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Berry Tiramisu | A strawberry twist on the Italian classic with mascarpone and Grand Marnier soaked ladyfingers!

Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier

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The hubby is not a fan of coffee nor coffee flavored anything, so instead of the classic version, I whipped up a spectacular Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier for our Easter dessert.

Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier slice on a square white plate with a red handled fork

Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier

My oldest son and I are incredibly fond, to put it mildly, of the classic tiramisu. He’s become a coffee aficionado and has espresso each morning to start the day. This love of coffee easily rolled from a morning pick me up to the dessert realm.  He followed my lead. But dear old Bill would rather have an Oreo than even one bite of luscious tiramisu, so I had to get creative.

We are huge fans on no-bake berry desserts like this tempting Berry Pretzel Dessert, so why not a berry tiramisu???? So strawberry tiramisu came to mind. Layers of ladyfingers soaked in a Grand Marnier syrup were alternated with fresh, sliced strawberries and a decadent vanilla custard with mascarpone and whipped cream. Do I have your attention? I thought so!

What is in a Traditional Tiramisu?

Tiramisu is a popular layered Italian dessert composed of layered ladyfingers dipped in coffee, a mixture of mascarpone and zabaglione (an Italian custard composed of Marsala, eggs and sugar), and cocoa powder. There have been many variations developed throughout the years, like my non-traditional strawberry tiramisu.

Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier in a white, oval baking dish

A Non-Traditional Strawberry Tiramisu Recipe

When I first planned to make a non-coffee tiramisu, I thought of using a mix of raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries. But with the sad state of the raspberries in the market before Easter, I let that idea go. Plus, my youngest, who eats almost anything, is not a fan of raspberries. Even though I had a fudge lamb for our chocolate fix, I wanted our holiday dessert to be a hit across the board. And it was.

Dipping the ladyfingers in a Grand Marnier syrup, made with my favorite orange liqueur, gave a subtle boozy undertone plus the custard mixed with whipped cream and mascarpone cream was to.die.for. I had given up dessert for Lent, and I made sure every molecule left in the mixing bowl went straight into my mouth. Sigh. It was heavenly. Plus having luscious, ripe red strawberries thrown in the mix didn’t hurt either.

Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier garnished with fresh strawberries on a square white plate

Tips for Making Tiramisu

Obviously, this strawberry tiramisu is not a traditional version. But many of the same tips for making a true Italian tiramisu also apply to this dessert.

  • PRO-Tip: Have your mascarpone at room temperature. It will mix into the custard more easily if not cold.
  • When whisking the egg yolks in the double boiler, give them your full attention. You do not want any egg yolk bits to cook/scramble as this will prevent a smooth custard.
  • Grand Marinier is an orange liqueur that works well with the strawberries. Feel free to substitute another favorite liqueur or liquor to enhance your sugar syrup if desired.
  • There are two different kinds of ladyfingers available. The ones I used were soft, like sponge cake. The Italian version is hard, more like a biscuit or cookie. Either work, but the softer version will soak up liquid more quickly.
  • PRO-Tip: Quickly dip the ladyfingers into the sugar syrup. One side, then the other. You do not want soggy ladyfingers or your tiramisu will not have any structure.
  • Chill your strawberry tiramisu at least 2 hours before serving so that all the flavors have a chance to infuse into the dessert components. Traditional tiramisu is usually garnished with cocoa powder or finely grated chocolate. Sliced strawberries are perfect for this berry tiramisu.

Berry Tiramisu Pinterest collage

How to Serve Your Berry Tiramisu

  • I was awfully ambitious when I thought I could get neat squares of berry tiramisu out of the serving dish. Forget about it and just scoop up large spoonfuls onto dessert plates. Top with a few more strawberry slices and voila, an elegant, unforgettable grand finale to your meal.
  • I tried to make a fancy-schmancy fruit arrangement on top—pretty, yes. Practical, no! This made cutting quite a challenge.
  • I also brushed the berries with a little currant jelly to give them a sheen, but that’s totally optional. Shake up the berries as you like. I’m still thinking about a raspberry version…

Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier in an oval casserole with a garnish of fresh strawberry slices

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Berry Tiramisu | A strawberry twist on the Italian classic with mascarpone and Grand Marnier soaked ladyfingers!

Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier

A berry twist on the classic Italian tiramisu.

  • Author: Liz Berg
  • Prep Time: 45 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert, No-Bake
  • Method: Mixing
  • Cuisine: American, Italian-American


Grand Marnier syrup:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup Grand Marnier


  • 6 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 1 pound mascarpone cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

To assemble:

  • 2 3-ounce packages of ladyfingers (sponge cake variety)
  • 16 ounces strawberries, hulled and sliced


  1. Make Grand Marnier syrup by combining sugar and water in a saucepan and heating, stirring occasionally, till sugar is dissolved. Add Grand Marnier and cool to room temperature.
  2. Heat egg yolks and the ¾ cup sugar in a double boiler, whisking constantly until thick and doubled in volume. Remove from heat and continue whisking for a minute or so. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the heavy cream, mascarpone, and vanilla till thick and smooth. Add the yolks and fold together till well combined. Set aside.
  4. Separate ladyfingers and dip, one at a time, into the syrup and lay on the bottom of a medium-sized baking dish. Layer with half the custard, then arrange about ¾ of the strawberry slices over the custard.
  5. Repeat with a second layer of soaked ladyfingers (you may have a few leftovers depending on the size of your dish), then top with the remaining custard. Garnish with remaining strawberries or reserve to top individual servings. Chill for 2 hours before serving.
  6. Scoop out spoonfuls of tiramisu to serve (I tried slicing, but it was quite a challenge!).


Total time does not include chilling time.
You might need an extra package of ladyfingers depending on the size of your serving dish.
You might like to serve this in a trifle dish in order to view the beautiful layers.



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69 comments on “Berry Tiramisu with Grand Marnier”

  1. You certainly do have my attention, Ms. Berg! Oh, my goodness…such a luscious Easter or anytime treat! Love every single ingredient in the recipe especially the Grand Marnier, cream and strawberries….BTW Your last #SundaySupper Lemon Cake is featured on my fan and personal page and my present post…It was a fantabulous all Liz Berg recipes are =)

    • One question: 12 oz of ladyfingers?? That seems
      like a lot of ladyfingers. Want to try this tomorrow………

      • Hi, Debbie,

        I will double check at the market today, but as long as you have enough to make two layers in your serving dish, you’ll be fine. I’ll get back to you after I look at the ounces on the packaging—I’m thinking I used two pacakages.

      • I used 6 ounces of ladyfingers (2 3-ounce packages). You might need 3 packages depending on the size of your pan. Hope you enjoy!!!

  2. Ohhh Lizzy! You did it again! Such a scrumptious recipe! I love this non-coffee version of tiramisu!!! I am bookmarking it for our spring! 🙂

  3. It must be wonderful taste!

  4. What a scrumptious summer dessert!

  5. Very pretty! I like those desserts you can just scoop out into a bowl:@)

  6. Liz this looks wonderful! Simply fantastic.

  7. This is absolutely gorgeous!

  8. Looks delicious! A friend made something similar with raspberries so the kids could eat it without the caffeine (and alcohol) hit so I can imagine this is great too!

  9. Your Tiramisu is gorgeous Liz. I am always in the mood for strawberries and you’re really got a winning combination of flavor and beauty.

  10. I don’t like raspberries either. SO I would happily devour this strawberry tiramisu. It’s so great that you reinvented such a classic treat.

  11. Coffee-less tiramisu? You wild an crazy woman! 😉 Actually it is a brilliant idea and it looks wonderful.

  12. Sounds delicious…as usual! Love the berries in this.

  13. I can’t wait to make your recipe Liz, I know hubs will go crazy for it! Nettie

  14. I love your twist on Tiramisu

  15. I’m right there with you in that I think tiramisu is the best dessert ever!! I LOVE your strawberry version!

  16. I love your berry twist on tiramisu, so pretty!

  17. Dear Lizzy, what a beautiful Spring treat. I love your version of tiramisu…looks wonderful dear! xoxo, Catherine

  18. This looks amazing and is a wonderful alternative tiramisu when you have coffee haters in the house.

  19. Gorgeous! Love the combination of berries and Grand Marnier.

  20. I love traditional tiramisu but this strawberry version does look great.

  21. Liz, this is just perfection!! I love tiramisu and the addition of berries sounds so good!

  22. Stunninngg, I too love tiramisu and this looks like straight up, made in heaven. Berry + mascarpone combo is super decadent for spring time !!!

