12 Quick and Easy Christmas Desserts
Whether you're a culinary pro or a kitchen novice, you'll appreciate these 12 quick and easy Christmas dessert recipes that use a short list of easy-to-find ingredients and simple prep. These easy recipes take some pressure off of your holiday plate and leave a tasty dessert instead.
Morgan's Amazing Peppermint Bark
All you need for this holiday treat are two ingredients and a microwave. The recipe comes together in just a few minutes, and then chills out in the fridge for an hour. Reviewer Rebekah Rose Hills exclaims that this recipe "is as easy as it gets – and yet so tasty and delicious!" Lisabobeesa says she adds the candy on top after the melted chocolate has been spread out onto waxed paper. "The colors look so much more festive," she says.
Cheesecake in a Jar
For a quicker (and a cuter) take on cheesecake that won't take hours to make and bake, assemble this no-bake version in small canning jars or ramekins. If fresh strawberries aren't at their prime, Christine Haley suggests using store-bought lemon curd and Diavet Hoye uses drained, canned pineapple instead. To dress them up for the holidays, tie a festive ribbon around each jar.
Pecan Caramel Clusters
Somewhere between candy and a decadent dessert lies this pecan caramel cluster that is made in the microwave. For an even more family-friendly confection, try switching out the dark chocolate for milk chocolate, like Stephanie Veselka does. You can also use chopped almonds or macadamia nuts instead of pecans.
Thin Mint Cookies
It takes only three ingredients and a few minutes of your time to make irresistible minty chocolate cookies. To get a perfectly smooth finish, make sure the chocolate is completely melted before adding the peppermint, suggests INTELSIS. Otherwise, the chocolate make seize up (get crumbly).
Related: How to Melt Chocolate 3 Easy Ways
Rum or Bourbon Balls
Rum balls are best made a few days in advance, so the flavors have a chance to meld, and then simply remove them from the fridge about 30 minutes before serving. Kat G says, "YOWZAAAAA! Fantastic recipe! These taste just like the rum balls my mom made during the holidays."
Apple Cobbler Crumble
If you need to whip up a last-minute dessert, this comforting apple cobbler crumble is the perfect choice. Much easier to make than a traditional apple pie, it still has all of the warm flavors and goes great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. If you don't have self-rising flour in your pantry, home baker Brianne D. makes her own using this recipe.
Too Much Chocolate Cake
Can there ever really be too much chocolate in a cake? We think not! This recipes is easy to prepare thanks to shortcut ingredients like cake mix and chocolate pudding, so you can work on other dishes for the holidays while it bakes in the oven. Professional cake decorator KRICKYR likes to use mini chocolate chips instead of the regular sized ones called for in the recipe because they don't sink to the bottom of the pan and they leave "a small bit of pure chocolate in each bite."
Quick and Easy Peanut Brittle
A favorite treat to bring along to holiday parties (or have out on the table for snacking), peanut brittle can be a lot of work to make. However, this quick and easy recipe uses only four ingredients and no candy thermometer is necessary. If this is your first time working with candy, Baking Fool reminds us that it will take 10 to 12 minutes for the caramel to reach the right stage on the stove top.
Related: How to Make Homemade Candy
Mini Strawberry Santas
It doesn't get cuter, or easier, than these miniature Santas made with strawberries, whipped cream, and chocolate sprinkles. If you don't have tiny hands to help you decorate, you can use tweezers to put on the sprinkle eyes. Keep these refrigerated until just before serving, otherwise the whipped cream will get soft, warns T L C.
Related: How to Make Whipped Cream
Easy Pumpkin Turnovers
Store-bought puff pastry, found in the freezer section, makes for an elegant and easy dessert when stuffed with canned pumpkin and spices. Leda likes to sprinkle the slightly cooled turnovers with a little sugar frosting (a simple mixture of confectioner's sugar and milk or water) for a touch more sweetness and a pretty finish.
The kids will love helping you make these fun and easy holiday treats. Use red and green candy-coated chocolates for the best seasonal look, or try putting a small piece of candy cane on top. EAHUGHES likes to line the baking pan with parchment paper to keep the pretzels from sticking.
Extra Easy Fudge
The trick to making this fudge is its secret ingredient: chocolate frosting! HOLLY76 says it's so easy, even kids can make it. Chill it in the fridge for at least 5 or 6 hours, or even overnight, so that it's easier to cut into squares.
Related: Browse our entire collection of Christmas Cookie Recipes.