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The “Eton Mess” Is Your New Favorite No-Bake Dessert

Eton Mess

Summertime is berry time as far as I’m concerned! I love fresh berries and am always looking for a new way to use them in recipes. I also love desserts that are quick and easy to throw together but also make a good impression! The “Eton Mess” hits a home run on all counts, PLUS it’s naturally gluten-free! And it might just be one of the most delicious things I’ve ever eaten in my life! Who knew berries, whipped cream and crunchy meringue cookies could combine to make such a masterful “mess”!

Eton Mess
Eton Field

You may be wondering…if it’s so good…then why is it called a MESS? Well, the story is that the Eton Mess was ‘invented’ in the 1930s during the annual cricket match at Eton College, one of Britain’s most distinguished public schools. It seems a labrador sat on a picnic basket in the back of a car and squashed a strawberry and meringue dessert. The resulting “mess” turned out to be quite delicious and so the Eton Mess was born and has been served up at the event ever since. Apparently there is some doubt to the validity of that story…but I like it so I’m sticking with it. :-)

The dessert makes great use of ripe summer strawberries, but I added a few other berries as well because….I love berries….and the addition of blueberries makes it perfect for a 4th of July celebration! :-)

Eton Mess

The Eton Mess

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds strawberries, sliced
  • 18 oz raspberries
  • 1 pound blueberries
  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 cups whipped cream (I suggest using the “real” stuff)
  • 3 cups vanilla meringue cookies, chopped (I bought mine at Trader Joe’s)

Directions

Eton Mess

In a medium bowl, mix the strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, sugar and lemon juice.

Eton Mess

Let the berry mixture stand until the fruit begins to release its’ juices – about 30 minutes.

Eton Mess

Add 1/3 of the berry mixture to the bottom of a large dish. (I keep meaning to buy a trifle bowl but since I also keep forgetting, I used a fancy glass jar I had – minus the lid. Any bowl will do.)

Eton Mess

Next, spread one cup whipped cream on top of the berries.

Eton Mess

Then scatter one cup of the vanilla meringue cookies on top of the whipped cream.

Eton Mess

Repeat two more times using the remainder of the ingredients. Isn’t it pretty??? :-)

Eton Mess

Serve immediately!

This makes enough for 10 people, so adjust the quantities if you want to make it for fewer. Or just eat all the leftovers yourself! Trust me…it’s easy to do (and don’t ask me how I know!) ;-)

What is your favorite easy summer dessert?

Eton Mess

Eton Mess

The "Eton Mess" - Your New Favorite Summertime Dessert

Jill Nystul
4.20 from 5 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 217 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 pounds strawberries sliced
  • 18 oz raspberries
  • 1 pound blueberries
  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 cups whipped cream
  • 3 cups vanilla meringue cookies chopped

Instructions
 

  • In a medium bowl, mix the strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, sugar and lemon juice.
  • Let the berry mixture stand until the fruit begins to release its' juices - about 30 minutes.
  • Add ⅓ of the berry mixture to the bottom of a large dish.
  • Next, spread one cup whipped cream on top of the berries.
  • Then scatter one cup of the vanilla meringue cookies on top of the whipped cream.
  • Repeat two more times using the remainder of the ingredients.
  • Serve immediately.

Nutrition

Calories: 217kcal


Jill Nystul Photo

Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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Food & Recipes

  • I I finally made the Eton Mess today, and after 50 years of cooking, I am rarely Wowed! anymore, but this was just delicious, easy, and everyone gobbled it down and was delighted. You are right, it’s my new favorite summer dessert.

  • Bought all the ingredients today to make this but unfortunately no one around here carrys meringue cookies this time of year so I’m going to be making my own. Oh well they’ll probably taste better and they only takes a few minutes to make

    • I did use fresh whipped cream (with sugar added)! I didn’t include the recipe, but it’s just 3 cups of whipping cream with 5 Tablespoons of sugar – whipped until it’s fluffy. :-) Sorry for the confusion!

  • Looks a lot like a pavlova – a dish that was invented in the southern hemisphere (either Australia or New Zealand no one is sure which) in honor of the Russian dancer, Anna Pavlova. And the ‘pav” was first served up at least a decade before this rip off.

    It still looks delicious though.

    • Thank You so much! I am GF and always looking for things I can eat at parties and family gatherings. You Are The Best! Now I will have to make my once a moth trek from Spanish Fork up to Trader Joe’s Not sure how it would taste with GF Joe Joes!

  • This sounds like a great summer dessert. We don’t have a Trader Joe’s here unfortunately but I think I can find or make little meringue cookies. Thanks for sharing!

  • I love the backstory! We should be grateful to that labrador! I’m gonna try this recipe someday if berries are available here. I live in a tropical country, do you think this works well with tropical fruits too? If yes, what king of tropical fruits? Thanks!!

    • I want the jar also. What about the base layer, is that a clear plate?
      I looked at a trifle bowl at BBB and decided that it was too top heavy and I thought it might tip during the serving process, plus how to transport it? Then the Eton Mess would be all over my car.

      • It’s an apothecary jar! The base is a stand :-) A regular glass bowl would probably be best for transporting.

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