10 Best Desserts to Take to a Holiday Party

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Looking for something special to take to your next holiday party? Look no further! Here are 10 of our very favorite recipes, from Eggnog Pound Cake to Rum Balls!

Photography Credit: Elizabeth Stark, Emma Christensen, Irvin Lin, Elise Bauer, Megan Keno, and Cindy Rahe

‘Tis the season for holiday parties and all the sweet indulgences that come along with them. Have you volunteered to bring dessert to your next gathering?

Here are ten of our favorites that travel well and are sure to please everyone at the party.

Chocolate Peppermint Swiss Roll

1 Chocolate Peppermint Swiss Roll: Oohs and ahhs may result from unveiling this chocolate-covered Swiss roll at a party—and continue once people bite into this light-as-a cloud, minty-sweet concoction.


Christmas Crack

2 Christmas Crack: Made with saltine crackers, cracked into pieces, and sort of addictive – this Christmas Crack lives up to its name on all counts. They come together quickly (though allow time for them to set) and are very shareable.


3 Rum Balls: Hand-held treats are made for holiday dessert tables. These no-bake rum balls can be made several days ahead, which makes life easier and also deepens the flavors.


Chocolate Chip Cookies

4 Chocolate Chip Cookies: If you are pressed for time, chocolate chip cookies are always a winner. Few people can turn them down. These chocolate chip cookies are a little special—some milk powder mixed into the batter does wonders makes them soft and chewy.


Eggnog Pound Cake

5 Eggnog Pound Cake: This cake is suffused with the flavors of the season—brandy, nutmeg, and cinnamon, plus cranberry and orange. Bonus: Any leftovers can be eaten for breakfast.


Sweet Potato Pie with Pecan Topping

6 Sweet Potato Pie with Pecan Topping: Pie is so hard to resist, and this is one loaded with pecans, a sweet caramel sauce, and sweet potatoes.


Flourless Lemon Almond Cake

7 Flourless Lemon Almond Cake: Here’s a bit of an antidote to excessive sweetness we encounter around the holidays. There’s something so appealing about citrus this time of year, too. This cake will appeal to those who need to avoid gluten.


Triple Gingerbread Cake

8 Triple Ginger Gingerbread Cake: Ginger lovers, take note! With fresh, powdered, and candied ginger, this cake is both sweet and spicy.


Pumpkin Bars with Streusel Topping

9 Pumpkin Bars with Streusel Topping: This dessert is ready to travel! The caramel sauce that goes over the top just before serving puts it, well, over the top. And that’s what the holidays are all about.


Caramel Apple Monkey Bread

10 Caramel Apple Monkey Bread: Don’t let the phrase “monkey bread” put you off. Trust us, it’s delicious. This pull-apart bread will satisfy a whole crowd—you literally pull away small pieces of sticky sweet dough and eat them. It’s loaded with apple cider caramel and baked apples, and nearly as rich as cake!

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Carrie Havranek

Carrie Havranek is a former Associate Editor of Simply Recipes and the author of the cookbook Tasting Pennsylvania (2019). She lives in Easton, Pennsylvania and goes out of her way for farmers' markets, new ingredients, yoga, and walks in nature.

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