These Empty Tomb Resurrection Cookies provide a fun and easy way to engage children in the miraculous Easter story. Not only is this recipe perfect for little hands to help with, but it also provides a captivating way to teach them about the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
The hollow meringue cookies serve as a symbolic reminder of Jesus Christ’s empty tomb, representing His resurrection.
Resurrection cookies are delightfully sweet and crisp on the outside, slightly chewy on the inside, and practically melt in your mouth. They are so good you will have the children asking you for Jesus cookies all year long.
❤️ Here is Why This Recipe Works
- This recipe is paired with an engaging, interactive story that will prompt you to search the Bible for scriptures that explain Easter. Each ingredient symbolizes a part of the Easter story (similar to our Greek Easter bread).
- Meringue cookies should only have small air pockets when properly mixed and baked. But we wanted to make sure these resurrection cookies would turn out hollow. After all, they are supposed to represent an empty tomb.
To ensure the cookies are hollow inside, slightly over mix the egg whites. This will make the air bubbles in the meringue less stable so more of the meringue will collapse and leave the cookies with large empty pockets.
- The low heat dries out the meringue cookies, preventing them from caramelizing and turning brown. This leaves the resurrection cookies crisp on the outside yet meltingly tender and slightly chewy on the inside.
We wanted to give you some talking points so you could discuss the Easter story with your children, but adding them to the recipe card made the recipe too long and buried the instructions for the cookies. So we included discussion topics and references to Bible scriptures in the blog post and provided a fun infographic.
🗒 The Ingredients
Here is a list of the ingredients you will need for this meringue Jesus cookie recipe. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details.
- Malted milk balls. We used malted milk balls to keep the recipe nut free, but toasted pecans or walnuts taste amazing as well. You can also get creative and use crushed cookies or Kit Kat candy bars.
- White vinegar. Vinegar helps stabilize the egg whites.
- Salt. A pinch of salt will balance out the sweetness.
- Egg whites. Make sure you don’t get any egg yolk in the whites. Even a small amount of yolk will prevent the egg whites from whipping correctly. (You can make lemon curd with the yolks).
- Granulated sugar. Regular granulated sugar works great, but if you have super fine baker’s sugar (not confectioner’s sugar), the meringue cookies will have a shinier texture.
- Optional flavoring. We made these cookies with a few variations using almond, vanilla, and peppermint extract. See the notes in the printable recipe card for variations.
👨🍳 How to Make It
Here is a brief overview to get an idea of what to expect with these Easter tomb cookies. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details.
Place the candy or nuts in a plastic bag and zip the bag closed. Beat them with a mallet until they look like fine gravel.
Talking point: When Jesus was arrested, he was beaten by the Roman Soldiers. Read John 19:1-3.
Place the vinegar in a large mixing bowl. Smell the vinegar (and taste some of it if you dare).
Talking point: When Jesus was on the cross, he was thirsty and he was given vinegar to drink. Read John 19:28-30.
Add the salt to the bowl. If you have extra salt, place a few grains in your child’s hand and let them taste it.
Talking point: The salt represents the salty tears shed by Jesus’ followers and the bitterness of our own sin. Read Luke 23:27.
Add the egg whites to the bowl with the vinegar and salt.
Talking point: Eggs represent life. Explain that Jesus gave up His life so that we could have eternal life. Read John 10:10-11.
Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer on high speed. When the egg whites get foamy, slowly pour in the sugar with the mixer running.
Talking point: The sugar represents the sweetest part of the story, which is that Jesus died because He loves us and wanted to pay the debt for our sins so we could be with Him. Read Psalms 34:8 and John 3:16.
Continue beating the egg whites until they get to the stiff peak stage (they will look shiny and pointy mounds will stand upright when you lift the beaters).
Talking point: The bright white eggs represent our sins being washed clean by Jesus. Read Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3.
Use a wide spatula to fold in the crushed candy or nuts. Make gentle folding motions, and when it is well combined, give it one or two more stirs.
