Irish Cream Tiramisu
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Spiked with Baileys, Nigella Lawson’s Irish-style tiramisu is one of the best.
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
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.
Next, separate the eggs, keeping only one of the whites. Whisk the egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale.
Then add the mascarpone and remaining Baileys.
Whisk until the mixture is smooth.
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg white until soft peaks form when you lift the whisk out of the bowl.
Using a rubber spatula, fold the egg white into the mascarpone mixture. Set aside.
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.
Arrange the dipped cookies in a baking dish.
Top with half of the mascarpone cream and another layer of dipped cookies.
Spread the remaining mascarpone cream over top.
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.
That’s all there is to it. Enjoy!
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Irish Cream Tiramisu
Spiked with Baileys, Nigella Lawson’s Irish-style tiramisu is one of the best.
- 1½ 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
- ⅓ cup superfine sugar (to make your own, process regular granulated sugar in food processor for 30 seconds until fine)
- 1 pound mascarpone cheese
- 2½ teaspoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder, such as Hershey's
- Mix the cooled espresso with ¾ cup of the Baileys in a shallow bowl. Set aside.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- When you are ready to serve, place the cocoa powder in a small sieve and dust over the top of the tiramisu.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
While reading through the Baileys tiramisu recipe, it calls for 1/3 cup of superfine sugar but the directions don’t include the sugar; is it supposed to be whipped in with the eggs whites?
Yes, if you look at the 2nd sentence of the 2nd paragraph, it indicates that you should whisk the egg yolks and sugar together. Hope that clarifies and that you enjoy!
Hi, I’m planning to make this tonight. Does the mascarpone need to be room temp?
Hi Kelly, I think I’m weighing in too late to help, but the mascarpone does not need to be at room temperature. I hope it came out nicely if you made it!
Hi Jen…..would I be able to substitute coconut sugar for regular sugar?
Hi Ella, It should work but I’ve never used coconut sugar so if the granule size is similar in size to regular/granulated sugar, I’d blitz it in the food processor to create finer crystals. Hope you enjoy!
This recipe is so good I just made it for the second time. This time I did a mix of baileys and Kahlua. I also added shaved dark chocolate ontop. Can’t wait to see how it turns out!
I made this for Christmas day. It was super easy to put together and was a big hit. Everyone loved it!!!
Thanks your photos and instructions were really useful. This is a really delicious Tiramisu. It is improved even further with a layer of finely chopped 70% cocoa chocolate on top before dusting with cocoa – a tip I got from an Italian lady on Christmas Day, although she put her chopped chocolate in the middle.
I am making this for Christmas Eve Dinner for 12. Question: would the recipe be altered if after I whisk the egg yolks & sugar a bit til thick and pale, I then cook the egg mixture in a double boiler, whisking, for 2-3 min? I am uneasy about serving raw eggs. Not sure I need to be but I’ve always been told not to eat raw eggs. Thank you.
Hi Cheryl, I’ve never tried that, so I really can’t say for sure how it would impact the recipe. If you’re uneasy about raw eggs, you can buy pasteurized eggs as according to the USDA, they are safe to eat raw. You can read more about it here.
Absolutely delicious!! So easy and I can’t wait to share this perfect recipe with friends and family!!
I know this family of mine. They will want seconds. Can I easily double the recipe for this dessert? Or is it best to make single batches? thank you. I plan to try this out for Christmas Eve this year — our family dinner!
LOL – yes, it’s fine to double it!
I have made the tiramasu which was very good with what I consider strong coffee. However I also have expresso powder for my next try. Wasn’t sure if you could advise as to how to measure this to one and half cup. I read various articles regarding mixing milk and water and even cinnamon to expresso so thought I’d ask you first. Any help would be appreciated! Thanks again for being such a great resource. You are my go to for anything yummy!
Hi Staci, Glad you like the recipes! For the espresso powder, I would just follow the instructions on the package in terms of how much you should use per cup. Hope you enjoy it with the espresso!
This was my first time trying to make tiramisu, which is actually my favorite dessert, and I did it! It was so good and much easier than I thought it would be. I did follow the adjustment of Bailey’s to one quarter cup and one cup of Nespresso coffee plus one shot of espresso. Everything else was as directed in the recipe. It is so good. I’m very proud of myself. Thank you so much, Jenn!
I like to halve the recipe, what size dish would you recommend?
Hi Inga, I’d guesstimate you’d need at 1.5 quart dish.
So delish! I love your step by step instructions and pictures. I’ll be making this again for sure. Made a perfect dessert for Christmas Eve – thank you!! Jo
Hi, I am just wondering if I make this on Christmas Eve, will it be ok for Boxing Day? Thanks Clare
Hi Clare, Yes that should be fine.
Hi, this is last minute but I’m hoping to make this tonight. I have a bottle of Bailey Espresso Creme and wondered if it would be ok to use instead of regular Baileys? If so, should I adjust the coffee component meaning would it be too strong using espresso coffee in addition to the coffee flavoured liquor? I wondered if I should used strong regular coffee instead.
