This keto pavlova is a sugar free twist on the iconic summer dessert, the pavlova! Simple ingredients and minimal prep required, this is the kind of dessert sure to impress! 2 grams net carbs per serving.
Living in Australia, our holiday desserts are a little bit different from those in the northern hemisphere. While they are tucking into some comforting puddings, pies, and cakes, we are doing the opposite. While the Christmas pudding is ever-present, as is the traditional Christmas cake, our dessert centerpiece is the classic pavlova.
What is pavlova?
A pavlova is in essence, a giant meringue, that is often filled with whipped cream and decorated with seasonal fruit. It’s hugely popular in Australia and New Zealand, and a quintessential part of a Christmas or Summer celebration.
A traditional pavlova is made with egg white and caster sugar (superfine sugar) but I wanted to make a keto friendly version! By making a couple of simple swaps, you get ALL the classic parts of a pavlova, minus the sugar and carbs!
Now, this pavlova may look incredibly fancy, but it is one of the easiest keto desserts you’ll ever make. No fancy kitchen gadgets needed, and less than 5 ingredients for the meringue.
The texture of the pavlova is crisp on the outside, and soft and fluffy in the middle, and melts in your mouth. It has a light vanilla flavor, and can be enhanced by whichever fruit you use!
I’ve got some friends visiting from America this Christmas and I cannot WAIT to share this recipe with them- It will be a little different to what they are accustomed to, but then again, they will also be wearing t-shirts and shorts instead of jackets…
Ingredients to make a low carb pavlova
Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this pavlova. While grocery stores and supermarkets don’t have keto caster sugar, you can easily make your own in a simple blender or food processor. Please do not substitute any of the ingredients, to ensure
- Egg whites– Large egg whites, that have reached room temperature.
- Superfine sweetener– Also known as caster sugar, you can use either erythritol or monk fruit sweetener. What you’ll need to do is blend it until it is a finer consistency, but NOT powdered.
- Cornstarch– Cornstarch is not keto friendly. However, the amount we are using in this dessert is minimal and will yield very little carbs to the overall recipe.
- Vinegar– Reacts with the egg whites and gives some rise to the pavlova.
- Vanilla extract– A must for any good baked recipe.
- Heavy cream– Also known as double cream or thickened cream. This will be spread on top of the meringue.
- Powdered sweetener– Keto powdered sugar, to mix with the heavy cream.
- Low carb fruit– To decorate the pavlova with. I love using strawberries and blueberries.
How do you make a sugar free pavlova?
Start by beating together your egg whites until stiff peaks form. Slowly, add the superfine sweetener, one tablespoon at a time, until the meringue is glossy and thick. Finally, add the vinegar, cornstarch, and vanilla extract, and beat until just combined. Gently transfer the mixture onto a baking sheet lined with foil. Form a circular shape, keeping the sides thicker. Bake in a preheated oven for around 90 minutes, or until dry and tender. Turn off the oven but keep the pavlova in there to cool completely.
Once the pavlova has cooled, beat together the heavy cream and powdered sugar until combined and smooth. Spread over the top of the pavlova and decorate with berries or other low carb fruit. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, for the cream to chill.
Tips to make the best pavlova
- Be sure that the bowl you beat the egg whites is completely dry. Even a touch of added water or moisture can affect how firm the meringue will be.
- You can prepare the pavlova up to 24 hours in advance, before serving.
- Patience is key here for the perfect pavlova. The cooling time may be a little more on the higher side, but you’ll be rewarded with the airiest and fluffiest meringue.
- Customize this however you like! Feel free to drizzle chocolate over it or even serve it with vanilla ice cream.
How do you store pavlova?
- To store: If you’ve layered and decorated your pavlova, you can store it in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 3 days. However, if you are storing the meringue base, you can refrigerate it for up to 2 weeks. Be sure that it is completely covered (plastic or glad wrap works very well) to ensure that no air pockets can seep through.
- To freeze: Only the meringue portion can be frozen. Cover it completely in plastic wrap, and store in the freezer for up to 2 months. When ready to use, refrigerate it until it is no longer frozen.
More festive desserts to try
Keto Pavlova (Sugar free!)
For the topping
- 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
- 2 tablespoon sugar free powdered sugar
- 1 cup berries to decorate
- Preheat the oven to 120C/250F. Line a large baking tray with tin foil and lightly grease.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat you egg whites until stiff peaks form. Using a tablespoon, add the superfine sweetener, until mixed through and glossy. Add the cornstarch, vinegar, and vanilla extract until combined.
- Transfer the meringue mixture onto the foil lined sheet. Push together into a circular shape.
- Bake the meringue for 90 minutes, or until golden around the sides and tender. Turn the oven off and keep the meringue in there to cool completely. Be sure to leave the door slightly ajar.
- Once the meringue has cooled completely, prepare the whipped topping. Beat together the heavy cream and powdered sweetener until thick and smooth. Gently spread over the top of the meringue. Decorate with berries of choice and refrigerate for at least an hour, to set.
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