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If you want to serve up a show-stopper dessert at Christmas, this is the one for you. It looks beautifully festive and is packed with fresh flavours after a heavy Christmas lunch.
Even better, you can prepare this Christmas Wreath Pavlova base ahead of time to leave you plenty of time for everything else on the day – an absolute must in my book!
This Christmas Pavlova is popular with guests because it looks so fabulous and tastes amazing too.
It’s an ideal dessert to serve up after a lavish Christmas dinner because it’s not too heavy and its fruity flavour might hit the spot for people who want a fresh pudding.
I’m giving you lots of tips and tricks for getting your pavlova just right. I hope you find it useful!
Make this as part of your No Stress Christmas Dinner Plan 2023!
Why you’ll love this Christmas Pavlova recipe
⭐️ Perfect light finish to a big feast
⭐️ Can be made ahead
⭐️ Looks beautifully festive!
TOP TIPS FOR PERFECTING YOUR CHRISTMAS PAVLOVA
- Use a VERY clean, dry bowl when whisking the egg whites.
- Separate the eggs by moving the yolk VERY carefully between each half of the shell in your hands, letting the whites drop through into the bowl. Discard the yolks.
- The meringue mixture should be very stiff peaks – stiff enough to hold the bowl upside down over your head!
- It’s very important to use baking paper or baking parchment, NOT greaseproof paper. It will stick to greaseproof.
- Be sure that the oven is set to a very cool (140c) temperature. You need this to cook very slowly.
- Allowing the meringue to cool in the oven as the oven cools should prevent too much cracking. Making your wreath quite tall (rather than too thin) is also helpful in preventing cracking.
- One final (and rather depressing) tip.. If your meringue is runny and not stiff peaks, I have yet to ever manage to find a way to resolve this. It is, sadly, best to forget this mixture and start again. SO! Prevention rather than cure:
1) VERY clean bowl!
2) Make sure there are peaks in the whisked egg whites before you start adding sugar
Christmas pavlova Ingredients
- Eggs – Only use the whites
- Caster sugar
- Raspberries – You can use frozen and defrosted to make the sauce if you like, although fresh do look better on top!
- Icing sugar
- Double cream – The cream for the topping should be straight from the fridge, this will help it to whip
- Cherries – If you can get hold of these they do look very pretty
- Pomegranate seeds
- Fresh mint (optional)
How to make A Christmas pavlova
1. Separate the eggs by moving the yolk VERY carefully between each half of the shell in your hands, letting the whites drop through into the bowl.
2. Whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks.
3. The mixture should be stiff enough to be able to hold the bowl upside down over your head!
4. Gradually add sugar. Draw a wreath shape on baking paper (I used a plate and mug as a template to draw around), turn it over and spoon dollops in the shape to ‘glue’.
5. Spoon the rest around the template and smooth the top so it’s flat. Bake in a preheated oven according to the recipe below.
6. Make your couli, whisk the cream and decorate on top with additional fruit and mint sprigs when you’re ready to serve.
Hint: The cream for the topping should be straight from the fridge, this will help it to whip.
- Frozen berries: You can use these instead of fresh for the sauce as they’ll be cheaper and you can buy ahead of time. Stick to red berries for that lovely Christmassy design!
You can store your meringue after it has cooled in a dry airtight container (like a cake tin or plastic storage box) at room temperature for up to a week. Keep it in a cool place until you’re ready to serve.
You CAN freeze meringue for up to a month, however this might prove difficult because of its size. If you have a chest freezer or a spare one somewhere, go ahead if you want to. Defrost it for 2-3 hours at room temperature before serving.
I have to say, whilst you CAN freeze this, I’m not a huge fan of doing so as it’s quite a delicate shape.
HOW TO MAKE AHEAD FOR CHRISTMAS DAY
On Christmas Eve or before:
- Make the meringue, cool and and store
On Christmas Eve:
- Whip the cream, cover and store in the fridge
- Make the coulis, cover and store in the fridge
- Wash the berries and a pinch of pretty mint sprigs to garnish
- Add the topping JUST before serving. (If you do it too far ahead it will go soggy)
- Obviously, topped leftovers will be saved in the fridge for Boxing Day, but they will be a little less than their best as it will go quite soft. (Still delicious though!)
I have referred to the coulis as ‘sauce’ as well in this recipe, because basically that’s what it is! It’s a thin sauce made from strained or puréed fruit or veg. This is why frozen berries can work well here.
To make, mash the raspberries and squish them through a sieve. Stir in 2btsp of icing sugar.
Yes, I recommend one like this whisking your egg whites and also whisking the cream.
This happens when the oven is at a temperature that’s too low as the meringue cooks. It’s hard to rectify once cooked but it won’t impact the end result. Just be sure the meringue is cooked for a little longer to make up for the oven not being quite hot enough.
(If that probably happens often it might be worth getting an oven thermometer to check the temperature of your oven.)
If you’re whisking the egg whites by hand, it can feel like you’re doing it wrong because it can take a good few minutes to see any progress.
However, keep going, once they start to whip up it quickly comes together!
Let me know how you got on and what you thought of these recipes. Please rate the recipe using the ⭐️ below.
Also I’d LOVE to see your cooking creations. If you’d like to share yours with me, you can tag me on Instagram (@tamingtwins).
Christmas Wreath Pavlova
- 4 Eggs, Whites only
- 250 g Caster sugar
For the couli:
- 150 g Raspberries
- 2 tbsp Icing sugar
For the decoration:
- 300 ml Double cream
- 2 tbsp Icing sugar
- 150 g Cherries
- 80 g Pomegranate seeds
- 225 g Raspberries
- Fresh mint, Optional
- Preheat the oven to 140C.
- In a very clean bowl whisk the egg whites until stiff.
- Gradually add the sugar, a little at a time, whisking well in between each addition.
- Draw a wreath shape on baking paper (or parchment NOT greaseproof paper) using a pencil, plate and ramekin or glass as a guide.
- Flip the paper over (so the pavlova isn't touching the pencil marks) and stick it to a baking sheet using a dot or two of the egg white mixture as glue.
- Spoon in dollops onto the template and smooth the top so it's flat.
- Bake at 140C for about an hour.
- Turn off the oven and allow the pavlova to cool in the oven.
- Meanwhile, make the sauce. Mash the raspberries and then squish through a sieve. Stir in 2tbsp of the icing sugar.
- Whisk the cream in another bowl and then stir in the other 2 tbsp icing sugar.
- When you are ready to serve, top with cream, fruit, coulis sauce and some mint springs.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.