These Mini Pavlovas with Coconut Whipped Cream make the perfect light dessert! They’re made with a simple meringue that is dairy-free and gluten-free. Top them off with your favourite berries, fruits or jam!

mini pavlovas on a marble and wood cake stand

Easy mini pavlovas

Let’s talk about my latest obsession, shall we? Pavlovas!

A crispy on the outside meringue that is soft and marshmallowy on the inside, filled with creamy whipped coconut cream and topped with an assortment of berries and passionfruit.

Like really, can there be anything better? (Answer: no.)

These Mini Pavlovas With Coconut Whipped Cream are perfect to enjoy for the holidays and are even fun to set up as a “DIY” pavlova bar where everyone can add their own toppings!

This recipe for mini pavlovas with whipped coconut cream is even better than a traditional pavlova because we’re making individually portioned pavlovas. Besides the fact that they’re totally adorable, they’re also easy to grab and eat, rather than having to cut into a big pavlova and serve up slices. Also, let’s be honest – who doesn’t love anything mini-sized?

Mini pavlovas also take less time to bake in the oven since they’re smaller, so you can get to eating them quicker 😉

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Dairy-free and gluten-free. Pavlovas are naturally gluten-free since they are made with a base of egg whites. This particular recipe also uses cocout cream instead of whipped cream to keep these pavlovas dairy-free.
  • Fun to make. Because let’s be honest, making dessert is half the fun! These mini pavlovas are fun and easy to make.
  • Impress your guests. While these may be secretly easy to make, you’re guests will be super impressed when you whip out these mini pavlovas for dessert. They look very professional and people might even think you bought them from a gourmet bakery!

What is pavlova?

A pavlova is a meringue-based dessert that is usually filled with some sort of cream and topped with fruits, jams or sauce. The dessert was actually named after a ballerina by the name of Anna Pavlova. (I mean, it is a pretty elegant dessert after all!)

The dessert is actually super popular in Australia but has gained a lot of popularity in North America….and in my kitchen.

What is the difference between a meringue and a pavlova?

Both meringue and pavlova are desserts made with a base of egg whites and sugar and they are both made by whipping up the egg whites and sugar together in a mixer. So what really is the difference?

The main difference is the texture.

Pavlova is soft on the inside with a marshmallow-like texture that melts in your mouth as you eat it. Meringue on the other hand is baked to be more crispy when eaten.

mini pavlovas on a white marble counter topped with fresh fruit and mint leaves

Pavlova ingredients

Each ingredient used to make a pavlova is really important to use to create a pavlova with the right taste and texture. For that reason, there are not many substitutes that can be made when making mini pavlova. The only substitution you can make is using vinegar in place of lemon juice.

  • Egg whites: the egg whites need to be at room tempature to whip up properly.
  • Sugar: white sugar. You can’t replace this with any other type of sugar.
  • Lemon juice: a pavlova needs some acid like lemon juice or vinegar to help stabalize the meringue and give it a better texture.
  • Vanilla extract: for flavour
  • Cornstarch: this is the “secret ingredient” that will make the pavlova soft and pillowy on the inside.

How to make pavlova

Pavlova is made with a *special* technique to make sure that your meringues come out crispy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside.

Here’s are some tips to make a perfect mini pavlova every time:

  1. Whip your egg whites to stiff peaks!
  2. Gently fold in cornstarch to get that marshmallowy centre
  3. Bake at 250 degrees F for 30-40 minutes, then turn the oven off and leave them in for another 30 minutes! (Don’t skip this step, or the meringues will fall flat!)

Then, all that’s left to do is fill them with some whipped cream and your favourite fruit!

How to store pavlova

It’s best to store the pavlova without any whipped cream or toppings on them. When you’re ready to enjoy, then you can add your toppings at the last minute.

Store any leftover pavlovas in an air-tight container on the countertop for up to 4 days.

Topping ideas

I love fresh berries and passionfruit to top these pavlovas, but you can really top them with whatever you like!