  23. Liz, what a great idea and such a great alternative to regular espresso filled tiramisu! I love this and have to try it!

  24. Tiramisu? Strawberrys? Grand Marnier? This dessert have all my attention from the begining! Looks extra! I would like to eat a little bit with a nice coffee!

  25. I love your creative and beautiful version Liz – I bet it is delicious!

  26. Dear Liz, I can this, I will make this – spectecular version of an Italian classic dessert! I am loving your updated version of Tiramisù!

  27. I love the idea of switching the coffee for berries! Perfect for berry season! 🙂

  28. I have often read about tiramisu in a variety of delicious flavors such as your strawberry version. I have never made any, but I know one thing for sure: when I make strawberry tiramisu, it will be your recipe that I use, Liz! Thank you for sharing!

  29. This berry tiramisu looks like a winner. I think it sounds heavenly.

  30. Love the strawberries in this tiramisu! Can’t wait to try!

  31. Wow Liz, this is beautiful, my daughter does not care for tiramisu either, but I know she would love this.

  32. Liz, I love this version of tiramisu…not only prettier, but tastier, as my opinion…I love the fresh strawberries in it.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  33. What a stunning looking delicious and refreshing spring or summer dessert!

  34. This is simply the most elegant dessert! Strawberries and Grand Marnier? This has to be amazing!!!!

  35. This looks gorgeous, Liz! Tiramisu is my husband’s favorite and strawberries are my favorite so this twist is perfect for us! Totally brilliant! 🙂

  36. You got the money shot with the fancy schmancy strawberries and it’s beautiful. I’m looking forward to this one and adding it to my list for Mother’s Day.

  37. This is not tiramisu, sorry. This is a lady finger dessert, but for sure not Tiramisu.. Where is mascarpone?? 😉

    • The recipe calls for a pound of mascarpone, Petra. I’m certain you’re right that this isn’t a true tiramisu, but it has many of the components of the classic: ladyfingers, mascarpone, alcohol, eggs. Perfect for those who don’t like coffee flavored desserts. Hope you give it a try—it’s amazing!

  38. What a GREAT idea! Berry Tiramisu – I like it!
    We still have strawberry (the season is almost over) and I might be able to make it right after Passover….
    It looks fantastic and soooo delicious

  39. LOL Enjoyed your write up as much as the recipe! Very pretty strawberry arrangement even if you said not practical. You are so gifted, Liz.

  40. This was amazing. Everyone raves about it 🙂

  41. Liz, this dessert looks so delicious! Is there something I could substitute for the Grand Marnier to soak the lady fingers? I really want to make this, but I try to stay away from alcohol. Thanks for sharing! Nancy

  42. oh yes I love this spin on the classic and its so fresh looking with strawberries!

  43. this looks fabulous love how light and refreshing it is

  44. I made this cake for my husband’s birthday and it was a hit! It was so light and delicious and the best part was that it was simple to make!

  45. This recipe is beautiful! And so delicious! Perfect for a summer’s evening.

  46. I like this berry version way better than the original – so creamy!

  47. Oh my! I’m all over this. I don’t like the classic tiramisu because I am not a coffee lover (I’m sure I’m in the minority here but that’s another story). Love everything about this version!

  48. Whoops – I don’t seem my rating stars with my comment so here you go!

  49. Oh my God. I am new to your blog. Just found your recipe over at Wonderful Wednesday Blog Hop. I’m trying to cut back on sugar but Tiramisu is truthfully one of my favorite desserts ever! I’ve never tried this combination before and I’m afraid that if I try this recipe i have to make a smaller batch. Otherwise, I will end up eating all of it on my own!

  50. What a nice idea! I love traditional tiramisu, but this looks like it would be equally delicious!

  51. I love how light and airy this dessert is….perfect for a warm night!

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  53. Since I’m not a coffee drinker this was the perfect alternative!

  54. Tiramisu is my favorite dessert and this berry version is lovely!

  55. Been looking for a recipe like this! Was so pleased with how it turned out.

  56. Everybody loved it! It was so good!!!

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