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Easy Thanksgiving desserts – tips and ideas and the decor of the “sweet” table
When we talk about Thanksgiving desserts, we have to mention a few practical and useful tips for the housewives who shall be hosting the festive dinner. How to create a dessert table that guests will love, without too much effort and time? After all, you will have enough work preparing the Thanksgiving appetizers, turkey, side dishes and set the festive table so any help will be welcome!
On the first place, it will be a great idea if you plan what type of desserts you want to serve for Thanksgiving. One main dessert should be present on the sweet table. A cake is typically the most liked one, but you could opt for a traditional pumpkin pie, apple pie or pecan pie.
Another good idea is to focus on seasonal flavors and tastes as this will save you time looking for exotic ingredients. There are numerous recipes with traditional Thanksgiving and fall tastes like apples, pears, cranberry, maple, nuts, etc.
Since this is a gathering of family and friends, check if any of the guests is planning to bring a dessert. On the first place, this will be of help to you, and you will avoid cluttering the sweet table.
Arrange the dessert table beautifully. Display the sweet treats in serving plates, platters, stands and decorate with festive ornaments which will add to the good mood. If you have a lot of guests, you may think of handmade labels for each dessert. Do not forget that holidays are a special time for kids! Here are some easy Thanksgiving desserts for kids and adults.
Easy turkey rice krispie treats
For the krispie treats:
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- 10oz bag marshmallows
- 5 cup Rice Krispies Cereal
- For the turkeys:
- 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate morsels, melted
- 12 chocolate wafers (or Hershey Kisses)
- candy corn
- candy eyes
- orange M&M’s
- In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Once melted, add marshmallows and stir continuously until melted. Remove from heat and quickly fold in the cereal, until completely coated.
- Press lightly into a buttered baking sheet. Allow to set, about 30 minutes.
- Using a round cookie cutter, cut circles into the Krispie treat.
- Using the melted semi-sweet chocolate, attach about 5 candy corn for feathers, one wafer for the face, two eyes and half of an orange M&M for the beak. You can add a red candy (or pipe on red candy melts) for the waddle.
Super cool and festive ice cream cone teepees
- 24 pointed ice cream cones
- One box chocolate cake mix in (or any flavor you like
- One bag (12 oz) of Wilton Candy Melts, dark chocolate
- 1-2 cups leaf sprinkles
- Straight pretzel sticks
- Cover the entire top of a large spring form pan with aluminum foil, wrapping it around several times.
- Use a small knife or scissors to make a tiny slit in the center.
- Push the pointed tip of one ice cream cone through the slit until the tip rests on the inside bottom of the pan.
- Repeat this with the rest of the cones (you may need to bake the cones in two batches depending on the size of pan).
- Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
- Make cake mix according to box and spoon into the cones, filling them about 2/3 full.
- Bake at 350F degrees for about 15-20 minutes.
- Allow them to cool before removing.
- Use a knife to cut the points off of each cone.
- Trim off tops of cupcakes to make a flat “bottom”.
- Melt candy melts in microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until melted and smooth.
- Dip the flat end of the cone into the chocolate, coating it completely.
- Dip chocolate into a bowl filled with leaf sprinkles.
- Set coated cones on parchment paper to harden up.
- Place remaining chocolate into a small zip-top bag and clip a corner.
- Pipe a bit of chocolate on the top of each teepee and then stick 3 pretzel sticks into the top.
- Let chocolate hardened up.
- 3 cups whipping cream
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 8 ounces mascarpone cheese at room temperature
- 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 cup brewed coffee
- ½ cup Marsala wine, brandy or pumpkin liqueur
- 3 7- ounce packages lady fingers
- Step 1 – In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the whipping cream and sugar together until light and stiff peaks form. Scoop into another bowl and set aside.
- Beat the mascarpone cheese in the same bowl of the stand mixer until softened and smooth. Add the pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice and mix well.
- Gently fold in ⅔ of the whip cream mixture until totally incorporated.
- Step 2 – Mix the coffee and Marsala wine in a medium size bowl.
- To assemble the Tiramisu, quickly dip each side of the lady fingers in the coffee mixture and arrange around edge of a 10-inch springform pan, placing rounded sides against pan.
- Line the bottom of the pan with additional ladyfingers, cutting if necessary to cover bottom of pan completely. Brush coffee mixture over ladyfingers on bottom of pan.
- Spread one-third of cream cheese mixture over ladyfingers on bottom. Repeat layers twice with remaining ladyfingers, coffee mixture, and cream cheese mixture, ending with cream cheese mixture. Smooth evenly with the back of a spoon.
- Top with the reserved whipped cream mixture.
