Quick Alcohol-Free Tiramisu

By Shiran

With the filling being eggless and alcohol-free, this is a quick version of tiramisu – a dessert made of layers of coffee-soaked ladyfingers and a rich, airy mascarpone cream. 

If you’re looking for a more traditional tiramisu, please refer to this post, which includes the classic recipe with lots of other tips and variations.

Quick Alcohol-Free Tiramisu | prettysimplesweet.com

It took a long time before I made a “real” tiramisu. Instead, I kept coming back to today’s recipe, and not just because it was easier. In a classic tiramisu recipe, Marsala, a slightly sweet red wine, is added (although there are substitutions). While there are several valid reasons to omit alcohol, I simply didn’t feel like buying a whole bottle for just a few drops. Then one day about two years ago, Erez showed up after work, holding a bottle of Marsala.

Apparently, this wine is also a perfect addition to tomato sauce, which is why Erez bought it. A few days before, we had tasted an amazing tomato sauce at a restaurant, and he wanted to try recreating it for us. He’s a superb cook, and I’m a lucky girl.

Quick Alcohol-Free Tiramisu | prettysimplesweet.com

At first, I wasn’t sure why the name Marsala sounded familiar, but it kept resonating in my head. It took me 3 days to realize it’s the one ingredient I was always missing for tiramisu. A lot of tiramisus have been made in my kitchen since then.

Although I love a traditional tiramisu, this quicker version isn’t less delicious, and I find reasons to make it all the time. With the filling being egg-free, the dessert is much quicker to put together.

Quick Alcohol-Free Tiramisu | prettysimplesweet.com

The mascarpone, folded with the cream, makes a thick yet airy mixture. I couldn’t stop eating spoonfuls of it! Mascarpone is always SO good! If you want a richer filling, you can add more mascarpone (up to ½-1 cup); if you want a lighter filling, you can add more whipping cream, (up to ½-1 cup). In the last case, know that the dessert will be harder to manage if made in a dish instead of glasses because the cream will make it extra airy.

The alcohol in the recipe is optional, but definitely add it if you can.

I prefer serving this particular tiramisu in individual glasses or trifles because, due to the lack of eggs in the filling, the cream sets less than in a traditional tiramisu. Besides, it looks fancier served this way. If you choose to make it in a baking dish, make sure you give it a few hours (at least 8) to set completely.

Quick Alcohol-Free Tiramisu | prettysimplesweet.com

For more detailed information on how to assemble the recipe, please refer to my other tiramisu recipe post.

 

Quick Alcohol-Free Tiramisu
Yields: 1 8-inch baking dish or 5-6 glasses (double the recipe for a 9×13-inch dish)
 

With the filling being eggless and alcohol-free, this is a quick version of tiramisu – a dessert made of layers of coffee-soaked ladyfingers and a rich, airy mascarpone cream.
Ingredients
Coffee Syrup:
  • 1 cup brewed espresso or strong coffee (made of 1 cup hot water mixed with 2 tablespoons instant coffee granules or espresso powder)
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons coffee or almond liquor (optional)
Filling:
  • 1 cup (227g/8 oz) mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons Marsala wine, dark rum, or brandy (optional)
  • 1 cup (250ml) heavy cream
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • about 200g/7 oz (20-24 units) ladyfingers

