Irish Cream Tiramisu

Tested & Perfected Recipes

Spiked with Baileys, Nigella Lawson’s Irish-style tiramisu is one of the best.

tiramisu

If you’re a fan of Baileys Irish Cream, you’ll love this fun twist on tiramisu from one of my all-time favorite cookbooks, Nigella Express by Nigella Lawson. The first time I made it, my husband proclaimed it the best tiramisu he’d ever had. Since then, it’s become a dinner party regular at our house. With layers of espresso- and Baileys-soaked ladyfingers and light mascarpone cream, it looks and tastes impressive yet is almost ridiculously easy to make. You spend 20 minutes putting it together, if that, then just pop it in the fridge overnight.

What you’ll need to make Tiramisu

ingredients

Before we get started, you should know that the recipe is made with raw eggs. With that in mind, use only fresh, properly refrigerated and clean grade A or AA eggs with intact shells, and avoid contact between the yolks or whites and the shell.

How to make Tiramisu

Begin by combining 3/4 cup of the Baileys with the espresso or strong coffee. Set that aside.

adding-baileys-to-coffee

Next, separate the eggs, keeping only one of the whites. Whisk the egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale.

pale-yellow-ribbons

Then add the mascarpone and remaining Baileys.

adding-baileys-and-mascarpone

Whisk until the mixture is smooth.

whisking-cream

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg white until soft peaks form when you lift the whisk out of the bowl.

soft-peak-egg-whites

Using a rubber spatula, fold the egg white into the mascarpone mixture. Set aside.

ready-to-fold

Now, time to assemble the tiramisu. Dip each ladyfinger, one at a time, into the espresso/Baileys mixture. Only dip it for 2-3 seconds, until just damp but not soggy.

quick-dip

Arrange the dipped cookies in a baking dish.

first-layer

Top with half of the mascarpone cream and another layer of dipped cookies.

layering-1

Spread the remaining mascarpone cream over top.

final-layer

Cover with plastic wrap and chill until the cream is set, at least 8 hours or overnight. When ready to serve, place the cocoa powder in a fine sieve and dust evenly over top.

dusting-with-cocoa

That’s all there is to it. Enjoy!

cut-tiramisu

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Irish Cream Tiramisu

Spiked with Baileys, Nigella Lawson’s Irish-style tiramisu is one of the best.

Servings: 12
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Total Time: 20 Minutes, plus 8-10 hours to chill

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups espresso or very strong black coffee, cooled
  • 1 cup Baileys Irish Cream, divided
  • 14 oz (or two 7-ounce packs) Savoiardi cookies or ladyfingers (see note), although you won't use all of them
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup superfine sugar (to make your own, process regular granulated sugar in food processor for 30 seconds until fine)
  • 1 pound mascarpone cheese
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder, such as Hershey's

Instructions

  1. Mix the cooled espresso with ¾ cup of the Baileys in a shallow bowl. Set aside.
  2. Separate the eggs, but keep only one of the whites. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until the mixture is thick, pale yellow, and forms a ribbon when the whisk is lifted out of the bowl, about a minute. Add the remaining ¼ cup Baileys and mascarpone and whisk until the mixture is smooth.
  3. In a separate bowl, vigorously whisk the single egg white until soft peaks form when you lift the whisk out of the bowl (you can do this by hand with such a little amount). Fold the egg white into the mascarpone mixture. It will seem thin but don't worry: it will set up in the fridge.
  4. Dip the cookies, one at a time, into the espresso/Baileys mixture; let them soak just long enough to become damp but not soggy. Line the bottom of a 9-inch square glass dish (or 7x11-in rectangular dish) with a layer of soaked cookies, then spread half of the mascarpone mixture over top. Repeat with another layer of soaked cookies, then top with the remaining mascarpone mixture. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and leave in the fridge until the mascarpone mixture is set, 8-10 hours or overnight.
  5. When you are ready to serve, place the cocoa powder in a small sieve and dust over the top of the tiramisu.
  6. Note: Savoiardi cookies are also called ladyfingers. But be sure to buy crisp cookies -- not the soft sponge cake ladyfingers sold in the bakery section of the grocery store.
  7. Note: This recipe uses raw eggs. Be sure to use only fresh, properly refrigerated and clean grade A or AA eggs with intact shells, and avoid contact between the yolks or whites and the shell.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (12 servings)
  • Calories: 392
  • Fat: 26g
  • Saturated fat: 14g
  • Carbohydrates: 31g
  • Sugar: 11g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Protein: 6g
  • Sodium: 269mg
  • Cholesterol: 108mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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Reviews & Comments

  • Tiramisu is such a premium and expensive dessert so I love that I can make this at home. Some of my family members can’t eat eggs so I had to replace it with heavy cream. Still was a hit and now a family favorite. Thank you Jenn for your fabulous recipes and hard work!

