Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (2024)

By Erin Clarkson on Jul 26, 2023

5 from 15 reviews

20 community comments

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This easy tiramisu is a simple no-bake dessert recipe that is great to make ahead and takes only 30 minutes of prep time. It is made with layers of coffee-soaked ladyfingers, and a smooth and silky mascarpone filling for a classic Tiramisu dessert. For a cake version of tiramisu, check out my tiramisu cake!

Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (1)

Hi hi! Just popping in to share this super easy tiramisu recipe with you! This is essentially a big boy version of the small batch tiramisu that is super popular on my website. While making a small homemade tiramisu is great, sometimes you want a larger sized one, and don't want to do the maths. I got you.

This is a fairly 'classic' tiramisu recipe which is a traditional Italian dessert. Mine is made with ladyfingers, a smooth and creamy mascarpone and egg yolk filling, then is loaded up with cocoa powder just before serving. I add whipped cream to my filling and leave out the marsala wine, so it's not a traditional 'zabaglione' but it's how I prefer it!

The thing that I love the most about tiramisu over other dessert recipes is how easy it is to make, but also how great it is to make ahead of time. You can prepare it the morning of or the day before in under 30 minutes, and have a super impressive dessert just hanging out in your fridge ready to go!

Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (2)
Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (3)

Ingredients in Tiramisu

Tiramisu has a few components to it - the mascarpone filling, the coffee soak, and then the ladyfinger biscuits. These are all combined together into a layered dessert.

  • Ladyfingers. My tiramisu recipe uses ladyfingers, often also called Savoiardi biscuits. Other recipes use a sponge cake, but using store bought ladyfingers makes life super simple and I think they taste delicious.
  • Coffee soak. I like to use cooled strong coffee for my coffee soak (you can pull a few shots of espresso and dilute to your liking), along with some kahlua if you like.
  • Egg yolks. This recipe is great to use up any extra egg yolks that you may have. The egg yolks give a creaminess to the filling and also help it set up.
  • Caster sugar. I prefer to use caster sugar or super fine sugar, as it helps the sugar to properly dissolve with the egg yolk mixture.
  • Mascarpone. Mascarpone cheese is a soft Italian cheese and is a critical element of Tiramisu - don't skip it. There isn't really a sub for it.
  • Cream. I call for 'heavy cream' in the recipe. This is the kind that you would use to make whipped cream. The cream is going to be whipped to medium stiff peaks and used in the filling. Adding cream isn't 'traditional' but I really like it with the addition of whipped cream.
  • Cocoa powder. Tiramisu is traditionally dusted with cocoa powder, however you can finish it with chocolate shavings if you like.
Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (4)

Is Tiramisu Cake?

This is something I notice gets googled a lot, and here is my answer - no - tiramisu is a layered dessert. This one is, anyway. Sometimes tiramisu can be made with a sponge cake, but is most often made with ladyfinger biscuits, the same way as my classic tiramisu has here.

This recipe for tiramisu is the layered dessert, made with layers of mascarpone filling and coffee soaked ladyfingers. I do have a Tiramisu Cake recipe on my website, which has a vanilla cake, a coffee soak, and is topped with an espresso mascarpone frosting, so it is the flavours of tiramisu, but in a cake.

Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (5)
Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (6)

How to make Tiramisu

The process of making tiramisu is super easy, and the best part is that you can do all of it ahead of time. In fact, It is best if you do make it ahead of time to give it time to chill and set up!

  • Make the coffee soak. I like to do this first, so that it has time to cool down before assembling the tiramisu.
  • Make the egg yolk filling. Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together over a double boiler (I use a pot with a heatproof bowl on the top). Keep whisking until they are super thick and the sugar has dissolved. Leave to stand.
  • Add the mascarpone. Once the egg yolk mixture has cooled slightly, add the mascarpone, then leave it to cool while you whip the cream. When you mix the mascarpone in it may seem at first like it won't incorporate, but just keep mixing it gently!
  • Whip the cream. I prefer to do this by hand using a whisk so that I have full control over it - if you over whip it you run the risk of your filling being grainy. You want to take it just past soft peaks.
  • Add the cream to the filling. Care fully fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone and egg mixture.
  • Assemble. Now it's time to put it all together. Carefully dip the lady fingers in your coffee soak, then arrange in the bottom of the baking dish. Top with half the mascarpone mixture, then a second layer of soaked lady fingers. Finish with the rest of the filling mix and then smooth off!
  • Set. Leave the tiramisu to chill and set for at least a few hours, or up to overnight. Dust with cocoa powder before serving.

Does this Tiramisu recipe have raw eggs?

