photo of earl grey tiramisu in a white casserole dish with a scoop taken out

About This Earl Grey Tiramisu

This Earl Grey tiramisu is a delicious twist on tiramisu, a classic fancy dessert! I personally love the flavor of Earl Grey tea. I’m always trying to incorporate it into more desserts like these Earl Grey Chocolate Chip Cookies and Lavender Earl Grey Cookies. And now, this Earl Grey tiramisu!

So what does this Earl Grey tiramisu taste like?

Instead of coffee or espresso, the ladyfingers are soaked in flavorful and aromatic vanilla Earl Grey tea. The soaked ladyfingers are then layered with vanilla mascarpone whipped cream. It’s also a “no bake” recipe—instead, you chill the dessert in the refrigerator. Overnight, the ladyfingers soften and absorb everything, turning into an airy, creamy, cloud-like, tea-flavored bowl dessert!

@hummingbirdhigh bc im old and cant have coffee after 10am anymore #earlgrey #baking #tiramisu #bakingrecipe ♬ Lofi Vibes – Gentle State

Why You Should Make The Recipe

Here are all the reasons to make this light and airy dessert:

The recipe skips the coffee and espresso, and instead uses Earl Grey tea for flavor and its caffeine source.

I love coffee drinks, especially specialty espresso drinks like Iced Pistachio Lattes and Vietnamese Egg Coffee. But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve sadly become more sensitive to caffeine. I now can’t enjoy a coffee drink past noon—if I do, I’ll toss and turn all night! So as a baker, that means that most coffee-flavored after-dinner desserts are off limits for me as well.

But for some reason, caffeinated tea doesn’t have the same effect on me. It doesn’t wreck my stomach as much, and I can have some after dinner without affecting the quality of my sleep.

The recipe is chilled and “no bake”—no need to turn on your oven!

It takes a lot to convince me to bake in the summer months. Who wants to turn on their oven in the blistering heat?

Luckily, this Earl Grey tiramisu is a NO BAKE dessert recipe. What does that mean? It literally does not need to be baked. That’s right, there’s no need to turn on the oven to make this dessert!

Instead, the dessert is chilled overnight to allow the ladyfingers to soften and become cake-like in their texture.

The best part? The Earl Grey tiramisu is served chilled, too. It’s the perfect light and airy summer dessert to cool you down!

photo of earl grey tiramisu in white casserole on marble tabletop

Ingredients and Substitutions

Now that I’ve convinced you to make this light and creamy Earl Grey tiramisu, here’s everything you need for the recipe:

Shopping List For Earl Grey Tiramisu Recipe

  • loose leaf Earl Grey tea
  • granulated sugar
  • pure vanilla bean paste
  • kosher salt
  • heavy cream
  • mascarpone
  • large pasteurized eggs
  • ladyfingers

And let’s talk about some key ingredients and potential substitutions:

Ingredient Recommendations and Substitutions

  • Loose Leaf Earl Grey Tea. You can use Earl Grey tea from 9 tea bags instead. Cut the tea bags open and pour out the tea leaves to use in the recipe.

    For this recipe, I recommend getting a “Creme De La Earl Grey” variety. Those varieties already have vanilla mixed in with the Earl Grey tea, making your tiramisu even more flavorful! I used this “Sweet & Creamy Earl Grey” from Aroma Tea Shop.

  • Pure Vanilla Bean Paste. Vanilla bean paste contains vanilla beans and does not have the alcoholic flavor of extract. I recommend using Heilala Vanilla Bean Paste, Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Bean Paste, or Rodale Vanilla Bean Paste in this recipe. Because the recipe primarily uses vanilla as its main flavor, I suggest SPLURGING on the very best vanilla you can find/afford.

    In a pinch, you can use pure vanilla extract. However your tiramisu won’t have flecks of vanilla beans. It will also taste sharper and more astringent because of the alcohol in the extract. I really recommend getting vanilla bean paste!

  • Pasteurized Eggs. If you can’t find the pasteurized eggs, see the method below on how to make them at home.

  • Ladyfingers. You need around 26 ladyfinger cookies to make this Earl Grey tiramisu recipe. The weight of the cookies will vary depending on the brand you buy. But 26 ladyfinger cookies roughly equals around 8 ounces (227 grams) of cookies.

    Unfortunately, most ladyfinger cookie packages contain around 24 cookies, or 7 ounces (198 grams) of cookies. If you’re making the tiramisu in an 8-inch square pan, buying a 7-ounce package of ladyfingers will leave you short a few cookies. So I recommend buying a 14-ounce package or a 17.5-ounce package instead!
photo of slice of earl grey tiramisu on white plate

Recipe Troubleshooting and FAQ

What is Earl Grey tea?

Earl Grey is a black tea blend that is flavored with bergamot orange oil. Bergamot oranges are a special type of orange with a very fragrant, flavorful peel. This peel is commonly used in flavors and perfumes. Unfortunately, beyond the peel, bergamot orange fruit isn’t great for food, flavor, or fragrance. It’s best to stick with eating regular orange varieties.

Earl Grey tea is especially popular in England, where the tea is frequently served with milk and sugar, or even just plain lemon. It is named for Charles Grey, a British Prime Minister in the 1830s, and is said to have originated from the London tea house Jacksons of Picadilly.

What pan did you use to make your tiramisu and do I need it for this recipe?

I used this 8 x 6-inch rectangular pan from Staub to make my tiramisu. But don’t worry! The recipe also works for an 8-inch square pan. There’s no need to buy my special pan!

