I'm welcoming in spring with this over the top, crazy delicious berry lemon layered pavlova. This layered pavlova has crunchy, chewy layers of meringue topped with fresh whipped cream, silky and fluffy lemon curd cream, sweet and tangy mixed berry compote all topped with a mix of fresh blackberries, strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. It's chewy, marshmallowy, sweet, tangy and so, so good.
The pavlova layers for this cake consist of three 8" rounds of vanilla meringue. I used cake pans to trace the 8" rounds onto parchment paper. I was able to fit all 3 on a half cookie sheet, but you can also bake the meringue layers in batches if you need to. The layers are baked until crisp and chewy while still remaining marshmallowy in the center. The meringue layers are then left in the oven to cool gradually. If they cool too fast they are prone to collapsing. Be careful moving the layers after they are baked as they are delicate and can fall apart easily, but no worries if they do crack or break. They can still be used and are still yummy!
This lemon cream. I'm telling you, once you make this, you will never see lemon curd the same way. Adapted from the amazing Dorie Greenspan, this lemon cream recipe is perfection. The recipe is similar to that of a lemon curd but once the curd has cooked, it is cooled down a bit then whipped with butter to create a silky, creamy and fluffy lemon cream. Insanely good.
Mixed Berry Compote
Any combination of berries works for this recipe. I used a combination of strawberries, blackberries, raspberries and blueberries. I used the same berries to sprinkle between the layers and to decorate the top. Cook the berries with a squeeze of lemon juice and a little bit of sugar until reduced and thickened. Let the compote cool before using.
Because of having multiple creamy components to this dessert, I only made a small batch of whipped cream for this layered pavlova, but if you want more pillowy dollops of whipped cream, double the recipe.
Assemble the layered pavlova by topping a layer of meringue with ⅓ of the whipped cream and swirling in ⅓ of the lemon cream. Top with a ⅓ of the mixed berry compote and a mix of fresh berries. I didn't measure the berries, but I used somewhere between ½ -⅔ cup of berries on the first and second layers and loaded up the top.
Repeat with a second layer of meringue, ½ of the remaining whipped cream, lemon curd cream, mixed berry compote and fresh berries. Place the last layer on top, followed by the remaining whipped cream, lemon cream curd, and mixed berry compote. Pile on more berries on top for decoration. Serve and enjoy!
If you make my berry lemon layered pavlova, let me know! Drop a comment or tag me on Instagram. I love seeing your bakes and creations.
For more berry recipes, check out these posts:
Berry Lemon Layered Pavlova
Lemon Curd Cream
- ½ cup (99g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 2 large eggs
- 6 tablespoons lemon juice
- 10 tablespoons (141g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 6 large (210g) egg whites, room temperature
- ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 ½ cups (297g) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Mixed Berry Compote
- 1 ½ cups (180g) mixed berries
- 1 ½ tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 cup (227g) heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 2 cups (300g) fresh mixed berries (hull and halve strawberries)
Make the Lemon Curd Cream.
- Make the lemon curd cream first so that it has time to chill. Set a fine mesh strainer over the container of a blender.
- Combine the sugar and the lemon zest in a medium saucepan. Rub the sugar and zest together between your fingers until the sugar is moist, clumpy, and very aromatic.
- Whisk in the eggs. Whisk in the lemon juice.
- Place the saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook, whisking contantly until the mixture reaches 180F on an instant read thermometer. The curd will start to thicken and leave tracks before it reaches 180F.
- Remove the curd from the stove and immediately strain the mixture in the strainer over the blender container. Discard the zest and any curdled egg.
- Let the curd rest at room temperature in the blender container, stirring occasionally, until it cools to 140F. This can take about 10 minutes.
- Place the lid on the blender and turn on high. Remove the lid and add the butter, a couple tablespoons at a time.
- Once all the butter has been added, place the lid back on, and keep blending for 2-3 minutes to get perfectly creamy, light and airy lemon curd cream.
- Pour the cream into a storage container and press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Chill the cream for at least 3 hours or overnight.
Make the pavlova layers.
- Preheat the oven to 250F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and draw three 8-inch circles on the parchment paper. (I traced 8-inch cake pans.)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium speed until frothy.
- Add the salt and cream of tartar.
- Increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat the whites to soft peaks.
- While continuing to beat the egg whites, gradually add the granulated sugar (a couple tablespoons at a time) and beat until glossy and stiff peaks form.
- Divide the meringue evenly between the three circles. Use an offset spatula to spread the meringue evenly to the edges of the circles.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the meringues are dry and crisp on the outside and the edges can be lifted off the sheets. They should still be marshmallow-like on the inside.
- Turn off the oven and prop the oven door open with a wooden spoon. Allow the pavlova layers to cool completely in the oven.
Make the mixed berry compote.
- Place the berries, sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium. Use a wooden spoon or a potato masher to muddle and mash the fruit.
- Continue cooking, stirring often, until the compote has reduced to about half its volume, about 5 minutes.
- Remove from the heat. Cool completely.
- Compote can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Make the Whipped Cream.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract on medium-high speed until medium peaks form, about 3-4 minutes.
Assemble the layered pavlova.
- Carefully peel one of the meringue layers off of the parchment paper and place on a serving plate. Be careful as the layers are delicate.
- Top with ⅓ of the whipped cream.
- Top with ⅓ of the lemon curd cream.
- Swirl in ⅓ of the mixed berry compote.
- Sprinkle with a mixture of blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and stawberries.
- Place the second layer of meringue on top.
- Top with another ⅓ of the whipped cream, lemon curd cream, and mixed berry compote. Sprinkle with a mixture of fresh berries.
- Top with the last layer of meringue.
- Top with the remaining whipped cream, lemon curd cream, and mixed berry compote. Sprinkle with the remaining fresh berries.
- The pavlova should be served immediately, or refrigerated for up to 4 hours.