Yes, it’s fine for you to use the Espresso Creme and I would use the strong coffee instead of the espresso. Please LMK how it turns out!
Hello! You are my go-to-first for all recipes. I am making this for my mom’s 75 bday. She loves Tiramisu. 1)Because it is a daytime party, and the guests have to drive home afterward, can I reduce the amount of baileys by 25-30%? 2) I saw some other recipes that used other alcohols like sweet wine or marsala or rum. Have you made this with any other alcohol types? Thank you!
Hi Chitra, So glad to hear my recipes are go-to’s for you! You can cut back on the Baileys and substitute that liquid with heavy cream, but I don’t think the alcohol in here will have any impact on those that eat it. And, yes, you can replace the Baileys with rum, marsala, or sweet wine. Hope that helps!
Excellent recipe! My favorite Tiramisu recipe forever. Turned out beautiful, smooth and creamy.
Firmed up nicely in the fridge and was not mushy. Made enough for a 9″x 13″ pyrex.
Didn’t need a hand blender and was able to whisk the filling. Magic bulleted heavy whipping cream to make whipped cream and added to the filling. Love the Baileys addition.
Like the idea of only 2 eggs and sugar amount. Some recipes have so many eggs they could make omelettes!
I have just made the tiramisu and must have done something wrong as I didn’t have enough ladies fingers for the size of the dish.
I bought a new dish measuring 23 cm x 17cm which is less than the recipe states (inside base measurements) and a 300 gr packet of biscuits (which is more than recipe states). There were 20 biscuits in the packet. I was short about 4 biscuits. I’m sure it will be delicious but intrigued about the measurements? Any suggestions please? Thanks so much.
Hi Anne, that’s a head-scratcher to me as, if anything, you should’ve had some left over. I wish I could help but it’s a bit of mystery — I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful!
Thanks Jenn. I’ll try to make it again! Everyone raves about it….I don’t want to miss out!
Anne, I hope you have better luck next time around!
This was totally delicious, delightful and a big hit. Thanks for sharing the recipe! Based on other reviews, I made 2/3 of the recommended Bailey’s and coffee mixture for the dipping liquid and that was just about the right amount. For my serving dish I needed only one package of ladyfingers and the balance between layers was perfect.
My problem came with the half of the family who will not touch coffee and claim to notice even a drop or two in a luscious chocolate icing. So, with your recipe as a base, I made a raspberry/white chocolate “tiramisu”. For the dipping liquid I used 1/2 cup of sugar dissolved in about 3 Tbsp boiling water and then added 1/3 c Grand Marnier and !/3 cup whole milk. Next a raspberry layer of 12 oz. macerated frozen, drained raspberries with a bit of sugar. For the custard layer I subbed Grand Marnier for the Bailey’s and added about 4 ounces melted white chocolate. I garnished it all with fresh raspberries, white chocolate curls and powdered sugar. It was also delightful and perhaps his idea would be helpful to others with the same “coffee” problem.
Thanks, as always, for the great recipes. 😊
OMG!!!! This was soooo good. Made this for St Patty’s day for my wife and I and it came out absolutely delicious !! Only problem was (and my ladyfingers may be bigger) I could only fit one package of ladyfingers in a 7×11 casserole. We tried it with and without the cocoa on top and it was delicious either way. I still have never had a bad recipe from Jenn Segal. Nigella Lawson also has our favorite brownie recipe. Will be making this again for ANY reason!
I enjoy seeing and trying your creative recipes! I wanted to comment on using the raw eggs. When I make tiramisu, I usually make a zabaglione from the eggs, sugar and booze, then no one has to worry about eating raw eggs. Would that technique work for this recipe, do you think? Another thing I do is to use decaffeinated espresso coffee because I am usually serving this dessert for an evening dinner party and wouldn’t want to make my guests have a sleepless night on account of enjoying the tiramisu. Thanks for your great website, photos and recipes!
Hi Karen, so glad you enjoyed the recipes! Unfortunately, I don’t think the technique that you’re suggesting will work here. I’m sorry!
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!
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!
Unfortunately, not. You really need eggs for this.
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!
Can I use Baileys irish cream liquid coffee creamer? (this one doesn’t have alcohol). Thanks,
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!
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 ..
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.
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!
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.
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
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!!
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!
It doesn’t appear that this recipe can be frozen?
I don’t think this would freeze well, Lil — sorry!
I have frozen it and it was fine
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.
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!!
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, I think you could get away with making this up to 2 days ahead. (And glad you like it!)
I love the simplicity of this recipe. It came out absolutely delicious. What size pan can I use to double the recipe?
Hi Natalie, Glad you enjoyed this! There’s no perfect size for doubling this, so I’d suggest two 9-inch pans.
Jenn, do you have a recommended step to cook the eggs? I cannot find pasteurized eggs in the shell in my area.
Hi Glinda, You might try this recipe that calls for cooking the yolks.
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?
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!
Hi Alana, Here are some clearly outlined methods for you to choose from. Hope you enjoy the tiramisu!
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
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!