Pavlova with Lemon Curd and Raspberries

TThis Lemon Curd Pavlova is topped with fresh raspberries. You can make lots of mini pavlovas and serve them individually, or make one large pavlova as a dessert centerpiece. Either way, this dessert is sure to impress!

Creating This Pavlova Dessert

What do you do when you’ve made Lemon Curd and have a whole bunch of egg whites leftover? Make individual pavlovas for dessert! That’s what I did, at least.

I topped my pavlova with lemon curd and fresh raspberries, but the nice thing about a pavlova is that you can top it with whatever you want and whatever is in season at the moment.

I have been craving berries lately. Especially raspberries. For breakfast, snacks, desserts…pretty much anytime. They’re hands down easily one of my favorite fruits.

But they’re so expensive! When I saw a sale on them this week I had to snatch up a couple containers. I enjoyed their bright fruity flavor with the crunchy meringue and creamy lemon curd.

I can’t help thinking of the other possibilities for pavlova as spring progresses into summer. One thing that I particularly love about this pavlova dessert is you don’t need an incredibly hot oven, so it is still doable on a warm day.

On a side note, for some reason Madeline had the bright idea to call this a “dessert quesadilla.” I have no idea what that means.

Eric says it’s because they were white and flat (like tortillas) and it had yellowish stuff on top (like cheese). I’m not seeing the resemblance, so maybe she just thought “Pavlova” was too difficult to say.

What is Pavlova?

Pavlova is a meringue-based dessert. It has a crispy, crunchy meringue-like shell that is soft and moist on the inside.

Pavlovas can be made as simple or complicated as you’d like. Sometimes you see layered pavlova desserts with fruit curd and fresh fruit between the layers of meringue.

While I think more elaborate pavlovas are beautiful to look at, I prefer keeping mine simple. These individual lemon curd pavlovas with raspberries are easier to make than you’d think!

AND you probably have all the ingredients to make the meringue-like base. There’s not really anything too fancy about this fancy looking dessert.

pavlova with raspberries and pastry cream

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What’s in a Pavlova?

For this simple pavlova dessert, you’ll need:

  • Vanilla extract
  • Lemon juice
  • Cream of tartar
  • Cornstarch
  • Sugar
  • Egg whites
  • Lemon curd, raspberries, and whipped cream (for topping)

How to Make Pavlova

Separate the egg whites from the yolks, then let them come to room temperature for about 30 minutes. Then, whip the egg whites together with the cream of tartar until soft peaks begin forming.

Slowly add in the sugar and cornstarch, followed by the lemon juice and vanilla. Continue beating the mixture until the meringue is glossy and stiff peaks form.

Portion the meringue (carefully!) onto a parchment paper-lined baking tray, then bake until set. Baking times may vary, but your meringue will likely take 45 to 60 minutes to bake. Remove the homemade meringue from the oven and let it cool completely on a wire rack.

Can I Prep These in Advance?

You don’t want to bake the meringue too far in advance, as it tends to deflate and become chewy over time. I’d say you’re probably safe to make the meringues the morning you plan on having people over, but not much before that.

Also note that you don’t want to assemble the pavlovas too soon before serving them, as the lemon curd can start to break down the meringue if left sitting on top of it for too long!

lemon curd pavlova topped with raspberries

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Tips for Making Pavlova

If you’re looking for an elegant dessert for an upcoming holiday or family gathering, this pavlova will surely be a hit.

Just dress it up with whatever toppings you like best (citrus curd, mounds of fresh whipped cream, or anything else light and refreshing that comes to mind). Then, pile on your seasonal fruit of choice.

I prefer to prepare these as individual desserts rather than a larger pavlova. There’s just something charming and likable to me about mini versions of desserts and individual small replicas of the full sized dessert.

If you prefer a larger pavlova, just make one large circle rather than 6-8 small sized nests. You will need to watch the baking time, however.

Also note that it’s useful to form a small well in the center of the meringue with the back of a spoon prior to baking the meringue. This will help the lemon curd and raspberries rest more easily on top of the pavlova.

More Special Occasion Desserts:

If you’re looking for an easy dessert the whole family will love, I highly suggest making a batch of Strawberry Fool. It’s essentially strawberries and cream, and it’s perfect during the warmer months!

These Raspberry Almond Angel Food Cake Parfaits look incredibly fancy, but they’re secretly so easy to make. This is a great dessert to make with kiddos!

I made this particular batch of Iced Vanilla Sugar Cookies for Valentine’s Day, but you can cut them into any shape you want!

Another simple dessert recipe with a major wow factor are these Balsamic Strawberry Shortcake Parfaits. Trust me, balsamic and fresh berries pair beautifully together!

No one can resist these Dark Chocolate Almond Molten Lava Cakes. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and dive right in!

Have you ever eaten pavlova before?

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Lemon Curd Pavlova with Raspberries

Lemon Curd Pavlova with Raspberries

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

This Lemon Curd Pavlova is topped with fresh raspberries. You can make lots of mini pavlovas and serve them individually, or make one large pavlova as a dessert centerpiece.

Ingredients

Meringue Nests

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract OR 1 vanilla bean (seeds only)
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 6 ounces egg white, about 5-6 large eggs

Toppings

  • Lemon Curd - Recipe: Citrus Curd 3 Ways
  • Fresh Raspberries, Strawberries or Blueberries
  • Whipped Cream
  • Mint Leaves, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Divide the egg whites from the yolks. Save the yolks for a later use, such as Citrus Curd or another favorite recipe that requires egg yolks. Bring the egg whites to room temperature for 30 minutes before beginning the recipe.
  2. Prepare by preheating your oven to 250 degrees F and lining a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. Whisk the cornstarch and sugar together in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. Add the egg whites and cream of tartar to the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, turn the speed on to low. Mix for 1 minute, then gradually increase the speed to medium-low.
  4. Continue to beat at medium-low for another minute, then increase mixer's speed to medium. Continue until the mixture has small bubbles and soft peaks start to develop, about 2 minutes.
  5. Slowly add the sugar mixture into the bowl as the mixture continues to beat. Increase the speed to medium-high. Beat for 2 minutes.
  6. Add the vanilla and lemon juice. Increase the speed to high and beat for an additional 2-3 minutes. It is ready when the meringue is shiny and has developed stiff peaks.
  7. For individual pavlovas, you can spoon little nests (6-8 total) of meringue onto the prepared baking sheet.* Then, bake at 250 degrees F for 45 – 65 minutes. Rotate the pan(s) halfway through baking.
  8. Finished meringue should be crisp and dry, but not cracked. The insides will have a marshmallow-like consistency. Cool baked meringue on a wire rack.
  9. After pavlova has cooled, top with lemon curd and fresh berries. Best served immediately. If you assemble the dessert too soon then the lemon curd with begin to dissolve the meringue.

Notes

*Tip: Form a dip in the center of each pavlova with the back of the spoon before baking to act as a dish to hold the lemon curd and berries.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 5 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 514 Total Fat: 14g Saturated Fat: 7g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 6g Cholesterol: 293mg Sodium: 272mg Carbohydrates: 84g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 79g Protein: 14g
GoodLifeEats.com offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although GoodLifeEats.com makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.

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