International Recipes and Cooking Around the World


Pavlova Recipe (Australian meringue with whipped cream and fruit)

(Australian meringue with whipped cream and fruit)

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Average: 4.7 (9 votes)

Both Australia and New Zealand lay claim to the birthplace of this heavenly dessert, created to honor the great Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova during her visit in the 1920s. Often called "pav" for short, it is a baked meringue, crispy on the outside and marshmallowy on the inside, that is spread with whipped cream and topped with fresh fruit.

Pavlova is a favorite for Aussie Christmases, and in New Zealand, it is often a stand-in for birthday cake.

6 to 8 servings


  • Egg whites, room temperature -- 6
  • Salt -- pinch
  • Superfine sugar (see notes) -- 1 1/2 cups
  • Cornstarch -- 1 tablespoon
  • Vinegar -- 2 teaspoons
  • Vanilla -- 1 teaspoon
  • Whipped cream -- 2 cups
  • Fresh fruit (see variations) -- 3 cups


  1. Preheat oven to 300°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper, and use a plate or pie tin to draw a 9-inch circle in the middle of the paper with a pencil. Turn the paper over so the circle is on the bottom.
  2. Add the egg whites and salt to the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on high until the whites form soft peaks, about 1 minute. With the mixer still running, slowly add the sugar and beat on high for another minute or so until the whites hold firm, shiny peaks.
  3. Remove the bowl from the mixer and sift the cornstarch over the beaten whites. Add the vinegar and vanilla and gently fold them all into the whites with a spatula.
  4. Scoop the meringue into a pile in the circle on the parchment paper and smooth them out with a spatula. Use the spatula to make a gentle depression in the middle of the meringue.
  5. Reduce the oven heat to 250°F. Place the meringue in the oven and bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes. Turn off the oven, leave the door closed and let the meringue cool completely in the oven.
  6. Carefully remove the pavlova from the baking sheet and center it on a serving platter. Spread the top evenly with whipped cream and arrange fruit nicely on the top. To serve, cut into wedges.


  • Fruit: All kinds of fruit can be used for pavlova, although a mixture of tart and sweet fruits nicely complements the sweetness of the meringue. Given the dessert's origin Down Under, kiwi and passionfruit are good to use. Or try strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, bananas, blueberries or mangoes.
  • To make individual pavlovas, spoon the merigue into 8 to 10 3-inch rounds and bake for 50 minutes to an hour.
  • Drizzle with fruit purees or even chocolate sauce.
  • For the vinegar, try using raspberry vinegar to give the meringue a subtle berry flavor.


  • To make superfine sugar, put regular sugar into a blender and run it until the sugar becomes very fine.
  • Pavlova meringue can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container for up to a week.


this is pretty much the recipe I use. I was originally taught by a lady from Devonport, who made wonderful pavs, to set the oven at 450F. Turn the oven off as soon as you put the pav in, and leave til the oven is cold. This makes a more coloured, crunchy, sugary crust with the soft marshmallow in the centre. My current oven is too well insulated to do this, so I set the oven at 350 or 375, then turn it down to about 275 for an hour. I recently had a book on pavs and their history from the Christchurch library. The pav has evolved and the author had at least 50 variations on the recipe, some quite different from this one.

The truth has now been confirmed...yeah!!
According to the Oxford Dictionary..the Pavlova was first created in New Zealand! Sorry copied it from us and cannot claim it as your own!! No hard feelings mind you!!

1929 - In New Zealand, a cookbook published in 1929 by E. Futter titled Home Cookery for New Zealand contained a recipe for “Meringue with Fruit Filling.” Although the name Pavlova is not used, the recipe is similar. Because of this recipe, New Zealanders claim to have originated the recipe. They say that the Australians used this recipe.

1935 - According to chef Herbert (Bert) Sachse of the Hotel Esplanade in Perth, Western Australia, the dessert was originally created as a tea dessert for the Hotel’s afternoon teas. According to the Paxton family legend, the Pavlova was named at a meeting at which Sachse presented the now familiar cake. The family say that either the licensee, the manager, or chef Sachse remarked, “It is as light as Pavlova.” It was then named Pavlova after the great Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova, who had been a guest of the hotel during her 1929 tour of Australia. In 1973, Herbert Sachse stated in a magazine interview that he sought to improve the Meringue Cake recipe that he found in the Women’s Mirror Magazine on April 2, 1935. The recipe was contributed by a New Zealand resident.

You both had the same recipe, but it was Aussies who gave it the name "Pavlova". In NZ it's "Meringue with Fruit filling". So, I think it's fairly to say that Pavlova is traditionally Australian dessert. No hard feeling! :) I'm Russian.

We also have the same recipe in Russia and we call it "Beze". But the recipe originally was created by a French chef Francois Massialot in 1692.

Love your neighbour as yourself.

This is a New Zealand dish, it originated in New Zealand and Aussies also have it, change the information it is misleading.