Mini Citrus Pavlovas

A quick check of the weather before I sat down to write this post informed me that another snowstorm was on the way.

We may be all dreaming of spring, with its rhubarb galettes and strawberry pie, but the reality is that we’ll be embracing citrus fruits for a while still here in Montreal. That’s fine with me, because a friend’s new book, Simply Citrus, is inspiring me to stock up on grapefruit and tangerines, limes and lemons.

Around here, blustery winds and fresh snowdrifts are totally normal for March, and today’s mini pavlovas match the elements.  Crisp white meringues are reminiscent of the frosty snowbanks that blanket our homestead from end to end, while soft peaks of whipped cream cover them like the freshly fallen snow.

I think winter desserts are every bit as elegant as summer, and pavlovas are at the absolute top of the list. Read on for the mini citrus pavlova recipe, plus a giveaway of Simply Citrus.


Meringues have long been a favourite dessert base of mine: crumbled into bowls of Eton Mess, styled in chocolate pavlovas, and on top of elaborate ice cream cakes. My children love crisp meringues as much as I do, so I am forever hoarding egg whites and sculpting them into shapes.

Mini citrus pavlovas are an elegant, yet simple dessert that will woo you with a killer combination of tart and sweet, creamy and crunchy. They are inspired by a recipe for ‘Grapefruit and Pomegranate Pavlova’ in the brand new cookbook, Simply Citrus, written by my dear friend Marie of Food Nouveau.

Marie’s beautiful cookbook is a fresh take on all things citrus. It features both savoury and sweet original recipes, the likes of which are approachable and simple, but not boring. I know I can get stuck in a rut with oranges, clementines and the like, often doing the same old thing, like a salad, but this book offers 60 new ideas.

It’s sugaring off season here in Quebec, and believe it or not, citrus and maple make a fine pairing. The kids and I have bookmarked the Squash and Clementine Mini Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream to make for a treat soon and I’ll be scaling up Marie’s Maple Paloma Cocktail into a pitcher for my next party.  The tangy grapefruit juice is mellowed out with the earthy maple syrup, and tequila gives it all a proper punch. Delicious!

Find Simply Citrus on Amazon and Indigo, or read to the bottom of the post for a chance to win a copy of your own.

Mini Citrus Pavlovas

If you’re snowed in like we are, or just looking for a little pop of colour in a grey March day, these citrus pavlovas bring a ray of sunshine to the table.

A few tips for perfect pavlovas:

  1. When whipped egg whites are the base of a recipe you want to get as much lift and air as possible. To ensure maximum volume, use room temperature egg whites and take care that there are no yolks or grease remnants on any of the utensils or the bowl, as this can weigh the egg whites down.
  2. A perfect pavlova is crisp on the outside with a slightly soft, marshmallowy interior. A pavlova should not be crisp and dried all the way through, like a meringue, although that is just as delicious, so don’t sweat it if your mini pavlovas have more crisp than chew.
  3. Ideally, the pavlova remains pure white, however, all ovens vary and you may find it takes on a little colour. Again, don’t worry, it will taste just as delicious. I’ve been know to serve up a golden pavlova and declare it ‘brown sugar’ flavour. Works like a charm!
  4. Store the baked and cooled pavlovas at room temperature in an airtight container for several days (up to 4-5 days, but it depends on the humidity). It’s important to keep them away from humidity as this will make them go soft and they will spoil faster – this is why they are an ideal winter dessert.
  5. Lastly, it is best to garnish a mini pavlova with cream and fruit just before serving for best presentation and texture.

I don’t need to tell you that these Mini Citrus Pavlovas would be adorable for a light dessert following Easter dinner. I’d even go as far as to say they would be lovely on a brunch menu, too. They are not too sweet, and feature citrus, which feels decidedly brunchy, wouldn’t you agree?

