How to beat egg whites

Article by: Allrecipes  |  Video by: Allrecipes
Find out how to beat egg whites, whether you need soft peaks or stiff peaks. We show you tips and tricks that will result in perfectly beaten whites every time!
What you'll need...
• Room temperature eggs, which increase in volume more easily than cold eggs.
• A clean glass or metallic bowl. The bowl should be large enough to accommodate the volume of the beaten whites. Ensure the bowl is perfectly clean, as even just a bit of greasy residue can prevent peaks from forming. Avoid plastic bowls, as plastic retains grease no matter how clean it is.
• A totally clean electric whisk. For the same reason as above, be sure the whisk is totally clean. You can use a manual whisk, it'll just require a lot more elbow grease!
• Cream of tartar. This optional ingredient helps to stabilise the egg whites and prevent over-beating. Add a pinch or two after a minute or two of beating.

Foamy whites
How to beat egg whites step picture 2
To get foamy or frothy whites, simply beat the whites for just a couple of minutes at high speed till tiny bubbles appear. The whites should not yet be able to stand as peaks.
Soft peaks
How to beat egg whites step picture 4
When a recipe calls for soft peaks, continue beating the whites on high speed till 'droopy' and rounded peaks form when the whisk is lifted out of the bowl.
Stiff peaks
How to beat egg whites step picture 6
Continuing to beat at high speed, beat till the whites stand straight up when the whisk is lifted out of the bowl. The peaks should not droop whatsoever.
Don't overdo it!
Over-beating egg whites will result in a lumpy, watery mixture that will render the whites unusable in your recipe. Cream of tartar helps to prevent this from happening.
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