Here are some other great topping options:

  • Chocolate sauce
  • Caramel sauce
  • Berry jams
  • Chocolate shavings
  • lemon curd

Recipe Substitutions

If you are not dairy-free, you can use regular whipping cream for the filling in these pavlovas, or even mascarpone or ricotta cheese.

You can also substitute the vanilla extract with other flavours, like almond extract or lemon zest to get the desired flavour you like.

Tips for making this mini pavlova recipe perfectly

  • Use room temperature eggs for best results. They will whip up the best into the meringue.
  • If you don’t want to wait for your eggs to come to room temperature, place your cold eggs in a bowl of luke-warm (NOT hot) water for 5 minutes.
  • Make sure your meringue comes to stiff peaks. You’ll know the meringue is ready you pull the beater out and the peaks are glossy, shiny and don’t tip over. This will take about 8-10 to whip up to this state.
  • Use a piping bag with a piping tip to make the mini meringues with a nice shape. You can also use a page spoon to dollop circles onto your baking sheet.
  • If you want to make the meringues look like the ones in this recipe, I used a Wilton 1m piping tip to pipe the mini pavlovas.
  • To make the coconut whipped cream, you’ll want to use a high-quality full-fat coconut cream from a can. Light coconut cream won’t whip well. You can alternatively buy pre-whipped coconut cream if you prefer to.
Mini pavlova on a cake stand topped with berries

More dessert recipes to try

If you tried these Mini Pavlovas with Coconut Whipped Cream or any other recipe on the blog let me know how you liked it by leaving a comment/rating below! Be sure to follow along on PinterestInstagram and Facebook for even more deliciousness!

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mini pavlovas on a white marble counter topped with fresh fruit and mint leaves

Mini Pavlovas with Coconut Whipped Cream

  • Author: Jessica Hoffman
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 60 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

This light and fresh dessert is crispy, creamy, and filled with fresh fruit!


Ingredients

Scale

Pavlovas

  • 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cornstarch

Coconut whipped cream

Other

  • Berries
  • Fresh mint 
  • Passionfruit (A must!) 

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F and line a baking pan with parchment paper. 
  2. Add the egg whites to a stand mixer and beat on high for about 1 minute until frothy. 
  3. Slowly start adding the sugar, 1 tbsp at a time and continue to beat on high for 8-10 minutes until stiff peaks form and the sugar is well incorporated. 
  4. Gently fold in the lemon juice, vanilla extract and cornstarch. (Do it gently! You don’t want to deflate your meringue!) 
  5. Use a piping bag to pipe meringues onto a baking sheet 
  6. Bake at 250 degrees for 30-40 minute until dry to the touch. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in the oven for another 30 minutes before removing. 
  7. To make the coconut whipped cream, remove the can from the fridge and scoop out just the cream on top  (the cream and liquid will have separated in the fridge)
  8. Add the vanilla extract and cane sugar and whip on high until smooth and the whipped cream forms soft peaks.
  9. Scoop a dollop of whipped coconut cream into the center of each pavlova and top with fruit 

 


Notes

Use room temperature eggs for best results. They will whip up the best into the meringue.

If you don’t want to wait for your eggs to come to room temperature, place your cold eggs in a bowl of luke-warm (NOT hot) water for 5 minutes.

Make sure your meringue comes to stiff peaks. You’ll know the meringue is ready you pull the beater out and the peaks are glossy, shiny and don’t tip over. This will take about 8-10 to whip up to this state.

Use a piping bag with a piping tip to make the mini meringues with a nice shape. You can also use a page spoon to dollop circles onto your baking sheet.

If you want to make the meringues look like the ones in this recipe, I used a Wilton 1m piping tip to pipe the mini pavlovas.

To make the coconut whipped cream, you’ll want to use a high-quality full-fat coconut cream from a can. Light coconut cream won’t whip well. You can alternatively buy pre-whipped coconut cream if you prefer to.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 pavlova
  • Calories: 160
  • Sugar: 22g
  • Fat: 7g
  • Saturated Fat: 6g
  • Carbohydrates: 23g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 3g

Keywords: how to make pavlovas, mini pavlovas, dairy-free pavlovas