Double Chocolate Pavlova with Mascarpone Cream & Raspberries

5 stars based on 16 votes


Created by a hotel chef in the 1920s in honor of the Russian ballet dancer Anna Pavlova during one of her tours to Australia or New Zealand, a pavlova is a cake-shaped meringue with a soft and marshmallowy center and crisp outer shell, usually topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit.


In this gorgeous chocolate version, cocoa powder and bittersweet chocolate are folded into the meringue — which makes it deliciously fudgy — and mascarpone cheese (Italian cream cheese) is added to the whipped topping. It’s a wonderfully light, gluten-free dessert. I made it for Passover this year and it was a huge hit.


The nice thing about pavlovas is that even though they look fancy, they are incredibly easy to make — even kids can do it. Mine love separating the eggs and whipping the meringue.


To begin, beat the egg whites until foamy. Then, gradually add the sugar and continue beating until the meringue is glossy and stiff (when you slowly lift the whisk out of the mixture, it will hold stiff peaks). Be patient; this takes 8-9 minutes.


Next, sift in the cocoa powder and add the chopped chocolate and vinegar. Using a rubber spatula, fold the mixture together until no streaks of cocoa powder remain. Mound the meringue onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and spread into a 9-inch “cake.”


Place in the oven and cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the meringue is puffed and crisp all over, yet still a bit wobbly underneath if you touch the center. Don’t worry if the top is cracked (it may crack even more than shown in the photo below) — this is normal and it all gets covered with whipped cream in the end.


When the meringue is cool, make the topping by beating the heavy cream and marscapone cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer until combined. Gradually add the sugar and continue beating until it holds pillowy soft peaks. Don’t overbeat! Pile the mascarpone cream on top of the meringue and gently spread it out about an inch from the edge (don’t worry if the meringue cracks in the process). Top the pavlova with the raspberries and sprinkle the shaved chocolate over top.


Cut the pavlova into wedges, wiping the knife in between slices, and serve. Enjoy!


Note: The meringue portion of this recipe was adapted from Nigella Lawson on

Double Chocolate Pavlova with Mascarpone Cream & Raspberries

Servings: 10
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 1 Hour 15 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 35 Minutes


For the Pavlova

  • 6 large egg whites
  • Pinch salt
  • 1-3/4 cups superfine sugar (see note)
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

For the Marscapone Cream

  • 8 ounces (1 cup) mascarpone cheese, cold
  • 1-1/2 cups heavy whipping cream, cold
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Topping

  • 1-1/2 cups fresh raspberries
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, grated or shaved into curls (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a dark marker, draw a 9-inch diameter circle on the parchment paper by tracing around a 9-inch cake pan or plate. Flip the paper over so your meringue won't touch the marker.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and salt on medium speed until foamy soft peaks form, about a minute. Increase the speed to medium-high and gradually add the sugar; continue beating until stiff peaks form, 8-9 minutes. (The meringue will be glossy.)
  3. Pass the cocoa powder through a sieve or sifter and add to the meringue. Add the vinegar and chopped chocolate. Using a large rubber spatula, fold the mixture until well combined. It should be a light mocha color with no white or brown streaks.
  4. Secure the parchment paper to the baking sheet by adding a dab of meringue under each corner. Mound the meringue onto the parchment inside the circle. Using the spatula or a butter knife, spread the meringue to fill the circle. Even the top and sides just slightly -- it shouldn’t be perfectly smooth or overworked. Place in the oven and cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the meringue is puffed and crisp all over, yet still a bit wobbly underneath if you touch the center. Don't worry if the top is cracked -- that's normal and it all gets covered with whipped cream in the end. Turn off the oven, prop the oven door open, and leave the meringue in the oven to cool to room temperature, at least 30 minutes. (The meringue won’t collapse as much if it cools gradually.)
  5. Before serving, carefully peel the meringue off of the parchment paper and place it on a serving platter. In a medium bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese, heavy cream and vanilla until combined. Gradually add the sugar and continue beating until it holds soft, pillowy peaks. Do not overbeat; it should not be too stiff or grainy. Mound the mascarpone cream onto the meringue and gently spread it out about an inch from the edge (don't worry if the meringue cracks in the process). Top the pavlova with the raspberries and sprinkle the shaved chocolate over top. Cut the pavlova into wedges, wiping the knife in between slices, and serve.
  6. Note: If you don't have superfine sugar, place regular granulated sugar in a food processor and pulse until fine, about 30 seconds.
  7. Note: This pavlova can be made ahead and assembled up to 12 hours ahead of time. Keep in the refrigerator.

