Almond Panna Cotta



I’ve tasted many different variations of panna cotta. I have seen it covered in syrup, fruit, nuts, and sometimes all of these ingredients and more. My preference is a plain almond panna cotta with a few pieces of fruit and some good honey or just the panna cotta by itself!  You can use any type of extract instead of almond or scrape some vanilla bean in the mixture. This is an easy dessert to make ahead as long as you have space in the refrigerator to store them. You don’t even need to bake these so your oven can be used for cooking other dishes if you are having a party.

The trick to a perfectly executed panna cotta is consistency. The challenge is using the right amount of gelatin and right type of cream. Going overboard on the gelatin results in a rubbery and sticky texture. Seem familiar? On the other end, too little gelatin will yield a runny-textured panna cotta.  Some recipes use half and half with milk but I prefer using heavy whipping cream.

Although ramekins are great for serving this dessert at home, I also find these 9 oz solo cup perfect for making panna cotta. You can even get lids to cover these cups if you want to take them to a party.


Makes around 15 panna cotta cups* (9 oz solo cups filled 1/3 of the way)

4 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 c sugar (100g)
2 tsp pure almond extract (or vanilla if you prefer vanilla panna cotta)
3 tsp gelatin
6 Tbsp cold water

1. In a large bowl, add 6 Tbsp cold water then sprinkle 3 tsp gelatin over the cold water.  Let it stand for about 10 minutes.
2. Heat heavy cream and sugar in a medium pot over low to medium heat. Stir constantly until sugar completely dissolves.
3. Add almond (or other types of) extract to the mixture and stir. Remove the pot from heat before the cream mixture begins to bubble or once you steam is visible.
4. Gradually pour warm heavy cream mixture over gelatin while stirring with a whisk until combined.  Make sure all the gelatin at the bottom of the bowl mixed evenly.
5. Divide mixture into cups or ramekins and chill in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours** or until panna cotta is set.

* Use half of this recipe to make 6 individual 4oz ramekins filled about 3/4 of the way.
** The timing will depend on the size of your cups and refrigerator temperature. When I fill these 9 oz solo cups 1/3 of the way, it takes about 2 hours for the panna cotta to set.

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