Panna cotta is an Italian dessert of sweetened cream thickened with gelatin and molded. The cream may be aromatized with coffee, vanilla, or other flavorings.

Ingredients of Panna cotta

  •  1/4 cup (60 ml) cold water or milk
  •  2 1/4 teaspoons (7 g/0.25 oz.) unflavored powdered gelatin*
  •  2 cups (480 ml) heavy cream
  •  1/4 cup (50 g/1.8 oz.) granulated sugar
  •  1/2 vanilla bean, split and seeded, or 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


Instructions of Panna cotta

  1. Place the water in a small bowl and sprinkle gelatin over the surface in a single layer.
  2. Make sure not to stack them as this will prevent the crystals from dissolving properly. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes to soften.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, heat the cream, sugar, vanilla pod and vanilla seeds over medium heat and bring to a boil until the sugar dissolves.
  4. Remove from heat and discard the vanilla pod. Stir in gelatin and whisk immediately until smooth and dissolved.
  5. If the gelatin is not completely dissolved, put the pan back in the stove and heat gently over low heat.
  6. Stir constantly. Pour the cream into 4 individual dishes.
  7. Refrigerate for at least 2 to 4 hours or until the mixture is completely set. If desired, garnish with fresh fruit and berries.
  8. The panna cotta can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 3 days.
Recipe Notes

If using sheet gelatin, use the same weight (7g). Add the sheets to a bowl filled with 2 cups water. Let sit for 5-10 minutes, then remove the sheets and stir them into the hot panna cotta as directed in the recipe (you don’t need to add it along with the water, such as in powdered gelatin – add the sheets only).