Russian Cream Dessert

You know you’ve been blogging a long time when you make a dessert (after rave reviews from a friend who basically says if you don’t make it, you’re life will be sad, lonely and incomplete), love it, and declare it the best thing you’ve eaten in your whole life only to start a post about it and realize through a boring chain of investigative events that you actually posted pretty much an identical recipe seven years ago…and apparently loved it equally as much back then although you literally have no memory of the event.

Which leaves me wondering:
Who am I and am I actually in a real, life episode of the X-files?
Or has my sleep-deprived and totally overworked and underpaid brain finally bailed on me? Left me hanging and looking half-crazy?
Actually, don’t answer the crazy part.
How have I managed to live a worthwhile life the last half-decade having totally forgotten about a life-changing dessert I once told you about?
Seriously. I don’t know what to believe anymore.
I should be fired from blogging. And life. But not cream. Not Russian cream. Or Berries and Cream. Or cream, cream, cream. I will never again forget about rich and creamy desserts if it’s the last thing I do (and it may be).

Russian Cream Dessert

So. In summary, this dessert is pretty as can be and ridiculously delicious. And so easy, you’ll wonder where all the extra steps are (I promise, I didn’t forget to include them – they just don’t exist). A bit softer, sweeter and slightly creamier than fancy-pants panna cotta (which usually doesn’t include sour cream), this Russian Cream is luscious and so very yummy. And if you’ve been making the Berries and Cream and loving every bite and taste these last seven years, then I’m genuinely very happy for you. For the rest of us, let us come together over Russian Cream and pretend we haven’t been missing out.

Russian Cream Dessert

One Year Ago: Recipes the World Forgot {Part 10}
Two Years Ago: Family Candlelight Dinner: Tips, How-To’s and Menus {Our Favorite Valentine’s Day Tradition}
Three Years Ago: Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries

Russian Cream with Berries

Yield: Serves 6-7

If you are using the individual packets of gelatin, you'll need a full packet plus a little bit of a second packet. You can get by using just one packet but the finished dessert won't be quite as set up as it is if you use the full tablespoon (learned from experience).

Also, since you are splurging on a creamy dessert anyway, I'll tell you, this is much thicker and richer (and more delicious) with regular sour cream - not light and definitely not fat-free.


  • 3 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 1/3 (10 ounces) cups granulated sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon gelatin (see note above)
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) sour cream (see note above)
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract


  1. In a 4-quart saucepan, heat the cream, sugar and salt over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, stirring constantly, about 4-5 minutes. If it starts boiling, turn the heat down and simmer gently (I find the sugar usually dissolves before it starts to simmer). Remove from the heat and set aside.
  2. Dissolve the gelatin completely in the boiling water and whisk it into the warm cream mixture.
  3. Cool completely (you can speed this up by using an ice water bath or putting the mixture in the refrigerator, stirring every 15-30 minutes). Whisk the sour cream and vanilla into the cooled cream mixture until smooth.
  4. Spoon into individual serving cups (about a cup per serving - you can use ramekins or small bowls or glass cups or just leave it to chill in one large bowl), cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.
  5. Top with fresh berries and/or pomegranate arils and serve chilled.

Recipe Source: sent to me by my sweet friend, Nicole, who devoured and loved it at our friend Hollie’s house who made it for quite a large crowd of people serving it in small plastic cups with fresh raspberries and pomegranate arils (I believe the recipe was originally included in one of those church cookbooks from the Eagle, ID, area attributed to Sheri B.) – the dessert is shockingly similar to a recipe I posted seven years ago (this one is slightly easier in preparation with a few minor differences in ingredients) 

42 Responses to Russian Cream with Berries

  1. Leslie says:

    Just for an FYI:

    I doubled this recipe for a Christmas party tonight, and it was enough for 40 4 oz plastic tumblers (like the kind you can get a Zurchers or Partyland). I filled them about half full 🙂

  2. Leslie says:

    Have you ever tried-or thought about trying a chocolate version of this? 🙂 Would you just add cocoa powder to the cream and sugar on the stove do you think?

