Classic Sherry trifle

Classic Sherry trifle
Photo Credit: Olive O’Brien

Growing up this dessert was a firm favourite among the whole family.  Of course, as children, we only ever got this dessert on special occasions, which to my mind was never nearly often enough!

In later years when mum became a diabetic, I tweaked her favourite dessert and used sugar-free jelly crystals and I also swapped the sugar for canderel.

I would advise if you want to substitute any part of the following sherry trifle recipe please do not be tempted to use low-fat milk or skimmed milk as there simply is not enough fat in either of these kinds of milk to thicken the custard and the custard will just burn (and possibly destroy your pot) ☹

Also just to note that single cream does not whip, so best to use double cream.

The Sherry part is, of course, optional, this can be made equally good without it.

If you find you have the time this Sherry Trifle works really well if made in advance as it allows the sherry flavour to reach, it’s full potential!


1 x serving bowl, 1 pot to make the custard, a whisk to whip the cream, a separate bowl to make jelly, 1 x Pallet knife


1 x pack of trifle sponge

2 x packs of unsweetened jelly crystals (any flavour of your choice)

1 x tin of fruit cocktail (optional)

10mls Sherry (any type but I favour Winter’s Tale)

75g x Custard powder

250mls x Milk

Sugar or canderel (to taste)

150ml x whipping cream or double cream

Fresh berries (optional)


In your serving bowl break up the trifle sponge making sure you cover the base of the bowl.

Depending on your taste soak the sponge with sherry with as much quantity as you like (remember this is optional)

If you are using the tinned fruit cocktail this is where you add the fruit which should have been drained of its juices.

Follow the instructions on the jelly pack and when the jelly is dissolved and cold (not set) gently pour it over the sponge.

Refrigerate to set.

Follow the instructions on the custard packet using a little milk to blend custard powder before adding to milk and add sugar/canderel to sweeten.

Only when the jelly is set and custard is cold should you pour the custard over the set jelly. And again refrigerate.

Just before you serve the dessert you should whip your cream in a clean bowl adding a little sugar/canderel to taste.

The cream should be whipped to a consistency that will give you soft peaks. It is important that you do not over whip the cream.

Using a pallet knife, spread the cream over the custard and chill until ready to serve.

Serving Suggestion

Photo Credit: Olive O’Brien

Decorate the cream with fresh berries of your choice or with mini marshmallows and shavings of chocolate flake.

I hope you enjoy making this version of my classic sherry trifle, this dessert is best consumed within 2 days from the fridge.

I would love to hear from you in the comments below or if you have any questions you can pop them down too and I will respond.

2 thoughts on “Classic Sherry trifle”

  • Thanks a lot for such an amazing review about classic sherry trifle and explanation given.

    We have been looking for a recipe for sherry trifle for a long time.  It is a very tasty tripod, I ate it before with a friend and I liked it a lot. I will definitely try this recipe.  Thanks again for this post. 

    If you don’t mind, I will share this article on my social media account. 

    Good luck!

    • HI Razvanllie thanks for your comment and hope you enjoy this delicious dessert.  I’d be interested to hear how you got on so please do return and let me know which version you tried. 

      Please feel free to share on your social media account, thank you. 

      All the best, Olive 

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