Nutrition Information

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  • Per serving (10 servings)
  • Calories: 429
  • Fat: 25g
  • Saturated fat: 15g
  • Carbohydrates: 51g
  • Sugar: 47g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 5g
  • Sodium: 136g
  • Cholesterol: 74mg

Reviews & Comments

  • 5 stars

    We decided to do a “different” Thanksgiving and skip the turkey and 1000 sides. We had prime rib and wanted something new and special for dessert. I made this and it was the hit of the party! It is SO easy to make! And so elegant and unbelievably delicious! This dessert is a show-stopper, highly recommend if you are looking for something beautiful that will impress!

    - Colleen on November 27, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This is a really good dessert ! I made it for Christmas and everyone loved it, they all asked for the recipe. I had a fun time explaining the name and where it came from.I have made it a few more times since
    then. A few times I cut back on the sugar
    ( it was way too sweet) and it was still great.I love the marshmallow -like texture.

    - Liliane Robbins on May 20, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Thank you so much for this recipe! I was intrigued when I saw the picture for this Pavlova. My mother in law is a huge chocolate fan so I thought I would make it this year for Easter dessert. Something different from the traditional Easter desserts. Thinking it may not be chocolatey enough for her, I also made your fabulous Supernatural Brownies. Let me tell you, this Pavlova was the hit of the party, although the brownies also had everyone raving and questioning, “what’s in these brownies?… they are so chewy and the texture is so different”. The Pavlova was melt-in-your-mouth delicious and the chocolate was perfect and rich. This is my new go-to for desserts. The mascarpone cream topping is the perfect disguise for this oddity. You really can’t go wrong with this one!

    - Shannon on April 8, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Happy Pesach Jen! Made this scrumptious dessert twice already!!! Favorite Passover dessert EVER!!!!! Several guests left with the recipe!!! Not to mention your macaroon recipe. This Pavlova (as with all your recipes) is easy to follow and turns out perfectly, cracks and all :). Filled the top with yummy cheese, covered with berries and added white chocolate shavings :). I made the first cake, one day ahead, refrigerated it and it was amazing.
    Thank you so much!!!

    - Marnie on April 7, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made this for our Easter lunch. Everything turned out perfect. Mine turned out just like the picture except for the 14 inches, rather than the 10 inches. I only had extra large eggs – too late to go out and buy smaller ones! I did consider decreasing the number of egg whites, but I don’t really have experience to figure that out. I saw a comment about it being a bit too sweet, so maybe it was good I used them extra large eggs! Definitely a keeper. Super easy and beautiful presentation. Thank you!

    - Cristina on April 6, 2015 Reply
  • Hi just made it and put it in the oven when I realized I forgot the vinegar. Do I need to to toss this one and make a new one from scratch? I was planning on bringing it for tomorrow’s Seder. Thank you for your help.