Instructions
  1. For coffee syrup: In a small bowl, combine hot coffee, 2 tablespoons sugar, and 2 tablespoons liquor. Mix until sugar dissolves. Set aside to cool.
  2. For filling: In a large bowl, whisk mascarpone vigorously by hand until creamy and smooth. Whisk in vanilla extract and alcohol. In a different mixer bowl, whisk together heavy cream and sugar using an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Fold whipped cream into mascarpone in 2 additions until mixture is smooth.
  3. Assemble tiramisu: Dip ladyfingers very quickly (less than a second) into the coffee syrup and line them in one layer in an 8-inch baking dish (see note for individual glasses). If necessary, break a few ladyfingers to fit them in the dish. Spoon half of the filling over the ladyfingers and smooth the top. Repeat with a second layer of coffee-dipped ladyfingers, then with the rest of the cream. Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or up to 2 days. I don’t suggest freezing tiramisu since it will ruin its texture.
  4. Serve cold. Right before serving, dust the top with cocoa powder or grated chocolate (or both!).
  5. For individual glasses: Spoon a dollop of the mascarpone cream mixture into the bottom of the glass. Break each ladyfinger into 4 pieces, soak in the coffee and place on top of the cream. You don’t have to use all 4 pieces at once; it depends on the size of the glass. Repeat with layering filling and ladyfingers, creating 2-3 layers in total. For each ladyfinger, add about 2-3 heaping tablespoons of cream. It doesn’t have to be exact – if you like more cream, go ahead and add more. For each serving, use 2-3 ladyfingers in total. For individual servings, you might need fewer ladyfingers than what the recipe suggests.

26 Comments on Quick Alcohol-Free Tiramisu

  1. Nicole ~ Cooking for Keeps
    September 25, 2014 at 3:38 pm (3 years ago)

    One of my favorite desserts! I just love the creamy mascarpone with the coffee soaked lady fingers…Heaven.

    Reply
  2. Winnie
    September 28, 2014 at 6:21 pm (3 years ago)

    קינוח מדהיםםםםם
    ואני מאד שמחה שנתת מתכון ללא ביצים חיות

    לדעתי זה קינוח נהדר לסיום ארוחה רומנטית

    Reply
  3. Jane
    November 22, 2014 at 8:27 am (2 years ago)

    Hi, I’d love to know where you source your egg free ladies fingers? I’m allergic to egg so an eggless Tiramisu recipe is really hard to come by. Thanks

    Reply
    • Shiran
      November 22, 2014 at 5:58 pm (2 years ago)

      Hi Jane 🙂 While the recipe doesn’t call for eggs, when I make it, I do use traditional ladyfingers that are made with eggs. Although I’m not familiar with a specific brand, you can purchase egg-free ladyfingers at a specialty foods store, or you can use eggless sponge cake (cut into pieces) instead. Hope this helps!

      Reply
      • Saba
        July 24, 2015 at 11:27 am (2 years ago)

        The title reads alcohol free but the ingredients include rum or wine.

        Reply
        • Shiran
          July 25, 2015 at 7:55 am (2 years ago)

          Hi Saba, the alcohol in the recipe is only optional for anyone who would like to add it since it does add a nice flavor. However, the recipe is amazing without it as well. I always like to include several options for you to choose, and the aim of this recipe is to be quicker and simpler than a classic tiramisu.

          Reply
  4. brian
    January 12, 2015 at 1:45 pm (2 years ago)

    Can you get mascarpone any where in Israel and if not whats best substititute..thanks,looks awesome!

    Reply
    • Shiran
      January 12, 2015 at 3:24 pm (2 years ago)

      Sure! You can find it in any supermarket and in almost any grocery store! Just ask for mascarpone (it’s called that way in Hebrew too).

      Reply
  5. Gayatri
    May 4, 2015 at 7:03 am (2 years ago)

    Hi Shiran! Thanks so much for this recipe, it turned out soooo incredible!! My new favourite 🙂

    Reply
    • Shiran
      May 4, 2015 at 5:07 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you so much Gayatri! I’m so glad you like it! 🙂

      Reply
  6. misbah
    May 30, 2015 at 5:16 pm (2 years ago)

    Hi
    Can i substitute mascarpone with cream cheese and condensed milk whisked together?

    Reply
    • Shiran
      May 31, 2015 at 3:37 am (2 years ago)

      Mascarpone is the main ingredient in tiramisu so I wouldn’t recommend a substitute (unless you don’t care for an authentic tiramisu flavor). The sweet subtle flavor and the creamy texture won’t be the same without it.

