Christmas Meringue plate

What is Pavlova?

Pavlova, Australia’s national dessert, is one of my favorite desserts, both to eat and to make. It looks seriously complicated but couldn’t be easier. Its foundation (literally) is a cloud of meringue. The meringue bakes up crusty on the outside with a pillowy marshmallow interior. Next is a layer of sweetened whipped cream. Usually a fruit of choice is the crowning glory. It’s a natural fit for Christmas with its snowy white appearance and the ability to customize it endlessly. I thought cranberry would be perfect for this Christmas Pavlova, and I happened to have these fantastic Sparkling Sugared Cranberries for a garnish.

Can I make Pavlova ahead of time?

You can make all of the components of this Christmas Pavlova (even the cranberries!) up to two or three days ahead. Pavlova is awesome for an easy, make ahead Christmas dessert. I whipped up the meringue and baked it three days before my event.  Wrap it in plastic wrap and store it in a cabinet (not the refrigerator, or else it will weep). You can even whip the cream the day before, sweetening it with a bit of powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Whipped cream stays fresh in the fridge for at least a few days.

Christmas Wreath Pavlova before decoration

How do I make the cranberry syrup?

I saved the cranberry syrup from the Sparkling Sugared Cranberries for a new life in this dessert. I combined the syrup with a few handfuls of fresh cranberries. Next, I squeezed some satsuma (a local citrus similar to a tangerine) juice in there. Finally, I simmered it until it thickened and the cranberries popped. This I strained and reserved for drizzling over the finished pavlova.

Christmas Meringue plate
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Christmas Pavlova

A show-stopping Christmas dessert, this Christmas Wreath pavlova has it all: tart fruit, clouds of whipped cream, and airy meringue.

Course Dessert
Cuisine British
Keyword christmas pavlova, christmas wreath pavlova, cranberry pavlova
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Assembly 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 42 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 117 kcal
Author Amanda


  • 4 egg whites extra large, at room temperature
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar white
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups whipped cream see note
  • Sparkling Sugared Cranberries
  • Rosemary sprigs cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • Cranberry sauce see note


  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.
  2. Place a sheet of parchment paper on a sheet pan.
  3. Draw a 9-inch circle on the paper, using a 9-inch plate as a guide, then turn the paper over so the circle is on the reverse side. (This way you won’t get a pencil mark on the meringue.)
  4. Place the egg whites and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment.
  5. Beat the egg whites on high speed until firm, about 3 minutes.
  6. With the mixer still on high, slowly add the sugar and beat until it makes firm, shiny peaks, about 4 more minutes.
  7. Remove the bowl from the mixer, sift the cornstarch onto the beaten egg whites, add the vinegar and vanilla, and fold in lightly with a rubber spatula.
  8. To make a wreath shape, spoon the meringue into a circle on the parchment paper and smooth the top, joining the dollops into a wreath.
  9. Bake for 1 hour.
  10. Turn off the oven, keep the door closed, and allow the meringue to cool completely in the oven, about 1 hour. It will be crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Wrap it in plastic wrap until you’re ready to assemble it, ideally right before eating.
  11. To assemble the pavlova, place the wreath on a plate (it will most likely crack as it cools–this is okay). Spoon whipped cream on top of the wreath and garnish with cranberry sauce, sugared cranberries, and rosemary or mint.

Recipe Notes

For the whipped cream, place 1.5 cups of heavy cream in the bowl of a mixer and whip until thick. Add 2 tablespoons vanilla extract and 1/2 cup of powdered sugar and whip until firm peaks.

For cranberry syrup, put reserved syrup from Sparkling Sugared Cranberries in a saucepan with 1 cup of fresh cranberries. Add the juice of one satsuma, orange, or clementine and simmer it until it’s thick and the cranberries pop. Strain into a bowl and discard solids. 

Nutrition Facts
Christmas Pavlova
Amount Per Serving
Calories 117 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Cholesterol 9mg3%
Sodium 21mg1%
Potassium 37mg1%
Carbohydrates 22g7%
Sugar 21g23%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 82IU2%
Calcium 12mg1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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