New Zealand Pavlova

New Zealand Pavlova

The Spruce 

Prep: 40 mins
Cook: 75 mins
Total: 115 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
253 Calories
1g Fat
54g Carbs
7g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 253
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 108mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 54g 20%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Protein 7g
Calcium 12mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This recipe for Pavlova, made with a meringue shell, whipped cream, and fruit, is one of New Zealand's national desserts.

When preparing a Pavlova recipe, the most important thing is to have scrupulously clean utensils, free of grease, egg yolks, or eggshells. In fact, the success of the meringue depends on it. Also important is that the egg whites are at room temperature before beating them to get more volume.

Pavlovas have a habit of deflating and forming cracks when you open the oven but don't be disheartened. Just make some extra whipped cream to fill in the hole if this happens. It will still be a spectacular dessert.

If you use bananas in the topping, toss them in lemon juice to stop them from oxidizing or turning brown.

Ingredients

  • For Meringue Shell
  • 4 large egg whites (at room temperature)
  • 1 cup castor sugar (also known as caster sugar, berry sugar or superfine sugar)
  • 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • For the Whipped Cream and Garnish
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar (also known as confectioners' sugar)
  • 2 cups whole berries (or sliced fresh fruit of choice; strawberries, raspberries, kiwi fruit, passion fruit, bananas, blueberries)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Steps to Make It

Note: while there are multiple steps to this recipe, this Pavlova dessert is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for baking and assembly.

Make the Meringue Shell

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for meringue
    The Spruce 
  2. Heat the oven to 275 F/140 C and place the rack in the middle of the oven.

  3. Line a baking tray with foil and draw a 7-inch circle on the foil with the blunt edge of a knife (don't tear the foil). Set aside.

    Foil on baking sheet
    The Spruce  
  4. In a clean, medium-sized metal bowl, beat the egg whites with a clean electric mixer on medium speed. Beat until the whites form soft peaks.

    Beaten egg whites in metal bowl
    The Spruce  
  5. Gently sprinkle the sugar into the egg whites, 1 teaspoon at a time, beating continuously until the whites form stiff glossy peaks.

    Beaten egg whites and sugar in metal bowl
    The Spruce 
  6. Sprinkle the cornstarch and vinegar on the meringue and fold in gently with a plastic spatula.

    Spatula in meringue mixture
    The Spruce  
  7. Add the vanilla and gently fold the mixture again.

    Meringue mixture in metal bowl with spatula
    The Spruce  
  8. Now gently spread the meringue in the circle on the foil to make a circular base. Make sure the edges of the meringue are slightly higher than the center so you have a very slight well in the middle.

    A large circle of meringue on a foil lined pan
    The Spruce 
  9. Bake the meringue for about 1 hour and 15 minutes or until it goes a very pale, pinkish eggshell color.

  10. Turn the oven off and leave the door slightly ajar to let the meringue cool completely. As the meringue cools, it will crack slightly.

    Baked meringue on a plate
    The Spruce 
  11. Just before serving, take the meringue out of the oven and remove it gently from the foil and place on a plate.

Make the Whipped Cream and Garnish

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for whipped cream and fruit garnish
    The Spruce 
  2. Whip the cream with the vanilla and icing sugar until it forms peaks and set aside.

    Whipped cream, vanilla, and icing sugar in a metal bowl
    The Spruce 
  3. Prepare the fruit by washing and slicing.

    Fruit in colander, bowl, and on a cutting board
    The Spruce 
  4. Toss cut fruit, like bananas and apples, with lemon juice to prevent browning.

    Tossing banana slices in lemon juice
    The Spruce 
  5. Gently spread the cream over the top of the cooled meringue with a spatula.

    Whipped cream spread over meringue
    The Spruce 
  6. Arrange the fruit on top. 

    New Zealand Pavlova (meringue, whipped cream, and fruit)
    The Spruce 
  7. Serve immediately and enjoy.