I’m participating in National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) which means I’m blogging every day of November, 2013!

I’ve got a thing for creamy, custard-like sweets. The Italian dessert panna cotta is one of my favorites, so a recipe in this month’s Fine Cooking magazine, a Pumpkin Panna Cotta, caught my eye. The recipe from Fine Cooking features a sauce made with apples and apple cider but I decided to make the panna cotta without the sauce.

panna cotta 2_text

I often make my panna cotta in jars because I think it looks pretty, and so I don’t have to worry about the whole un-molding business. You are, of course, welcome to make yours in ramekins and then un-mold them…whatever floats your boat! I found this pumpkin panna cotta to be plenty sweet without the sauce, but if you try it, I’d love to hear how it comes out.

panna cotta 1_

Recipe for Pumpkin Panna Cotta

Yield: serves 4-6 (depending on the size of the jar/ramekin)

If you are having an intimate family dinner for Thanksgiving, this may be the perfect dessert. You could also double the recipe to serve more people.


*1 1/4-oz. envelope unflavored powdered gelatin (2-1/4 teaspoons)
*1-3/4 cups heavy cream (I used organic cream)
*3/4 cup whole milk (I used raw milk)
*1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar, organic if possible
*1 teaspoon fine sea salt
*1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (I used the seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean instead)
*1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
*3/4 cup canned pure pumpkin purée, organic if possible


1. In a small bowl, stir the gelatin into 1/4 cup cold water and set aside.

2. Whisk the cream, milk, brown sugar, salt, vanilla extract or vanilla bean and cinnamon in a saucepan over medium heat until just beginning to boil.

3. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the softened gelatin. Add the pumpkin and whisk everything together, then strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl or 2-quart liquid measure (this step is optional- I skipped it). Divide among 4-6 small jars or ramekins (I used teensy Weck jars). Refrigerate until firm to the touch, covering with plastic wrap once cool, at least four hours or overnight.

(If you make your panna cotta in ramekins: un mold each one by dipping the bottom of each ramekin in hot water for a few seconds. Next, run a small knife around the edge all the way to the bottom to loosen it. Cover with a dessert plate, turn over, and "give it a good downward shake", to remove from the ramekin.)

Adapted from Fine Cooking.

panna cotta top

More Pannacotta recipes:
Avocado Panna Cotta from Healthy Green Kitchen
Buttermilk Panna Cotta from Healthy Green Kitchen
Panna Cotta with Peaches and Grand Marnier from The Wicked Noodle
Blackberry Panna Cotta from Hunter Angler Gardener Cook
Yogurt Panna Cotta with Walnuts and Honey from Smitten Kitchen



  1. 1

    Georgie — November 14, 2013 @ 10:02 pm

    Tasty, love this time of year and all the flavors that come with it. I love the spoons in your photo – simple gorgeous. Best of luck with (NaBloPoMo) – great job so far!

    • Winnie replied: — November 15th, 2013 @ 6:34 pm

      Thanks Georgie…my mom gave me the spoons and I love them, too!

  2. 2

    Nicole — November 15, 2013 @ 6:04 pm

    When it comes to my favorite dessert it’s a toss up between creme brulee, creme caramel, and panna cotta. I just bought a container of gelatin so I might have to surprise Phil with this one night soon. Thanks!

    • Winnie replied: — November 15th, 2013 @ 6:35 pm

      Let me know what you think if you make it, Nicole!

  3. 3

    Lizthechef — November 15, 2013 @ 7:00 pm

    Yummy – I love pumpkin desserts but am not a fan of pie crust. This is a great dessert for fall and winter.

  4. 4

    Natasha — November 16, 2013 @ 9:26 am

    I am a fan of creamy desserts too, so this is right up my alley! Looks yummy!

  5. 5

    Erica — November 16, 2013 @ 4:22 pm

    Love those jars!

  6. 6

    Top 10 Thanksgiving Pumpkin Panna Cottas - Top Inspired — November 18, 2013 @ 6:16 am

    […] Recipe and photo credit to healthygreenkitchen.com […]

  7. 7

    5 Panna Cotta Recipes Perfect For Thanksgiving - Exquisite Girl — November 20, 2013 @ 10:17 am

    […] Let’s continue with something similar but simpler: pumpkin panna cotta. You start the same way: you stir the gelatin into cold water. Then you whisk the cream, milk, brown sugar, salt, vanilla extract or vanilla bean and cinnamon in a saucepan. After a few minutes you remove the pan from the heat and you add the gelatin. Then add the pumpkin, whisk and put in jars.{found on site}. […]

  8. 8

    Tina — November 25, 2013 @ 10:56 am

    Has anyone tried this with coconut milk for a dairy free option?