29 Aug Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // Eff the Oven August

Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // butterlustblog.com

Welp, we made it. Today is the very last post of my Eff the Oven August series. It’s been one whole month without turning the oven on. That wasn’t so hard, was it?

And while I’m  looking forward to the birthday layer cakes (mine!!) and gooey pumpkin treats that come with the onset of fall, I have really enjoyed my little hiatus from baking. The last month has challenged me creatively. Brainstorming recipes requiring little to no heat pushed me outside of my comfort zone. And I liked it. I made several kinds of dessert never seen before on Butterlust — from these popsicles to this icebox cake to these quinoa puddings. All of these having been on the to-make list for some time but were always pushed aside because of my love for, well, cake.

Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // butterlustblog.comButtermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // butterlustblog.com

And while I just mentioned the F-word (no, not that one…Fall), don’t expect to be seeing any pumpkin recipes popping up around here any time soon, y’all. <– We’re in Texas. Home of the 8 month summer.

Things aren’t cooling down any time soon, which unfortunately makes it a little hard to get into the crisp air, sweater weather, cozy-up-and-bring-me-some-apple-cider kind of mood. So the plan is to do all my fellow southerners solid and hold off on the fall recipes until October. We’ll be turning the oven back on but also taking advantage of the few extra ice cream eating months that living south of the mason dixon line has gifted us.

Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // butterlustblog.comButtermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // butterlustblog.com 

This Buttermilk Panna Cotta is another one of those recipes that fell neglected on my loooong recipe bucket list. I’ve made pastry creams, pudding and custards out the wazoo but never panna cotta. To be honest, I was always a little weirded out by it because its so…gelatinous? I’m haunted by childhood memories of my grandma’s Jell-o fruit molds — a relic from the 1950’s that she quickly learned her grandchildren were not interested in eating. Chunky. Jiggly. Blegh. Texture is a freaky thing.

But you know what? I was wrong. Because when done right, panna cotta is silky and creamy and just a tiny bit jiggly, but in a good way.

Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // butterlustblog.comButtermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // butterlustblog.com

This Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping is the perfect dessert to help you hold on to the last few weeks of summer. The buttermilk adds a bright tang, which the pinch of cinnamon adds a bit of depth and spice — a little foreshadowing of the months to come. And I know the markets aren’t exactly bursting with fresh strawberries anymore, but it was brought to my attention that I hadn’t made a single strawberry recipe this summer so I just couldn’t resist. And since, in my opinion, no creamy dessert is complete without a good crunch, I topped it all off with stovetop pecan crumble. Toasty crumble topping is my kryptonite.

Buttermilk Panna Cotta adapted from Bakeless Sweets by Faith Durand
Crumble Topping adapted from Dessert for Two

A Few Notes About This Recipe:

This recipe is designed to serve two people so it’s great for a date night in! BUT since it’s no bake and uses easy ratios, it can easily be doubled or tripled to feed a crowd. 

You should definitely still be able to find strawberries at your local grocery, but if not substitute with another late-summer fruit like blackberries. 

If you don’t have buttermilk you can substitute with whole or 2% milk instead. Nut or soy milk would work here as well, but the cream is important for the end texture of the dessert so don’t leave it out. For a dairy-free version you could use soy or coconut coffee creamer in place of the cream. 

Enjoy! XO, Katie

Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Crumble Topping // Eff the Oven August

makes 2 servings


    For the Buttermilk Panna Cotta:
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, divided in half
  • 3/4 teaspoon powdered gelatin
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon sugar (sub honey or maple syrup if preferred)
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • For the Strawberry Crumble Topping:
  • 8-9 strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup or honey
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons old fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped pecans
  • dash of cinnamon
  • dash of salt


  • Chill two glasses that hold a minimum of 6 ounces.
  • To make the Buttermilk Panna Cotta, pour half of the buttermilk into a small saucepan over no heat. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top of the buttermilk and let set for 5 minutes.
  • Add sugar and stir over medium heat until both gelatin and sugar have dissolved. Remove from heat and whisk in the remaining buttermilk, cream, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Taste to check for sweetness and add more sugar if desired.
  • Divide the mixture between chilled glasses, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for two hours, up to overnight.
  • To make the crumble topping, heat strawberries and maple syrup in a saucepan over medium heat until bubbly and strawberries are beginning to break down, about 12-15 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  • In a separate bowl, combine oats, flour, brown sugar, pecans, salt and cinnamon. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat then add the oat mixture. Heat for 8-10 minutes or until toasty, stirring frequently to prevent pecans from burning. Remove from heat and let cool for at least 5 minutes. To serve, divide strawberries over firm panna cotta and top with crumble mixture.
  • Amanda @ Cookie Named Desire
    Posted at 09:57h, 30 August Reply

    I’ve thoroughly enjoyed seeing the recipes you’ve made this past month. I think sometimes we (or at least i) forget how much we can make without needing to touch the oven. I’ve also been wary about panna cotta because I am also reminded of a milk flavored jello even though I know it doesn’t taste remotely like that. You’ve inspired me to take a chance and revisit panna cotta
    Amanda @ Cookie Named Desire recently posted…Movie Theater Cookies RecipeMy Profile

    • KWahlman
      Posted at 16:29h, 30 August Reply

      Thanks, Amanda! Definitely try it — if nothing else it’s soooo easy to put together so if you don’t end up liking it you haven’t wasted a lot of time 🙂

  • Alexandra @ Confessions of a Bright-Eyed Baker
    Posted at 12:52h, 30 August Reply

    I haven’t made panna cotta yet myself, but this sounds so light and bright and fruity. Love that you added the crumble topping because – YES – totally necessary. 🙂
    Alexandra @ Confessions of a Bright-Eyed Baker recently posted…Funfetti Cake with Ombré FrostingMy Profile

    • KWahlman
      Posted at 16:29h, 30 August Reply

      Thanks, Alexandra! Crunch is a MUST!

  • Bea
    Posted at 14:56h, 30 August Reply

    It looks amazing!
    Bea recently posted…Noble CAKEMy Profile

  • Elizabeth @ SugarHero.com
    Posted at 01:10h, 04 September Reply

    As a Californian, I feel your hot weather pain. Who cares what the calendar says, it’s still summer in my heart (and in my apartment). Love this beautiful, elegant panna cotta!
    Elizabeth @ SugarHero.com recently posted…Croissant Salted Honey Ice Cream SandwichesMy Profile

  • barb
    Posted at 18:44h, 20 December Reply

    I love panna cotta and make it from time to time – never used buttermilk before but had some leftover…then I got whipping cream and it was left over…this could go on forever! However, this is a great recipe and I added some sweetened fresh raspberries and it was a great dessert. It’s an easy dessert and yummy at that. Thank you so much!

    • KWahlman
      Posted at 12:56h, 21 December Reply

      So glad to hear it, Barb!! Fresh raspberries sound perfect!

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