This dairy-free Coconut Panna Cotta recipe makes an impressive, creamy dessert that is so easy to make! You only need a few simple ingredients to pull this dessert off and you will be sure to impress everyone.
This is a perfect dessert to serve when the weather is warm. It's so refreshing and also doesn't require any baking. Although I've used mango in this recipe you can top it with absolutely anything you like! Mango and coconut take me back to my time living in Thailand so that's where my mind went with this one.
What is panna cotta?
Panna cotta literally translates to "cooked cream" and is a classic Italian dessert. The traditional dessert is made of sweetened heavy cream where gelatin powder is used as the thickening agent. It can be served in a small glasses or inverted onto small dishes. It is often flavoured with vanilla bean, vanilla extract, coffee and other flavours. In this case it's coconut!
Ingredients to make this recipe
- Full-fat, canned, coconut milk
- Non-dairy milk
- Water or milk
- Ripe mango
- Toasted coconut (optional)
- Coconut oil (if you want to unmold)
How to make coconut panna cotta
Panna cotta is one of the easiest dessert recipes to make!
1.Bloom the gelatin - place the cold water in a small bowl and slowly sprinkle gelatin evenly over the surface working with one layer at a time. Let the first layer dissolve before adding more gelatin. Let the gelatin mixture sit for 5 minutes.
2. Heat the coconut milk - in a small saucepan over medium heat to medium-low heat, warm the coconut milk, milk, honey, and salt until hot but not boiling.
3. Combine - remove from heat and whisk the bloomed gelatin into the coconut mixture. Let sit for 15 minutes before pouring into molds.
If you plan to unmold them choose a cup that is smooth for easy release. Lightly grease the cups/molds with coconut oil.
4. Chill - whisk the coconut mixture then pour into cups. Let come to room temperature then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
5. Prepare the mango by first peeling then cut as small piece from the bottom so you can stand the mango upright. Slice off the flesh from each side of the flat, oval pit. Dice.
Toast coconut in a preheated 350°F (175°C) for 5-6 minutes, stirring half way through. For a deep coconut flavor, let the coconut get nicely browned. But keep a close watch as it can burn easily.
Which type of coconut milk should I use?
For this recipe it's important to use right kind of coconut milk. Normally I use brands that contain nothing but coconut and water BUT for this recipe you want to look for one that contains an emulsifier like guar gum, which prevents the separation of the oils. You want to avoid coconut milk that comes in a carton as they don't contain enough fat. Canned coconut milk that is full-fat is what's recommended for a luscious dessert. The extra fat is what produces a creamy panna cotta with a silky texture.
- Full-fat coconut milk - you could use half light and half full fat if you are looking to reduce the fat. For a creamy coconut panna cotta it's best to avoid using all light or low fat coconut milk.
- Non-dairy milk - you can use any type of milk or cream.
- Gelatin - for a vegan coconut panna cotta you can use agar agar powder however I have not tested this so I can't say what amount you would need.
- Honey - I have made this with both maple syrup and sugar with a perfect outcome.
- Mango - Tropical flavors go well with mango but any fresh fruit, fresh berries, or sweet compote can be used.
How do I unmold Panna Cotta?
First, make sure you greased your cups or molds with coconut milk or a light spray of non-stick cooking spray. Once the panna cotta has set overnight, fill a bowl with very hot water. Dip one cup at a time into the hot water until the panna cotta has released itself. You will start to see a small amount of liquid forming around the edge. Don't let it sit too long in the hot water or it will start to totally melt. Place a serving plate on top of the mold and invert. Give it a little shake or tap, if necessary, to release.
Frequently asked questions.
Yes they are a great source of protein and can be increased even more depending on the extra ingredients you add such as nut and seed butters, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, protein powder, and Greek yogurt.
Lots of protein, fiber and healthy fats can help keep you satiated longer which can aide in weight loss. Plus with this easy make-ahead recipe you are less likely to grab something unhealthy from the coffee shop.
There are many ways to bump up the protein in your oatmeal recipe such as adding nuts, seeds, hemp hearts, nut butter, protein powder, Greek yogurt, and cottage cheese. Make it savoury by adding a poached or fried egg and some cheese.
Tried this recipe? I would love it if you could leave a star rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ and/or a comment below. You can also follow me on social media here on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest!
More recipes using coconut milk
- Thai Style Coconut Chicken Soup
- Creamy Corn and Vegetable Chowder
- Thai Meatballs in Red Curry
- Curried Red Lentil Soup
Coconut Panna Cotta with Mango
- 2 packages powdered gelatin (7g/2 ½ tsp. each)
- ½ cup cold water
- 2 cans full-fat coconut milk (400 ml/13.5 oz each)
- ½ cup non-dairy milk
- ¼ cup plus 2 tbsps. honey, sugar or maple syrup
- pinch salt
- 2 ripe mangos, diced
- toasted coconut, optional
- To bloom the gelatin, place the cold water in a small bowl and slowly sprinkle gelatin evenly over the surface working with one layer at a time. Let the first layer dissolve before adding more gelatin. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- In a small saucepan over medium to medium-low heat, warm the coconut milk, milk, honey, and salt until hot but not boiling. Remove from heat and whisk the gelatin mixture into the coconut cream mixture. Let sit for 15 before pouring into molds. Whisk again before pouring into cups.
- If you are inverting onto plates, lightly brush the molds with coconut oil or non-stick spray.
- Whisk the coconut mixture then pour into cups. Let come to room temperature then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 5 hours or overnight.
- If unmolding, fill a medium bowl with very hot water. Dip one cup at a time into the hot water until the panna cotta has released itself. You will start to see a small amount of liquid forming around the edge. Don't let it sit too long in the hot water or it will start to totally melt. Place a serving plate on top of the mold and invert. Give it a little shake or tap, if necessary, to release.
- Serve chilled with fresh mango and toasted coconut.
Hi. I tried making this yesterday and it didn't set completely so it was a bit runny and separated. I used the type of coconut milk you stated so I'm not sure how to problem solve.Any suggestions would be appreciated.
I'm sorry to hear that your panna cotta didn't set up for you. Some things that can cause that to happen are gelatin not bloomed properly, gelatin didn't melt completely or it was boiled. Too much heat can cause it to lose it's setting ability. The other thing that can happen is that something was mistakenly mis-measured. I hope that helps and you give it another try!
Eveline Mut says
I made the coconut panna cotta, and it turned out well.
My guest and I enjoyed it
So happy you enjoyed it Eveline! Thanks for commenting!
If I were to use sheet gelatin would it be the same amount 7g?
I believe it would be 4 sheets per 7 grams. Or enough to set 4 cups liquid. You can check out this article for more info. https://www.thespruceeats.com/gelatine-powder-or-leaves-4082397
Hope that helps!