    - Maya on April 2, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Maya, Unfortunately, the vinegar is necessary to give the meringue its crisp shell and soft, marshmallowy interior. I would make another one and save the current one for snacking :)

      - Jenn on April 2, 2015 Reply
  • 4 stars

    When I let my meringue cool with the oven door open, it collapsed! Looks very hollow on the inside and the outside very crispy :( what did I do wrong? Bake it too long? I baked it 15 less than it said because it was looking done, did I cool it too quickly? :( will definitely try again

    - Alex on March 31, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Alex, Definitely bake it for the recommended time so that it’s stable, but it’s okay if it collapses or cracks a bit — that’s normal for a pavlova. It all gets covered with cream in the end so you don’t have to worry about it :)

      - Jenn on April 1, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I have made this several times, always a pleaser! Made it for guests at a dinner party almost a year ago and they still keep talking about it and asking me to make it again. The merengue is crispy on the outside and soft-ish on the inside, perfect! The mascarpone cream is delicious. I usually serve the raspberries on the side.

    - Teresa on March 26, 2015 Reply
  • Can the meringue be made in advanced? If so, how long will it keep & how should it be stored?

    - Elayne Freeman on March 26, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Elayne, It’s fine to make it a day ahead of time. You can store it uncovered in the fridge.

      - Jenn on March 26, 2015 Reply
  • How far in advance can the pavlova be made?

    - Linda G on March 26, 2015 Reply
    • Hi Linda, I would say it’s perfectly fine to make it one day ahead of time. It may keep longer, but it will be at its best fresh.

      - Jenn on March 26, 2015 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I fixed this last Thanksgiving to accommodate a gluten-free relative, and it was the hit of the holiday – had to fix it again for Christmas! I followed other review suggestions and used about 1/4 c. less sugar than called for. This is a beautiful dessert and really easy to make – it’s a keeper!

    - Jane Smith on March 19, 2015 Reply
  • 4 stars

    I made this for Christmas and it was a hit. Family members thought that it was a store bought dessert. If I make it again, I will omit the chopped chocolate from the the batter, as it didn’t melt, and I didn’t like biting into the pieces. Other than that, it’s delicious, being that, I was skeptical due to the fact that I hate meringue.

    - Barbi Z on December 27, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Jen-Thank you for sharing your recipes. I have used more recipes from your blog than any other blog or cookbook…ever. They are all wonderful and believe me, my family has high standards! I’ve made this Pavlola twice and both times people flipped for it. It’s a wonderful recipe for a celebration.

    - Anne on December 3, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made this for Thanksgiving dessert. I was a big hit. The recipe was easy to follow and came out perfectly. We are fans of Pavlova and loved this variation.

    - Janelle Ozawa on November 30, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made this for Thanksgiving and it was a huge hit…will definitely make it again!

    Thank you for sharing your recipe!

    - Nancy on November 28, 2014 Reply
  • Could this be made with the egg whites you buy in a carton or does it need to be from an actual cracked egg that I separate myself? Thanks.

    - James on November 27, 2014 Reply
    • Hi James, Great question. To be honest, I’ve never baked with egg whites from a carton but from what I’ve read, it will work. However, you will get much lighter and more delicate meringues from fresh eggs. I’d probably stick with fresh since the texture of this meringue is what makes it so wonderful.

      - Jenn on November 29, 2014 Reply
  • It’s now been proved that the first recipe for what we know as Pavlova was sent to an Australian magazine from New Zealand.
    It was known and baked in New Zealand before being named as ‘Pavlova’ in Australia, after, as you have said, the tour of the famous Anna Pavlova.
    ‘Pavlova’, the beautiful meringue cake, comes from New Zealand, not Australia, although made and loved in both countries.

    - Jilli Andre on November 27, 2014 Reply
  • I am making this one day ahead of time. The recipe says you can assemble 12 hours ahead of time. Does that just mean that whipped topping? Is one day too much?

    - Jane on November 26, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Jane, I have made this dessert a day ahead of time and it holds up beautifully in the fridge.

      - Jenn on November 26, 2014 Reply
      • So you can make it 24 hrs. in advance up to what point in the recipe? I don’t won’t it to get soggy. Or am I better off just making the meringue part 1 day in advance & keeping in a cool (but not refrigerated) place. It seems easy to make the cream, etc. on the day of…..

