This super light and fresh Raspberry Panna Cotta with homemade Raspberry Compote topping is a delicious and easy Summer dessert. It is the perfect make-ahead dessert for a party or to simply enjoy as a sweet treat!
Why we love this Recipe
This Raspberry Panna Cotta with thick Raspberry Sauce is the perfect light, fresh and creamy Summer dessert. This classic Italian dessert is an easy recipe that is great for a dinner party, Valentine's day or as an every day dessert. Just like my Raspberry Mousse, it's the perfect make-ahead dessert too!
This Panna Cotta recipe is packed with Raspberries both inside the cream and in the topping with the homemade raspberry compote. Plus, it can be made with fresh or frozen raspberries so you can make it all year round!
Scroll down to recipe card for all quantities.
For the Raspberry Panna Cotta
- Raspberries: either fresh or frozen, thawed. They are blended then poured through a thin mesh sieve to remove the seeds (optional).
- Liquid: a mix of Milk (I used Full Cream Milk) and Cream (Heavy/Thickened). You could use only milk or cream but I have found that the best texture is found by mixing both.
- Sugar: Caster Sugar or White Granulated Sugar.
- Vanilla: Essence, Extract or Paste. You could also use fresh Vanilla Bean if preferred, although it tends to be very pricey. It is an optional ingredient, but definitely boosts the flavour of the dessert!
- Gelatin: I use a Gelatin Powder mixed with a little bit of cold water. Gelatine Leaves can be used instead, but tend to be harder to find in supermarkets. Make sure to use unflavored gelatin.
Check out the FAQs section below to make this recipe without gelatin (to make it vegetarian).
For the Raspberry Compote topping
- Raspberries: again, fresh or frozen. You might need to add a little bit of water if using fresh raspberries.
- Sugar: Caster Sugar or White Granulated Sugar.
- Lemon Juice: used to both balance the flavours as well as help the juice thicken and set. You can also use the lemon zest if you want.
How to make Raspberry Panna Cotta
The first step of the recipe is to make the panna cotta cream. While it is setting in the fridge, you can then prepare the raspberry compote topping.
Panna Cotta Cream
- Photo 1: Blend the Raspberries until smooth, either using a regular blender or an immersion blender.
If using frozen raspberries, let them thaw completely first (or thaw in the microwave) then drain to remove any excess liquid.
- Photo 2: place a thin mesh sieve or fine mesh strainer over a small saucepan and pour the raspberry puree through.
- Photo 3: using a silicone spatula, gently press the blended raspberry sauce through the sieve to keep the smooth liquid only. Discard the remaining seeds and chunks.
Note that this part is optional if you don't mind having seeds in the dessert. Removing the seeds will give you a very smooth panna cotta.
- Photo 4: add the Full Cream / Whole Milk, Thickened / Heavy Cream, Sugar and Vanilla Extract to the blended raspberries in the sauce pan and whisk to combine.
- Photo 5: turn on low to medium heat and bring to a simmer. Make sure to continuously stir. Once it starts to simmer, remove from the heat.
- Photo 6: While the liquid mixture is heating up, prepare the gelatin. Sprinkle the gelatin powder in a small bowl and add a little bit of water (1 to 2 tablespoons). Mix until smooth then set aside until it looks like a thick paste.
If using gelatin leaves, place them in a bowl with very cold water before starting to make the panna cotta. Then press the leaves between your hands in the sink to strain them and remove any water.
- Photo 7: Add the rehydrated gelatin mixture to the hot liquid and whisk well until it has completely dissolved.
- Photo 8: Pour the raspberry panna cotta cream mixture into serving cups then place in the refrigerator to set for 2 to 3 hours.
I used small glass cups, but you could also use dessert serving glasses or ramekin.
Raspberry Sauce for Panna Cotta
While the panna cottas are setting in the fridge, start preparing the fresh raspberry sauce.
- Photo 9: Place the Raspberries (fresh or frozen, thawed), Lemon Juice and Sugar in a small saucepan. Turn on low to medium low heat.
Note that if using Fresh Raspberries, I recommend adding a little bit of water to help the fruits start cooking and avoid burning the fruits at the start.
- Photo 10: Leave to simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, occasionally stirring, until the fresh berries start to break apart and the juices have thickened slightly. Taste the compote and adjust the sugar level to suit your taste if required.
- Set aside to cool down completely. Alternatively, the raspberry compote can also be prepared in advance and kept in the fridge in a sealed jar for up to a week.
- When the panna cotta have completely set and the compote is cool, top them some of the sauce. Finish with some fresh raspberries and optionally some fresh mint leaves and shredded coconut.
- Keep in the fridge until ready to be served. I recommend adding the fresh raspberries and other toppings just before serving to keep them fresh.