      Reply
  7. Kristal
    July 3, 2015 at 3:24 pm (2 years ago)

    Can I use a whip cream instead of heavy cream?

    Reply
    • Shiran
      July 4, 2015 at 9:48 am (2 years ago)

      Hi Kristal, do you mean whipping cream? If so, then yes you can.

      Reply
      • Natalie
        July 6, 2015 at 12:22 am (2 years ago)

        Hi Shiran,

        When I beat whipping cream, I can get it to soft peaks only and then it starts breaking down and gets watery. Am I doing something wrong?

        Reply
        • Shiran
          July 7, 2015 at 7:23 am (2 years ago)

          Hi Natalie! You probably don’t do anything wrong! Making whipped cream can be tricky, as it turns from soft peaks into stiff peaks in seconds, and then breaks down. Whipped cream has a pretty soft texture, even at stiff peaks, so maybe you’re looking for the wrong texture. Soft peaks is fine for this recipe, as long as it’s not too soft. It should have a consistency of shaving cream. Hope this helps!

          Reply
  8. Pam Goh
    January 21, 2016 at 5:48 am (1 year ago)

    I just tried your recipe. It’s really easy and simple. Most importantly, it tasted great! Just the right amount of sweetness. I don’t have Marsala in my part of the world. I used Tia Maria instead, which is a coffee liqueur. I smiled when I read you didn’t want to buy a whole bottle just for a few drops. I don’t know about Marsala but Tia Maria keeps well. I’ve had my bottle for 8 years now. I always taste it before I use it and it’s still fine. I don’t often make tirimitsu because of the eggs process. It’s so much work. Now I should be able to finish my Tia Marie thanks to your lovely recipe!

    Reply
    • Shiran
      January 21, 2016 at 6:02 pm (1 year ago)

      I’m glad you love it, Pam! Tia Maria is delicious! Marsala also keeps well, but back then I didn’t cook much so I didn’t have much use of it, but these days I use it pretty often in my recipes. Thank you for your comment, and I hope you enjoyed your Tia Maria! 🙂

      Reply
  9. Namirah
    September 11, 2016 at 1:20 am (7 months ago)

    Hi shiran..
    If i would like to use eggwhites instead of heavy cream…would that be fine? Do i use the same amount or would it differ?
    Looking forward to use left over egg whites 🙂

    Reply
    • Shiran
      September 12, 2016 at 8:21 am (7 months ago)

      Hi Namirah, check out my other tiramisu post where you can find more details on how to use egg whites instead of whipping cream.

      Reply
  10. Tyler
    October 5, 2016 at 11:59 am (6 months ago)

    Hi can i use whipped topping instead of heavy cream?

    Reply
    • Shiran
      October 6, 2016 at 4:01 am (6 months ago)

      Hi Tyler, whipped topping has different texture and flavor than heavy cream that is whipped, so personally I like it less. If you like its flavor, you can use 2 cups of whipped topping in place of the 1 cup heavy cream that is whipped (because heavy cream doubles its volume when whipped).

      Reply
  11. Sarosha
    December 12, 2016 at 5:31 pm (4 months ago)

    Is this for a rectangular 8-inch baking dish or can it be for an 8-inch circular springform pan as well?

    Reply
    • Shiran
      December 15, 2016 at 9:35 am (3 months ago)

      It’s a square baking dish. A round baking dish is a bit smaller in size, but you can use it if you want.

      Reply
  12. Naomi
    January 3, 2017 at 3:17 am (3 months ago)

    This recipe looks really simple! Thanks. I attempted tiramisus before, and they always turn out soggy. Do you know what could be causing that and how to prevent it? Thanks!

    Reply
    • Shiran
      January 3, 2017 at 9:09 am (3 months ago)

      Hi Naomi, do the cookies get soggy? If that’s the case, soak them in the coffee syrup very quickly, it should be less than a second.

      Reply

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