Orange and White Chocolate Pavlova (serves 10-12)

Orange and White Chocolate Pavlova by The Fat Foodie

Orange and White Chocolate Pavlova by The Fat Foodie

This orange and white chocolate pavlova is one of the easiest desserts you could ever make and I’ll bet it’s one that’ll be eaten the quickest too. I don’t know about your house, but few sweet things are demolished faster in our household than a pavlova, particularly one which merges a good zesty fruit with sweet sugary shards of meringue and rich, lightly whipped cream.

The combination of creamy orange curd spread over layers of thick meringue which is crisp, but still just  slightly chewy, and sandwiched by silky whipped cream is a great marriage altogether. Although I’ve used orange in my curd you could easily opt to use lemon, lime or even passionfruit instead and any of them would give you a great result.

As this was made as a treat for my family I didn’t make it a dairy-free version, but if you can’t tolerate dairy you could easily adapt the recipe by using non-dairy versions of the ingredients such as oat cream, coconut cream, non-dairy butter and dark chocolate instead of white chocolate.

Orange and White Chocolate Pavlova by The Fat Foodie

Orange and White Chocolate Pavlova by The Fat Foodie

As easy as this orange and white chocolate pavlova is to make there are just a few small, but important, rules you must follow in order to get the best results:

1.) Don’t get any fat in the egg whites. Egg whites will not whisk properly if there is any fat in them whatsoever, so crack each of your eggs into a small bowl before tipping the egg whites one at a time into the bowl you’ll be whisking them up in. That way if you accidentally break an egg yolk you’re only throwing away one egg rather than the whole bowlful. Also, make sure your bowl and electric whisk beaters are spotlessly clean of any residual fats.

2.) Use room temperature eggs as they will be much more voluminous than fridge-cold ones.

3.) Use caster sugar. The egg white bubbles are so delicate that they’ll break more easily if they’re in contact with large pieces of granulated sugar. Therefore, using the smaller sized caster sugar granules will help to retain as much air within the egg whites as possible.

4.) Add a little cornflour to stabilise the egg whites and to create a slightly chewy texture to your meringue.

I made my meringues the night before I was intending to make the pavlova which meant that they could cool down slowly in the oven overnight, ensuring their crust did not crack very much, but you could just use them immediately once they’ve been cooked and have cooled down. Trust me, if you follow these tips you’ll be rewarded with beautiful, big meringues that’ll be just begging to be topped with whipped cream and an assortment of fruits.


For the meringues:

6 egg whites

375g caster sugar

2 tsps cornflour

For the orange curd:

1 large orange

The zest and juice of 1 orange

6 egg yolks

150g butter (or a non-dairy version)

225g caster sugar

For decoration:

A carton of lactose-free double cream (about 284ml) or a non-dairy version

100g white chocolate (you could use dark chocolate if you prefer)


Preheat your oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F/Gas mark 4.

Put greaseproof paper on two large baking sheets.

Separate 6 eggs and put the egg whites in a large mixing bowl. Whisk until firm and then whisk in the cornflour and sugar.

Spread three equal circles of meringue mixture onto the baking sheets.

Put in the oven and then turn the oven down to 150C/130C Fan/300F/ Gas mark 2. Bake for 1 hour and then leave the meringues to cool.

To make the curd:

Put all of the curd ingredients into a small saucepan and over a low heat gently whisk it together until it is hot and the curd leaves a thick coat on the back of a spoon dipped into it.

Strain it through a sieve into a bowl and leave it to cool.

To assemble the pavlova:

Break your white chocolate into small pieces and place in a bowl. Leave the chocolate to melt by putting this bowl into a larger one filled with hot water. (Make sure no water gets into the chocolate though, otherwise it’ll seize and will be unworkable.)

Whip the double cream.

Put the first meringue on a serving plate and spread it with the cooled orange curd and then a layer of double cream.

Put the second meringue on top and put the rest of the curd on it, followed by another layer of cream (reserving a little cream for the top).

Put the top meringue on and spread with the last of the cream.

Put the melted white chocolate into a piping bag and drizzle over the top of the pavlova. You could just use a spoon to drizzle it over the cake though if you don’t have a piping bag.

Serve with aplomb to the astonishment and adoration of those around your dinner table and be prepared for people to come back for seconds or even thirds.

Orange and White Chocolate Pavlova by The Fat Foodie

Orange and White Chocolate Pavlova by The Fat Foodie












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Coconut and Lemon Cupcakes (makes 12-16)


Coconut and Lemon Cupcakes by The Fat Foodie

Ever since I’ve been cooking with coconut oil I’ve wondered what it would be like used in a cake instead of butter. I feared that it would make the sponge heavy, but it actually works really well and gives the cake a light texture while retaining its moisture. Coconut oil tastes quite strongly of coconut though, so I knew it’d have to be a cake which used coconut as one of its main flavour profiles. I figured incorporating lemon zest would work well with it and it does, creating feather-light, fruity, fluffy coconut and lemon cupcakes. (And if you’re feeling particularly self-indulgent, two cupcakes is a low FODMAP portion.)

This coconut and lemon cupcake cake mix is one of those brilliant ‘chuck all of the ingredients into a big bowl and whisk’ mixes, taking next to no time at all to prepare and with the aid of an electric whisk it’s easy to whip up a light and tasty buttercream with which to top the cakes. The real difficulty lies in stopping yourself from eating more than one at a time. Well, maybe two…


140g coconut oil (melted, but not hot)

200g sugar

2 tbsps lemon juice

2 eggs

a pinch of salt

120ml rice milk

4 tbsps dessicated coconut

The grated zest of 1 lemon

1 tsp coconut essence

200g gluten-free self-raising flour (I use Dove’s Farm G/F flour because it’s made with low FODMAP ingredients whereas many other gluten-free flours are made with high FODMAP options.)

1 tsp baking powder

For the buttercream icing:

70g soft non-dairy butter

1 1/2 tsps vanilla extract

180g icing sugar

1 tbsp lemon juice

3 tbsps of desiccated coconut (for decoration)


Preheat your oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas 4.

Place your empty cupcake cases in a cupcake tray or, if you don’t have one, just on a flat tray.

With the exception of the flour and baking powder, put all of your ingredients into a large mixing bowl and whisk together.

Add the flour and baking powder and whisk. (Gluten-free flour can be really absorbent, so add a couple of tbsps more rice milk, if necessary.)

Spoon the cake mix into the cupcake cases, but don’t overfill them. (I normally fill them to roughly halfway.)

Bake them in the oven for 12-15 mins until they’re golden brown. You can tell they’re cooked when a skewer pushed into the centre comes out completely clean. Leave to cool on a cooling rack.

Put all of the buttercream icing ingredients in a bowl and whisk together until the icing is pale and fluffy.

When the cakes are cool top each one with a dollop of the buttercream icing and sprinkle with desiccated coconut.

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Coconut and Lemon Cupcakes by The Fat Foodie


Coconut and Lemon Cupcakes by The Fat Foodie


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