Drop 1-tablespoon sized mounds of the meringue onto the baking sheet.
Talking point: The mounds represent the rocky tomb where Jesus’ body was laid. Read Mathew 27:57-60.
Place the baking sheet in the hot oven and immediately turn the oven off but keep the oven door closed. Talking point: Give the kids a strip of masking tape to “seal” the oven door closed and explain that the tomb that Jesus was buried in was sealed. Read Mathew 27:65-66.
Let the cookies stay in the oven overnight or for at least 6 hours. Talking point: It may be sad to leave the cookies in the oven and go to bed. Jesus’ followers were also sad when Jesus died and was placed in a sealed tomb. Read John 16:20, 22.
In the morning, open the oven and remove the cookies. When you take a bite, the cookies will be hollow. Talking point: On the first Resurrection day, everyone discovered that the tomb Jesus was buried in was empty. Read Mathew 28:1-9
😉 Tips for Success
- Once the egg whites reach the stiff peaks stage, beat them for an additional 10 to 20 seconds, so they are slightly over-whipped (this will help the cookies have large hollow pockets to represent an empty tomb).
- When you add the crushed candy or nuts, give the mixture a few extra stirs to overmix the batter slightly. It will knock out more air bubbles and ensure the cookies are hollow. You don’t want to be too aggressive, though.
- Keep the oven light on and peak at the meringue cookies after the first 30 minutes. If you see bead-like droplets of liquid on the meringues while they bake, that indicates that the oven is too cool. You can turn the oven back on at 250°F for 20 minutes, then turn the oven off but don’t open the door.
✅ Substitutions and Variations
Add the following additions for different flavors.
- Nutty meringues: Toasted, smashed pecans and ½ teaspoon of almond extract.
- Girl Scout mint meringues: Crushed Girl Scout mint cookies and ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract.
- Lemon meringues: Crushed crispy lemon cookies and ½ teaspoon lemon extract.
What to Make with Leftover Egg Yolks
Save the egg yolks for more delicious recipes.
- chocolate chip egg yolk cookies
- Thick lemon curd
- blender hollandaise sauce
⏲ Storage and Reheating
To maintain the texture, as soon as the meringue cookies cool, store them in an airtight container. They should not be refrigerated or they can pick up condensation and turn into a sticky mess.
You can freeze the meringue cookies if you keep them in an airtight container. Let them thaw at room temperature.
Typically, you do not want to keep meringue cookies in the fridge because the moisture in the fridge will make the cookies wet and gooey. However, if it is a hot, humid day, place frozen meringues in an airtight container and let them thaw in the fridge, then remove them from the fridge when thawed. This technique will work when the weather has more humidity than the fridge.
More Recipes Using Egg Whites
❓Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, but they can also be crisp and crunchy. Our recipe for empty tomb cookies will give you cookies that are crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside. If you prefer crisp interiors, follow the instructions in the recipe card but keep the oven on for 45 minutes before turning it off and waiting until the morning to open the door.
If you overmix the egg whites or stir the add-ins too much, the air pockets in the meringue will deflate and make the cookies flat. This recipe for resurrection cookies encourages you to overmix the egg whites very slightly in order to get a large hollow cookie that represents an empty tomb. Make sure you are not too aggressive when you stir in the crushed candy.
These Empty Tomb Resurrection Cookies provide a fun and creative way to engage children in the Easter story. The recipe is perfect for little hands and gives you an opportunity to teach the children about Jesus.
The empty tomb means He is risen! (See Mathew 28:5-7.)
More Easter Cookies
Here are some more cookies that are perfect for Easter:
- Strawberry shortbread cookies
- Pistachio cookies
- Malted milk cookies
- Lemon ricotta cookies
- Chocolate coconut tahini cookies
- Blueberry granola cookies
⭐️ Helpful Tools
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😋 More Recipes You Will Love:
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This cold oven pound cake is tender, buttery, and rich. It is easy to make and transports well if you need a dessert for Easter potlucks.
