Rethinking Thanksgiving Desserts

Cooking a Thanksgiving meal is always a stressful undertaking, but don’t flake out when it comes to dessert! Of course, you can always choose to just go ahead and buy that Trader Joe’s pie again this year, but why not try your hand at baking something to finish off the meal? With so many great options for both the novice and experienced baker out there, have fun with it and go a little crazy! Feel free to think a little out of the box with your desserts, or you can go traditional, but with you baking it, your guests will be sure to be pleased no matter which way you go.

You can always make a traditional pie. There’s a reason why apple and pumpkin pies remain such Thanksgiving staples, they’re easy to make and sure to please. And lets be honest for a moment, they’re such institutions that guests practically expect to be getting a slice at the end of the meal. Just be sure that if you’re going to make a pie, please make the crust yourself. The pie will be so much better off for it and your guests will definitely thank you. Maybe try mixing it up a bit by adding some cranberry into your traditional recipe and making a cranberry-apple pie.

If you’re looking more for small nibbles, how about some cookie bars. Something with a graham cracker bottom will surely fit right into the season.

Any spice cake is a welcome addition to a dessert table this time of year. Try your hand at a ginger-spice bundt cake.

Don’t like pumpkin pie? Bring pumpkin into your dessert in other ways. Check out our pumpkin-chocolate chip cookies, or try this pumpkin bread pudding! Feeling a bit more daring in the kitchen, give our Thanksgiving Pie inspired French Macarons a try.

Feel like you’ve mastered the basic Thanksgiving recipes and are looking for a bit of a challenge? Earlier this year, we did a chocolate mousse cake with hazelnut cake. How about making a pecan cake instead and layering it between layers of chocolate and pumpkin mousse? Martha Stewart had a great recipe for pumpkin mousse if you’re not sure how to tackle this one.

Or of course, there’s always simple cookies decorated with royal icing. Want to incorporate turkeys and leaves? Check out this great photo for some ideas!

So which way will you go? Are you going to opt for tradition or whimsy this year?

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