Baked Alaska Dessert

Classic Baked Alaska Dessert

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 35 mins
Cook: 7 mins
Freezing: : 12 hrs
Total: 12 hrs 42 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
286 Calories
9g Fat
47g Carbs
5g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 286
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 11%
Saturated Fat 5g 24%
Cholesterol 40mg 13%
Sodium 143mg 6%
Total Carbohydrate 47g 17%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 41g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 1mg 6%
Calcium 97mg 7%
Iron 0mg 2%
Potassium 182mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Baked Alaska is an easy dessert to make, and it's quite versatile. The cake and ice cream can be cut or molded in a variety of shapes and sizes. Make small, individual baked Alaska desserts or one large cake. If you want a dome-shaped cake, soften the ice cream and then freeze it in a large bowl; unmold it onto a round cake and then cover it with the meringue. Or use small store-bought sponge cake shells to make single-serve desserts.

The meringue acts as insulation which protects the ice cream from the heat. The meringue should be at least 1/2 inch in thickness over the ice cream and completely cover the ice cream and cake with no gaps or openings.

1:09

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Classic Baked Alaska/Tester Image

"An impressive dessert that's not hard to make. The textures of cake, ice cream, and meringue are fun. A light cake made without much butter or oil works best, otherwise it hardens in the freezer. I used vanilla, pistachio, and chocolate ice creams with strawberry jam. Using the convection setting ensured the meringue browned evenly." —Danielle Centoni

A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 4 cups ice cream, softened, about 2 pints

  • 1 (1-layer) sponge cake, yellow, white, or chocolate, about 9 x 9-inches

  • 1/4 cup seedless raspberry, or strawberry jam

  • 5 large egg whites, room temperature

  • 2/3 cup superfine sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Classic Baked Alaska Dessert ingredients

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  2. Line an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan completely with plastic wrap, leaving some overhang on the longer sides to use as handles to pull the ice cream out once solid. Add the softened ice cream to the pan, spreading it in a smooth layer with a silicone spatula. Freeze until very solid, at least 6 hours or up to overnight.

    If using different flavors/colors of ice cream for a layered effect, freeze each layer until completely solid before adding the next layer.

  3. Cut the cake horizontally so that it's 1-inch thick. Then cut the cake again so it's an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch rectangle. Place the cake on an oven-safe platter or tray.

    cake on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  4. Warm the jam and brush it over the cake. Let the jam cool completely before proceeding.

    jam brushed over the cake on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  5. Pull the ice cream from the loaf pan by the plastic wrap handles. Discard the plastic. Place the brick of ice cream on top of raspberry coating on the sponge cake. Freeze the cake and ice cream until very firm, about 30 minutes.

    Meanwhile, position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 450 F.

    ice cream on top of the jam and cake

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  6. In a large bowl, beat the egg whites until foamy. Gradually add the sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.

    beat egg whites with sugar in a bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  7. Spread the meringue over the ice cream and the cake, taking care to seal it completely, so no ice cream or cake is exposed. There should be about a 1/2-inch thick layer of meringue over the ice cream and cake.

    ice cream and cake covered with the meringue mixture

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  8. Bake until the meringue is light brown, about 5 to 7 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

    Classic Baked Alaska Dessert

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Raw Egg Warning

Consuming raw and lightly-cooked eggs poses a risk of food-borne illness.

 

Tips

  • If you don't have superfine sugar, put 3/4 cup of granulated sugar in a food processor. Process the sugar for about 1 to 2 minutes, or until fine. Measure 2/3 cup to use in the recipe.
  • Eggs are easier to separate when they're cold. Separate the whites into the mixing bowl, and let stand until they come to room temperature. Save the yolks for another recipe.
  • Egg yolks can be frozen. For every 4 yolks, beat about 1/8 teaspoon of salt (for main dishes) or 1 1/2 teaspoons of sugar or corn syrup (for sweet dishes) into them. Label the container with the number of egg yolks and the date.
  • The meringue is browned quickly in a hot oven, so it might not be cooked to the safe temperature of 160 F. Fresh eggs may contain Salmonella which can cause foodborne illness. Children, older adults, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems are at greater risk for foodborne illness. If you aren't sure about your eggs, use pasteurized eggs or egg white powder to make the meringue for this recipe.