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Really, Really Easy Dessert?

I need to bring dessert to a family dinner about 2 hours from home. It will just be 6 people and I'd rather not just buy a cake. Is there something that you can suggest...I really have a fear of serious baking. Thank you!

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  1. Is apple crisp too casual? Then you could just stop for some ice cream when you're almost at your destination. vanilla is my favorite with apple crisp but caramel or cinnamon might be nice, too. Easier than pie. :)

    1 Reply
    1. re: fern

      Apple crisp is killer for easy, just rememebr to use real butter, and not some margarine "foodstuff."

      Also, bread pudding is right up there for a high ratio of deliciousness to time.

    2. These man catcher brownies are great, easy to make.


      1. This is the easiest homemade cake recipe I have come across. You don't even drain the pineapple!

        Just mix in a bowl and bake. I have also included the standard cream cheese icing that goes with it but I often don't even ice the cake.


        1 (20 ounce) can crushed pineapple - Do Not Drain
        1 1/2 cups sugar
        1 teaspoon vanilla
        2 eggs
        2 cups flour (all purpose)
        2 teaspoons baking soda
        1 cup nuts, chopped (I like walnuts or pecans)

        Mix all ingredients together and pour in a greased 13 x 9 x 2 inch pan. Bake in 350ยบ preheated oven for 30 minutes.


        1 (8 ounce package) cream cheese, softened
        1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
        1 1/3 cups powdered sugar
        1 teaspoon vanilla
        Chopped nuts for garnish

        Cream cheese and butter. Beat in powdered sugar and vanilla. Spread frosting on cake and top with chopped nuts.

        1. Something with puff pastry? It's always easy.

          Fruit filled? How about goat cheese and figs (or a good fig preserve)

          1. It's coming toward the end of stone fruit season, and the various berries might be starting to slack off, but you still might consider slicing and macerating some stone fruits and berries in some sugar, triple sec, and lemon and/or orange zest. Pick up any cake - sponge, vanilla buttercream layer, etc. and cut and serve with the macerated fruit. Even cookies, particularly madeleines which can be bought in big tubs at Costco. The fruit poured on top of some vanilla ice cream, with a few (or as many) madeleines for garnish, and you're set...

            1. Thank you for all of your wonderful suggestions. I think this group would LOVE apple cobbler.

              2 Replies
              1. re: DaisyM

                Good choice! There are many styles of cobbler, with different skill levels - you can find most on the recipe board here, and other sites. Since you aren't a baking maven, I'd recommend the method where you melt a stick of butter in the pan as the oven preheats - the loose batter is then poured over the butter (not mixed in) and the fruit dumped on top, sprinkled with a little sugar. This bakes up with a crispy, buttery top. It is similar to a clafouti, with more of a crust. Pick up some vanilla ice cream en route, and warm the cobbler a little in the oven or microwave before serving.

                1. re: DaisyM

                  This just occurred to me--Galley girls pear tart.


                  It's so easy to do and looks elegant if you layer the pears.

                2. I just read and saw a picture of this wonderful Angle Food Cake with a lime glaze on top, drizzled down teh sides, with toasted coconut and toasted almonds. You just buy a store bought angle food cake. Mix 1 cup of confectioners sugar with 1 TBL lime juice and 1 TBL water, let it sit for 20 min before drizzling over the top of your cake. Then toast unsweetened shredded coconut and a sliced almonds and decorate the cake with that. Simple but looks awesome.

                  1. How about some poached pears with vanilla bean and served with vanilla bean ice cream, almost a Poire Helene.

                    Another favourite of mine is crostada. It is a simple pastry rolled in a circle. The apples or pears or peaches are arranged in the middle and about 2 inches of crust is turned up all around. With pears or apples, you then pour in caramel sauce. And bake. If you are interested I can look up the recipe for the crust. It is rustic, simple and delightful.

                    1. A very siple but elegant dessert:

                      1.5 cups heavy cream
                      18 ozs. chocolate morsels
                      1 prepared graham cracker crust

                      Heat the cream to boiling, remove from heat, stir in the chocolate until completely melted. pour into pie crust and chill for 4 hours.(or up to 3 days)

                      If you save the plastic "top" that came with the pie crust, you can re-attach it the other way around and it will ravel nicely for several hours.

