The 48 Best Christmas Desserts of All Time

The more, the merrier when it comes to sweet holiday treats

Chocolate Buche de Noel

The Spruce

Tis the season for festive Christmas desserts! And the more there are, the merrier the holidays will be. Serve any one of these 50 dessert recipes to top off a delicious holiday meal, bring them to Christmas parties, or just enjoy the confections while decorating the tree. In these recipes, your favorite holiday flavors—such as gingerbread, caramel, and mint—come together in the form of cheerful Christmas cookies, stunning seasonal cakes, and homemade fudge that's perfect for gift-giving, and one amazing edible cupcake wreath.

  • 01 of 48

    The Ultimate Sticky Toffee Pudding

    The Ultimate Sticky Toffee Pudding

    Diana Miller / Getty Images

    Sticky toffee pudding is a must-bake Christmas dessert in Britain—it's even one of Harry Potter's favorites in the books! A dark, date-filled cake is drenched in thick toffee sauce for an ultra-decadent treat. Make it a few days in advance so the sauce soaks in for a super-rich and sticky experience.

  • 02 of 48

    Chocolate Buche de Noel

    Chocolate Buche de Noel

    The Spruce

    Use vanilla Genoise cake to form the Swiss roll "log" for this chocolate buche de Noel, or yule log cake, before covering it in rich chocolate buttercream and decorating with your favorite Christmas-themed candies.

  • 03 of 48

    Christmas Spiced Victoria Sponge Cake

    Christmas Spiced Victoria Sponge Cake

    The Spruce

    Victoria sponge is an important and beloved British "sandwich cake" filled with fruit preserves and whipped cream. Add warming Christmas spices to put a festive spin on the classic recipe.

  • 04 of 48

    Eggnog Pie

    Eggnog Pie

    The Spruce / Elaine Lemm

    Make a velvety custard pie that tastes like the season's favorite tipple. The boozy, eggnog-flavored filling nestles in a sweet pastry crust for a delectable, nostalgia-inducing holiday dessert.

    Continue to 5 of 48 below.
  • 05 of 48

    Pecan Pie Cheesecake

    Pecan Pie Cheesecake

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    Pecan pie cheesecake combines two decadent holiday desserts in one. It delivers all the flavor and crunch you love in pecan pie, with the amazing smooth, creamy texture of cheesecake. You can bake this cheesecake up to four days before guests arrive, but make the pecan topping on the day of serving.

  • 06 of 48

    Chocolate Candy Cane Cake

    Chocolate candy cane cake

    The Spruce / Elizabeth LaBau

    Wow family and friends with an impressive chocolate candy cane cake. Three moist layers of chocolate cake are filled with candy cane-studded buttercream, then frosted with chocolate-mint icing. It's decorated with chocolate curls and mini-candy canes for a full winter wonderland effect.

  • 07 of 48

    Cranberry Upside-Down Cake

    Cranberry Upside-Down Cake

    The Spruce/Ulyana Verbytska

    Colorful cranberry upside-down cake is a delicious way to celebrate the holiday season. Orange juice and zest, plus brown sugar add plenty of flavor to the cranberry topping for this sweet, vanilla-scented cake.

  • 08 of 48

    Eggnog White Chocolate Cheesecake

    Eggnog White Chocolate Cheesecake

    The Spruce / Ailsa von Dobeneck

    If eggnog tops your list of favorite holiday flavors, you will swoon for this dreamy white chocolate cheesecake. With a spiced, rum-boosted cheesecake filling and gingersnap crust, it makes an indulgent ending to any holiday meal.

    Continue to 9 of 48 below.
  • 09 of 48

    Traditional English Trifle

    Traditional English Trifle

    The Spruce

    Boozy, fruity, and creamy all at once, English trifle is an absolute must-have for a traditional Christmas feast. Layer sherry-soaked sponge cake with velvety custard, sweet jelly, red berries, and fluffy whipped cream to enjoy this luscious, tiered dessert at your own holiday dinner.

  • 10 of 48

    Vegan Cranberry and Pear Holiday Pie

    Vegan Cranberry and Pear Holiday Pie

    Aubrie LeGault / Stocksy United

    Here's a wonderfully festive cranberry and pear pie for Christmas that vegan guests can enjoy without guilt. The lightly-spiced cranberry and pear filling is baked with maple syrup for extra sweetness and there's a lovely and simple crumb topping to balance out the tart fruit.

