Updated: Jan 24
This blog was originally posted in 2020, but we wanted to re-share because dessert is never out of style!
Let’s be honest, one of the biggest joys of the holidays are the sweet treats. For me it’s not a holiday without some yummy goodness - cookies, chocolate bars, lemon bars, peach cobbler, sweet breads, pie especially apple & sweet potato pie, as well as brownies and cheesecake. But my absolute favorite is cake! Given my love for desserts, I started to wonder why not make dessert the main course this holiday season.
Though it may be tempting to have a dessert party for one, sharing the sweets with your closest family and friends is much sweeter. Check out 3 fun ways to host a dessert soiree this holiday.
1. Bake Off
Get together with a few of your closest friends and family who like to bake or are up for the challenge of making a dessert. You can get creative with this. Choose 1 dessert item for everyone to make or the baker can choose. Then, each of you will present to the same family/friends (separate from the bakers) to taste, judge and pick the winner. You can also rate each other with the rule that the person cannot pick themselves. To spice it up, add a prize for the winner; each baker can contribute $5-10 toward a gift or just give cash.
Take the Bake Off to another level for the skilled bakers. Being huge Chopped and Cupcake Wars fans in my family, I love the idea of having a bake off or Dessert Wars with 2 or 3 rounds (first round could be one type of dessert i.e., cookies and the second round another type of dessert i.e., cupcakes) and then eliminate the bakers until the winner remains. Also, I would add a twist for the judges to pick a wild card ingredient for everyone to use in the dessert. This party could be done virtually if judging solely on presentation.
2. Dessert Brunch
A dessert brunch is as simple and fun as it sounds. You would have a dessert potluck or the host could provide brunch; guests could bring drinks or vice versa. Create a menu of several sweet brunch foods that make your mouth water, drink mimosas or a holiday cocktail, talk and play games. This brunch could even happen virtually to continue social distancing - each person having their own sweet brunch dishes & drinks in their own home hanging out on Zoom, talking and playing games virtually.
Try a Christmas Tree Fruit & Cheese board or a Donut Hole Christmas Tree for festive appetizers. (Click on pictures for instructions.)
Other sweets to make are sugar cookies, pie, holiday bars or cupcakes. Here are a few of my favorite finds from Pinterest (Click on the pictures to link to the recipes.)
Pair your tasty dessert brunch with these tasty holiday drinks:
(For more holiday snacks and desserts or tips for hosting a holiday party check out many more ideas saved on Adorn’s Pinterest page in “Holiday Parties”).
3. Wine and Dessert Soiree
We always talk about cheese and wine. But desserts can be a great wine pairing too. Have a wine & dessert party this holiday season. You can choose your favorite wine and dessert pairing and have just one or try them all. You can include the small pieces of dessert in a plate for each guest along with the designated wine pairing. This party can be virtual as well - rate how well the wine and dessert paired and share your thoughts with one another over a zoom call.
Here are some dessert and wine pairing suggestions:
Chocolate Cake and Cabernet Sauvignon
Brownies and Merlot
Lemon Bars and Chardonnay
Cheesecake and Riesling
Strawberry Shortcake and Brut Champagne
Pumpkin Pie and Sherry
It’s always good fun during the holidays, and I think even sweeter with these dessert party ideas. There are so many treats you can make and several ways to host your own dessert party. We’d love to see what you bake up. Share your favorite dessert party photos and tag @adorncelebration on Instagram or Facebook. For a chance to have your party featured by Adorn, DM us on social media.