18 Traditional Christmas Desserts We Could Make Every Year

Gingerbread Men and Women
Photo: Dotdash Meredith

Of all the traditions that come with Christmas, perhaps none are as sweet as the desserts we make. The nostalgia surrounding our favorite holiday cakes, pies, cookies, and candies keeps us coming back to them year after year like a magical time machine. Scroll through to find some of our most beloved traditional Christmas recipes that never go out of style.

01 of 19

Bûche de Noël

a Yule log decorated with chocolate "bark", meringue mushrooms, and confectioners' sugar snow

Also known as a Yule log, this traditional chocolate cake still steals the show in France, Belgium, Switzerland, Canada, and other former French colonies.

02 of 19

Mini Christmas Cakes

cupcake-sized fruitcakes decorated with smooth royal icing and snowflake designs

You may associate fruitcakes with that one neighbor, coworker, or aunt who never failed to deliver one to your door. Gifting Mini Christmas Cakes would be a fun, unexpected alternative to a standard fruitcake.

03 of 19

Russian Tea Cakes I

Russian Tea Cakes I sprinkled with powdered sugar
Philly Ry

"Bubba brought it with her when she came from Lithuania. I pass it on in the true spirit of this season," says recipe creator THEAUNT708, who adds that five generations have now made these cookies during the Christmas season.

04 of 19

Eileen's Spicy Gingerbread Men

Gingerbread Men and Women
Dotdash Meredith

"I was looking for a classic, soft, delicious gingerbread cookie recipe, and I found it! This recipe makes such a nice, soft dough with the perfect blend of spices." — Spongebob7

05 of 19

The Real Red Velvet Cake

The Real Red Velvet Cake
Smart Cookie

Though it's a Christmas-appropriate shade of red, this red velvet cake requires no food coloring thanks to non-alkalized cocoa powder. An old-fashioned white ermine frosting tops it off.

06 of 19

Aunt Teen's Creamy Chocolate Fudge

Aunt Teen's Creamy Chocolate Fudge
My Hot Southern Mess

"My mother used to make fudge every Christmas, and although I wanted to carry on that tradition the traditional fudge recipes were all so hard and never seemed to turn out well. I tried this recipe last year, and not only was it quick and super easy, the fudge tasted spectacular," home cook HEATHERHIPPO writes.

07 of 19

Carrot Cake III

carrot cake with thick layers of frosting and pecan topping

"This is my husband's favorite cake, but we always purchased one from a bakery. So, I was very intimidated trying this, not only for him but for Christmas day with his family. The instructions were to the point and very easy to follow, but most importantly, it was an absolute hit! Everyone loved it, especially my better half. I'd recommend this recipe to anyone and everyone," Ebbz Rozéfort says.

08 of 19

French Silk Chocolate Pie I

chocolate pie with whipped cream
Mackenzie Schieck

"I got rave reviews from everyone at Christmas dinner. All the ladies wanted the recipe," home cook DULCINEA27 writes. "It was light and fluffy and set very well. Goes great with a very buttery crust!"

09 of 19

Chantal's New York Cheesecake

Overhead view of Chantal's New York Cheesecake recipe decorated with fresh strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and mint leaves

"I have never made a cheesecake before, and because of the reviews for this one, I made it for Christmas. Oh my goodness! It was the best I ever had," Alicia Capozzi says.

10 of 19

Date Nut Loaf Cake

closeup of slices of fruitcake with dates and candied cherries

A warm brown sugar sauce takes this moist Date Nut Loaf Cake to the next level. For an extra kick, consider replacing a tablespoon of water with whiskey, as home cook amirasandra suggests.

11 of 19

Soft Christmas Cookies

Soft Christmas Cookies
Pictured: Soft Christmas Cookies | Photo by MDarling.

"These cookies puffed up nicely and held their shape when using cookie cutters. Very buttery and not overly sweet," home cook Bonniejo Roberts says. Other reviewers agree that these cookies couldn't be easier to bake and cut.

12 of 19

Apple Pie by Grandma Ople

Apple Pie by Grandma Ople
Photo by Holiday Baker.

With 10,000 reviews averaging a five-star rating, this prize-winning pie may just rival your own grandmother's recipe.

13 of 19

Too Much Chocolate Cake

Too Much Chocolate Cake
Amber Dehn-Koenig

"This chocolate cake is phenomenal! I have been making this for about two years now for many, many different occasions, and it always gets rave reviews," Ellen E. says. "Chocolate doesn't get any better than this!"

14 of 19

Irresistible Pecan Pie

Pecan Pie
Photo by Meredith. Meredith

"After a trial run to rave reviews, this pie made its proper début at our family Christmas dinner and was one of the smash hits of the evening," reviewer SARAH-NEKO says.

15 of 19

Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake

Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake
Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake | Photo by Meredith. Meredith

Sticky toffee pudding is a traditional English dessert that gets its flavor from cinnamon, dates, raisins, and dried currants.

16 of 19

Peppermint Brittle

Peppermint Brittle
Photo by tamzie.

"A Christmastime treat! This holiday confection is gobbled up quickly by guests, and it is so easy to make. The cool crunch of peppermint with creamy white chocolate is a divine combination," writes recipe creator HONDA.

17 of 19

Favorite Old Fashioned Gingerbread

low angle looking at a slice of gingerbread topped with whipped cream
Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

"If I could give this 10 stars, I would. First time I ever made a gingerbread, and now I've got to make it every year for Christmas. Everyone just loved it." — Randi Johnsen

18 of 19

Holiday Rum Balls

homemade Holiday Rum Balls dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with cocoa powder
Chef John

Dark rum, dark chocolate, and cocoa powder transform plain brownies into a rich dessert.

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