Updated on January 19, 2020
Easy coffee panna cotta without gelatin is a creamy dessert with a strong coffee flavor and vanilla notes. This is one of easy coffee desserts to try! If you like to drink your coffee with cream and sugar, this is a nice vegetarian dessert.
It’s like an iced coffee, but better and thicker.
You will enjoy making easy coffee desserts after you try this one! This easy panna cotta recipe without gelatin is suitable for vegetarian and gluten-free diets.
By the way, grab this easy panna cotta recipe to make for romantic evening! One of the easiest Valentine’s desserts.
It’s an eady no bake dessert for International Coffee Day (1st of October). We love Italian desserts with a twist and hope you will try this dessert recipe with coffee as well.
It’s not a coffee flavored dessert, because panna cotta is made using espresso with agar agar coffee jello. Only for true coffee lovers!
I’m a great fan of coffee, are you too? But not the person that drinks hundred cups per day… I prefer my morning to start with a good cup of quality coffee. But it can start with creamy espresso panna cotta too, why not?
Prepare this coffee dessert in the evening, it will set overnight in the fridge, and you can enjoy Italian coffee desserts in the morning instead of regular beverage with milk!
There are many coffee trends like serving coffee in waffle cons or even with mushrooms! Yes, you read it right. In general, coffee becomes creamier and sweeter. I can say this coffee panna cotta is actually our way of serving cold brew.
Did you know Finnish people drink the most coffee in the world? Imagine, it is 12 kilos/ 423 oz per person? And the biggest coffee exporter is the country in the other part of the world – Brazil.
I’m sure you will enjoy desserts made with coffee, too!
What is a panna cotta
This coffee dessert will look great on any celebration as well as romantic evening (or maybe romantic breakfast?). And it has such a beautiful name, makes a restaurant feel… Well, don’t tell anyone, but panna cotta in translation from Italian means just “boiled cream”…
If you’re wondering what to make with coffee or you have leftover espresso, try this easy recipe!
Panna cotta without gelatin…or agar agar panna cotta
I made this coffee panna cotta with agar agar, which is an excellent vegetarian alternative to gelatin.
What is agar agar powder? It is made from red marine algae or seaweed. It is stronger than gelatin and doesn’t add any specific taste or color to the final dish. Agar-agar is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
Just follow the recipe to make panna cotta using agar agar.
Agar agar vs gelatin ration
Powdered agar agar that I used is 6 times more stronger than gelatin, so you need only few teaspoons to set these two panna cotta in glass. That means that 1 gram of agar agar equals to 6 grams of gelatin powder, depending on the brand you use. Always check the instructions on the package and keep in mind that heavy cream sets better that juice and other liquid.
To set this panna cotta with gelatin powder I’d use 6-9 grams of gelatin. Also if you’re using gelatin, don’t forget you need let it bloom in water, then melt and add to the cream.
You can add agar agar directly in liquid and also no worries that it can loose properties. For example, if the coffee jelly is starting to set, you can remelt it and it will be good to set again!
Agar panna cotta sets great and have a great texture as well.
So this is vegetarian panna cotta recipe with agar agar! To make it vegan, you can substitute regular milk with coconut cream.
You can prepare this coffee dessert in advance and refrigerate. Italian panna cotta can last for a couple days in your fridge (if you can resist it so long).
How to make panna cotta
Mix whipping cream with espresso, vanilla, granulated sugar and agar. Bring it to boil and lower the heat and simmer few minutes. Fill the glasses and let it cool at room temperature before placing in the fridge.
Panna cotta ingredients are very simple: heavy cream, agar agar, sugar, espresso and vanilla.
Also if you wish, you can sweeten panna cotta with alternative sweeteners like stevia or erythritol, just make sure it dissolves well in cream.
Coffee jelly with agar agar
Coffee jelly is made with espresso, agar agar, Demerara or Muscovado sugar. Heat it on the low for couple minutes.
Let the coffee mixture cool before pouring on panna cotta! If it is starting to set, you can reheat it for a minute again – it won’t loose its setting properties.
I’ve tried coffee jelly with Demerara and Muscovado sugar and both were great! To my mind, Muscovado gives it a lovely caramelized flavor. If you can’t find it, you can substitute to dark brown sugar.
This coffee jelly looks so good on the panna cotta!
You can enjoy this coffee panna cotta without coffee jelly as well.
Do you like Panna Cotta dessert as much as we do? Then also check our Orange Panna Cotta recipe!
Coffee panna cotta decoration
I decided to serve this coffee panna cotta in glasses, decorated with whipped cream, homemade praline and mint leaves.
I think almond praline goes really well with coffee dessert.
What is praline? Praline is a confection, made with caramelized nuts and butter.
Praline can be easily made at home like caramel. You just need to simmer the sugar with water until desired color, add butter and crushed or sliced nuts.
Then pour the goodness on the baking paper (be careful – it is hot!) and let it harden. After that you can crush praline candy for decoration and of course delicious leftovers just for you!
Additionally, you can decorate this simple dessert with chocolate shards, strawberries, raspberries or blackberries. Also you can decorate panna cotta with coffee beans. Coffee beans are optional and you may not eat it. It is a beautiful “straight to the point” decoration.
If you make this panna cotta without coffee jelly, you can sieve some unsweetened cocoa powder on top, add a spoon of ice cream with coffee syrup. Delicious summer dessert idea!
By the way, check our persimmon panna cotta recipe!
If you like recipes with espresso, you should also check our Easy Tiramisu coffee dessert!
Coffee Panna Cotta without gelatin - Coffee Desserts
Coffee panna cotta:
- 3 tbsp strong brewed coffee (espresso)
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- 170 ml heavy cream / 5,7 oz or 0,7 cup
- 1 tsp Agar-Agar powder
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 135 g strong brewed coffee (espresso) / 3,5 oz
- 1/2 tsp agar agar
- 2 tsp demerara sugar or muscovado sugar
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 1 pack whipped cream stabilizer
- 1 tbsp powdered sugar
- 4 leaves mint
- 1,5 cup almonds sliced
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/2 cup water
- Place cream, coffee, sugar and vanilla essence in a saucepan. Warm it a minute, whisking lightly.
- Add agar agar and whisk lightly on a low heat for 2 minutes.
- Pour cream and coffee mixture into prepared glasses. Let them cool on the countertop, then put in a fridge for half an hour.
- Heat espresso with agar-agar and demerara or muscovado sugar for 2 minutes. Let it cool for 4 minutes.
- Slowly pour the coffee layer on the panna cotta (make sure it is set on top). and leave it in fridge until sets completely (about half an hour more).
- Prepare a tray, lined with baking paper.
- Put sugar and water in a pan, covered with a glass lid. Simmer on the low heat until the sugar caramelizes and is golden.*
- Add butter and combine with a spatula.
- Add sliced almonds, mix vigorously and immediately pour it on the baking paper. Flatten with a spatula. Let it cool and set for half an hour.
- Whip cream with sugar and stabilizer on high speed about 3-4 minutes until soft peaks.
- Using mortar and pestle, crush praline to smaller pieces.
- Add a spoon of whipped cream to each panna cotta, sprinkle praline on top and decorate with mint leaves.