  • 11 of 48

    Cupcake Wreath

    Cupcake Wreath

    The Spruce / Elizabeth LaBau

    Feeling creative this holiday season? Craft a showstopping Christmas cupcake wreath. It's easy to make and you can eat every single bit of it, from the creamy frosting leaves to the sweet candy berries—even the super-cute chocolate-vanilla pinecones on top. It makes a great Christmas table centerpiece.

  • 12 of 48

    Holiday Rum Balls

    Rum Balls

     The Spruce

    Rich, dense, boozy chocolate rum balls are a classic Christmas candy that's sure to become one of your favorites as soon as you try them. They're a wonderful post-dinner treat with coffee or a sweet make-ahead holiday gift.

    Continue to 13 of 48 below.
  • 13 of 48

    Red Velvet Cake

    Red velvet cake

    John Shepherd / Getty Images

    Red velvet cake is as striking visually as it is delicious, making it just the right hue for a holiday dessert buffet. You'll mix vinegar and baking soda—just like a kids' science experiment—to make sure this cake rises nicely.

  • 14 of 48

    Turtle Candy

    Turtle candies

    The Spruce

    Turtle candies are a favorite Christmas treat and make great holiday stocking stuffers for kids and adults alike. You only need three ingredients to recreate these popular pecan, caramel, and chocolate confection.

  • 15 of 48

    Gingerbread Truffles

    Gingerbread truffles

    The Spruce

    Everyone loves the flavor and aroma of warm spiced gingerbread in the winter months. This great holiday recipe creates soft little truffles that taste just like gingerbread cookie dough. They're sure to disappear quickly!

  • 16 of 48

    Struffoli Neapolitan Christmas Sweets

    Struffoli Neapolitan Christmas Sweets

    Tania Mattiello / Getty Images

    Struffoli are the traditional dessert at the end of a Neapolitan Italian Christmas day dinner. These tiny balls of deliciousness are made from citrusy dough that you fry until crisp, and top with a sweet honey glaze, plus colorful candy sprinkles.

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  • 17 of 48

    Christmas Tree Pretzel Rods

    Christmas tree pretzels

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    Here's a fun handheld dessert that kids can enjoy at tree-trimming parties and Christmas gatherings without making a mess. Little ones can even get in on the action and help decorate the Christmas tree pretzel rods themselves.

  • 18 of 48

    Gingerbread With Lemon Glaze

    Gingerbread With Lemon Glaze

    The Spruce

    What would Christmas be without gingerbread? Dark molasses gives this gingerbread a gorgeous, deep brown color and rich flavor that will remind you of childhood. Finish it with a simple two-ingredient lemon glaze for an elegant presentation.

  • 19 of 48

    Dark Chocolate Mousse With Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur

    Dark Chocolate Mousse With Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur

    Getty Images

    Bailey's Irish Cream can be used for more than spiking your mug of coffee. The sweet, creamy liqueur makes a fabulous addition to decadent, sophisticated, dark chocolate mousse. You can create this impressive dessert in thirty minutes, but plan to chill in the fridge at least two hours before serving.

  • 20 of 48

    Candy Cane Truffles

    Candy Cane Truffles

    Elizabeth LaBau

    Candy cane bits and peppermint extract add refreshing flavor and crunchy texture to smooth ultra-dark chocolate ganache truffles. Make these festive dessert truffles in about an hour, plus a couple of additional hours for chilling.

    Continue to 21 of 48 below.
  • 21 of 48

    Cranberry Orange Bread Pudding

    Cranberry Orange Bread Pudding

    The Spruce

    Warm, comforting cranberry orange pudding makes a wonderful, homey dessert for family gatherings. Use a rich, eggy bread—such as challah or brioche—for this recipe. The pudding bakes in about an hour and tastes even more amazing topped with hard sauce.

  • 22 of 48

    Black Russian Cake

    Black Russian Cake

    ASIFE/iStock/Getty Images Plus

    This delicious black Russian cake takes inspiration from the famous cocktail made with vodka and Kahlua. Use these boozy ingredients, plus boxed yellow cake mix, instant chocolate pudding, eggs, milk, and oil, to create the batter. Pour it into a bundt pan for baking, finishing the cake with a drizzle of chocolate sauce to serve.

  • 23 of 48

    Christmas Cupcakes

    Christmas Cupcakes

    The Spruce / Ulyana Verbytska

    These Christmas cupcakes are designed for grown-ups to enjoy, thanks to the inclusion of mincemeat, brandy, and warming Christmas spices in the batter. Spike the pretty frosting with liqueur or a hand-held treat that makes a great holiday drop-in party contribution.

