The Perfect Pavlova Recipe.   (2024)

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The perfect pavlova recipe. Fruity, sweet, chewy and creamy. This light and delicious dessert is so easy to make and its the perfect summer dessert especially when entertaining because you can make this pavlova recipe ahead of time then just assemble before serving.

The Perfect Pavlova Recipe. (1)

Doesn’t this pavlova look spectacular!

I promise, it tastes as good as it looks and it is pretty easy to make. Debbie and I don’t do a lot of desserts, though I always jump at the chance to make one. I really enjoy baking, it wasthe first thingI loved to doin the kitchen and I used to bake all the time,but my waistline can’t handlebaking like it used to…

This pavlova recipe is not super easy on the calories, but it is light and fluffy and doesn’t leave you with a heavy feeling in your tummy.

What is pavlova?

Pavlova is a traditional New Zealand and Australian dessert. It’s basically a meringue dessert made by whipping egg whites and adding sugar and a little vinegar. It’s usually topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit or fruit compote.

The Perfect Pavlova Recipe. (2)

Can you make this Pavlova recipe ahead of time:

Yes! That’s one thing that makes this dessert so great for entertaining. You can make the meringue and the cherry compote even a couple days ahead of time, but you can’t assemble the dessert until right before you serve it.

As long as your house isn’t really humid, you can keep the meringues wrapped in plastic wrap or in an airtight container on the counter and they will stay firm for a day or two. Don’t put them in the fridge as the meringues will absorb the moisture from the fridge and they will wilt and get wrecked.

If your house is humid, eat them right away 🙂

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Did I mention how gorgeous it is?

Say you are having a dinner party and you bring this beauty pavlova out for dessert. It looks impressive. Like you really know what your doing, but if you can beat eggs in a mixer, stir some sugar and cherries together with wine in a pot, and whip some cream to top it all off then you can make this pavlova recipe.

The hardest part is keeping your fingers out of the whipped cream and not drinking the wine you need for the cherry compote!

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How do you make pavlova?

  • whip egg whites, sugar, and a little vinegar to stiff peaks and then form it into round discs on parchment lined baking trays.
  • bake it slowly so that the outside gets a nice crust and the inside is soft and fluffy. Let it cool completely before trying to take it off the baking tray.
  • You can bake it as one tall layer slightlyconcaved in at the top to fill with fruit and whipped cream, you can layer it like we did and fill the layers with billowymoundsof whipped cream and mascarpone cheese, or you can also make mini pavlovas and serve them as individual desserts. Love that idea.

They look impressive and fancy, but as you can see, they are quite easy to make!

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Alternative toppings for this pavlova recipe:

This dessert is fabulous with fresh fruit, but we love a good fruit compote/sauce and this one with fresh cherries and red wine was our top pick, but there are countless ways to make this desert your own.

I have made it with a raspberry sauce which was delicious and I have seen it made with chocolate added to the meringue or drizzled on top. Strawberries, kiwi’s, or passion fruit on top or a combination of fruits would be sooo good too. Any fruit in season is the best fruit to use.

Any kind of fruit curd would be amazing. Like lemon, or rhubarb or a raspberry curd! Holy yum!! (also a great way to use up the leftover egg yolks)

If you want this to be an even lighter dessert, leave the whipping cream out altogether and just serve the Pavlova with fresh fruit alone or topped with a fruit compote.

So many delicious options!

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Useful tools to make this perfect pavlova recipe even easier:

  1. Parchment Paper – a staple in our kitchens and a must for this pavlova recipe
  2. Silicone Baking Mats – these are so awesome and versatile! We often use parchment paper, but these work the same and are reusable.
  3. Baking Sheet – these sheets without sides are great because you can easily slide the Pavlova off the trays without having to lift and possibly wreck the rounds.
  4. Cake Stand – you need a cake stand to display this beautiful dessert. We LOVE these ones:

If you’ve tried this pavlova recipe then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let us know how it turned out in the comments below. We love hearing from you!

To save this recipe for later on Pinterest:


We love to see your creations! Tag @Cookswithco*cktails if you post a picture of this recipe onINSTAGRAM

The Perfect Pavlova Recipe. (7)

Pavlova with Red Wine Cherry Compote & Marscapone Whipped Cream

The perfect pavlova recipe. Fruity, sweet, chewy and creamy. This light and delicious dessert is so easy to make and its the perfect summer dessert especially when entertaining because you can make this pavlova recipe ahead of time then just assemble before serving.

3.86 from 102 votes

Print Pin Rate

Course: Dessert

Cuisine: Canadian

Prep Time: 45 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour hour 15 minutes minutes

Total Time: 2 hours hours

Servings: 10

Calories: 450kcal

Author: Julie & Debbie



  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla clear vanilla if you have it


  • 2 cups whipping cream , chilled
  • 1 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1 cup icing sugar


  • 1 1/2 cup cherries
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3/4 cup red wine
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice


  • Make the pavlova first so preheat the oven to 275 degrees.

  • Beat the egg whites in a mixer on low speed at first and then increase the speed to medium and beat until they get frothy and start to turn white. Add the sugar into the egg whites bit by bit until its all incorporated. Beat the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Add the vinegar and the salt and mix it in on low speed for about 5 - 7 seconds.

  • Line a baking tray with parchment then take the parchment and put a 9-10 inch plate on top on one end of the paper. Draw a line around the plate and do the same on the other end so you have two perfect circles. Turn over the paper and put it back on the tray. Take the egg whites and spread them inside the two circles evenly.

  • Place them in the oven and cook for 1 hour and 15 mins then turn off the heat and let the pavlova cool in the oven slowly. Don't take the pavlova off the parchment paper until it has completely cooled or it could stick and break.