Frozen raspberries will work perfectly here. Simply make sure they are fully thawed and very well drained to remove any extra liquid for the panna cotta. For the compote, you could use the fruits straight from the freezer, but you might need to cook the compote for a little bit longer to evaporate any extra moisture.
Simply replace the Full Cream / Whole Milk with a Dairy-free Milk and use a plant-based Cream such as coconut cream (for a slightly different flavour) or a soy cream (for a more neutral flavour).
Yes but you will need to replace the gelatin another type of gelling agent such as Agar Agar Powder. This plant-based gelling agent will make this dessert vegetarian.
To make this panna cotta with Agar Agar, substitute the gelatine with 1,5 grams or 3/4 teaspoon of Agar. Agar needs to be boiled to activate, so you will need to add it to the saucepan and whisk it for about 1 minute once the cream starts to boil, then pour it directly into the serving cups.
Tips for Success
- The texture of the dessert will depend on the amount of gelatin you use. I personally prefer my panna cottas to be more on the creamy side, so the quantity of gelatin is relatively low, but for a more set jelly-like texture, you could slightly increase the quantity of gelatin. Be careful not to use too much gelatin though or your panna cotta will be hard.
- The key to get two nice separate layers in your dessert is to let the bottom layer set completely before adding any toppings. Depending on the type of gelatin you use, it should take about 2 to 3 hours in the fridge for the panna cotta to set completely.
- This dessert is best made in advance since it needs to set in the fridge for a few hours, so it is perfect for a party! It will take between 2 to 3 hours for the raspberry panna cotta cream to set, but you could keep it in the fridge for 24 hours before topping it with the sauce and serving it!
- Create a different dessert by using another topping, such as a Mixed Berry Compote, Strawberry Compote or Blueberry Compote.
Storing & Freezing
This dessert should be kept in the fridge and is best served within two days for optimal freshness. I recommend adding any toppings just before serving the raspberry panna cotta so that they stay as fresh as possible.
This dessert should not be frozen.
More Fruit Desserts
- Lemon Mousse with Lemon Curd
- Pear Compote
- Strawberry Mousse
- Banana Chia Seed Pudding
- Mango Mousse (eggless)
- Stewed Rhubarb
- Passion Fruit Mousse
Made this recipe?
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Raspberry Panna Cotta
Raspberry Panna Cotta
- 200 gr (7 oz) Raspberries - fresh or frozen (see note 1)
- 250 ml (1 cup) Full Cream / Whole Milk
- 250 ml (1 cup) Heavy / Thickened Cream
- 80 gr (1/3 cup) Caster Sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla
- 2 teaspoon Gelatin Powder - plus a little bit of cold water
Raspberry Compote Topping
- 200 gr (7 oz) Raspberries - fresh or frozen (see note 2)
- 1 teaspoon Lemon Juice
- 30 gr (2 tablespoons) Caster Sugar
I highly recommend using the measurements in grams & ml (instead of cups & spoons) for more accuracy and better results.
Raspberry Panna Cotta
- Blend the Raspberries until smooth. Pour the puree through a thin mesh sieve over a small saucepan. Gently press with a spatula to keep the liquid only and discard the seeds (see note 3).
- Add the Milk, Cream, Sugar and Vanilla Extract to the saucepan and whisk to combine. Turn on medium low heat and bring to a simmer, then remove from the heat.
- Place the gelatin powder in a small bowl and add a little bit of water (1 to 2 tablespoons). Mix until smooth then set aside for a couple of minutes or until it looks like a thick paste (see note 4).
- Add the gelatin mixture to the hot liquid and whisk well until it has completely dissolved. Pour into the serving cups, then place in the fridge to set for 2 to 3 hours.
Strawberry Compote Topping
- Place the Raspberries, Lemon Juice and Sugar in a small saucepan. Turn on low to medium low heat and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the raspberries start to break apart and the juices have thickened slightly (see note 5).
- Set aside to cool down completely, then pour over each panna cotta. Keep in the fridge until ready to serve (see note 6).
- Optionally, finish with fresh raspberries, some chopped mint and a sprinkle of shredded coconut.
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- If using frozen raspberries, make sure they are fully thawed and drained of any excess water / moisture.
- If using fresh strawberries for the compote, you might need to add a little bit of water to help it start cooking - about 2 tablespoons.
- Removing the seeds is optional, but will give you a very smooth panna cotta.
- If using gelatin leaves, place them in a bowl with very cold water before starting to make the panna cotta. Then press the leaves between your hands in the sink to strain them and remove any water.
- The exact cooking time will depend on the fruits and the texture you want (thicker or more liquid). The compote will continue to set as it cools down. At this stage I recommend tasting the compote and adjusting the sugar if needed.
- I recommend adding any toppings (including the compote) just before serving the dessert when possible, so that they stay as fresh as possible. The compote can be made in advance and stored in a jar in the fridge for up to a week.