Christmas Dessert Recipes

Our Favorite Holiday Cookies, Cakes, Breads, and More!

December 15, 2020
Christmas Stollen

Christmas Stollen

TorriPhoto/Shutterstock

Check out our classic Christmas dessert recipes—from mince pies to stollen and sticky toffee pudding, as well as our easy chocolate yule cake and fun Christmas cookies. Oh, and old-fashioned gingerbread! Without further ado, here are our best Christmas baking ideas.

Christmas Dessert Recipes

Christmas Cakes and Puddings

Best Fruitcake Ever
Forget those horrible commercial fruitcakes. This is an easy, moist, delicious cake using dried fruits instead of the standard candied and glaceed fruits. Not only are dried fruits more readily available at your local market, but they also have a deeper and more natural flavor (not as sweet).

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Image: Anna Shepulova/Shutterstock

Bûche de Noël (Chocolate Yule Log)
Try this easier, lighter version of the traditional chocolate Yule log! It’s a show-stopping dessert and fun to make.

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Image: David P. Smith/Shutterstock.

Sticky Toffee Pudding with Butterscotch Sauce
A scrumptious treat for all ages, this sticky toffee pudding is sure-fire hit at any Christmas feast. Note: Normally baked in a pan but you can also make individual ramekins. 

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Image: Becky Luigart-Stayner

Christmas Breads

Classic Christmas Stollen 
A lovely version of an old favorite. Tastes best served warm. Decorate with whole candied cherries, and use other candied fruit pieces to make leaves and stems.

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Image: TorriPhoto/Shutterstock

Old-Fashioned Gingerbread 
This is an authentic, hundred-year-old recipe that’s wonderful served warm with a scoop of French vanilla ice cream or sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar.

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ImageMarie C Fields/Shutterstock

Christmas Pies and Tarts

Mince Pies
If you don’t like mince pie, you actually haven’t had the authentic thing! Learn more about “real” mince pie and find a recipe …

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Mini Cranberry-Apple Pies
These Cranberry-Applies are sweet, yet tart. What a great combination in one pie! Single-serving pies work really well at a holiday gathering or dinner party; they’re easy to make, attractive, and guests love them.

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Mini-Cranberry Apple Pies.

Cranberry Dream Pie
This icy-cold Cranberry Dream Pie is sure to be a hit at any table. Made ahead of time and waiting in the freezer, it’s like having an ace up your sleeve.

Cranberry Dream Pie. Photo by Samantha Jones.
Cranberry Dream Pie. Photo by Sam Jones/Quinn Brein.

Christmas Cookies and Bars

Really Old-Fashioned Gingerbread People
This recipe for “Really Old-Fashioned Gingerbread People” makes a large batch because, well, anything this good deserves to be made in bulk. A few well-placed bits of candy or nuts for eyes and a nose will give your creations delightful personalities.

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Pistachio-Cranberry Icebox Cookies
With their red-and-green color scheme, these sweets are perfect for the holidays.

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Image: Ginger Nikole Vaughan/Quinn Brein

Spiced Sinterklaas Cookies (Speculaas) 
Traditionally, speculaas are served on the eve of St. Nicholas Day or on the feast day itself (December 6), but we enjoy them throughout the holiday season.

Speculaas Cookies. Photo by Sam Jones/Quinn Brein
Speculaas cookies. Photo by Sam Jones/Quinn Brein.

Ethel’s Sugar Cookies 
A classic sugar cookie recipe that’s perfect for making cut-outs. Super easy, too! See more Easy Sugar Cookie Recipes.

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Candy Cane Dessert Squares 
This crowd-sized recipe can be served frozen or refrigerated, making it ideal for a holiday buffet.

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Image: Sam Jones/Quinn Brein

Snowball Cookies
Bring the snow indoors with these classic snowball cookies! 

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Image: LanaM/Shutterstock

Christmas Candy

Never-Fail Christmas Fudge 
Even if you’ve never made candy before in your life, give this easy fudge recipe a try. True to its name (thanks to the presence of marshmallows), it won’t seize or crumble or make you tear your hair out. It’s a tasty treat perfect for Christmastime!

Never-fail christmas fudge. Photo by GreenArt/Shutterstock
Never-Fail Christmas Fudge. Photo by GreenArt/Shutterstock.

Peanut Brittle
Simple, yet delicious, this peanut brittle is a tasty classic. For variety, mix in a cup of almonds with the peanuts!

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Image: Janet Hudson

More Christmas Recipe Collections

What are your favorite holiday desserts to make (or eat)? Tell us in the comments below!

Reader Comments

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Recipe search

My mom had a recipe for persimmon pudding which used persimmon puree and was served with freshly made lemon sauce. She never wrote a recipe down to my knowledge and I'm wondering if anyone has a recipe for persimmon pudding? Thank you!

Dr Pepper Chocolate Sheet brownies

This I made last summer, lost the recipe cannot fine one anywhere, this was made in a 12 by17 sheet pan with Dr Pepper it also had bitter sweet chocolate in it, would love to make again

Gingerbread boys... anxious

Gingerbread boys... anxious to give the recipe a try. I also need to find a good just plain gingerbread recipe the kind that is very dark, with nice sharp ginger and moist. Claudia

Claudia, Here's a recipe on

Catherine Boeckmann's picture

Claudia, Here's a recipe on Almanac.com that is dark and spicy, with ginger.
Hope this helps: http://www.almanac.com/recipe/...
If you do a search for "gingerbread," you'll see a lot of other nice options, too.

Great Christmas desserts

Wow, these are great desserts. Great job putting all of this together. I will certainly pick up a couple of these to add to some of my own.

desserts

Today I am using some of these dessert recipes for Thanksgiving. Thank you to the wonderful people that submit their family recipes for someone like me. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

I just want to tell you how

I just want to tell you how much I enjoy these news letters. The recipes Folklore and all.Thank You.
Nancy