Mini Citrus Pavlovas

A pretty springtime dessert, adapted from 'Simply Citrus'. You will need to prepare the mini meringue bases several hours or the night before serving so they have time to dry. Once assembled, the pavlovas are best enjoyed at once.
4.88 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Desserts
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Gluten-free
Essential Ingredient: Citrus
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings: 6 pavlovas
Calories: 300kcal
Author: Aimee

Ingredients

  • 3 large egg whites room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice strained
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract divided
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 medium pink grapefruit
  • 1 medium orange
  • 3 clementines or mandarines
  • 1 Tablespoon liquid honey
  • 1 1/4 cups whipping cream
  • 4 teaspoons powdered sugar
  • mint to garnish

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 250F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Place the egg whites in a clean, dry bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, beat the whites on medium high until stiff peaks form. Meanwhile, stir together the cornstarch, lemon juice and 1 teaspoon vanilla in a small bowl.
  • With the mixer running, slowly pour the sugar into the whipped whites, a few teaspoons at a time. Whisk until the meringue is glossy and holds stiff peaks. Whisk in the cornstarch mixture until fully incorporated.
  • Scoop the meringue into 7 mounds on the parchment paper. I use a large ice cream scoop for this. Round the edges slightly with a spatula and use the back of a spoon to press a small crater into the centre.
  • Place on the middle rack of the oven and bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Meringues should be crispy on the edges and bottom. Turn off the oven and let them cool completely. Store in an airtight container until ready to use.
  • Slice the ends off of of the citrus, and remove the rind with a knife. Slice into thin rounds and transfer to a bowl. Toss gently with the honey and let stand while you whip the cream.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk, beat cream with remaining 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla until stiff peaks form. Slowly whisk in the powdered sugar.
  • To serve: place the mini meringues on a serving platter. Divide the whipped cream among the craters. Top with sliced citrus fruits, and drizzle a little of the accumulated juices over the fruit. Garnish with a sprig of mint, if desired, and serve at once.

Notes

I use artificial clear vanilla extract for both my pavlovas and whipped cream to help them stay as white as possible.
This dessert can also be made as one large pavlova. Bake for 1h and 30 minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 300kcal


Giveaway!

Thanks to Gibbs Smith, I have a copy of Simply Citrus to giveaway to one of my Canadian or American readers.

To enter: leave a comment on this post and tell me which citrus fruit you couldn’t live without. ** This giveaway has ended**

Congratulations to our winner Pippa!  Her fave citrus is the blood orange. 

Winner will be announced here on this post on Sunday, March 18. Good luck to all!

Recipe from Simply Citrus by Marie Asselin, reprinted by permission of Gibbs Smith.

About Aimee

Cooking has always been Aimée's preferred recreational activity, creative outlet, and source of relaxation. After nearly ten years in the professional cooking industry, she went from restaurant to RSS by trading her tongs and clogs for cookie cutters and a laptop, serving as editor here at Simple Bites. Her first book, Brown Eggs and Jam Jars - Family Recipes from the Kitchen of Simple Bites, was published in February 2015.

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Comments

  1. These look amazing! I’ve never tried pavlova before, but I think it is time to get brave.

    Citrus I couldn’t live without… Lemon, I think. It brightens so many things.

  2. Aimee,
    Thanks so much for this recipe!! I can’t wait to serve this at Easter brunch. What a great change from the usual cakes and pastries.

    While I love all citrus, it is the basic orange that is always in my house. Not only for me, but also when the grandson visits. He knows right where they are and helps himself as soon as he walks in the door. 🙂

    Sue Ann

  3. Lisa Duchene says


    My toddler loves eating navel orange rinds. I use them also to make pumpkin citrus marmalade in the fall. In Morocco the navel oranges grow right in the streets on tall round trees. The kids pick the flower buds too as they sell them to make jasmin tea. Just love citrus!

  4. I don’t eat enough citrus fruit. it’s not that I don’t enjoy it. every once in a while, I will get a craving. the scent of a peeled clementine reminds me of Christmas. occasionally, I enjoy a juicy pink grapefruit. lemons are so great in water, or to freshen up a meal. so I cannot choose a favourite. they are all fresh and beautiful !

