Classic panna cotta: an easy recipe made with just 5 ingredients! With a luxuriously creamy texture and a hint of sweet vanilla.
It’s panna cotta day, yay!
Have you ever had panna cotta before? I’m in love with desserts like this, so simple and elegant, but so easy to make.
It’s similar to vanilla pudding or creme brulee, but really it’s in a class by itself.
Cool, creamy, and just sweet enough, with a hint of warm vanilla and a silky-smooth texture that can’t be beat. You’re going to love this classic Italian dessert!
WHAT IS PANNA COTTA?
Panna cotta is a classic Italian dessert. It means “cooked cream.”
It’s simple as can be but is such a lovely and elegant dessert. It’s made by heating milk, cream, and sugar with a little plain gelatin, then chilling it in the fridge until set.
The result is silky smooth, a little creamy, and just sweet enough. The perfect ending to a really nice meal!
HOW TO MAKE PANNA COTTA?
It sounds kinda fancy, but really, this is one of the easiest desserts you’ll ever make.
The recipe has just 5 simple ingredients, and it whips up in 10 minutes or less.
Start by pouring the milk into a small pot.
Add the cream, and then sprinkle plain gelatin in an even layer all over the surface of the liquid.
Allow the gelatin to sit and soften. This usually takes about 5 minutes.
Next, place the pot over low heat and allow it to get warm and steamy.
Whisk the softened gelatin into the liquid, until it’s completely dissolved and free of any lumps.
Then whisk in the sugar, allowing it to fully dissolve and sweeten the mixture.
Turn off the heat and stir in the vanilla.
Pour the mixture into greased 4-ounce ramekins. Or you can use little mason jars like I did here.
Chill the panna cotta in the fridge until set. This usually takes about 2 hours, but you’ll know for sure it’s done when you shake a ramekin and it’s just barely wobbly in the center.
WHAT DOES PANNA COTTA TASTE LIKE?
Classic panna cotta has a silky, creamy texture and a milky, sweet taste.
This recipe also has a hint of rich vanilla and a slightly toasty flavor that comes from the golden sugar.
DOMINO® GOLDEN SUGAR
For the panna cotta you see here, I used a brand new (to me!) product: Domino® golden sugar.
Just like regular granulated sugar, it’s made from pure cane. But it’s less processed, so you can use it more freely in all your favorite foods.
Domino® Golden Sugar has a beautiful golden color, and a subtle hint of molasses flavor that brings a warm, rich, almost caramel-like flavor to this dessert.
It works cup-for-cup just like regular sugar and can be swapped out for the same amount of traditional white sugar.
IS PANNA COTTA HEALTHY?
This recipe is gluten-free, but it does contain animal products so it’s not considered vegetarian or vegan.
For more info on the nutritional value, be sure to check out the nutrition facts in the recipe card below.
HOW TO SERVE
You can serve these right in the jars, or unmold them onto a plate before serving.
If you decide to unmold them, you might want to carefully break the suction with the tip of a thin, sharp knife, to help get them out.
Panna cotta is best served chilled or at room temperature.
As you can see here, I’ve garnished these golden sugar panna cotta with fresh figs and blackberries, but you could use any kind of delicious seasonal fruit you can get your hands on.
Panna cotta is also great with a drizzle of chocolate sauce, salted caramel, or raspberry sauce!
CAN THIS BE MADE THE DAY BEFORE?
Panna cotta can definitely be made a day or two before you plan to serve it. It’s a great idea to do it this way, so it has plenty of time to chill in the fridge and set up.
It will keep in the refrigerator for several days. Just be sure to cover it with plastic wrap so that it doesn’t dry out.
Panna cotta also freezes very well! Just be sure to wrap it well, and allow it to thaw in the refrigerator before serving.
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- Place the milk and cream in a small pot, and sprinkle the gelatin over the surface.
- Allow the gelatin to soften for about 5 minutes.
- Heat the mixture over low heat, whisking until the gelatin has completely dissolved and no lumps remain.
- Whisk in the Domino® Golden Sugar.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
- Divide the mixture equally between 4 greased 4-ounce ramekins or mason jars, and refrigerate the panna cotta until set (about 2 hours).
- Garnish with fresh fruit, if desired.