        - Sue Lorentsen on December 22, 2014 Reply
        • Hi Sue, I would say it’s best to assemble it no more than 12 hours in advance of serving, but you can make both the meringue and cream the day before. Just keep the meringue in a cool dry place and the cream in the fridge, and then put it all together and refrigerate the day of your dinner party. Hope you enjoy it!

          - Jenn on December 23, 2014 Reply
  • At what temperature do you bake the meringue?

    - Debbie on November 22, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Debbie, The pavlova gets baked at 300°F.

      - Jenn on November 23, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Per another reviewer, I cut the sugar in the chocolate meringue back to 1 1/4 cups, which was good, but still a bit sweet. Might try 1 cup next time. I may have underbeaten the meringue, because mine did spread a bit and ended up thinner. Nonetheless, it was a great success! People who normally don’t eat dessert asked for 2 helpings and haven’t stopped raving about it. Very impressive dessert!

    - Kari on July 18, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I have made this three times already and each time it has turned out perfect! I ran low on superfine sugar the first time (roughly 1/2 cup) and it still tasted delicious. The second time I made it, I used 1 3/4 cup as the recipe calls for and found it a tad too sweet. This is now my go-to dessert recipe! It is easy to make yet gives an impressive presentation. I made it for a tea party and everyone begged for the recipe. I found myself wanting to keep this all to myself, but I gave in and shared the recipe!

    - Mary on July 8, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This was wonderful!! Very easy to make, even having never made meringue before. The instructions and pictures were very helpful. Mine also expanded to about 12″. I think I will decrease the amount of sugar the next time — it was very sweet and I love sweet. Also, my family agreed that we enjoyed it more chilled. I didn’t use the mascarpone, only sweetened, homemade whipped cream. It was really delicious. And the raspberries make it. They’re the perfect complement to this dessert. Fabulous. Thank you!

    - Dee on June 25, 2014 Reply
  • 5 stars

    will everything turn out ok when i use Splenda? i can not rate the pavlova at this time , as it sounds and looks it would be a 5star

    - lorraine on June 13, 2014 Reply
    • Hi Lorraine, I have never baked with Splenda so I can’t say for sure. So sorry, wish I could be more helpful.

      - Jenn on June 19, 2014 Reply
  • I decided to make this pavlova for Memorial Day dinner. It was wonderful! I consider myself a pretty creative cook and had never made anything like this and it not only turned out just as beautiful as the picture but the flavor was wonderful. Everyone thought it was the best dessert they had ever eaten! Thank you for a great recipe. I did however have to find the largest cake plate I had because even staying inside the 9 inch circle it expanded to about 12 inches or more in diameter.

    - Linda on May 29, 2014 Reply
  • I made this for the first time this Mother’s day and as far as the taste all I can say is there was not a single crumb left on the serving plate let alone anyone’s plate.

    Due to a little excited touching by the group in the kitchen during the cooling stage the meringue collapsed in the center. I didn’t worry and sure enough after spreading all that delicious cream on top nobody was the wiser. It looked stunning and tasted beyond delicious!

    The meringue was so much easier to execute than I expected having never made one before. I used a silicone baking sheet and eyeballed the 9 “ circle to save time and it still formed beautifully.

    This is one that surely will be continue to made for years to come. Kudos and thank you from a first time commenter but long time explore of your recipes! Not one has been anything less than outstanding.

    - jennifer on May 14, 2014 Reply
  • This dessert is just wonderful. I made it for our family’s Mother’s Day celebration along with your crab cakes and French green beans and it was loved by all. Definitely a keeper!

    - Karen on May 12, 2014 Reply
  • Outstanding! Very easy to make and absolutely delicious. I have always loved meringues but had never tried a chocolate version. Rich, but very light. Crunchy shell with moist, soft center. I did cut the sugar to 1-2/3 cups and think will use 1-1/2 next time. It’s plenty sweet. Also loved the mascarpone/whipped cream topping. Divine!!

    - Mindy on May 12, 2014 Reply

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