  • 24 of 48

    Black Forest Cake

    Black Forest Cake

    Getty Images

    Sophisticated Black Forest cake is a symphony of sweet tastes, from the dark chocolate cake layers to the boozy cherry filling and smooth whipped cream frosting. Top the cake with dark and white chocolate curls and maraschino cherries for a show-stopping Christmas dessert.

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  • 25 of 48

    Snickerdoodle Creme Brulee

    Snickerdoodle Creme Brulee

    Diana Rattray

    Put a decadent twist on a classic French bistro dessert with this rich recipe for Snickerdoodle creme brulee. Add cinnamon to the hard caramelized sugar topping for the creamy cookie-flavored custard. It's an elevated dessert that will please your guests' inner children.

  • 26 of 48

    Christmas Strudel

    Christmas Strudel

    The Spruce / Ulyana Verbytska

    Christmas strudel is a welcome indulgence during the holiday season, whether served for dessert or as a special treat while tree trimming. Store-bought phyllo dough is layered with a nicely-spiced filling of mincemeat, marzipan, apples, nuts, and spices, and baked until golden-brown and bubbling.

  • 27 of 48

    Baked Glazed Eggnog Doughnuts

    Baked Glazed Eggnog Doughnuts

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    These cake-like eggnog doughnuts are a fun dessert idea for the holidays and taste great with a cup of coffee, too. You may be surprised at how easy it is to bakes up these bakery-style treats in the oven with this recipe that avoids the calories and fat of deep-frying.

  • 28 of 48

    Mint Chocolate Chip Brownies

    Mint Chocolate Chip Brownies

    Miri Rotkovitz

    Bake these fantastically fudgy mint chocolate chip brownies in 30 minutes. The brownies are darker, denser, and more intensely chocolatey than the typical recipe, thanks to a double-whammy of cocoa powder and melted chocolate, along with dark chocolate chips, and mint extracts in the batter.

    Continue to 29 of 48 below.
  • 29 of 48

    Butter Pecan Layer Cake

    Butter Pecan Layer Cake

    Lauri Patterson E+ / Getty Images

    Create smiles around the table when you serve up this divine butter pecan layer cake. Start by making two layers of vanilla-flavored cake loaded with toasted, buttery pecans. Fill and frost these with creamy butter pecan frosting, and top with chopped pecans.

  • 30 of 48

    Pumpkin Spice and Cranberry Babka

    Pumpkin Spice and Cranberry Babka

    The Spruce / Miri Rotkovitz

    After a belt-loosening Christmas dinner, sometimes you crave a simple dessert. Warmly-spiced pumpkin babka has plenty of sweetness from canned pumpkin puree in the filling and dried tart cranberries for balance. Toast leftover slices to spread with cream cheese at breakfast the next day.

  • 31 of 48

    Eggnog Truffles

    Eggnog truffles

    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

    Eggnog truffles are scrumptious little candies that combine the rich taste of eggnog with sweet white chocolate and an extra dash of nutmeg. Use regular store-bought eggnog, as opposed to lower-calorie versions, for rich-tasting truffles.

  • 32 of 48

    Easy Orange Liqueur Cake

    Easy Orange Liqueur Cake

    Miki Duisterhof / Getty Images

    Make over a yellow cake mix and give it some festive cheer, by adding in fresh orange zest, chopped pecans, and orange liqueur. Bake this holiday-ready cake in a bundt pan and finish with a sweet orange glaze.

    Continue to 33 of 48 below.
  • 33 of 48

    Maple Walnut Cheesecake

    Maple Walnut Cheesecake

    Laurent Rouvrais / Getty Images

    This heavenly maple walnut cake is just the right dessert when it's cold and snowing outside. Pour creamy maple cheesecake filling into a crunchy graham cracker-and-walnut crust and bake until set. Decorate the cake with walnut halves for a nice presentation. It tastes wonderful with whipped cream on top!

  • 34 of 48

    Flourless Chocolate Torte

    chocolate and amaretto torte

     The Spruce / Elaine Lemm

    This flourless chocolate torte is a dense, rich cake that you can easily recreate for your Christmas table. Top with a tangy raspberry sauce or a homemade creme anglaise.

  • 35 of 48

    Pear Streusel Pie

    Pear Streusel Pie

    The Spruce / Barbara Rolek

    Transform canned pears and a frozen, ready-made pie crust into a holiday-worthy dessert with this easy, budget-friendly pear streusel pie. Add seasonal dried cranberries to the filling, if you like, for tartness and texture.