What are pasteurized eggs?

You need 4 large egg yolks, preferably from pasteurized eggs, to make this Earl Grey tiramisu recipe. Pasteurization is the process of gently heating a food product (typically, milk, eggs, wine) to kill any pathogenic microorganisms and make it safe for consumption and storage. Using pasteurized egg yolks in this Earl Grey tiramisu makes the recipe safe to eat!

You can typically find pasteurized eggs at fancy grocery stores like Whole Foods or local co-ops. And in a pinch, you can pasteurize eggs at home, too!

If you can’t find pasteurized eggs, here’s how to pasteurize them at home:

The best time to pasteurize the eggs for this recipe is after you’ve made the Earl Grey tea concentrate and mascarpone whipped cream for the recipe.

To do so, place the egg yolks and 2 Tablespoons of the granulated sugar from the mascarpone whipped cream recipe in the top pan of a double boiler or in a heatproof bowl set over a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan filled with a few inches of simmering water (be sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water).

Cook over medium heat, using a whisk to stir the mixture and scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally, until the mixture has thickened and is able to coat the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. An instant read thermometer inserted into the center of the mixture should read 140°F. Let cool slightly, then add the remaining sugar and whisk as instructed in the recipe.

More Fancy Dessert Recipes

More Earl Grey Recipes

Get the Recipe: Earl Grey Tiramisu Recipe

This vanilla Earl Grey tiramisu replaces the coffee/espresso in traditional tiramisu with Earl Grey tea! The recipe is light, airy, creamy, and no bake.
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Ingredients

For the Earl Grey Tea Concentrate

  • 1 ½ cups (12 ounces or 340 grams) water
  • 3 Tablespoons loose leaf Earl Grey tea (preferred) OR 9 Earl Grey tea bags
  • ¼ cup (1.75 ounces or 50 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla paste (preferred) OR extract
  • pinch of kosher salt

For The Mascarpone Whipped Cream

  • 1 ¼ cups (10 ounces or 284 grams) cold heavy cream
  • 1 (8-ounce) container cold mascarpone
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla paste (preferred) OR extract
  • 4 large pasteurized egg yolks
  • ½ cup (3.5 ounces or 99 grams) granulated sugar
  • pinch of kosher salt

Assembly

  • 26 (around 7.65 ounces or 217 grams) ladyfingers

Instructions
 

For the Earl Grey Tiramisu

  • First, make the Earl Grey tea concentrate. Bring the water to a boil in a heavy-bottomed, medium saucepan over high heat. Add the Earl Grey tea and immediately reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 10 minutes.
    Meanwhile, place the sugar for the tea concentrate in a medium, heatproof bowl.
    After 10 minutes, taste the concentrate—you want it to have a really strong Earl Grey flavor, almost to the point of being bitter. If it’s not quite there, simmer for another 5 minutes.
    When the concentrate is ready, place a fine-mesh sieve over the bowl with the sugar and strain the concentrate into the bowl. Gently press on the tea leaves or bags with a heatproof spatula and discard them. Whisk the concentrate to dissolve the sugar, then whisk in the vanilla and salt.
    Set on a wire rack to cool slightly while you make the mascarpone whipped cream.
  • Make the mascarpone whipped cream. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the cream on medium-high speed until soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes.
    Turn the mixer off and add the mascarpone and vanilla for the whipped cream all at once. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, then whisk the mascarpone and vanilla into the whipped cream on medium speed until combined, about 30 seconds.
    Transfer the whipped cream to a medium bowl.
  • Whisk the egg yolks and sugar, then fold in the whipped cream. Combine the egg yolks, sugar, and salt for the mascarpone whipped cream in the stand mixer bowl (there's no need to clean the bowl!). Beat on medium-high speed until light, fluffy, and doubled in volume, about 5 minutes.
    Scoop half of the whipped cream over the egg mixture and fold it in with a rubber spatula. Repeat with the remaining whipped cream and fold it in until just combined. At this point, it will be a very light and fluffy cream.
  • Assemble the Earl Grey tiramisu. Working with one ladyfinger at a time, dip a ladyfinger in the Earl Grey tea concentrate, and turn to coat. Quickly place it in the pan to arrange a single layer of cookies at the bottom of the pan. If using an 8-inch square pan, you’ll end up using around 13 ladyfingers. You may need to slice or break the ladyfingers to fit them into the pan.
    Scoop half (around 12 ounces or 340 grams) of the mascarpone whipped cream over the ladyfingers and use an offset spatula to spread it evenly over the cookies.
    Repeat the process of soaking the remaining ladyfingers, and topping them with the remaining mascarpone whipped cream to make the final 2 layers of the Earl Grey tiramisu.
  • Chill the Earl Grey tiramisu. Loosely cover the tiramisu with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight.
  • Serve and store. Serve chilled. The tiramisu will keep, tightly covered in plastic wrap or sliced in an airtight container, for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.

Notes

  • I used this 8 x 6-inch rectangular pan from Staub to make my tiramisu. But don’t worry! My first few test runs of the recipe were for a regular 8-inch square pan, so that’s what I actually recommend to use in this recipe. It will work just fine, I promise!
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Weeknight Baking:
Recipes to Fit your Schedule

Over the past several years of running Hummingbird High, I kept a crucial aspect of my life hidden from my readers: I had a full-time, extremely demanding job in the tech world. In my debut cookbook, Weeknight Baking, I finally reveal the secrets to baking delicious desserts on a tight schedule.