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Published August 30, 2018. This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
Banana Coconut Panna Cotta Recipe with Fresh Berries and Vanilla is super easy to make and is topped off with some fresh berries soaked in vanilla and simple syrup.
This is seriously one of the most underrated desserts of all time. It’s simple to make, it’s beyond delicious and it just offers that touch of elegance to whomever you are serving it too. All too often I get stuck and forget about something incredibly delicious I made years ago, just like in this recipe.
It’s been a few years since I made it, but wow am I glad I did because it is ridiculously tasty! No joke, my wife took 1 bite of this after she didn’t want to and then was like crap now I have to eat the whole dang thing. Yup, this is just that good!
What is Panna Cotta
The word Panna Cotta is Italian and translates to “cooked cream.” While that is a great translation, I think the definition of it is a little better which is a sweet cream set with gelatin. You may never have worked with gelatin, but I promise you’ve eaten it before. J-E-L-L-O ring a bell :-). Yup, you’ve eaten it before.
It consists of heavy cream that incorporates a sweetener, like honey or sugar, and then some sort of flavoring, usually chocolate or vanilla. You want to then sprinkle your gelatin over top and let it bloom. When it blooms the gelatin and the cream will sort of wrinkle together, and at that point you are good to scald it.
From there you strain it and let it set in a the dish you would like to serve it in and that’s it.
How to Make It
You know I’m not about to sit around and make a simple vanilla or chocolate version, no, no, no, I’m always going to put my stamp on it. I thought it would be awesome to add in a bit of coconut milk to this recipe and then finish it with some bananas. Truth be told I was originally wanting to make a banana version and then topping it off with fresh strawberries for that ever-classic strawberry-banana combo.
Well I found out some dude from Food Network had already done a banana version so I had to change mine up a bit. I’m not about to yield to some dudes that are on TV, this dessert was my idea first, I swear it.
For this recipe, you would back off by a third of the cream and replace it with coconut milk, simple as that. Oh yeah, use the canned coconut milk not the stuff you find in the refrigerated aisle.
Once the procedures are complete you then transfer it to a blender with some bananas and puree it until it is completely smooth. Strain it, plate it, and let it set!
How to Serve It
To me, this is best served in single serving dishes which is why I put it in little 4-ounce glass jars. They are cool looking and because it’s rich, I think it is best served in this way. There are several things you can serve panna cotta with from chocolate sauce to caramel, to berries and grand Marnier, honestly the possibilities are endless.
I was looking for things to compliment the flavors of banana and coconut which were already in the recipe, so I went ahead and added on some fresh whipped cream, vanilla and simple syrup soaked fresh berries, toasted coconut flakes and toasted mashed macadamia nuts.
The goal when serving up anything, whether it be a main entrée or this coconut panna cotta, is to always make sure things are complimenting. Well I know all of those toppings go insane with bananas and coconut, so it was a no brainer.
You could change it up by incorporating some rum into the berries or even to the whipped cream. Just a quick thought.
More Amazing Dessert Recipes
If you love this, then be sure to check out these amazing dessert recipes.
- French Silk Pie Recipe
- Croissant Bread Pudding
- Italian Ricotta Cheesecake Recipe
- Old Fashioned Peach Cobbler Recipe
- Smoked Hazelnut Nutella – from Vindulge
Banana Coconut Panna Cotta Recipe
For the Panna Cotta:
- 2 cups of heavy whipping cream
- 1 tablespoons of unflavored powdered gelatin
- 1 cup of canned whole fat coconut milk
- ½ cup of sugar
- 1 vanilla bean seeds
- 2 peeled ripe bananas
For the Toppings:
- ½ cup each fresh blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and golden raspberries
- ¼ cup of simple syrup
- 1 ½ tablespoons of vanilla
- whipped cream
- ¼ cup each toasted coconut flakes and mashed macadamia nuts
- Add the heavy cream to a medium size pot and sprinkle the gelatin over top and let it sit for 1 minute until it blooms.
- Stir the mixture and then whisk in the coconut milk, sugar and vanilla bean seeds, and scald over medium-low heat, about 5 minutes.
- Transfer the mixture to a blender with 2 bananas and puree until smooth.
- Strain the mixture and then evenly pour it into single serving bowls or dishes. Let stand in the refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours or until it is set and firm.
- Next, add the berries to a bowl and gently mix them with the simple syrup and vanilla. Keep cool until ready to serve.
- To Plate: add some whipped cream to the top of the panna cotta and top off with some fresh simple syrup and vanilla soaked berries, toasted coconut and macadamia nuts. Serve!