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Berry Lemon Pavlova Layer Cake

Berry Lemon Layered Pavlova

Layers of meringue filled with whipped cream, lemon curd cream, mixed berry compote and fresh berries
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Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 45 mins
Chill 3 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 45 mins
Course Dessert
Servings 8 - 12 servings


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

Pavlova Layers

  • 6 large (210g) egg whites, room temperature
  • teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 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

Whipped Cream

  • 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 1/3 of the whipped cream.
  • Top with 1/3 of the lemon curd cream.
  • Swirl in 1/3 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 1/3 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.


Lemon Curd Cream recipe adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan.
Keyword berry compote, berry lemon pavlova, layered pavlova, lemon cream, mixed berries, pavlova, whipped cream
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