No it doesn't - the egg yolks are 'cooked' during the double boiler stage of the recipe where you combine the yolks and the sugar. I don't use a thermometer for this, but if you do want to make sure that your eggs are at the correct temperature, you can temperature check them - you want them at least 74°c / 165°f on an instant read thermometer. Make your own decisions here and I like to make sure I use super fresh eggs for making my tiramisu just for peace of mind!

This recipe only uses egg yolks - other tiramisu recipes incorporate the egg whites into the filling too.

Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (7)
Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (8)
Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (9)
Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (10)

Alcohol Free Tiramisu

I use Kahlua in my Tiramisu recipe, but more traditional recipes use Marsala wine or a dark rum.

If you want to make this an alcohol free tiramisu, simply omit the alcohol from the coffee soak.

How to slice Tiramisu

I find that the cleanest way to slice tiramisu is to use a sharp knife or an offset spatula. Make sure that the dessert is properly chilled and set, then use a knife or spatula to cut into portions. Once you have the first one out, you should be able to use a fish slice or something similar to remove servings.

Alternatively, just use a spoon and scoop out servings.

Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (11)

Can Tiramisu be made ahead of time?

Yes, in fact this is best to make ahead so that it has time to set up. The egg yolk mixture will seem a little loose when you are assembling it, but it should set up nicely in the fridge.

This chill time also gives the lady fingers time to soften slightly from the coffee soak, and for the flavours to meld.

I usually make tiramisu the morning of the evening I am planning to serve it because I have bad time management, but if you like, you can make it a day ahead and store covered with plastic wrap in the fridge. Dust with cocoa powder just before you eat.

How do you store Tiramisu?

Store leftovers either in an airtight container in the fridge, or just in the serving dish that you made the dessert in, lightly covered with plastic wrap. Eat within 2-3 days.

Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (12)

Frequently Asked Questions

What tools and equipment do you use?
You can find a full list of the tools and equipment I use on my products page

Which pan did you use?

I made my Tiramisu in a ceramic 9"x13" pan. You can use whatever pan you have that you think will fit - this recipe will also fill a 9x9" pan and give three layers (it fills right to the top)

Can I use regular granulated sugar?

If you like you can, but you run the risk of your zabaglione being grainy. You can either blitz your sugar to make it a little finer, or make sure that the sugar is dissolved in the egg yolk mixture. Caster sugar I have found is much more common in nz than the US - if you have a fine grained regular granulated sugar in the US that should be fine. In NZ you want to use Caster.

Help! My filling looks really thin?

The first few times I made homemade tiramisu I thought this too! But don't freak out, once it has some time to sit in the fridge then the filling will firm up. Just make sure that when you are cooking the egg yolks and sugar together you have a nice thick mixture.

For more Easy Dessert Recipes, check out:

  • Passionfruit No Bake Cheesecake
  • Perfect Swiss Meringue Pavlova
  • Smooth No Crack Pumpkin Pie
  • Cheesecake Brownies

❤️ Made this recipe and love it? ❤️

I would LOVE for you to leave me a review and star rating below to let me know how you liked it! Also, please make sure to tag me on Instagram!

Answers to your baking questions

Over the years, many of you have asked me questions about:

  • baking in grams
  • adjusting oven temperatures
  • what kind of salt to use
  • and many more!

I've curated and answered them all for your easy reference in this frequently asked questions post!


Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (17)

Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers

5 Stars4 Stars3 Stars2 Stars1 Star5 from 15 reviews

  • Author: Erin Clarkson
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 6 hours
  • Yield: 12 servings 1x
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: No bake
  • Cuisine: Italian
Print Recipe


This easy tiramisu is a simple no-bake dessert recipe that is great to make ahead and takes only 30 minutes of prep time. It is made with layers of coffee-soaked ladyfingers, and a smooth and silky mascarpone filling for a classic Tiramisu dessert. For a cake version of tiramisu, check out my tiramisu cake!




  • 8 large egg yolks (about 140g), at room temperature
  • 200g caster / super fine sugar
  • 540g mascarpone, at room temperature
  • 540g heavy cream, cold
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean paste (optional)


  • 660g strong coffee, cool - I use espresso shots then dilute slightly. (sub in 160-200g kahlua if you like)
  • 48 lady finger biscuits (usually two packets depending on the yield)
  • Dutch cocoa for dusting



  1. Lightly whisk the egg yolks in a medium heatproof bowl. Add the sugar and whisk well to combine. Create a double boiler by placing a small to medium saucepan of water on the stove, and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  2. Place the bowl on top of the saucepan, making sure that the water does not touch the bowl. Whisking continuously, cook the mixture for 9-10 minutes, until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is thick. To test that the sugar has dissolved, rub between your thumb and finger to feel for grains.
  3. Remove the mixture from the heat and leave to stand for 3-4 minutes, whisking occasionally, to allow it to cool slightly.
  4. Once the egg mixture has cooled slightly, add the mascarpone and whisk in until just combined. Leave to cool further while you whip the cream.
  5. Using an electric hand mixer or a whisk, whip the cream with the vanilla until stiff peaks form. Ensure that you do not over whip it, as it will make your mixture grainy. I prefer to whip to soft peaks and then finish by hand.
  6. Fold the whipped cream into the egg and mascarpone mixture and mix to combine.


