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Cherry Panna Cotta

This creamy dessert features classic Italian vanilla panna cotta topped with a rich homemade cherry syrup. This easy Cherry Panna Cotta recipe can be made ahead and is ideal for entertaining guests during summer months!
Prep Time20 mins
Chill Time4 hrs
Total Time4 hrs 20 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: cherry, dessert, Italian, panna cotta, summer, sweet
Servings: 3 servings
Calories: 419kcal
Author: Lara


Panna Cotta

  • 250 mL heavy cream or whipping cream or fresh cream (1 cup)
  • 125 mL semi-skimmed or whole milk (½ cup)
  • 6 g gelatine (2 tsps. or 1 sachet) see notes
  • 3 tbsp. water cold
  • 4 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Cherry Topping

  • 170 g fresh cherries (¾ cup), halved and pitted
  • 1 ½ tbsp. sugar
  • 4 tbsp. water cold
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 ½ tsp. corn starch


  • Bloom gelatine: Place 4 tbsp water in a small bowl. Sprinkle gelatin powder over water and leave to sit for 5-7 minutes.
    (If using gelatin leaves, submerge the leaves in a bowl of cold water and allow to sit for 5-7 minutes. After 5-7 minutes, remove the leaves from the water and squeeze out any excess moisture before adding to warmed cream - do not add the extra water).
  • Whilst gelatine is blooming, place heavy cream, sugar, milk, and vanilla extract in a small saucepan on medium heat, stirring frequently. Remove from heat as soon as the mixture just begins to simmer (you will see a few bubbles at the side of the saucepan).
  • Add gelatin mixture (or leaves) and stir well to incorporate, making sure all gelatine dissolved.
  • Allow the mixture to cool slightly, and divide between 3 serving glasses. Cover the tops of the glasses with plastic wrap and transfer to a refrigerator and chill for 4-5 hours to set. Whilst the panna cotta is setting, prepare the cherry topping.
    The consistency should be just firm but smooth, and the center of the panna cotta should wobble or quiver gently when the glass is touched.
  • Cherry topping: Place cold water in a small bowl, add corn flour and stir until dissolved. Place sugar, cold water, and corn flour mixture in a saucepan on medium heat. Add cherries (halved and pitted) and cinnamon sticks and simmer for 12-15 minutes until thick syrup is formed and cherries have softened. Transfer cherry topping mixture to a medium bowl and allow to cool completely.
  • Divide the cherry topping between the panna cotta glasses (about 1-2 tbsp. of topping for each glass). Serve chilled.


If using gelatine leaves, use 2 gelatine leaves for each tsp. of gelatin powder (you will need 4 gelatine leaves for this recipe).


Calories: 419kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 114mg | Sodium: 38mg | Potassium: 76mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 1232IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 80mg | Iron: 1mg