  • 36 of 48

    Peppermint Bark

    Peppermint bark

    The Spruce

    Peppermint bark makes a wonderful dessert at festive gatherings and an excellent edible gift or stocking stuffer. It's easy to make with this foolproof recipe that requires only three ingredients.

    Continue to 37 of 48 below.
  • 37 of 48

    Triple Layer Lemon Cake

    Triple layer lemon cake

    Dennis Gottlieb / Getty Images

    Fill three layers of fluffy, lemon-flavored cake with tangy lemon curd and frost with a delectable lemon-coconut frosting to make this stunning irresistible triple-layer lemon cake.

  • 38 of 48

    Chocolate Bread Pudding

    Chocolate Bread Pudding

    The Spruce / Anita Schecter

    Chocoholics will cheer for this gooey bread pudding with all the homey comfort you crave in a holiday dessert. It's boosted with a massive triple-dose of sweetness from cocoa powder, chocolate chips, and a melted chocolate topping.

  • 39 of 48

    Banana Split Trifle

    Banana split trifle

    Dorling Kindersley / Charlotte Tolhurst / Getty Images

    Guests will go bananas for this fun, tropical-inspired take on traditional Christmas trifle. Layer sliced bananas with vanilla and chocolate puddings, vanilla wafers, pineapple, pecans, whipped topping, and maraschino cherries, to create this show-stopping dessert.

  • 40 of 48

    Baked Cranberry Doughnuts With Orange Glaze

    Baked Cranberry Doughnuts With Orange Glaze

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    Easy baked doughnuts with a zesty, sweet orange glaze make a wonderful dessert at Christmas dinner or a special treat on Christmas morning. This cranberry-studded doughnut recipe freezes well, glazed or unglazed.

    Continue to 41 of 48 below.
  • 41 of 48

    Dark Chocolate Molten Lava Cake

    Dark chocolate molten lava cake

    Janet Hudson / Flickr

    Holiday guests will enjoy digging their forks into this rich fudgy chocolate cake with a warm molten lava center that explodes onto the plate, creating its own sauce. Decorate slices with a little powdered sugar for a restaurant-style presentation.

  • 42 of 48

    Maple and Brown Sugar Pecan Pie

    Maple and brown sugar pecan pie

    Jason Poole / E+ / Getty Images

    This fabulous maple pecan pie makes an indulgent dessert that's wonderful at holiday meals and buffets. Serve it with a big scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.

  • 43 of 48

    Orange Meringue Pie

    Orange meringue pie

    Capelle.r / Getty Images

    Citrus is at its peak in the winter months and this orange meringue pie is a refreshing change from the usual lemon. You can use a store-bought pre-baked pie crust for this recipe to make preparation easy, but don't skimp on the meringue topping to truly make a statement at your holiday table.

  • 44 of 48

    Rocky Road Fudge

    Rocky road fudge

    The Spruce / Elizabeth LaBau

    Make Rocky Rocky road fudge with gooey marshmallows and crunchy pecans whenever guests descend at holiday time. It is quick and easy to prepare and packs a chocolate punch.

    Continue to 45 of 48 below.
  • 45 of 48

    Vegan Christmas Fruitcake

    Vegan Christmas Fruitcake

    Richard Jung / Getty Images

    Create your own vegan-friendly version of classic holiday fruitcake with this must-know recipe that makes a great family Christmas gift. It has all the candied fruits and spices you want in fruitcake with margarine and egg replacer to keep it vegan-friendly.

  • 46 of 48

    Cherry Pretzel Dessert Recipe

    Cherry pretzel dessert

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    When your palate gets tired of all that cinnamon and pumpkin spice, sneak a little summer into your holiday meal with a sweet-tart cherry pie filling in a crunchy pretzel crust. Your guests are sure to ask for seconds.

  • 47 of 48

    Chocolate Meringue Pie

    Chocolate meringue pie

    The Spruce / Elaine Lemm

    Chocolate meringue pie has so much to love, from the luscious chocolate cream filling to the buttery pastry shell, and crisp meringue topping. This classic dessert takes time to prepare but is sure to impress holiday dinner guests.

  • 48 of 48

    Brown Sugar Cheesecake With Caramel Pecan Topping

    Brown sugar cheesecake with caramel pecan topping

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    This is a fabulous special-occasion cheesecake. A divinely creamy filling is baked on top of a pecan graham cracker crust and smothered with a caramel pecan sauce that comes together in a flash.