  1. Assemble all your components - the coffee mixed with kahlua if using, the lady fingers, and the tiramisu filling. Have a 9"x13" (20cm x 30cm) pan ready to go.
  2. Make the first layer by dunking half the lady fingers in the coffee mixture one at a time, for no longer than 1 second each. You do not want them to get completely wet - just to moisten. They will absorb more liquid as the tiramisu sets. Arrange 24 of the soaked lady fingers in the bottom of the baking dish - you may need to snuggle them in.
  3. Add half of the filling mixture - about 675g. Spread gently over the lady fingers to smooth.
  4. Repeat the layering process with the remaining lady fingers dunked in the coffee mix and the rest of the filling mixture, and smooth out.
  5. Cover the pan with plastic wrap then leave to set in the fridge for at least 4 hours, or up to overnight. Remove the plastic wrap and dust with cocoa powder before serving.
  6. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge or in the serving pan lightly covered with plastic wrap for up to 3 days.


'Heavy Cream' is the kind of liquid cream you use to make whipped cream

Any pan size works for this tiramisu - I have made it in a 9" square before and you get three layers. Otherwise make it in the dish of your choice - your layers may be thinner or thicker than mine, but because it is no bake, whatever you choose to assemble it in is fine.

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Reader Interactions

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  1. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (18)Hayley

    Absolutely frothing over this recipe. Delicious and super easy! 10/10!


  2. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (19)Karina Arakua

    Well, I had no idea that tiramisu was so easy to make. Considering how good this is, that feels like dangerous information to know!! I halved the recipe as I was only making a "personal" amount and I've still been able to eat an abundance of tiramisu (definitely not complaining). As per usual, another excellent recipe from Cloudy Kitchen!


  3. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (20)Siobhan

    I needed to make tiramisu for a dinner party and had never made it before. Came straight to this blog and to my delight you had one! Very easy to follow and the tiramisu was delicious.


  4. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (21)Rachael

    I can't wait to try this! We've been searching for a good tiramisu since having it on a cruise last year and none of the ones we have had since can live up to that cruise one so I want to try to just make it at home instead.


  5. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (22)Anna

    Made this for a special - I was worried as I've never made Tiramisu before, but it was easy! Such good clear instructions and honestly so delish! The marscapone only came in a 500g bag so I added 40g more cream. yummy! Thanks!


  6. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (23)Nicole

    My husband requested tiramisu for Christmas this year, I’d never made it before so decided to do a practice run. This recipe is so easy and super delish!


  7. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (24)Barbara

    Delicious and incredibly easy to make! Love that the eggs are cooked so everybody can enjoy it. Will definetly make again!


  8. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (25)Vishi Veerappan

    We made this for Christmas this year - it was totally devoured by the family!

    Can always rely on your recipes! Thank you!!

    Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (26)


  9. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (27)Kay

    Best Tiramasu ever everyone loved it


  10. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (28)Danny Harper

    This is a great recipe! Highly recommend!


  11. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (29)Kate McDonald

    Made for Christmas Day. So easy and delish. Substituted some espresso for Baileys 🥰


  12. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (30)Aimee

    Having made the small batch version a few times, thought I would give the bigger one a go for Christmas and it turned out fantastic. This recipe is so quick, easy and tastes amazing. Everyone loved it, even the fussy relatives. Thanks for the recipe!


  13. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (31)Kelly

    Great recipe, easy to make and easy to halve! Yummy, was a hit on the Christmas Day table and great way to use up egg yolks

    Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (32)


    • Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (33)Erin Clarkson

      Yayyy so happy you loved! x


  14. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (34)Martha Zander

    I made one for Christmas Day and one for Boxing Day celebrations and it was so popular at each event. Easy to make and delicious. Thank you!


  15. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (35)Briar McGowan

    My absolute go to tiramisu recipe! Super creamy and delicious and very easy to make.


  16. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (36)Charlie Smyth

    I made this recipe and the tiramisu didn't set! I have made tiramisu before (using a different recipe and it worked fine). I followed this recipe to the letter so unsure why mine was a runny mess, very disappointed. Wouldn't rate this recipe for that reason.


    • Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (37)Erin Clarkson

      Oh no! Sounds like maybe you didn't cook the mixture long enough? So sorry it didn't work!


  17. Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (38)Amara

    I made this for my tiramisu loving mum for Mother’s Day and it was a hit! The perfect recipe: fun, easy , delicious. My 2 year old and I had so much fun putting it all together, it involved some fun steps but was incredibly easy to make and most of all, it was so so yum. Will be making this often!