    • Mel says:

      Hmmm, that’s a great question. I’m honestly not sure, Leslie. I have a feeling the cocoa would mess with the texture. I haven’t tried it but good luck if you decide to experiment!

  3. Cindy Hansen says:

    I just made this tonight to serve the company for dinner. I served it with fresh chopped strawberries and everyone loved it. While cleaning up I finished off my daughters portion that she didn’t finish (the horror!) and I actually really liked it better room temperature. The texture loosened up a bit verses when it was straight out of the fridge.

  4. Lynda says:

    I made this for the ladies at my Bible Study. This is AMAZING!! Everyone wanted the recipe. I also had family over and they loved it. My niece said she wants me to make it for her birthday. Its a simple and straight forward recipe with ingredients I usually have on hand. I did use vanilla paste which really amps up the vanilla flavor and introduces all the vanilla bean specks which makes it look fancy. I served it in all my antique china tea cups, so pretty.

  5. Cheryl says:

    Oh My! This stuff is so yummy. I had some oral surgery so I was looking for something soft to make, to eat. Now I have made it 3 times. The first time i made it I had a problem getting the gelatin to dissolve in the boiling water, it turned into a big glob, and took a long time to dissolve. So the next time i made it I sprinkled the gelatin over 1/4 cup cold water, and let it sit for a few minutes, then i poured 3/4 cup of boiling water over that, and it dissolved right away. And I have some in the fridge now-Yum.

  6. Becky Lucas says:

    DELICIOUS!!! I made it for my book club and it was a HIT!

  7. Emily says:

    Thank you for the recipe! This was very, very good–a nice Valentines treat. Next time I’m going to try making it with less gelatin, though. It set up a little more than I was expecting (quite the opposite of the other comments), and I’d like to try it with more of a pudding texture.

  8. Joan says:

    This was very easy to make and absolutely delicious! What a wonderful Valentine’s treat! Thank you, again, Mel. I have made many things from your website and they are all fairly easy and very delicious!

  9. Rosemary McCaffrey says:

    Oh, my!! I made this last night to serve tonight for a Valentine’s dinner. I needed six for the dinner, and I poured it into eight glasses so I could taste-test it this afternoon. My husband declared we should either skip the dinner and go right to dessert, or skip dessert and save them all for the two of us!! It was easy to make, and it set up perfectly. I made a certain “barefoot” lady’s raspberry sauce to go with it. Perfection!! Thank you, Mel!

  10. Kristi says:

    Have this setting in my fridge right now and keep sneaking spoonfuls! We’ve been off of sugar for three weeks but decided today and tomorrow we can cheat in honor of our anniversary and valentines! Mmmmmm, thanks Mel!

  11. Lisa says:

    Yea, this never firmed up much at all even overnight. I had it in a large dish though not individual servings, maybe that made a difference. For the calories and consistency I wouldn’t make it again. That’s okay though 🙂

  12. Lisa says:

    Me too! Followed the recipe to a t – but three hours later in the fridge it’s still just cream – liquid. Maybe I need to just be patient and stop sticking my finger in it :/

    • Mel says:

      Hi Lisa – I do think it will take a bit longer than three hours but I chill mine overnight so I’m not sure exactly how long until it’s “officially” set up. Is it super runny, like milk?

  13. Ericka says:

    At what point does this set like a pudding? Mine is cooling in the fridge right now but it’s just liquid. Did I do something wrong? I did double the batch but followed all directions. I’m taking this to a party tonight and I’m a little nervous! Help!

    • Mel says:

      I chill mine overnight so I can’t say for sure at what point it will get more firm. Like, how liquidy is it? Like milk? It should be thicker than that when you spoon it into the cups. I’m hoping the double batch wasn’t the culprit. Let me know if it sets up!

      • Ericka says:

        It was like milk. We’re at about 3 hours now with the sour cream mixed in, it’s starting to set….not sure it will be ready in two hours when I leave for my party but fingers crossed! It tastes delicious and just like the next commenter said, perhaps if I stop poking my finger at it, it will set up! I can always take candy bars to the party and save this bad boy for just the family tomorrow! :).

