Nigella Lawson’s Orange Blackberry Trifle Makeover #44 on Gourmet’s 50 Women Game Changers in Food

Lighter Blackberry Orange Trifle

Lighter Blackberry Orange Trifle

I got the idea for this Orange Blackberry Trifle from Nigella Lawson’s book Nigella Kitchen: Recipes from the Heart of the Home. In true Nigella style, instead of sticking firmly to the recipe, I modified it to use what I had, something she strongly encourages in her cookbooks. I also lightened it up a bit, giving it a mini-makeover.

I felt like this easy trifle was a great recipe to represent Nigella Lawson – #44 on Gourmet’s List of 50 Women Game Changers in Food and her cooking style.

I began participating with a group of food bloggers, led by Mary A Perfect Bite, who are cooking their way through the list, kind of  late in the Game – with #41 Elizabeth Andoh. Now four weeks into it and we’ve finally hit upon someone I am familiar with and whose cookbooks and recipes I adore.

Nigella Lawson is a popular English food writer, journalist and television personality, who began her career as a book reviewer and restaurant critic. She rose to Deputy Literary Editor of the Sunday Times in 1986, before embarking on a freelance writing career.

Her first Book, How to Eat: The Pleasures and Principles of Good Food, was released in 1998 and became a bestseller. In 2000 she won the British Book Award for Author of the Year, for her second cookbook, How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking.

With her charming casual style, simple and delicious recipes, bestselling cookbooks, and popular cooking shows, Lawson has become a household name — representing everything that is sumptuous, comforting and pleasurable about food.

Her cooking philosophy totally resonates with me. Nigella is someone who cooks because she loves food and she loves cooking. She exudes pleasure, a quality often overlooked in our hustle-bustle world, and readily admits that she feels most at home in her kitchen.

Nigella’s writing style is very chatty, so when you read her books it’s like having a friend in the kitchen with you. She’s not a trained chef, but a home cook, encouraging other home cooks. Her recipes are all about experiencing the joy of cooking for comfort rather than trying to impress with perfection.

Clearly a woman after my own heart, according to this August 19, 2011 blog post, her cookbook collection at the time numbered 3,886. (Which makes me feel a little better about my own cookbook addiction.)

Making Lighter Blackberry Orange Trifle

Making Nigella’s Blackberry Orange Trifle Lighter

Nigella originally concocted her orange blackberry trifle to use up her leftover marmalade pudding cake, a recipe that is on my list to try.  I instantly thought it would be a great way to use up what remained of my light yogurt pound cake.

Her version calls for a pint of heavy whipping cream. I opted to use less cream and use a light homemade vanilla pudding to supplement it, an ingredient that is often used in trifles. The combination of orange marmalade, orange liqueur, fresh orange juice and zest was delightful paired with the blackberries, pound cake, vanilla pudding and whipped cream.

This delicious dessert, with a reasonable 7 Weight Watchers PointsPlus, is just the kind of thing my husband adores and was quick to disappear!

Nigella Lawson Blackberry Orange Trifle

Nigella Lawson’s Blackberry Orange Trifle Makeover


5.0 from 2 reviews
Lighter Orange Blackberry Trifle Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A delicious homestyle dessert made a bit lighter with reduced fat pound pound cake and low fat pudding
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 8
  • 3 to 4 slices reduced fat pound cake (to make 3 cups of 1-inch cubes)
  • 2 tablespoons orange marmalade
  • ¼ cup Contreau or Grand Marnier
  • zest and juice of 1 orange
  • 1 recipe vanilla pudding
  • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped
  • 2 cups fresh blackberries, divided
For the Vanilla Pudding
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup fat free evaporated milk
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Make the pudding first since it needs a chance to cool before being added to the trifle.
  2. In a small bowl, mix the sugar, cornstarch, and salt with ½ cup of evaporated milk.
  3. Put the remaining ½ cup evaporated milk and 1 cup 2% milk in a heavy bottomed saucepan set over medium low heat. Heat until it begins to steam and then slowly whisk in the cornstach mixture, stirring constantly.
  4. Cook over medium low heat until the pudding thickens and just starts to boil, about 5 minutes.
  5. Reduce the heat to very low and continue to cook, stirring often, another 5 minutes or so.
  6. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
  7. Cover and chill before using it in the trifle.
  8. Spread the slices of pound cake with orange marmalade and then cut them into 1-inch cubes. Place the cut cake cubes in a shallow bowl and Drizzle them with the orange liqueur and orange juice. Toss them a bit to get some of the liquor and juice on each piece. Toss in 1 cup of the blackberries.
  9. Cover the cake and berries evenly with the cooled pudding and then spoon over the whipped cream.
  10. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
  11. When you are ready to serve, scatter the remaing blackberries and orange zest over the top.
Cook's Notes
Nutritional Estimates Per Serving (1/8th): 293 calories, 8.1 g fat, 45.3 g carbs, 2.5 g fiber, 5.2 g protein and 7 WW PointsPlus value. I love this kind of recipe because it doesn't have to be exact to be good. You can use whatever kind of cake you like - loaf cake, sponge cake, pound cake, angel food cake. You could also skip the pudding and just use more softly whipped cream if you like. You can make it in individual goblets, or a more traditional glass bowl or trifle dish.


The following bloggers are also featuring the cooking of Nigella Lawson today, with lots of wonderful recipes I need to bookmark:

Mary – One Perfect Bite, Val – More Than Burnt Toast, Taryn – Have Kitchen Will Feed, Susan – The Spice Garden, Heather – girlichef, Miranda – Mangoes and Chutney, Amrita – Beetles Kitchen Escapades, Sue – The View from Great Island, Barbara – Movable Feasts, Linda – There and Back Again, Nancy – Picadillo, Mireya – My Healthy Eating Habits, Veronica – My Catholic Kitchen, Annie – Most Lovely Things, Jeanette – Jeanette’s Healthy Living, Claudia – Journey of an Italian Cook, Alyce – More Time at the Table, Kathy – Bakeaway with Me, Jill – Saucy Cooks, Sarah – Everything In the Kitchen Sink

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  1. says

    What a beautiful dessert for just a few points! I, too, am a lifetime Weight Watcher, though I am just about at the point of beginning all over again–sad, but true. Will enjoy looking at your blog for ideas. Thanks, Martha. I’m glad you’ve joined our gang.

  2. says

    I am saving this recipe for a dessert treat! I love the WW points here … seems impossible for so few points, but you’ve done it! As a WW member, I thank you!

    • says

      Hi Susan,

      Hope you enjoy it. The portion is on the smallish side, but I’ve decided I would rather eat less of something that tastes great than more of something that doesn’t satisfy.

  3. says

    Martha, this looks scrumptious and it really sounds delicious. I love how you were able to lighten this up. She is an interesting woman and you picked a great recipe to highlight her style. I hope you have a great weekend. Blessings…Mary

  4. says

    Martha, this takes me back to my childhood when my mum would make trifles like this for us. I don’t know why for the life of me, I haven’t made them myself. I should seriously make some soon enough. Your trifle looks fabulous and I bet it tastes even more so! Also, thanks so much for your lovely comment on my blog…I’d be thrilled to share my cookie recipe on your cookie website :) Let me know what you need!

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