  5. Lora Bracci says

    Hello Aimee,
    My Italian heritage has always incorporated citrus . Sharing a fennel and orange salad with my grandparents is one of my fondest memories.

  6. Wendy Mar says

    My favorite citrus to eat would be oranges. But which citrus I cannot live without? Oi, it would be lemons. Used in muffins or cakes. A squeeze over baked salmon. A squeeze into water. To preserve and brighten avocados some in guacamole. When there’s a tickle in your throat, lemon and honey. So so so many uses for lemons.

  7. I love citrus. I eat an orange or clementine every day during the winter & I love lemon in my water first thing in the morning & during the day I like to add lime to my drinking water. Wasn’t able to have grapefruit for many years but am slowly rediscovering it. I like the pink grapefruit.

  8. I can’t wait to try this recipe for the first time. I definitely couldn’t do without lemons, although oranges are a close second 🙂

  9. These are beautiful and would be perfect for a brunch alongside a mimosa bar! 😉 I’ve never attempted pavlovas before, but I definitely want to try theses.

    The citrus I couldn’t go without is definitely lemon! I use it in so many things and it’s almost always present in my baked goods.

  10. Sharon Gates says

    Such a lovely post!
    I could not live without lemons, and probably oranges. I definitely can live without grapefruit 🤫

  11. I love this post, but most especially your beautiful photos! lemons and limes are the citrus i could not live without! they are so versatile!


  12. I made my first pavlova for Christmas, a pavlova wreath with a sauce made from cranberries, raspberries and pomegranate seeds. Mint was added for a spot of color and flavor. This citrus pavlova recipe is even better as you just cut the fruit – no extra cooking So refreshing to just see this. Can’t wait to try it for an upcoming Bunko party.

    If I could have only one citrus fruit, I would pick the lemon. Tartness is my key flavor and the lemon has so many different uses from enhancing food and drinks to cleaning. Just smelling lemons makes me think clean and bright.

  13. I could not live without lemon and limes. this is a lovely post, especially your gorgeous photos!

  14. Janice Perkuchin says

    Love, love, love lemons!

  15. Beautiful and sunshiny! I’ve had making something similar on my to-do list for ages… but it will also involve lemon curd (gotta use those yolks after all). My fave citrus is the blood orange. In fact, my friend & I have a “must-text-the-other” APB deal as soon as we spot them in the markets or stores! I guess we’re orange nerds : )

  16. Hi Aimee,
    Love your posts…for me I would have to say lemons, because you can do so much with them and not just for cooking…for eating I love love oranges…both just cheer me up 😊☀️

  17. Gretchen Halbach says

    We have had such a long, cold and snowy winter here in the Pacific northwest…this citrus Pavlov looks like just the trick to wipe away the winter blues!
    I love citrus and use all varieties in cooking, cleaning and aromatherapy though my all time favorite citrus would be a toss up between lemons or satsumas. Lemon is my go too for just about everything though come late November it is such a treat to pop up to Canada and get a beautiful fresh satsuma! We live on the border though the ones here in the states are just not the same😳

  18. Donna Morley says

    Blood oranges are the best citrus pick me up I have found. They make the most gorgeous marmalade and brighten any dish they are used in.

  19. Beautiful pavlovas! The combination of the citrus fruits makes for a spectacular display.

    My favourite of all the citrus is Grapefruit. It has been since I was young, with just a light sprinkling of sugar I will enjoy them any time of the day!
    And at the height of citrus season I make curd with the juice and candy the rind.

  20. Definitely oranges and pineapple…I eat them all winter long. There are days when I must be low in Vitamin C and have about 3 oranges because they are so satisfying.

  21. These are beautiful!
    Grapefruit is so good! But what I always have on hand are lemons.

  22. Melissa L. says

    I love grapefruit, but my family has recently discovered pink Cara Cara oranges and we’re a little obsessed.

  23. I find lemons the most versatile citrus fruit.

  24. Natasha Daly says

    These look beautiful! Perfect end of winter desert!