- Chill overnight or at least 4-6 hours.
Pumpkin panna cotta
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 2 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp ground cloves
- 1/8 tsp allspice
- In a large saucepan add milk and sprinkle gelatin on top. Let sit for 5 minutes to soften gelatin.
- Combine heavy cream, sugar, pumpkin puree, and spices. Blend until smooth.
- Whisk together pumpkin mixture with milk.
- Cook over medium heat until mixture begins to steam, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
- Remove from heat and ladle mixture into glasses or other serving vessel of your choice. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight before serving.
- Top with whipped cream and toasted nuts.
Baked apples with curd, raisins, cinnamon and candied fruits
- 6 large apples
- 200 g of curd (or cottage cheese)
- 2 tbsp. l crème fraiche
- 3 oz (100 g) of raisins
- 2 oz (60 g) candied fruit
- 1 oz (30 g) walnuts
- 2 tbsp. honey
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 star star anise
- 150 ml of water
- Mix curd with sour crème fraiche and honey in a bowl, add chopped nuts, raisins and candied fruits. Stir until combined.
- Preheat oven to 350 F (180C) degrees.
- Wash the apples and carefully remove the core.
- Place the apples in a baking dish and fill with curd mixture.
- Pour the water and put cinnamon sticks and star anise between apples.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Cool and serve.
Puff pastry apple roses
- 3 large apples
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice (juice of 1/2 a fresh lemon)
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 6 tbsp apricot preserves + 4 tbsp hot water
- 2 sheets puff pastry, thawed
- Preheat oven to 375°F (190C)
- Core the apples and slice them in half. Then slice them very thinly (use a mandolin, if you have one.) Place the apple slices in a large microwave safe bowl and immediately toss the apple slices with the lemon juice to prevent browning.
- Fill the bowl with water until all of the apples are submerged and microwave for 5 minutes, until the apples are tender and pliable.
- Drain out the water and toss the apples with the sugars and cinnamon until totally coated.
- Place the puff pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface, and divide it into 6 equal strips.
- One at a time, roll the strip out just a little bit and evenly cover with the apricot preserves.
- Lay 7-9 apple slices along one half of the puff pastry – peel side facing out.
- Fold up the bottom of the puff pastry to cover the apple slices and, starting at one end, roll the apples and pastry up until you reach the other end and have a beautiful apple rose.
- Place the apple rose into a lightly greased muffin tin and repeat the process with the rest of the dough strips.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the puff pastry is golden brown.
Pomegranate poached pears
- 4 ripe, firm pears
- 1½ cups pomegranate juice
- 1 cup sweet dessert wine, such as Muscatel or Riesling
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds
- Peel pears, leaving them whole, stems intact. Slice off the bases so the pears will stand upright. Use an apple corer to remove cores.
- Place the pears on their sides in a large saucepan. Pour pomegranate juice and wine over the pears. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer gently until the pears are tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, 30 to 45 minutes. Turn very gently once or twice as they cook so they color evenly. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to a shallow bowl and set aside.
- Boil the poaching liquid over high heat until the sauce is reduced to ½ cup, 15 to 20 minutes.
- To serve, spoon 1 tablespoon sauce onto each of 4 dessert plates. Place a pear upright on each plate. Drizzle remaining sauce over each pear and sprinkle pomegranate seeds around it.
Puff pastry poached pear tarts
- 1 1/2 (750ml) bottles red moscato of choice
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 star anise
- 3 cardamom pods
- 4 firm Bartlett pears
- 8 ounces goat cheese, softened
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 sheets puff pastry, each quartered
- powder sugar for dusting
- Pour moscato into a saucepan and add the cinnamon stick, star anise and cardamom pods.
- Peel pears, leaving them whole.
- Poach the pears over medium-low heat for 20 minutes, turning once halfway through if pears aren’t completely submerged.
- Remove mixture from heat and set aside. Allow pears to soak for an additional 20 to 30 minutes, gently turning them occasionally.
- Preheat oven to 400˚F (200C).
- Remove pears from the poaching liquid and slice in half lengthwise, scooping out the seeds in the center of each side.
- Lay cut pears onto paper towels, cut side down, to allow some of the liquid to absorb.
- In a small bowl combine goat cheese and honey and stir until thoroughly mixed together.
- Spread a small amount of goat cheese mixture onto each piece of puff pastry, leaving about a 1 1/2 inch border.
- Gently slice each pear half into thin slices, keeping the shape intact, and place onto a prepared puff pastry piece.
- Transfer the tarts to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until puff pastry has puffed around the pears and are golden brown.
- Transfer to a cooling rack and cool.
- Dust with powdered sugar before serving.