This blueberry coffeecake cheesecake combines a tender blueberry cake with a decadent cheesecake. Serve it for Easter brunch or dinner.
Empty Tomb Resurrection Cookies
These Empty Tomb Resurrection Cookies provide a fun and creative way to engage children in the Easter story. The recipe is perfect for little hands and gives you an opportunity to teach the children about Jesus. Refer to the blog post for scripture readings and talking points about how the ingredients symbolize some of the elements of Easter.
The cookies are light, airy, and crisp on the outside, with a soft, slightly chewy center. They melt like marshmallows in your mouth.
Check the notes for flavor variations.
The empty tomb means He is risen!
- 1-⅓ cups malted milk balls or whole pecans
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 4 egg whites
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- Optional: ½ teaspoon vanilla or see notes for more ideas
- Preheat the oven to 275°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
- Place the candy (or nuts) in a resealable plastic bag. Use a meat mallet or rolling pin to pound them until they look like fine gravel.
- Place the vinegar and salt in a large glass or metal mixing bowl. (Make sure there is no greasy residue in the bowl).
- Add the egg whites to the bowl and beat them with an electric mixer on high speed. When the egg whites get foamy, slowly pour in the sugar with the mixer running.
- Continue beating the egg whites until they get to the stiff peak stage (they will look shiny and have pointy mounds that will stand upright when you lift the beaters). Once you reach this stage, beat the egg whites for 15 to 20 more seconds. At this point, you can also add flavorings like vanilla extract, almond extract, or mint extract.
- Dump the crushed candy or nuts into the whipped egg whites. Use a wide spatula and use a gentle folding motion to mix them into the whites. When they are well distributed, give the batter two or three more stirs (a few extra stirs will slightly over-mix the batter, and make sure the cookies have a larger hollow pocket).
- Drop 1-tablespoon sized mounds of the meringue onto the baking sheet.
- Place the baking sheet in the hot oven and immediately turn the oven off but keep the oven door closed.
- Let the cookies stay in the oven overnight or for at least 6 hours.
- Keep the oven light on and peak at the meringue cookies after the first 30 minutes. If you notice tiny droplets of liquid on the meringues, that is a sign that your oven was not preheated enough. You can turn the oven back on at 250°F for 15 to 20 minutes, then turn the oven off but don't open the door.
- In the morning, open the oven and remove the cookies. When you take a bite, the cookies will be hollow.
- If you don’t have a meat mallet, you can use a rolling pin or wooden spoon to crush the candy or nuts.
- Make sure your bowl and beaters are perfectly clean. If you have even a small amount of grease or residue on the beaters or bowl, the egg whites will not whip up properly. Use a glass or metal bowl because plastic bowls are susceptible for retaining unseen grease.
- To maintain the texture, as soon as the meringue cookies cool, store them in an airtight container. They do not need to be refrigerated. The interior will get slightly crisper each day you store them unless they come in contact with humidity. Humidity will make them wet and sticky.
- Stiff peak stage: Egg whites will be at the stiff peak stage when they look shiny and you can see pointy peaks stand up straight when you lift the beaters.
Add the following additions for different flavors.
- 1 cup toasted, smashed pecans and ½ teaspoon of almond extract.
- Crushed Girl Scout mint cookies and ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract.
- Crushed crispy lemon cookies and ½ teaspoon lemon extract.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 63Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 31mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 0gSugar: 14gProtein: 1g
Nutrition information is a guideline only. It is calculated automatically by third-party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.
Wednesday 29th of March 2023
I love the use of crushed candy in these meringue cookies. They look really excellent! angiesrecipes http://angiesrecipes.blogspot.com
Thursday 30th of March 2023
Wednesday 29th of March 2023
5 Stars for a cookie recipe and tradition that Ive never heard of! Thank you for preserving and presenting this lovely recipe. Merengue is fabulous and fun to master. They look delicious!
Wednesday 29th of March 2023
Thanks, Kimberly. I hope you enjoy the cookies. They really are fun!