Raspberry Panna Cotta Cake

When I left Canada to complete a post-doctoral residency in periodontics, my first birthday away was celebrated with this cake made by my dear friend Sylvie, another French Canadian I had met at The University of Pennsylvania.   The cake was so different than anything I had ever had. The very pretty cake was made of two layers: a creamy panna cotta-like layer dotted with luscious raspberries over  a base layer of moist white cake.  Light and delicious, it was a really special confection that made for a memorable birthday.  Whenever I need a celebratory cake, this recipe is one I turn to again and again.  I like that it can be made in advance.  The cake layer can even be made and frozen for several days right in the springform pan.  The recipe never fails to delight and surprise.  “What is in this?”  Yogurt, cream, very little sugar and gelatin!  Calling it a panna cotta cake is the best descriptive term I have come up with. In French its original name was “Délice aux framboises”.  Oh la la, it sure is! image


Cake layer: half of a white cake mix


Raspberries spread over cake layer


Heating milk, cream and sugar before whisking in the gelatin.


Yogurt and vanilla added to the milk~cream-sugar~gelatin mixture and poured over the raspberries. Chill for 2 hours or overnight.


Serving the cake to celebrate a talented young woman’s graduation, I added pink  perennial geranium flowers around the cake.

image image

Raspberry Panna Cotta Cake

  • Servings: 10
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
  • 1/2 of a white cake mix, prepared as directed, in a 9″ springform pan, cooled
  • 4 teaspoons Knox gelatin(2envelopes)
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup half and half cream(use heavy cream if using low fat milk)
  • 2 1/4 cups plain whole milk European style yogurt(not Greek)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 12 oz fresh raspberries(2 containers)
  1. Spread the raspberries over the cake base in the springform pan.
  2.  Dissolve gelatin in water.
  3. In a small saucepan heat milk, cream and sugar until sugar is dissolved.  Remove from heat and add gelatin, whisking to mix thoroughly and prevent clumping.
  4. Add yogurt and vanilla.  Mix well.  Pour over the raspberries.
  5. Chill at least 2 hours or overnight.  Run knife around sides to loosen and remove sides of pan.  Serves 10.

Bon appétit!

54 thoughts on “Raspberry Panna Cotta Cake

  1. Cannot wait to make this beautiful cake for my adult granddaughter ‘s birthday. Is European yogurt the plain yogurt we used to eat before Greek yogurt became all the rage or is it actually labeled European style yogurt? Beautiful photography also!

    • Trader Joe has a European yogurt labelled so It is like yogurt we used to eat before Greek. Must be whole milk to get the cake really creamy and silky. Get the vanilla bean white cake mix at Trader Joe too. It’s the best! Lest me know how your granddaughter likes it Mary Ann! Xo

      Sent from my iPhone


  2. This is definitely a very fancy cake that delivers both in looks, and taste for sure! I love the two layers! I love the raspberries studded in the pannacotta layer! I adore pannacotta so I can’t wait to try this! 🙂 absolutely stunning!
    Thank you for sharing this beautiful cake! Happy FF! 🙂

    • Thank you Dini! Appreciate you hosting the party:-). I am more of a cook than a baker so panna cotta is a favorite to make. This cake can be modified so easily like with lemon yogurt and blueberries. Let me know how you enjoy it!

      Sent from my iPhone


  3. This is so beautiful and amazing you HAVE to submit it to Food52 “My Best Mash Up Recipe” because it combines 2 dessert things — cake and panna cotta. Wow, it really is special with the colours too! Bravo!

  4. I have been the recipient of this cake for a special birthday and it is a definite crowd pleaser. It makes a beautiful presentation and is so unique. My mom and I have made this a family favorite.

    • When I made this cake for you Lynne, it was the first time I had tried it myself. Now I make it all the time because it is so easy. It’s new name is a hommage to your Italian roots! I am honored it’s become a Liquori favorite!

      Sent from my iPad


  5. Wow, this cake sure deserves to be in the spotlight Johanne – how absolutely stunning! Love the flowers studded on the cake too. Will have to try this for sure, I’m bookmarking it now. :). We’ve decided to take a short trip to see our friends in Quebec – we thought we’d do a road trip and stop somewhere in Vermont for some rest and exploring. Our friends live in the most gorgeous part of PQ – it’s a small island called Ile d’Orleans, their backyard has the St. Lawrence River flowing through it, and the Laurentian Mountains can be seen from their kitchen window. Real idyllic!

    • Thanks so much Loretta! I am so envious. Ile d’Orleans is so beautiful, especially in the summer! How lucky to have friends living there that you can visit. This cake is a recipe from a Québécois magazine from 25 plus years ago! If you continue driving along le fleu e St-Laurent, you will reach that amazing garden, Les Quatre Vents, I think I mentioned before. Did you ever watch the movie, Seducing Dr. lewis? Set in a small village along the St Lawrence. Might still be able to find it at a library….

      Sent from my iPad


      • I’ll have to look that up Johanne, thanks for the movie recommendation too. We won’t be there too long, but plan to make the most of it. Just love Quebec in the summer time :). I plan to blog about it too, as the house has so much history and the location is perfect! Nicole keeps a wonderful garden too, with a lot of herbs and veggies too that she utilizes in her kitchen. Watch this space…..:)

  6. I hardly have words this looks so lovely! It’s something that belongs in a fairy tale = or at least a wonderful garden party! I can just about picture little girls in pigtails, white dresses with pink sashes cavorting around the garden! I’d be one of them! And you’ll notice, in answer to your question awhile back,


  7. This looks so incredible! I love the look of the raspberries peeking through the top and dispersed throughout the pannacotta layer. This cake must be so light and so rich and creamy…what a perfect spring (or are we in summer now?) cake!

  8. Johanne, It looks beautiful and it taste even BETTER!!
    I’m happy I got to eat this with one of the most wonderful family! Can you send a slice to the Bahamas? haha.

  9. Oh, my. This cake is a WOW. I love the pure smooth simplicity of panna cotta, and it is genius to have it layered over berries and cake. beautiful. I will be making this. thanks so much for sharing this celebratory dessert, Johanne.

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