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How to Make Christmas Desserts

The Christmas dinner dishes have been cleared away—but you’ve got one more treat in store for the family! Use these tips to learn how to make Christmas desserts and you’ll surely create a grand finale. From planning a sweet buffet to ideas for presentation, get inspired by our scrumptious holiday dessert recipes, or specifically our Christmas treats. These are the recipes that can help you put the expert tips into action—from trifles and layered desserts to chocolate lovers’ favorites to easy, no-bake cookie balls and Christmas fudge.

How to Make Christmas Desserts: Chocolate Tips

Chocolate Garnish

Impress your friends and family by making chocolate curls like the pros. Simply heat chocolate slightly by microwaving 20 to 30 sec. or until you can just smudge the chocolate with your thumb. Draw a vegetable peeler down the edge of the chocolate to create chocolate curls. Curls are delicate, so handle carefully or place on dessert with a toothpick.

How to Make Christmas Desserts: Serving Tips

  • Turn a simple dessert into something special with a beautiful presentation
  • If you have 2 to 3 different desserts, consider making sampler plates with bite-size servings of each. That way, everyone can taste all the sweet treats without eating too much.


Trifles are not only delicious, but they can also make beautiful centerpieces for the holiday table. Cranberry-Orange Trifle, Merry Cherry Dessert and Gingerbread Trifle look especially festive in a large, clear glass bowl. Consider placing the bowl on a bed of fresh pine boughs for an elegant touch.


Knowing how to make Christmas desserts means knowing how to decorate them accordingly! Holiday-themed cakes are always a hit. Here is a sampling of some of our favorites: Drummer Boy Cake, Sparkling Tree Cakes and Butter Pecan Cheesecake.


Cupcakes are the perfect hand-held dessert and have as many flavor variations as full-size cakes do. Chocolate-Candy Cane Cupcakes, Holiday Poke Cupcakes and Black Forest Cupcakes are just a few possibilities to add to your holiday line-up.

Yule Logs

The Yule Log, or bûche de Noël, is a traditional French Christmas cake that’s made in the shape of a log. The frosting has lines carved into it to resemble the bark on a tree. Sometimes it is even decorated with meringue mushrooms and moss created from chopped pistachios! Since the project can be daunting for some, we have created two recipes: Chocolate Yule Log Cake and Festive Yule Log “Cake”. Not only are they beautiful, but they’re also very achievable for those of us that are not French pastry chefs!


Get creative! After you have plated slices of Apple-Pear Crumble Pie, add a dollop of thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping and gently dust each plate with ground cinnamon or powdered sugar for a festive touch.

How to Make Christmas Desserts: Festive Tips


Did you know? Cranberries are also known as bounceberries, since they actually bounce when they are ripe! They are harvested between Labor Day and Halloween, making them widely available during November and December. As a result, cranberries are extremely popular on holiday tables. If you haven’t considered a cranberry-inspired dessert until now, take a look at some of these recipes for ideas: Cranberry Upside-Down Cake, Cranberry-Glazed Cinnamon Cheesecake, White-Chocolate Cranberry Cake and Apple-Cranberry Pie.

Ugly Sweater Cookies

Christmas isn’t complete with a colorful and cozy sweater. Add a fun and festive touch to your dessert table with a tray of Ugly Sweater Cookies. This yummy twist on the ugly sweater holiday trend is sure to be crowd pleaser.

Tips for COOL WHIP

COOL WHIP Whipped Topping is the perfect addition to holiday pies, but remember that it comes frozen. Be sure to build in enough time to properly thaw it before topping your dessert. The best way to thaw frozen COOL WHIP Whipped Topping is in its container in the refrigerator. Depending on the size tub you have, the thawing time varies. Recommended thawing times are: 8-oz. tub - 4 hours; 12-oz. tub - 5 hours; 16-oz. tub - 6 hours. We DO NOT recommend thawing COOL WHIP Whipped Topping in the microwave.

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