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Straight on shot of four glasses of buttermilk goat cheese panna cotta topped with figs, pistachios and honey on a light, grey textured surface.

Buttermilk Goat Cheese Panna Cotta with Figs, Honey & Pistachios

  • Author: Sabrina Russo
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 servings 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free


This rich and tangy goat cheese panna cotta pairs perfectly with sweet, ripe figs, orange blossom honey and salty, toasted pistachios.



Panna Cotta:

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 packet plain powdered gelatin (~2 tsp)
  • ¼ tsp finely grated orange zest*
  • 4 oz creamy, fresh goat cheese, softened at room temperature


  • ½ cup pistachios
  • 2 tsp unsalted butter, melted
  • Kosher salt

Other toppings:

  • Orange blossom honey
  • Fresh figs, cut into wedges


  1. Heat cream base: Add cream, sugar and salt to a pot. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  2. Bloom gelatin: Place buttermilk in a cup. Sprinkle gelatin over top. Allow to bloom for 5-10 minutes while cream comes to a simmer.
  3. Mix panna cotta base: When cream comes to a simmer, lower heat and whisk in buttermilk/gelatin mixture. Stir in orange zest. Whisk until gelatin is dissolved. Place softened goat cheese in a bowl. Whisk cream mixture into goat cheese, one ladleful at a time, until completely combined.
  4. Strain and pour: Strain panna cotta base through a sieve into a large liquid measuring cup. Pour mixture into desired glasses or ramekins. This is enough for 6-8 servings. Cool at room temperature. Place in fridge to cool and set up completely for several hours or ideally overnight.
  5. Toast pistachios: While panna cotta sets up, toast the pistachios. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place nuts on a parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle over melted butter and season liberally with salt. Toss. Bake about 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool at room temperature and store in an airtight container.
  6. Serve: To serve, top panna cottas with figs and nuts, and drizzle over honey. Enjoy.


Instead of using finely grated orange zest, you could also place a 2-by-1 inch piece of orange peel into the cream during the first step. This would impart orange flavor and later be sieved out before pouring the panna cotta into molds.

Panna cotta freezes surprisingly well. I freeze them in glasses or ramekins, and put the panna cotta in the fridge for several hours or up to overnight to defrost them.

  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Simmer
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean


  • Serving Size: 1/2 cup panna cotta
  • Calories: 380
  • Sugar: 38g
  • Sodium: 290mg
  • Fat: 22g
  • Saturated Fat: 12g
  • Carbohydrates: 41g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 8g

Keywords: panna cotta, goat cheese, figs, gluten free, dessert