10 Dazzling Easter Desserts
Sweet things abound at Easter time—its secular side is practically devoted to candy, from those ubiquitous gooey crème eggs to jewel-toned jelly beans. But man (and kid) cannot survive on candy alone, and once the dishes have been cleared from the Easter feast, it’s time for dessert.
What makes a dessert an “Easter dessert?” It’s all about showcasing the vibrant energy of springtime: brilliant colors, light textures. Think tangy citrus, fluffy marshmallow, fresh flavors, juicy berries.
We’ve collected 10 of our favorite dessert recipes that we’re sure will be a hit with your crowd. Got a group of kids on the way? Invite them into the kitchen to whip up some peanut-butter–chocolate Easter eggs. Feeding a more sophisticated set? Serve up a sweet-savory Easter pie or a honey-rosemary angel food cake. You prefer classics like lemon bars and strawberry shortcake? We’ve got those, too. Because when Easter rolls around, everyone should have their sweet tooth fulfilled.
How about an edible take on the Easter basket? In our Easter Basket Cake (pictured above), it’s easy to make the chocolate icing resemble a straw basket: Simply sweep the surface with the tines of a fork.
Coconut Cake: Everyone goes wild for coconut cake, and for Easter you can transform it into a whimsical jelly-bean nest. This cake is all-coconut, from the cake batter to the frosting to the coconut-laced filling.
Peanut Butter–Chocolate Easter Eggs: These clever little chocolate treats are made with rice cereal plus white- and dark-chocolate chips made into egg shapes. Have the kids pitch in to make them.
The light-as-air Sunshine Cake is just the thing after a rich holiday meal. It’s a lemony low-cal cake made fluffy with egg whites (for white-cake batter) and yolks (for the yellow-cake batter). Swirled together and frosted with Lemon Fluff (made from whipped topping and lemon juice and zest), with ripe raspberries on the side, this cake is an Easter ray of sunshine.
Strawberry Shortcake: Has anyone ever said ‘no’ to a delicate shortcake piled high with fresh berries and sweetened whipped cream? We think not. Plus, this dessert is fairly low-cal and low-fat, especially if you make it with frozen light whipped dessert topping instead of whipped cream. We’ll leave the indulgence factor to you.
Easter Pie: This one’s for the grown-ups at the table—a sweet-savory concoction of cherries, ricotta cheese, and wheat berries (really, they’re fabulous for texture), all laced with cinnamon and citrus zest.
Strawberry-Lavender Pavlova with Vanilla-Bean Whipped Yogurt: Pavlovas resemble pretty little clouds. Here, their sweet meringue swirls are filled with fresh fruit and a light yogurt sauce.
Lemon-Creme Brûlée: Crème brûlée is surprisingly easy to make (if you haven’t used a kitchen torch before, you’ve missed the fun!). This lemon version is a lively take on the creamy classic, and looks like little cups of sunshine.
Honey-Rosemary Angel Food Cake: Fresh rosemary subtly perfumes every bite of this honey-laced cake. Mascarpone cheese and whipped cream make the filling ultracreamy.