the best mood.
This no-bake dessert is simple to make just like our strawberry lemon lasagna or our chocolate lasagna recipe. If you’re looking for a dessert that is easy to make, but yet looks and tastes like you spent hours in the kitchen, then this is the dessert for you to try!
WHAT IS TIRAMISU?
Tiramisu is a classic Italian dessert. In Italy, it means “pick me up,” and this dessert does just that!
It is a coffee-flavored dessert that contains ladyfingers, espresso, with a whipped mascarpone layer topped with whipped cream, and cocoa powder.
Tiramisu does usually contain raw eggs, although in this tiramisu recipe I cook them for a bit on the stove prior to mixing it with the mascarpone to make a deliciously creamy custard layer that you are going to love.
DOES TIRAMISU CONTAIN ALCOHOL?
This tiramisu recipe contains rum, but you can easily omit it if you choose without altering the taste of the dish too much. I have made this recipe with and without the rum extract and it is amazing either way. It is really up to you if you choose to add it or omit it.
You can also try using rum extract instead as well.
The alcohol is not cooked out in this recipe.
WHAT MAKES THIS TIRAMISU DIFFERENT?
In most tiramisu recipes you will use raw eggs to make the custard. In this recipe, I do consider the eggs to be cooked, as they are whisked with the milk on the stove, brought to a boil, and then allowed to boil for an additional minute.
Also, I use a dark chocolate for the cocoa topping. Many other recipes you see have a lighter chocolate, but I love the deep, rich flavor (and look!) of the dark chocolate.
- Egg Yolks- Egg yolks help get that creaminess of the custard that you love in tiramisu.
- Sugar- Sugar helps create a delicious custard with other ingredients.
- Milk- With this recipe, I love to use whole milk so that it adds to the creaminess of the dish.
- Mascarpone Cheese- Mascarpone cheese combines with other ingredients to make that creamy layer we all love! Be sure to soften your cheese prior to mixing it with the other ingredients.
- Heavy Whipping cream- Heavy whipping cream is a key ingredient in tiramisu as it adds that fluffiness that we love in this dessert.
- Vanilla- Vanilla adds a little more flavor to this tiramisu recipe. Use a high-quality vanilla if you have one.
- Ladyfingers- Pick up ladyfingers from any grocery store. I have found them at stores like Trader Joes, Kroger, even Walmart. If you are struggling to find them you can always order them online.
- Coffee- This recipe calls for coffee. Use a strong coffee that is cold, so that it doesn’t melt the other ingredients.
- Rum – A touch of rum gives this dessert a little bit more of that “pick me up” flavor we love. Feel free to use ⅛ teaspoon of rum extract + 2 Tablespoons of water instead if you don’t have any rum on hand.
HOW TO MAKE TIRAMISU
- Beat egg yolks and sugar in a medium saucepan.
- Whisk until well blended. Whisk in milk. Over medium heat, bring mixture to boil, stirring constantly.
- Reduce the heat to low.
- Boil and stir for 1 minute.
- Remove from heat.
- Place plastic wrap or waxed paper directly onto the egg yolk mixture in the saucepan.
- Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Mix egg yolk mixture and cheese with whisk until smooth.
- Beat whipping cream and vanilla in a chilled medium bowl with electric mixer on his speed until stiff.
- Separate ladyfingers horizontally, in half,
- Mix espresso and rum (or rum extracts + 2 tbsp water).
- Drizzle ladyfingers with espresso mixture.
- Arrange half of the ladyfingers in a single layer in 9×13 baking dish.
- Spread half of the cheese mixture then half of the whipped cream over the ladyfingers.
- Repeat layers.
- Sprinkle top generously with cocoa.
- Cover and refrigerate 4-6 hours or overnight.
TIPS AND TRICKS FOR MAKING TIRAMISU
- If you don’t have any mascarpone cheese or prefer a different type of cheese you can use 2 8 ounce packages of cream cheese instead. Be sure to soften it.
- Rum is an optional ingredient. If you do not have rum you can either use rum extract or omit it.
- The best thing about tiramisu is seeing those layers! Try freezing the cake for a few minutes prior to cutting it. Also, go ahead and use a sharp knife and wipe clean between cuts.
- I know it is hard to wait the 4-6 hours for your tiramisu before you eat it, but it is a must so that it sets up correctly.
HOW TO STORE TIRAMISU
If you happen to have tiramisu leftovers you can store them in the fridge for up to two days. You can still eat it after that (for up to 4 days) but then you will start to see your ladyfingers getting soggy and your whipping cream becoming runny.
CAN I MAKE THIS AHEAD OF TIME?
You can make tiramisu ahead of time when you store it in the fridge. It is good for a total of 4 days and the quality tends to diminish after day two.
So if you are going to make it ahead of time, I suggest making it the day before or the morning of.
You can freeze tiramisu for up to 3 months when properly stored covered to prevent freezer burn.
CAN KIDS EAT TIRAMISU?
With this tiramisu recipe nothing is cooked or baked off, however, there is very little alcohol in this dessert.
If you are serving it to kids you can serve as is, use the rum extract, or omit the rum altogether.
This is really a personal decision.
Get MORE DELICIOUS RECIPES!
- 6 large egg yolks
- ¾ cup sugar
- ⅔ cup milk
- 1 lb. mascarpone cheese or 2 packages – 8 oz. each cream cheese, softened
- 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- 2 packages 3 oz. each ladyfingers
- ¼ cup strong coffee cold
- 2 Tablespoons rum or ⅛ teaspoon rum extract and 2 Tablespoons water
- 1 Tablespoon baking cocoa
- Beat egg yolks and sugar in a medium saucepan. Whisk until well blended. Whisk in milk. Over medium heat, bring mixture to boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low. Boil and stir for 1 minute. Remove from heat.
- Place plastic wrap or waxed paper directly onto the egg yolk mixture in the saucepan. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Mix egg yolk mixture and cheese with whisk until smooth. Beat whipping cream and vanilla in chilled medium bowl with electric mixer on his speed until stiff.
- Separate ladyfingers horizontally, in half, Mix espresso and rum (or rum extracts + 2 tbsp water). Drizzle ladyfingers with espresso mixture.
- Arrange half of the ladyfingers in a single layer in 9×13 baking dish. Spread half of the cheese mixture then half of the whipped cream over the ladyfingers. Repeat layers.
- Sprinkle top generously with cocoa. Cover and refrigerate 4-6 hours or overnight.