Kid-friendly English Eton Mess Fruit Salad Recipe - Sticky Fingers Cooking
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Recipe: English Eton Mess Fruit Salad

Recipe: English Eton Mess Fruit Salad

English Eton Mess Fruit Salad

by Dylan Sabuco
Photo by Dylan Sabuco
prep time
10 minutes
cook time
4-6 servings

Fun Food Story

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English Eton Mess Fruit Salad

Eton Mess is one of those magical treats that prioritizes simplicity and spontaneity. Alongside desserts like "dump cake" and "pile-up pie," Eton Mess invites budding chefs to experiment without the pressure of rigid rules. The recipe is adaptable and forgiving, and each step leads to delightful results, ensuring that young chefs feel encouraged and enjoy their time in the kitchen. So, if you want to nurture your child's culinary confidence, starting with an easy, unpretentious dessert like Eton Mess is a brilliant idea!

To capture the spirit of a traditional Eton mess, pair the fruit salad with Silken Lemon Meringue Pie Pudding, which boasts a whipped tofu layer. The tart lemon complements the sweetness of the fruits, creating a truly out-of-this-world dessert.

Happy & Healthy Cooking,

Chef Erin, Food-Geek-in-Chief

Fun-Da-Mentals Kitchen Skills

  • chop :

    to cut something into small, rough pieces using a blade.

  • knife skills :

    Bear Claw (growl), Pinch, Plank, and Bridge (look out for trolls)

  • measure :

    to calculate the specific amount of an ingredient required using a measuring tool (like measuring cups or spoons).

  • sprinkle :

    to scatter small drops or particles of an ingredient evenly or randomly over food. 

  • stir :

    to mix together two or more ingredients with a spoon or spatula, usually in a circle pattern, or figure eight, or in whatever direction you like!

Equipment Checklist

  • Large bowl
  • Cutting board + kid-safe knife
  • Dry measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Wooden spoon
  • Zester (or grater with small zesting plate/side)
  • Citrus squeezer or juicer


English Eton Mess Fruit Salad

  • 3 C fresh or frozen berries (your choice—my favorites are blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries)
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 T granulated sugar


English Eton Mess Fruit Salad


Eton mess is a classic dessert from Eton College England. Legend has it that the original was actually made in an attempt to clean up a mess. The story goes that a dessert of strawberry pavlova was spilled on the field of a cricket match at Eton vs. Harlow. Instead of wasting the dessert, the servers scooped it into glasses and served it to the guests, and Eton mess was born! The English Eton Mess Fruit Salad recipe below combines with our Silken Lemon Meringue Pie Pudding recipe to create the complete Eton mess.

chop + sprinkle

Have your kids gently chop 3 cups fresh or frozen berries and place them into a large bowl. Sprinkle the berries with 1 tablespoon sugar and stir a few times to coat them in the sugar.

zest + juice + stir

Zest and juice 1 lemon into the bowl of coated berries. Stir a few more times, to dissolve the sugar.

reserve + serve

Reserve the fruit salad if you are also making the Silken Lemon Meringue Pie Pudding (see recipe) and layer the two recipes in cups. Or enjoy it by itself! This fruit salad can be chilled overnight or served right away. You will surely be chuffed to bits (very pleased) when you dig into this recipe!

Surprise Ingredient: Berries!

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Photo by Ana Hollan/ (girl eating wild elderberries)

Hi! I'm a Berry!

"To be specific, I'm an edible berry. We might be sweet or sour, colorful, juicy, and delicious! People around the world eat us alone, with other foods, and in jams, preserves, and pies! Yum! Did you know that bananas, pumpkins, tomatoes, and watermelons are technically berries!" 

  • Thousands of years ago, before crops were domesticated, hunter-gatherers picked wild berries, an activity people still enjoy doing today. 
  • Berry cultivation may have begun as early as the 10th century in Japan, the 14th century in Europe, and the 18th century in the United States. 
  • The word "berry" comes from the Old English "berie," from the German "beere."
  • Globally, strawberries are grown twice the amount of any other berry, although strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries are not actual berries, botanically speaking—they are aggregate fruits. 
  • Botanical berries include blueberries, cranberries, elderberries, gooseberries, lingonberries, and persimmons.
  • Berries are a wonderful snack eaten by themselves or added to cold and hot cereal. But they are equally delightful when made into preserves, jams, and sauces. In addition, berries are often used in baked goods like cakes, cobblers, muffins, and pies. 
  • Berries are often called a "superfood" and are recommended by doctors and nutritionists for a healthy diet. They are high in antioxidants and fiber, and many have essential nutrients like vitamin C, helping to protect against cancer and chronic disease.

