Pavlovas with Cranberry-Ginger Sauce

This healthy, gluten-free dessert has everything--crisp-on-the-outside, gooey-inside meringue base, whipped cream, tart cranberry sauce and toasted nuts. Plus, you can make everything ahead of time, then simply assemble and serve.

Prep Time:
1 hrs
Additional Time:
2 hrs 30 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 30 mins
12 servings



  • 4 large egg whites, at room temperature

  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

  • ¾ cup granulated sugar

  • 1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch

  • 1 teaspoon white-wine vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cranberry-Ginger Sauce

  • 2 cups cranberries, fresh or frozen

  • cup honey

  • cup spiced rum or cranberry juice

  • 1 ½ tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ½ teaspoon almond extract


  • cup slivered almonds

  • 1 tablespoon spiced rum or vanilla extract

  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar

Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. To prepare meringues: Arrange racks in upper and lower thirds of oven; preheat to 225 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper and draw six 2 1/2-inch circles, a couple inches apart, on each piece. (Pavlovas don't spread much.) Flip the parchment marked-side down.

  2. Beat egg whites on medium-high speed in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment until soft peaks form, about 1 minute. With the mixer running, add nutmeg, then gradually add 3/4 cup sugar, beating until the mixture is stiff, shiny and smooth. Sprinkle cornstarch, vinegar and 1 teaspoon vanilla over the whites and use a spatula to gently but thoroughly fold it all together.

  3. Dollop 1/3 cup of meringue over each circle on the parchment. Spread it out with the back of a spoon to fill the circles and even the tops.

  4. Bake the meringues for 1 1/2 hours, swapping baking sheets from top to bottom, front to back, halfway through. Turn off the oven without opening the door and let stand for 30 minutes more. Let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Peel the meringues from the parchment to loosen, then cool on the parchment to room temperature, about 30 minutes.

  5. To prepare sauce: Meanwhile, combine cranberries, honey, 1/3 cup rum (or cranberry juice), ginger, cinnamon and almond extract in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over high heat, then reduce to a low simmer. Cook until most of the cranberries pop and the sauce thickens slightly, 10 to 12 minutes.

  6. To prepare almonds: While the meringues cool, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  7. Toss almonds in a small bowl with rum (or vanilla) and sugar. Spread on the prepared baking sheet. Bake, stirring once halfway through and checking every 30 seconds near the end, until the almonds are light amber, 7 to 8 minutes. Set aside to cool.

  8. To prepare whipped cream: Just before serving, beat cream and vanilla in a mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form.

  9. To serve: Top each meringue with whipped cream, cranberry sauce and almonds.


To make ahead: Store meringues (Steps 1-4) tightly wrapped on the parchment-lined pan at room temperature for up to 3 days. To serve, unwrap and recrisp at 225 degrees F for 10 minutes; turn off the oven and let stand 10 minutes. Refrigerate cranberry sauce (Step 5) and store almonds (Steps 6-7) airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

200 Calories
9g Fat
25g Carbs
3g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 200
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 25g 9%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 23g
Added Sugars 21g 42%
Protein 3g 5%
Total Fat 9g 11%
Saturated Fat 5g 24%
Cholesterol 23mg 8%
Vitamin A 305IU 6%
Vitamin C 3mg 3%
Folate 3mcg 1%
Sodium 25mg 1%
Calcium 26mg 2%
Iron 0mg 2%
Magnesium 12mg 3%
Potassium 81mg 2%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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