                      Put it in the fridge when you get there, take out 1/2-1 hour before you need it. Serve with whip cream and afew fresh raspberries

                      1. Ice cream and cookies. Berries and whipped cream. Two of my favorites.

                        Ice cream and cookies. Storebought really good gelato with Pepperidge Farm Bordeaux cookies (2 or 3) stuck in the top of the gelato and fanned out. Stop by the grocery store in your destination city before the dinner to purchase the ice cream gelato. Can pick up the cookies close to you or there. Really, really good.

                        Variation: Ice cream sandwiches. High quality cookies (2) with ice cream inside. Amaretti with coffee ice cream. Oatmeal cookies with mint choc chip. Pepperidge Farm Bordeaux cookies with Dulce de Leche-type ice cream for the a creme brulee-type experience.

                        Berries and whipped cream. Good berries or other late summer fruit, sweetened or not, topped with high-quality canned whipped cream -- check the label to make sure a lot of preservatives haven't been added.

                        Frozen puff pastry with sliced fruit inside.

                        1. Swedish apple pie is often my go-to for a really easy dessert.

                          1 Reply
                          1. This is my "go to" emergency dessert, however, not sure the whipped cream would hold up for the 2 hour ride.

                            I just get one of those short-cake crust/pie things...or the little individual cups, make some whipped cream, and put whatever fresh fruit on it in a nice way...everyone thinks its great and asks where i bought it.

                            1. This was posted on the Home Cooking Board back in May. Made them last weekend and they were simple and amazingly good.

                              Peanut Butter Bars

                              1 cup butter
                              18 pounce jar peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
                              1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
                              2 cups confectioners' sugar
                              12 ounce package semisweet chocolate chips (or other semisweet chocolate)


                              1. Melt butter and peanut butter together in a saucepan.

                              2. Combine confectioner's sugar and graham cracker crumbs in a large bowl.

                              3. Add the melted ingredients to the sugar and crumbs and mix together. It will be stiff.

                              4. Spread mixture in a 13 x 9 x 2 inch pan, or a smaller pan if you want thicker bars. Press firmly.

                              5. Melt chocolate chips and spread on top.

                              6. When cool cut into squares. The bars do not have to be refrigerated, but can be to speed cooling. Do not store in refrigerator. Cut into 36 bars or according to taste.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: shaebones

                                Yes, these are very good. They taste like Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. After I cut them I put them in little miniature paper or foil cupcake cups. Makes them look quite special.

                              2. My favorite EAsy go to dessert is Peanutbutter Chocolate chip cookie bars:

                                2 rolls pillsbury chocolate chip cookie dough(I know, I know but she wanted easy!)

                                1 1/2 cups peanut butter
                                1/1/2 cups powdered sugar
                                1 1/2 cups vanilla

                                Spread first roll into 9x13 pan
                                Mix pbutter and sugar and vanilla
                                Spread mixture on dough
                                Crumble second roll of dough over the top.

                                Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes. When cool, cut into squares.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: chocchipcookie

                                  1 1/2 cups of vanilla????????????????

                                    1. re: shaebones

                                      Sorry, I meant teaspoons. That's what you get when you are in a hurry.

                                  1. If it's not too hot, a fruity bread pudding travels well and usually is good at family gatherings. Chop up some brioche breath and add the milk, eggs, sugar and fruit (frozen is okay). Pop into the oven, and take it covered to the dinner.

                                    1. from my early married days, just learning to 'cook':

                                      large can of pears in light syrup, drained (or sliced ripe ones)
                                      pinch cinnamon, dash nutmeg & salt
                                      3/4 c crushed ginger snaps mixed with 2 T melted butter

                                      Place pears in shallow baking dish
                                      dust with spices and stir
                                      top with crumbs
                                      bake at 325 till soft and bubbly--20 minutes?

                                      The crumbs blend together with the pears to make a"sauce". great with some vanilla ice cream. great and unusual flavor combo.