The Panna cotta or ‘cooked cream’ is genuinely delightful. Light, soft and creamy, it is the ultimate high-end dessert, but you know what? It’s super easy to make.
And although a classic panna cotta flavored with vanilla is hard to beat, the chocolate version below is a great contender.
Oh, and it’s ready in around thirty minutes, so you won’t even break a sweat. Get ready for the best no-bake chocolate panna cotta to make for friends, family, and yourself!
To make this creamy dessert, you only need six ingredients. Fresh cream, which will be the dessert’s base, granulated sugar, a splash of milk, gelatin and the flavoring agents, vanilla extract and cocoa powder.
With such few ingredients, quality matters, so use premium cocoa powder and find an authentic vanilla extract from vanilla beans, not the artificial stuff. The cream must be fresh as well, so find the nicest kind available.
Use fine ingredients, and you’ll end up with a restaurant-quality dessert ideal for date night and formal dinner parties. The panna cotta has a sophisticated feel to it you’ll absolutely love.
A classic panna cotta is somewhat of a cream Jell-O; it’s dairy-based gelatin with a very smooth texture. Having said that, you can flavor a panna cotta with anything, from dulce de leche to chocolate, although the most common flavor is vanilla.
And just like you can complement a panna cotta with fresh berries or a fancy strawberry compote, you can make a chocolate panna cotta even more exciting with chocolate sauce or crushed nuts. There’s room for creativity here!
Now, how to serve a panna cotta? You can pour the mixture while still in a liquid state into ramekins, martini glasses or any cup. This is a dessert best enjoyed individually, which is part of its charm. Let’s head on to the recipe.
Hydrate the gelatin sheets in a few tablespoons of warm water and set them aside.
In a saucepan over low heat, heat the milk until steamy but not boiling and stir in the gelatin. Remove from heat.
In a second pot over low flame, heat the heavy cream, sugar, vanilla extract and cocoa powder. Remove as soon as the first bubbles show.
Combine the milk and the cream mixture and pour into ramekins or serving glasses. Let the panna cotta set for at least four hours in the fridge before serving.
Garnish with extra cocoa powder, shaved chocolate, drizzled chocolate sauce of whipped cream.