    I could not live without lemon. Lemon in my water everyday, lemon for salads, bowl of lemons for colour in the kitchen!

  25. Lisa Bernadette says


    Do I have to pick just one? 🙂 Lemons & Oranges – especially Cara Caras at the moment.

  26. Ann Hefner-Gravink says

    Limes are my favorite but lemons are more versatile. Blood oranges are magnificent and kumquats challenging. How can you expect us to pick just one!!

  27. John Popovich says

    I use a lot of lemons and I like Navel Oranges, this looks like something I could make. Thanks for sharing the cookbook too.

  28. I could not live without blood oranges. It’s hard enough to live without them after their short season! Can’t wait to try out this recipe.

  29. I couldn’t live without lemons!

  30. I can’t live without lemons or limes! I go through so many each week, especially now that I’ve discovered the joys of whiskey sours. But normally they just go into salad dressings. Limes are essential for my guacamole and Thai food “addictions,” it is rare that a week goes by without both of those showing up on the table!

    Though in winter I’m eating all the citrus and consider it my mission to introduce as many people as possible to Cara Cara oranges!!!


  31. Meyer lemons are my hands-down faves. But I’m coming around to the fun of grapefruit!

  32. Patti Bergh says


    I love citrus fruits but if choosing one then….my choice would be juicy oranges! 🍊

  33. Elizabeth N says

    Oranges. I can’t live without oranges. Though lemons are amazing too.

  34. I love citrus fruits! Grapefruit for me everyday, but my children just love the navel oranges. I always have both around my house.

  35. I love citrus fruit! I miss the Mandarin oranges from Japan that our family bought at Christmas many years ago.I recently discovered Kumquats.I add lemon juice or zest to both sweet and savoury, so lemons would be the citrus fruit I couldn’t manage without.I wish I could grow lemons in my backyard!

  36. Lemons ! I use them in lots of sweet and savoury dishes.I do miss the Japanese Mandarins from my childhood.I have just discovered Kumquats——so delicious!

  37. Lemons!

  38. This recipe looks just delightful and like it will brighten this long drawn out Alberta winter. I personally, cannot live without lemons, but my husband hails from Florida and demands oranges regularly.

  39. I can’t live without clementines i love them

  40. I love all citrus fruit, but lemons are probably my favourite. This looks so spring-like. I will definitely be trying this.

  41. The recipe looks so happy. Pavlovas are so yummy, but I rarely find the time to make them. Will consider giving this recipe a try for Easter. I love all citrus fruuts, but I am especially fond of Cara Cara oranges and pink grapefruits.

  42. Karen Jeanne says

    I couldn’t live without mandarin oranges, canned or fresh! Thanks for the giveaway!


  43. I only recently had a Pavlova when i was visiting friends in New Zealand. Pavlova is their special desert at Christmas. I couldn’t believe how delicious it was. I would want to have it with blood oranges. They are so flavourful and add beauty and drama to any dish.

  44. I live in Texas and we have delicious, local, grapefruit.

  45. These look so pretty. Pink grapefruit by far are my favorite.

  46. Colleen Bernard says

    Book looks wonderful. Limes are my favourite

  47. My first pick for citrus is Meyer Lemons!
    Those pavlovas are beautiful, like little suns on clouds.


  48. I just made these pavlovas for the first time this afternoon…I got meringues instead. Next time I’ll shorten the baking time. I paired them with home made lemon curd using Meyer lemons. Also a first time use for me! My favorite Citrus for fresh eating… Little cuties. What I use the most in my cooking and baking… Lemon. I’m thankful we have both available year round in this global economy!

  49. Ahhh! I have to pick ONE citrus to not live withoit? While I LOVE eating grapefruit and I have my own little lime tree, I guess I would have to say lemons because I love lemon-flavoured anything too much to go without them! 😍🍋

  50. It’s a toss up between oranges and lemons but, if I had to choose only one, I would select lemons because of their versatility and ability to add phenomenal flavour to so many different dishes and also because I don’t think I could go without my lemon curd!

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