Easy Tiramisu with Ladyfingers (2024)


Should ladyfingers be soft or hard for tiramisu? ›

Wondering if you should use soft or hard ladyfingers for tiramisu? They come in both forms, but we tend to use the soft variety. Espresso powder: We use instant espresso coffee powder found in the coffee aisle at your grocery store.

What can I use instead of sponge fingers for tiramisu? ›

Pavesini Biscuits: Pavesini biscuits are a popular alternative to ladyfingers in tiramisu. These small, thin biscuits are low in calories and can be brushed with coffee instead of being dipped. They are commonly used in making tiramisu, especially in individual servings [2].

What is a substitute for mascarpone cheese in tiramisu? ›

You can mimic the silky, decadent consistency of mascarpone with an easy DIY recipe. To make this mascarpone substitute, mix together 12 ounces of room temperature cream cheese (1 ½ blocks) with ¼ cup of heavy whipping cream and ¼ cup of sour cream until combined.

How do you keep lady fingers from getting soggy in tiramisu? ›

Don't soak! Quickly dip the cookies into your coffee or liquor. Try not to leave them in the liquid too long—a quick dip will do. Overly soggy cookies make for a wet texture and a messy dessert.

Is it better to leave tiramisu overnight? ›

For the best results, tiramisu needs at least 6 hours in the fridge before serving.

Does tiramisu have to sit overnight? ›

Assemble the tiramisu:

Spoon half of the filling mixture across the ladyfingers, smoothing with a spatula. Repeat with a second layer of ladyfingers and remaining mascarpone cream. Cover and chill for at least 8 hours but preferably overnight.

Why is my tiramisu so watery? ›

The other main reasons the mixture would be runny is if other liquid ingredients have been added first, or if the mascarpone has been beaten so much that it has curdled (then you will get water separating out from the cheese curds).

Are ladyfingers and sponge fingers the same? ›

Ladyfingers, or in British English sponge fingers (sometimes known by the Italian name savoiardi, Italian: [savoˈjardi], or by the French name boudoirs, French: [budwaʁ]), are low-density, dry, egg-based, sweet sponge cake biscuits roughly shaped like large fingers.

Can you substitute Nilla wafers for ladyfingers? ›

I found NILLA Wafers to be the perfect substitute for lady fingers in these easy Tiramisu Cups. I always have such a hard time finding lady fingers at the store…by using NILLA Wafers you get that extra vanilla flavor and you don't have to wonder where to find them!

Why is my tiramisu not creamy? ›

The right biscuits

The choice is yours, even though connoisseurs of this dessert will always tell you to choose savoiardi. In fact, the result is completely different if you use these biscuits, which are tall and spongy and absorb less coffee. As a result, the consistency will be less creamy and slightly more compact.

Can I use sour cream instead of mascarpone in tiramisu? ›

Are you a fan of tiramisu? Here's a slightly different recipe that uses sour cream instead of mascarpone cheese; It's a wonderful combination of a light, soft, and slightly tangy cream layered with biscuits soaked in dissolved coffee, topped with a dusting of cocoa powder; It's a gentle twist on the Italian classic.

What is the closest cheese to mascarpone? ›

Mascarpone has a one-of-a-kind silkiness and a milky flavor profile but ricotta cheese, cottage cheese, full-fat cream cheese, and Requeson cheese are all similar to mascarpone cheese.

Can I use sour cream instead of mascarpone? ›

Substitute 1 cup of mascarpone with 1 cup of a sour cream and cream cheese mixture. To make this mixture, use 1/2 cup of sour cream and 1/2 cup of cream cheese.

Are lady finger cookies soft or hard? ›

They are typically soaked in a sugar syrup or liqueur, or in coffee or espresso for tiramisu. Plain ladyfingers are commonly given to infants, being soft enough for teething mouths, but easy to grasp and firm enough not to fall apart.

Are sponge fingers hard or soft? ›

a type of biscuit or cake with a long, thin shape and rounded ends, that is soft inside and hard outside and covered with sugar. Sponge fingers are often used for making desserts (= sweet dishes eaten at the end of a meal): In tiramisu, sponge cake can be used instead of sponge fingers.

What is the best biscuit for tiramisu? ›

Lady fingers, or Saviordi biscuits, are dry Italian style biscuits that get dunked in the coffee soak and soften to form the base of a perfect tiramisu!

How do you describe the texture of tiramisu? ›

Incredibly airy, light texture and creaminess – We achieve this by using the classic method of whipping eggs, which giving the dessert a light mouthfeel and creaminess. Only 7 ingredients – You don't need a million ingredients to make tiramisu, and in fact, I think that makes it worse.

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