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Tiramisu Cake with Ladyfingers

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Prep Time: 5 mins    Cook Time: 0 mins

5 from 4 votes

Did you know you can make a delicious, impressive tiramisu cake with ladyfingers using only 6 ingredients?

Four cups of Tiramisu on a table next to each other with spoons.
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This classic Italian dessert pairs the flavors of coffee, chocolate, and mascarpone cheese. The ladyfingers are soaked in coffee for a rich flavor and silky texture.

This is elegant enough for a dinner party and you can make it a day ahead if you need to, making it the perfect choice. Date night? Potluck supper? Whatever the occasion, this is a dessert that always disappears fast.

There is absolutely no baking involved here. If you can mix ingredients together, you can easily rustle up this iconic tiramisu dessert. It really is that easy!

Other elegant desserts that I love to bake include this New York style cheesecake and shortcut tres leches cake which everyone always loves.

Main Ingredients

Tiramisu cake is a creamy, coffee-flavored dessert that can be made with surprisingly few ingredients. These are the main ones you are going to need:

  • Espresso: One of the key flavors in tiramisu. You will need espresso or very strongly brewed coffee for the best result. If you don’t have a coffee machine at home, pick up an espresso at a local coffee shop. The better the coffee, the better the dessert will taste.
  • Ladyfingers: For the right texture and to soak up the espresso and cream. You need to use real Italian ladyfingers, not the cheaper cake-line ones which will disintegrate as soon as they hit the espresso. If you can’t find ladyfingers, you could sub sponge cake or angel food cake instead, as long as you cut them into ladyfinger-sized pieces and dry them out a bit in a 250°F oven.
  • Mascarpone cheese: For creaminess. It will blend more easily at room temperature. If you can’t find this ingredient, you can make faux mascarpone. Either blend 8 ounces of cream cheese with ⅛ cup each of sour cream and whipping cream or blend 8 ounces of cream cheese with 2 tablespoons unsalted butter and ¼ cup heavy cream.
  • Egg yolks: For flavor and texture. Use pasteurized egg yolks at room temperature for the best result. When mixed with the mascarpone, the egg becomes light and fluffy.
  • Sugar: To sweeten the tiramisu. Use superfine sugar if you have it, or else pulse regular white sugar in the blender briefly to make it superfine. The reason is that if the grains are too large the sugar won’t dissolve and mix in properly.

Instructions Overview

One of the great things about this tiramisu cake with ladyfingers is you don’t even have to heat up the oven, since it’s a no-bake dessert.

The first thing to do is pop the ladyfingers into the espresso. Depending on the brand and quality, they will take anywhere from a few seconds to a couple of minutes to absorb some of the coffee.

While they are soaking, you can whisk the egg yolks, mascarpone, and sugar until light and fluffy. Divide half the espresso-soaked ladyfingers between 3 serving bowls, then top with half the cream mixture.

Repeat these layers and refrigerate overnight or for at least a couple of hours. Serve sprinkled with unsweetened cocoa powder.

Common Questions

What can I serve with tiramisu?

This after-dinner dessert is great served with an espresso on the side. Sliced strawberries, milk chocolate-covered peanuts, or a sprig of mint would make a nice garnish, but it’s perfectly delicious without any of these.

How should I store it?

Keep the tiramisu refrigerated until you serve it. The finished tiramisu needs a minimum of 2 hours in the refrigerator else the ladyfingers won’t be soft and the cream layer will slide off. Eat it within 5 days.

Can I freeze it?

Yes, you can! Freeze it in a covered container for up to 3 months then thaw overnight in the refrigerator or for half an hour on the countertop.

Should I make this recipe ahead?

I prefer to refrigerate the tiramisu overnight. This ensures the ladyfingers soak up the coffee flavor and soften in the cream. You will need to make it at least 2 hours ahead anyway.

Is it safe to eat raw eggs?

It’s perfectly safe as long as you ensure the eggs have been pasteurized in the shell, so check the packaging. This will eliminate the already tiny chance of foodborne sickness.

Chopnotch Tips

  • You might like to add a splash of liqueur to the espresso before soaking the ladyfingers. It’s delicious without, but if you fancy adding some coffee liqueur, marsala wine, dark rum, or cognac, go ahead.
  • Use fresh ingredients. If you use mascarpone, cream, or eggs close to their expiry date, these ingredients might separate in the dessert.
  • Let the mascarpone sit on the counter for 15 minutes before using it. If it’s too warm or too cold, it can curdle.
  • Too much soaking will make the ladyfingers soggy. You can dip them briefly in the espresso or even brush it over them.
  • If you prefer, you can make this in one medium size dish rather than in 3 small ones. If you want to make it in a 9x13-inch dish, multiply the ingredients by two.

Tiramisu is Italian for "pick me up", a reference to the coffee and (sometimes) alcohol added to the recipe. It’s an easy, no-bake dessert which is perfect after any kind of main dish.

Let us know what you think! Give this recipe a rating in the comments section below.

Recipe

How to Make

Tiramisu Cake with Ladyfingers

This easy, 6-ingredient dessert is a wonderfully authentic, no-bake Italian classic. It’s perfect for date night.
SCALE THIS RECIPE
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 0 mins
Chilling Time: 2 hrs
Total Time: 2 hrs 5 mins
Servings: 8 people

Ingredients

  • 2 cups espresso
  • 1 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1 box ladyfingers, cut in half
  • 2 egg yolks
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • cocoa powder, for serving
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Instructions

  • Soak ladyfingers in coffee while you cook the filling.
  • Mix cheese, egg yolks, and sugar in a bowl or you can use a blender.
  • Prepare small cups or bowls for tiramisu. Put ladyfingers first on the bottom to create the first layer. Top with cream cheese mixture. Repeat the layers to the top.
  • Refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight. Serve topped with cocoa powder.
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Notes

  • You might like to add a splash of liqueur to the espresso before soaking the ladyfingers. It’s delicious without, but if you fancy adding some coffee liqueur, marsala wine, dark rum, or cognac, go ahead.
  • Use fresh ingredients. If you use mascarpone, cream, or eggs close to their expiry date, these ingredients might separate in the dessert.
  • Let the mascarpone sit on the counter for 15 minutes before using it. If it’s too warm or too cold, it can curdle.
  • Too much soaking will make the ladyfingers soggy. You can dip them briefly in the espresso or even brush it over them.
  • If you prefer, you can make this in one medium size dish rather than in 3 small ones. If you want to make it in a 9x13-inch dish, multiply the ingredients by two.

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 489kcal (24%), Carbohydrates: 73g (24%), Protein: 13g (26%), Fat: 16g (25%), Saturated Fat: 9g (56%), Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 132mg (44%), Sodium: 76mg (3%), Potassium: 2124mg (61%), Fiber: 1g (4%), Sugar: 13g (14%), Vitamin A: 596IU (12%), Calcium: 140mg (14%), Iron: 4mg (22%)
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course:
Dessert
cuisine:
Italian

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