    • — Diana F. on January 30, 2021
    • Reply
  • Hi Jen,

    Wondering if this can be made without eggs. Would it make any difference to the taste or texture of the tiramisu. Thank you for the amazing recipe!

    • — Sheetal on December 28, 2020
    • Reply
    • Unfortunately, not. You really need eggs for this.

      • — Jenn on December 29, 2020
      • Reply
  • This a a fail proof recipe. Made it several times after initially feeling intimidated by such a beloved dessert. It is always a hit, just the right sweetness and texture made a day in advance. And no flour or baking, no mess. Beating the egg white is about as hard as it gets. Thank you!

    • — RASHIDA SHAKIR on November 11, 2020
    • Reply
  • HI Jenn,
    Can I use Baileys irish cream liquid coffee creamer? (this one doesn’t have alcohol). Thanks,
    Sabeen

    • — Sabeen Khwaja on September 17, 2020
    • Reply
    • Hi Sabeen, I think the finished dish will taste a bit different, but that it should work. Please LMK how it turns out if you try it!

      • — Jenn on September 21, 2020
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn! I just made this and it turned out DELISH except that the texture of the cream part seems a bit stiff/thick? The only variations I made from the recipe were to halve the sugar, and to use whiskey instead of Baileys, in about 1/3 of the quantity. (I saw on Nigella’s website that Bailey’s can be substituted for whiskey and cream, but my cream happened to just go bad…). Also I left it in the fridge for almost 24 hours before eating it. Could any of these variations account for the thick texture? Or d’you think it could be something else? Oh one more thing – I think I maaay have overwhipped the egg whites a bit, they were closer to hard/stiff peaks than soft peaks ..

    • — Sarah on May 24, 2020
    • Reply
    • Hi Sarah, Sorry the texture was a bit off. Yes, I think the overwhipping of the egg whites is what caused the problem. You will experience a big difference in texture when the egg whites are beaten to stiff peaks instead of soft ones.

      • — Jenn on May 26, 2020
      • Reply
      • Ah okay, thanks so much!! For others’ reference – it wasn’t a big deal in the end, my mum actually liked that the texture was firmer 🙂 And over the next few days it softened anyway!

        • — Sarah on June 2, 2020
        • Reply
  • Love a Tiramisu. Thought we would try your recipe Before my birthday in June. I think it’s going to be Italian theme, lockdown birthday menu. We were blown away. The best tiramisu yet! A recipe to keep.

    • — Iqbal Dhadda on May 18, 2020
    • Reply
  • Hey, I absolutely love all your recipes.
    For the tiramisu, I would recommend not using the eggs and instead use miracle whip and add vanilla acing in it for some sweetness.
    For coffee, instead of using regular coffee, I would suggest making hazelnut coffee. Makes it extra delicious.
    Hope you try it that way and enjoy it

    • — Mmf on April 15, 2020
    • Reply
  • I would like to try your recipe for Irish Cream Tiramisu, and thought I might try making the ladyfinger cookies to save on cost. Do you have a good recipe for that or have a link to share of a good recipe? Thanks much! I love all of your recipes that I have tried so far!!

    • — Tricia on January 17, 2020
    • Reply
    • Hi Tricia, Unfortunately, I don’t have a ladyfinger recipe of my own to share, but this one from King Arthur looks good. (Please keep in mind that I’ve not tried it myself.) Please let me know how the ladyfingers (and the tiramisu) turn out if you try them!

      • — Jenn on January 17, 2020
      • Reply
  • It doesn’t appear that this recipe can be frozen?

    • — Lil Hemeon on January 11, 2020
    • Reply
    • I don’t think this would freeze well, Lil — sorry!

      • — Jenn on January 13, 2020
      • Reply
  • Great recipe! I had never made tiramisu before and this is easy and oh so delicious. I’ll definitely make it again when I’m looking for a special dessert to serve.

    • — Ann C on January 2, 2020
    • Reply
  • Fabulous Tiramisu Jenn! So easy to make and wonderful flavor. I modified recipe slightly for family member with allergy to cocoa, I decided to use Cinnamon powder instead.

