The Hairy Bikers panna cotta recipe

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The Hairy Bikers panna cotta is the perfect prep ahead dessert. It has 10 ingredients and takes only 10 minutes cooking time.

hairy bikers panna cotta
(Image credit: Cristian Barnett)
Preparation Time2 hours (may need extra time to set)
Cooking Time10 mins
Total Time2 hours 10 mins
Cost RangeMid
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories459 Kcal23%
Sugars14.8 g16%
Saturated Fat26.2 g131%
Protein2.1 g4%
Fat42.2 g60%
Carbohydrates15 g6%

The Hairy Bikers panna cotta is a great alternative to Christmas pudding and is full of festive spices. 

Creamy, gently spiced and filled with plump rump rum soaked raisins, these panna cotta make a wonderful Christmas dessert. If you don’t like raisins you could finely dice some stem ginger and mix this through the panna cotta mix instead, 


  • 30g raisins
  • 2tbsp dark rum
  • 3½ gelatine sheets
  • 500ml double cream
  • 4tbsp caster sugar
  • ½tsp ground ginger
  • ¼tsp ground allspice
  • ¼tsp ground nutmeg, or to taste
  • ¼tsp ground cinnamon
  • A small handful of berries, to serve




  1. First leave the raisins to soak in the rum for about half an hour. Soak the gelatine in a little cold water until soft.
  2. Meanwhile in a medium sized saucepan bring the cream, sugar and spices to a boil. Simmer for two to three mins, whisking until the sugar has dissolved.
  3. Squeeze out the excess water from the gelatine and dissolve it in the cream mixture whilst off the heat.
  4. Drain the raisins, stir into the mixture and discard the soaking liquid.
  5. Share out evenly into six moulds or ramekins, leave to cool completely, then cover with clingfilm and place the panna cottas into the refrigerator to set. At least 2 hours but ideally overnight.
  6. When ready for serving, quickly dip the ramekins into hot water to slightly loosen the panna cottas, then pop them out onto a serving plate. Serve with some berries - redcurrants look very Christmassy..

Top tips for making the Hairy Bikers panna cotta

If you don’t have panna cotta moulds or ramekins you can use little glasses or espresso cups. You can also serve the panna cotta with a small gingerbread or shortbread biscuit for some added crunch. 

How are you supposed to eat panna cotta?

It’s best to bring the panna cotta out the fridge around 10 minutes before serving as you don’t want them too cold. Eat with a small spoon and serve in the ramekin or turned out onto a plate. A firm panna cotta could also be eaten with a small dessert fork, if you like. 

How long does panna cotta last in the fridge?

A covered panna cotta will keep in the fridge for a couple of days but we wouldn’t recommend keeping them longer than three days.

Is panna cotta supposed to jiggle?

If you plan to turn out your panna cotta onto plates, you want it to be firm enough to hold its shape but there should still be a little wobble to it. Too much gelatin and the panna cotta will be too firm. For a creamy, smooth finish, serve in small cups and use a little less gelatin. 

The Hairy Bikers' 12 Days of Christmas: Fabulous Festive Recipes to Feed Your Family and FriendsView at Amazon

The Hairy Bikers' 12 Days of Christmas: Fabulous Festive Recipes to Feed Your Family and Friends by The Hairy Bikers (Orion, £25) - View at Amazon

Fancy some Hairy Biker festive side dishes? This book has recipes for glazed carrots, roast parsnips and a wonderfully rich, cranberry, kumquat and port sauce. 

We have plenty more Hairy Bikers recipes if you want some savoury inspiration. Read our guide on how to make panna cotta if you need more tips and then give these raspberry panna cotta a try. 

Hairy Bikers

Simon King and David Myers are the fantastic duo that make up the Hairy Bikers and are best known as Si and Dave. The Hairy Bikers have several cookbooks published including How to Love Food and Lose Weight and Eat for Life. Hairy Biker recipes are always triple tested and try to be as fuss-free as possible so you can trust the timings. Si and Dave have also had several hit cooking shows as they remain as one of the UK’s favourite cookery duos.

With contributions from