What is Eton Mess?

Photo by Stolyevych Yuliya/
  • Eton mess is a dessert served at an annual cricket match at Eton College in England when they play their rival, Harlow School. It consists of berries, cream, and crushed baked meringue. It looks like a messed-up pavlova (a dessert made with a baked meringue base or shell filled with whipped cream and fruit).
  • The recipe name, Eton Mess, was first recorded in 1893, although there are stories that the dessert got its name in the 1920s or 30s from an accident involving a dog and a strawberry pavlova on the cricket field at Eton College. Supposedly, the broken-up pavlova was scooped up and plopped into glasses, and the mess was enjoyed by everyone there!

Let's learn about England!

Photo by Tomsickova Tatyana/
  • England is ruled by a Monarch, a Prime Minister, and a Parliament. Windsor Castle is the oldest royal castle in the world that is still being used by the royal family.
  • England is on the island of Great Britain, along with Wales and Scotland. It is also part of the United Kingdom, which consists of those three countries and Northern Ireland. 
  • Did you know that there's no place in the UK that is more than 70 miles from the sea?! 
  • Stonehenge is a construction of immense stones that the early inhabitants of what's now Wiltshire, England, began building around 3100 BCE. The final sections were completed around 1600 BCE. Scientists are still not sure how or why they built it. One theory for its purpose is an astronomical observatory. It is very popular with tourists.
  • Other popular tourist spots in England include the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben and Parliament (Palace of Westminster), the Roman Baths and the city of Bath, and the Lake District.  
  • London, the capital city, wasn't always called that. In the past, its name was Londonium.
  • England took part in the briefest war in history. They fought Zanzibar in 1896, and Zanzibar surrendered after just 38 minutes!
  • There have been several influential English authors, but perhaps the most well-known is William Shakespeare, who wrote classics such as Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, and Hamlet.
  • English computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee is credited with inventing the World Wide Web.
  • The British really like their sandwiches—they eat almost 11.5 billion a year!

What's It Like to Be a Kid in England?

  • Most schools in England require students to wear a school uniform. 
  • Sports kids play include football (soccer), cricket, rugby, tennis, netball (similar to basketball), and rounders (similar to baseball). They also play video games, watch the telly, and ride bikes or skateboards.
  • Boxing Day is a unique holiday kids celebrate in England the day after Christmas, December 26. The official public holiday is the first weekday after Christmas if Boxing Day falls on a weekend. When the English created the holiday, it was the day to share the contents of alms boxes with the poor. Today, it is mostly a day off from school and work, although some small gifts may be given out to family and employees, or collected to give to the poor.
  • English kids may have different names for everyday items also found in the United States. For example, a kid will call his mom "mum." Their backyard is a "garden." A big truck is called a "lorry," and the trunk of a car is a "boot." Biscuits in the US are closest to the British "scones," and cookies in England are "biscuits." A TV is usually called a "telly." Bags of chips are referred to as bags of "crisps." French fries, like those from a fast-food hamburger place, might be called "fries," but if they are thicker, like the ones typically served with batter-fried fish, they're called "chips" (fish and chips). Finally, kids call the fish sticks they might have for lunch "fish fingers.

THYME for a Laugh

What do you call a sad strawberry? 

A blueberry.

Lettuce Joke Around

What did one raspberry say to the other raspberry? 

"If you weren't so sweet, we wouldn't be in this jam!"

The Yolk's On You

What is a scarecrow’s favorite fruit? 


Lettuce Joke Around

What do you call raspberries playing the guitar? 

A jam session!

The Yolk's On You

Tongue twister:

Say it 3 times fast . . . "Bake big batches of brown blueberry bread."

The Yolk's On You

What do you call strawberries playing the guitar? 

A jam session!

Lettuce Joke Around

What do you call a sad raspberry? 

A blueberry.

The Yolk's On You

What’s a ghost’s favorite fruit? 


That's Berry Funny

Why were the little strawberries upset? 

Because their parents were in a jam!

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