This dairy-free panna cotta actually loves your guts

Written by Gina Rose Urlich | 7 August, 2017

Nutritionist Gina Rose Urlich has created a silken coconut panna cotta packed with health benefits that support the entire body through boosting gut health. 

The good news about this silken coconut panna cotta is that it comes packed with health benefits that support your entire body, and you can happily make it a regular part of your diet.

The star of this dish is gelatin, a component of animal bones and marrow. Yes, I’m using animal bone and marrow in a dessert… say whaaaat? I can reassure you gelatin has no flavour and fully dissolves, making it a great ingredient to sneak in for fussy eaters.

Gelatin is rich in an amino acid called glycine that helps the body produce stomach acid and restore a healthy stomach lining. Having adequate amounts of stomach acid helps us break down the food we eat and absorb the maximum amount of valuable nutrients. When we don’t have enough stomach acid we can experience nutrient deficiencies and gut issues like bloating, constipation and reflux.

Gelatin also helps us digest fats and proteins, making it easier for our bodies to absorb. It also keeps water in the digestive tract, promoting healthy bowel movements and leaving us fuller for longer.

Why all the focus on gut health? We now know for sure that the gut is the epicentre of our health – piles of research are all pointing in this direction. The gut is not only the place we absorb important nutrients and eliminate waste, but 80% of our immunity is also housed there. An unhealthy gut has been linked to everything from mental health, autoimmune issues, obesity, high cholesterol, allergies, diabetes and cardiovascular issues.

The digestive environment governs the health of all other systems and when it is compromised, you will start to feel and see it in your body.

For all these reasons, I’d encourage you to get into the kitchen and give this dessert a go – your body will thank you and you can thank me!


2 cups coconut milk (I use Coco Quench coconut milk)
1 can of organic coconut cream
1 tablespoon gelatin (I use Nutra Organics)
1/3 cup coconut nectar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup seasonal berries


1. Pour two cups of coconut milk into a medium saucepan and sprinkle evenly with the gelatin. Let the milk sit for five to ten minutes to allow the gelatin to soften.

2. Heat the milk and gelatin over medium heat, stirring constantly, until gelatin is dissolved and milk begins to steam. Stir the coconut cream and coconut nectar into the warm milk and whisk until all the ingredients are dissolved.

3. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla. Let the mixture cool for 10 minutes.

4. Divide the coconut milk mixture evenly among six glasses.

5.Cover panna cottas tightly with plastic wrap, making sure the plastic wrap does not touch the cream's surface. Refrigerate for about five hours, until cold and set. Serve with seasonal berries.

Gina Rose Urlich

Gina is a Brisbane-based clinical nutritionist and lover of wholesome food with a real passion for using the power of nature to heal the body. Gina is a practitioner specialising in women’s health, including hormonal issues and fertility.

Read more by Gina Rose Urlich

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