  14. pam says:

    any idea how many times I could safely multiply this – thinking of making this for a large group (100+)

    • Mel says:

      Hmmm, good question. Sometimes recipes like this (and puddings, for example) get a little funny when made in too large batches. I think a triple batch would be the most I’d go for.

  15. Stephanie says:

    I can’t wait to try this!

  16. Jenn says:

    so what exactly is just “gelatin”? Are we talking jello gelatin in any flavor? Or is there “gelatin” that is not flavored that you buy somewhere specific? Sorry to even have to ask!

    • Laura M says:

      to Jenn. gelatin is a pure jelling ingredient and not flavoured at all. In Canada it is sold in small orange boxes with envelopes of gelatin inside. Normally used for making jam.

    • Mel says:

      No, not jello – it’s plain, unflavored gelatin that comes in little boxes (and the boxes have little packets inside) – usually above the jello in the baking aisle or somewhere thereabouts.

  17. angela says:

    Just made this last night. Super easy and delicious! My husband said he was just going to have a taste before going to work in the morning. When I got up I saw his empty dish on the counter 🙂 thank you!

  18. Elizabeth says:

    I’ve made Russian Creams before and they are so so good! My favorite way to eat it is topped with a homemade raspberry sauce and chopped pistachios. The touch of salt and crunch from the pistachios just puts it over the top!

  19. Susan says:

    Had a bite of this at Hollie’s, and I must say it IS delicious. Now I don’t have to call her for the recipe! ☺️ Thanks for sharing it!

  20. Mette Isaksen says:

    I saw this on Neeach ! What a dessert! FIT for any great occasion!

  21. Brooke says:

    i love your writing as much as the food. i swear we would be friends but probably everyone thinks that. 😉

  22. Rachel says:

    Do you think that I could sub out the sour cream for greek yogurt? Thanks for all the yummilies!

    • Mel says:

      I haven’t tried it but usually Greek yogurt subs pretty well for sour cream. It might have a slightly different texture (maybe a touch grainier? I’m not sure) but I think it’s definitely worth a try.

  23. Anna K. says:

    I know (and absolutely love) this dessert as Swedish Cream. It’s a family favorite and so great because you can make it ahead, and vary it depending on the season. Thanks for reminding me of it!

  24. Johnna says:

    Strange coinky dink or another XFiles moment – One year ago your post was “Recipes the World Forgot”.
    I love going through your recipes looking for interesting looking dishes.
    Always an awesome night when we have a recipe from your blog!
    Will have to try this!!

  25. Paige says:

    This looks super delicious. You can totally pass this off for breakfast right?


  26. If it’s any consolation, I thought this looked familiar and recalled seeing something similar on your blog. So, who cares if you didn’t remember? You have long-time fans who are always happy to see a post from Mel. 🙂

  27. Teresa says:

    I’ve made your Colorado creme and it was wonderful! Today I’m making your creamy white chili, which I make almost weekly this time of year. I may try Russian cream for dessert.

  28. Becky says:

    I had a Russian cream several years ago with triple berry sauce. I feel in love and had to immediately find a recipe… Just may have to make yours today! Can’t wait:)

  29. Emily says:

    Thank you, Mel! This looks like an excellent little Valentines Day dessert. Can’t wait!

  30. I’ve never heard of Russian cream and now I’m just dying to try it! Plus I can’t resist anything with berries.

  31. Emily says:

    Also very similar to a Colorado Creme recipe you have posted before.

    • Mel says:

      Yep! The Colorado Creme has less sugar and there’s no boiling water for dissolving the gelatin – I think that gives the Colorado Creme a firmer consistency whereas the Russian Cream and Berries and Cream have a softer consistency.

  32. Catherine says:

    This is also very similar to your recipe for Colorado Creme! I’m curious, does it change the consistency or texture to dissolve the gelatin separately in water? Now I want to try it both ways! Better put cream on my shopping list! 🙂

    • Mel says:

      Hey Catherine – I think this recipe (and the Berries and Cream) is slightly softer in consistency than the Colorado Creme – the extra water + gelatin gives a slightly different texture.

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