Lemon Blueberry Pavlova Cake
This Lemon Blueberry Pavlova recipe is one of the best desserts when you want something sweet but light. The pavlova cake combines marshmallowy cake, fluffy lemon citrus whipped cream and blueberries altogether for a simple and easy dessert.
This beautiful cake is creamy and soft in the middle but has a crisp outer shell. I’ve made several dozen versions of a pavlova cake over the years and this one is a favorite. I love any dessert that has that sweet and tart combination, and this version of lemon blueberry pavlova does just that.
I’ve brought this to several dinner parties and events, and people are always impressed. Little do they know that a pavlova cake is simple to put together. I’m convinced that anyone can do it and wow the people in your life.
Plus, this is a dessert my kids love. I don’t feel too bad giving them this one since it is fairly light for a dessert. It’s the perfect sweet treat for any occasion.
What is Pavlova?
A Pavlova cake is a naturally gluten-free dessert made with the main ingredients of egg whites and sugar. They are whipped into creating an airy meringue that serves as the base of the cake.
Pavlova is then usually topped with whipped cream and berries. This version is no exception—it has a fresh lemon whipped cream and blueberries on top of the pavlova cake.
Fun fact – pavlova gets its name from the iconic Russian ballet dancer, Anna Pavlova. Just like her, this dessert is seemingly lighter than air. Funny enough, the dessert was not created in Russia—it was actually created either in New Zeland or Australia after she toured there in the 1920s.
Tips for Making a Meringue Dessert
If you are wondering what to do with egg whites you have leftover from making something like a homemade mayonnaise recipe or creme brule making a meringue dessert is ideal. However, if you have not made one before, you may feel a bit intimidated.
The good news is it’s easy! Meringue looks much more complicated than it actually is. That being said, here are some helpful tips to help you create the perfect meringue dessert:
- Any greasy residue or oil can hinder the whipping process for your egg whites. So you need to make sure your utensils are perfectly cleaned before you whip your egg whites.
- Be patient when whipping the meringue. You want to make sure it is a stable meringue. In the first two minutes or so of whipping, it will increase in volume, but at this point the air bubbles within are unstable. You’ll need to keep whipping away until the meringue deflates slightly and then increases back up again.
- If you want that perfectly white meringue dessert, you’ll need to set the oven for a lower temperature. In a convection oven, reduce the temperature to 200F. If you have a baking oven, you’ll need to dry the meringue out at 225F.
Can You Make a Meringue Dessert Without Cornstarch?
A meringue dessert like pavlova can be made with or without cornstarch. There is both a pro and a con to using cornstarch that you should be aware of, however.
Meringue made with cornstarch will be more stable and less likely to deflate or collapse, especially coming out of the oven. On the other hand, a meringue dessert made with cornstarch will also have a slightly gritty texture that some people find less than desirable.
For those who are new to making a meringue, I recommend using cornstarch the first few times at least until you get the hang of it. Or, if you are feeling confident and adventurous, try the meringue with no cornstarch and see how it goes! If the meringue is properly whipped, no cornstarch is needed.
How to Make This Pavlova Recipe
- Gather your ingredients such as egg whites, sugar and the optional cream of tartar or corn starch.
- Whip the meringue, then fold in the cornstarch.
- Bake the meringue on low temp for the whitest pavlova.
- Make the cream by whipping the cream, lemon zest and vanilla until soft peaks.
- Layer the whipped cream onto the meringue base once the base is completely cooled. Top with the berries and garnish, then serve the pavlova cake.
More Meringue Recipes to Try:
Lemon Blueberry Pavlova Cake Recipe
Pavlova Cake is made with a meringue topping and combines marshmallowy pavlova cake, fluffy lemon citrus whipped cream and blueberries altogether for a simple and easy dessert.
Pavlova Cake Recipe
- 2 cup blueberries
Vanilla Whipped Cream
- 1/4 wedge lemon
- Mint Leaves
How to make Pavlova Cake
Place 6 egg whites and 1 3/4 cups sugar in a bowl of a stand mixer and whip on high speed for about 15-20 minutes, or until drastically increased in volume, pearl white in color and the meringue has stiff peaks.
Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and trace an 8-inch round circle around a baking pan or a salad plate. Turn the parchment paper over, set aside.
Preheat oven to 350F with the baking rack in the middle.
Once the meringue is properly whipped, sift in 2 tbsp cornstarch and 1 tsp cream of tartar. Then, carefully fold them in completely.
Transfer the meringue within the traced circle and place in the oven. Immediately reduce heat to 225F and bake for 1 hour. Then, turn off heat, place a wooden spoon between the oven and the door and allow to cool for 30 minutes. After that, remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
How to make the Lemon Whipped Cream
Combine 1 1/2 cups heavy whip cream, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 tbsp lemon juice, and lemon zest in a bowl of a stand mixer and whip for 3-4 minutes or until soft peaks form. Do not overwhip or the cream will look grainy and even start to separate.
How to Assemble the Berry Pavlova
Carefully transfer the Pavlova Cake disk to a serving platter (use this cake transfer spatula to make it easier.
Spoon the Chantilly Cream on top of the Pavlova Cake disk.
Top with the blueberries and optional garnishes.
Serve right away, or within 30 minutes of assembling, for best results. Refrigerate if not serving right away.