  • Next make the cherry compote. Pit the cherries and slice them in half. Put the red wine in a sauce pan and heat to a boil. Reduce the wine to 1/2 a cup. Add the cherries and the rest of the ingredients. Simmer for 30 mins or until the cherries are nice and soft, then set aside to cool.

  • When the pavlova has cooled completely its time to make the whipped cream by pouring the chilled whipping cream into a chilled mixer bowl. Beat on high speed until the cream starts to get fluffy. Add the sugar and the mascarpone cheese bit by bit and be careful not to over whip the cream. You don't want butter! Set the whipped cream aside.

  • Assemble the pavlova by placing one of the rounds on a serving platter. Top with half of the whipping cream and a good ladle of the cherry compote. Place the second round on top of the filling and cover with the rest of the whipping cream and another good ladle of the cherry compote.

  • Serve!


The pavlova can be wrapped in plastic or sealed in an airtight container and kept for several days on the counter unless your house gets very humid (in which case, eat your pavlova right away!)

Don't store pavlova in the fridge, the fridge can make it soggy.


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 450kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 87mg | Sodium: 120mg | Potassium: 208mg | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 1030IU | Vitamin C: 2.3mg | Calcium: 68mg | Iron: 0.2mg

The Perfect Pavlova Recipe.   (2024)


Why is my pavlova not fluffy? ›

The secret to a good, crisp pavlova is in the drying of the meringue after cooking. If there is a lot of moisture in the air, whether from humidity or even other cooking you are doing in the kitchen, you will have problems. That's why the “Pavlova Nazi” in me insists on no boiling saucepans during pav time.

What happens if you overbeat pavlova? ›

Overbeating egg white breaks down the structure and the meringue is likely to collapse during baking. Beat until firm peaks form, then start adding sugar. If the egg white starts to separate or looks curdled, it's overbeaten and you'll need to start again with fresh egg whites.

How do you make a pavlova not crack? ›

Bake in the middle of the oven for an hour then turn the oven off and let it cool completely before removing. Removing too soon will crack the pavlova. It's best to make the pavlova the night before and allow to cool in the oven over night.

How can I keep my pavlova white? ›

To get that perfect pavlova texture you bake the meringue mixture initially at a relatively higher temperature to help set the outside of the pavlova and give a nice crisp crust. The temperature is then turned down low and baked slowly. This prevents the pavlova turning crunchy and also keeps it bright and white.

What happens if you don't put vinegar in pavlova? ›

If you've noticed that most pavlova recipes add cornflour and something acidic, often vinegar but sometimes lemon juice or cram of tartar, here's why: adding starch and acid creates a more stable foam and helps prevent several potential problems.

What does white wine vinegar do in pavlova? ›

Our answer. In a meringue recipe, such as Nigella's Mini Pavlovas (from Domestic Goddess and on the Nigella website), the vinegar is added as it helps to stabilize the whisked egg whites and helps the meringue mixture to hold the air whisked in to it.

How do you know when a pavlova is done? ›

How Do I Know My Pavlova Is Done? A perfectly baked pavlova should be pale and look dry, but a skewer inserted in the meringue should come out with a thick sticky, marshmallow-like consistency. If you aren't sure about the pavlova's doneness, turn the oven off, open the door and leave the meringue for up to an hour.

Why is my pavlova not forming stiff peaks? ›

One of the most common mistakes is not beating the eggs long enough, or on too slow a speed, which means the egg whites won't reach stiff peak stage and instead only reach a soggy droopy stage.

Is it OK to leave pavlova in oven overnight? ›

You can make it and leave it to cool in the oven overnight, or you can store a cooled, undecorated Pavlova in an airtight container. Once decorated with cream and toppings, they can be stored in the fridge until you're ready to serve, but they are best eaten that day.

Is it OK if pavlova cracks? ›

Like most merengues, getting the texture just right isn't always easy. While some cracking is normal and expected, meringue can sometimes split with crevices that look more like faults on a tectonic plate, and that's not ideal.

Can you open oven when cooking pavlova? ›

Leave the oven door shut while cooking, then cool the pavlova in the oven with the door closed. Don't open the door at all as the sudden temperature changes can cause it to crack, and worse.

Why is my pavlova GREY? ›

Most meringue mixtures, such as Nigella's Mini Pavlovas (from HOW TO BE A DOMESTIC GODDESS) are a mixture of whisked egg whites and sugar, giving a glossy white meringue. If the meringue has turned slightly silver or pale grey then it is possible this is due to aluminium, though it is very rare for this to happen.

Why put salt in pavlova? ›

Salt causes the whites to collapse a little and therefore to whip up better — but just a pinch of fine salt at the beginning. Too much and you can end up with a dead pavlova once baked.

Why do you put lemon juice in meringue? ›

Whether it be vinegar, lemon juice, cream of tartar, or a combination, an acid will greatly improve the structure of meringue. Acid not only helps meringue whip up and aerate more quickly, it also keeps it stable. Without acid, meringue is more likely to collapse either during or after mixing.

How do you fix meringue that won't fluff? ›

A mild acid will help give your meringue more volume and structure, which means they will inflate more fully and hold the air longer. You don't need much: about 1/4 teaspoon of cream of tartar for every two to three egg whites should do the trick. You can also use lemon juice.

Why did my pavlova come out flat? ›

Adding the sugar too quickly can deflate the mixture, which means you will have a less airy pavlova. If you mix in the sugar too quickly, then you risk adding too much air quickly, which can also destabilize the meringue.

How do you fix a soft pavlova? ›

The pavlova should be white or slightly beige in colour, crisp to the touch and soft on the inside. If you have accidentally added too much vinegar, bake the same pavlova again at 150C for half an hour. This will crips it up but also give it a slightly darker colour.


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