    I generally followed instructions as written, but reduced original Baileys amount to only 1/4 cup mixed with 1 cup dark coffee for lady finger dunking. Then I added 2 tablespoons of Baileys Cinnamon Vanilla to the Mascarpone cream mixture. When assembling dessert, I followed others suggestion to dip for 1-2 seconds only and quickly blot off excess drips before placing in pan. I added a light sprinkle of cinnamon powder on each layer of lady fingers before the mascarpone cream, and topped whole dessert with a heavy dusting of cinnamon through a fine sieve. My final dessert is light, fluffy and flavorful without being boozy at all. My family really loved the Cinnamon as well instead of Cocoa. Definitely a winner!!

    • — Erika M on December 15, 2019
    • Reply
  • Hi Jenn, I have made this recipe several times and it is always delicious This time I am planning to bring it to a dinner party. I know the directions are to refrigerate 8 hrs or overnight but how long can this be refrigerated without it becoming soggy. Thank you for your help.

    • — Maria on July 25, 2019
    • Reply
    • Maria, I think you could get away with making this up to 2 days ahead. (And glad you like it!)

      • — Jenn on July 25, 2019
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn.
    I love the simplicity of this recipe. It came out absolutely delicious. What size pan can I use to double the recipe?

    • — Natalie on May 21, 2019
    • Reply
    • Hi Natalie, Glad you enjoyed this! There’s no perfect size for doubling this, so I’d suggest two 9-inch pans.

      • — Jenn on May 21, 2019
      • Reply
  • Jenn, do you have a recommended step to cook the eggs? I cannot find pasteurized eggs in the shell in my area.

    • — Glinda on March 15, 2019
    • Reply
    • Hi Glinda, You might try this recipe that calls for cooking the yolks.

      • — Jenn on March 16, 2019
      • Reply
  • Would a 9″ metal baking pan work?

  • this was the best tiramisu I’ve ever had. I do think next time I will use my hand mixer for both bowls rather than mixing by hand.

  • Since I have never had a failure with any of your recipes this one got me and I’m hoping you can tell me what I did wrong. I followed the recipe exactly but after it was in the refrigerator overnight I took off the foil and it was..well basically ladyfingers floating in the cream. I re-read the recipe and can’t figure out where I went wrong. In other recipes there are a lot more eggs used as well as egg whites. Welcome any of your thoughts. Your recipes are ALL fabulous so this was clearly my error.

    • I’m sorry you had a problem with this, Barb! This recipe is pretty predictable – is there any chance you may have mismeasured something? Also, did you beat the egg whites until soft peaks formed?

  • I was planning on making this for Thanksgiving Day. I saw that you made it in a 7×11 dish. Will it be okay to make this in a 9×13? I’ve looked everywhere and can’t seem to find any in the 7×11 size – or where did you get yours?

    Thank you!!

    • Hi Jennea, I’ve had mine for ages and am not sure where I got it. Do you have a 9-inch square pan? That would basically be the equivalent.

  • Thank you Jenn! This was so yum! I made it just as you described it for a ‘bring a dessert’ party. So much fun, sadly it was gone at the end so no leftovers. I had never used Baileys before and that made it extra nice. Also setting it in the fridge overnight lays the biscuits soften into cake. Great tip! Our favorite Italian restaurant would struggle to make an equal! Love, love, love!

  • Hi Jenn- How do you minimize contact with the egg shell when separating the whites and yolks? I have never served a dish that contains raw eggs and want to be sure I do it correctly and minimize and risks. Thank you!

  • I totally agree with your husband, this is the best tiramisu ever and it’s so easy to make. My dinner guests were very impressed, so thank you. The only thing I found was that I had lots of coffee and Baileys left over. At first I thought maybe I hadn’t dipped the fingers for long enough, but they were absolutely fine, so next time I’ll reduce the quantity as I’m not one for drinking cold coffee!

    • I’m just making mine and have found this too! Thought it might not come out well but you’ve given me hope

      • — Kate on June 9, 2020
      • Reply
  • Hi Jen,
    Could you confirm the size of the pan used for this recipe?I plan to make this recipe and I was confused with the size as you have responded to one of the readers that its 9 x13 inch pan and it does look like one in the picture.

    • You’re correct, Meera. It’s a 7×11-in pan. Sorry for the confusion!

  • Could you leave out the Irish Cream from the Tirimisu and it turn out?

    • Hi Denise, You could use more coffee in place of the Bailey’s but I think the flavor will be a bit flat — sorry!

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