It was the same Kerber who beat Williams in Melbourne in January but the world No. 1 turned the tables on the grass at the All England Club with a clinical display of power tennis amid windy conditions.
"I was trying everything", Kerber said, "but she deserved it today".
Serena has clinched a total of 71 career titles in contrast to Kerber's nine titles.
"I think I played what I could today", the fourth-seeded Kerber said.
Also on Centre Court, Serena and her sister Venus showcased their magic when they claimed their sixth Wimbledon women's doubles title - and 14th Grand Slam trophy - with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Timea Babos and Yaroslava Shvedova.
Still Kerber was not going away easily and, at 3-3 in the second set she had her first break point with Williams looking stressed.
"I had just enough time to change and get the ankles retaped", Serena said.
Williams hit 13 aces and won 38 of 43 points when the world No. 1 put a first serve in.
Serena will have a chance to win a second singles gold medal at the Olympics in Rio next month before attempting to close in on Court with a 23rd major at the US Open a few weeks later. Williams said she had learned that obsessing about numbers was no good for anyone, suggesting that the shackles are now off and the pressure would be reduced. In the past eight grand slams, I don't know how many finals I've been in.
And it was evident in her words, most succinctly when a reporter asked after the semifinals what Williams makes of it when others refer to her as one of history's greatest female athletes.
All she knows of the imposing Albury-bred champion who so successfully straddled the amateur and Open eras to win an astonishing 64 majors, including doubles and mixed, from 1960-1973 in what was a very different tennis time, is, well, just "basic facts". It was uncharacteristic of the German and in complete contrast to the way she had played the rest of the set. This title goes alongside six championships at the U.S. Open, six at the Australian Open and three at the French Open.
The women's final at Wimbledon has started with defending champion Serena Williams serving first to Angelique Kerber.
"Yeah, it's been incredibly hard not to think about it. I had a couple of tries this year", Williams said during the trophy ceremony on matching Graf's record.
Embarrassed by her stunning loss to Roberta Vinci at the US Open last year - a defeat that cost her a rare calendar Grand Slam - and humbled by her further failures this year, Williams had vowed to come back stronger than ever and she conceded it was a huge relief to finally end her quest. Then losses in finals to Kerber at the Australian Open, and to Garbine Muguruza at the French Open.
Serena and Venus Williams will also play in the women's doubles final on Saturday.