Decadent and Healthy Valentine’s Day Dessert

Published on February 12, 2015

Updated on February 13, 2018

Dark Chocolate Panna Cotta with Honeyed Berries

Whether it is a holiday or a normal week night, healthy eating should always be a priority in your life. Surprise your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day with this elegant dark chocolate panna cotta with honeyed berries dessert. Originally made with heavy cream, you can use gelatin and yogurt instead to create a healthy version of this Italian tradition. This light and silky dessert can be made with different fruits, chocolate and nuts.

Maintaining a healthy balanced diet is a key ingredient to cancer prevention. A balanced diet includes eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables, avoiding red and processed meats, limiting sugary foods and minimizing alcohol consumption. This Valentine’s Day and every day be health conscious and make this delicious, guilt-free dessert.

Ingredients (serves 4)

Panna Cotta
1 cup low-fat milk
1 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
½ cup of sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 ounces dark chocolate (70% cocoa), chopped
1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
Pinch of salt
Vegetable oil

2 tablespoons honey
1 cup of mixed berries: strawberries, blackberries and raspberries
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves


  1. In a small bowl, pour in 1/4 cup of the milk and sprinkle the powdered gelatin over it. Let stand about 5 minutes until the gelatin is softened. In a saucepan, combine the remaining milk, sugar, vanilla and salt. Bring just to a simmer over medium heat. Remove the milk mixture from the heat and whisk in the softened gelatin.
  2. In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chopped chocolate in 15-second intervals (or melt chocolate over a double boiler). Slowly whisk in the hot milk first and then the yogurt mixture until creamy.
  3. Brush four small ramekins with vegetable oil and set on a baking sheet. Fill the ramekins with the panna cotta mixture. Refrigerate for about 2 hours, until the panna cotta is firm.
  4. While the panna cotta chills, dice berries and toss with honey and mint in a small bowl. Optional step- to create a coulis (fruit sauce), put mixture in a blender and blend on medium until berries are just pulsed.
  5. Once chilled, run a knife or small rubber spatula around the ramekins and invert onto plates. Garnish with the diced berries or coulis and serve.

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