Become a Better Cook in 4 Days!

Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries – A simple, delicious panna cotta with strawberries tossed in a sweetened balsamic glaze. Incredible!

Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

Looking for a special dessert to make with in-season, fresh strawberries?  Then this recipe for Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries just may be the perfect choice!

This recipe originally appeared in the Barefoot Contessa at Home cookbook – and Ina Garten wrote that she got her inspiration for this recipe from Mario Batali.  With two great chefs having a hand in this recipe…you know it must be delicious!


Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

What is Panna Cotta?

Panna Cotta translates to ‘cooked cream’ in Italian. It is traditionally a chilled, molded dessert made with cream that is thickened with gelatin and often flavored with vanilla, or sometimes coffee.

Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

How do you make Panna Cotta?

Panna Cotta is actually a very simple dessert to prepare.  Today’s version is made by simmering together heavy cream, sugar, and gelatin – then mixing in vanilla and yogurt. The yogurt really helps give this Panna Cotta a very rich taste, as well as a super thick and creamy texture.

The cream mixture is then poured into ramekins and chilled in the refrigerator until set.

And, because this is egg-less custard of sorts, no tempering  is needed – so it really is one of the easiest creamy desserts you can make!


Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

Can you make Panna Cotta a day ahead?

Absolutely yes! In fact, Panna Cotta needs a minimum of six hours to set up – so making this easy, rich dessert well ahead of time is actually recommended.

How do you serve Panna Cotta?

When you are ready to serve your Panna Cotta, run a thin, sharp knife around the edges of the custard in the ramekin. Then, dip the bottom of each ramekin in a shallow pan of hot water to loosen the custard. Place a small dessert place over the top of the ramekin, and carefully invert the plate (holding the ramekin securely while you flip). Carefully lift the ramekin off the custard – and you’ve got panna cotta!

This Panna Cotta is served with Balsamic Strawberries that are made by simply tossing sliced strawberries with balsamic vinegar, a hint of sugar and a little bit of freshly ground black pepper.

Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

If you’ve never had strawberries and balsamic vinegar together before – you’re in for a delicious treat!  The combination of sweet strawberries and tart, rich balsamic vinegar are surprisingly good together, and also a perfect complement to the sweet and creamy vanilla-infused Panna Cotta.

This Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries is a truly memorable dessert! It’s the perfect ending for any special meal – but it’s also easy enough to make for anytime you want a delicious dessert, especially when strawberries are in season. We also added a sprinkling of freshly grated lemon zest on top of our Panna Cotta for additional fresh flavor.

This post originally appeared on A Family Feast in February 2013. We’ve updated the post and images.

You may like these other Strawberry desserts:

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

  • Prep Time: 6 hours 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 5 mins
  • Total Time: 6 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings
  • Category: dessert
  • Method: no-bake
  • Cuisine: Italian


Adapted from Barefoot Contessa at Home cookbook


For the Panna Cotta

3 tablespoons cold water

1 packet unflavored gelatin powder

3 cups heavy cream

2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt (non-fat greek yogurt may also be substituted if whole-milk yogurt can’t be found at your market)

1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract

1 vanilla bean

¾ cup sugar

For the Balsamic Strawberries

4 pints (8 cups) sliced fresh strawberries

5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons sugar

½ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

Freshly grated lemon zest, for garnish


To Prepare the Panna Cotta

In a small bowl, add 3 tablespoons cold water. Sprinkle the gelatin powder on the water, and stir to combine. Let sit for 10 minutes to allow the gelatin to fully dissolve.

In the meantime, in a medium bowl, whisk together half (1½ cups) of the heavy cream, the yogurt and the vanilla extract – mixing well to combine. Remove the seeds from the vanilla bean (cut the bean lengthwise with a sharp knife and then use the tip of the knife to scrape the seeds out of the bean); add vanilla seeds to the cream mixture.

In a small pan, heat the other 1½ cups of heavy cream and the sugar over medium heat. When the mixture comes to a simmer, remove from the heat and stir in the dissolved gelatin. Stir until completely dissolved. Add the hot cream-gelatin mixture to the cold cream mixture and mix well.

Pour the mixture into ramekins or custard cups (or a single, wide flat bowl will also work if you do not have ramekins) and chill until cold. Once the panna cottas are completely chilled, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight (or at least another 6 hours).

To Prepare the Balsamic Strawberries

Approximately half an hour before serving the panna cotta, in a bowl, combine the sliced strawberries, balsamic vinegar, sugar and black pepper. Let the mixture sit at room temperature to allow the flavors to combine.

To Serve

To serve the panna cotta, run the tip of a sharp knife around the custard in the ramekin and dip the bottom in a shallow pan of hot water to loosen the custard from the bottom of the dish. Place a dessert plate tightly over the ramekin and carefully invert the dessert so that the custard comes out of the ramekin. (Shake the ramekin gently if necessary to get the panna cotta out.)

Serve each panna cotta with the balsamic strawberries and a sprinkling of grated lemon zest on top.

Keywords: panna cotta with balsamic strawberries


Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries

Featured in this Panna Cotta with Balsamic Strawberries Post

  • Share
  • Pin
  • Tweet
  • Email
  • Meet The Author: Martha

  • Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Recipe rating

    What type of comment do you have?

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    A Family Feast ® is a registered trademark of A Family Feast, Inc. All content, including recipes, text, visual elements, and photographs are copyright © A Family Feast, Inc. 2012-2020, unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved.