No matter how full you are after a scrumptious Thanksgiving dinner, there’s always room for dessert. End your Thanksgiving celebration on a sweet note with these decadent desserts. And the best part about them is that they are so simple to make. You don’t even need an oven and yet it is these dishes that will leave you patting that beautiful, satisfying food belly. Without further ado, here are four delicious Thanksgiving desserts to make your holiday more memorable.
1. No-Bake Cranberry Cheesecake Bars
When a buttery graham cracker crust meets an irresistibly good cheesecake filling, you get these delicious Cranberry Cheesecake Bars that your friends and family will want more and more of.
Graham Cracker Crust: To make the crust, take 2 boxes (about 16 ounces) of gluten-free graham crackers and crush them in a food processor until you get fine crumbs. Then, take 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) of grass-fed butter (softened and cut into 1/2 inch chunks). When you add them into the food processor, make sure to add the chunks one at a time and mix it with the crumbs. Once you have mixed all your butter into the crumbs, you’ll know your crust is ready when it’s flaky and slightly-crumbly, according to Fed + Fit.
Then, put the crust on a 9×13 inch pan and press it down well so that it creates an even layer that’s about a quarter inch thick.
Cheesecake mixture: Get yourself a large bowl and mix together 2 packages (8 ounces each) of softened cream cheese, 11.25 ounces of dairy-free condensed milk, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Use an electric mixer to blend it together for about 2 to 3 minutes until you get a smooth and fluffy mixture. Once done, pour the filling on the top of your crust until it forms an even layer.
Cranberry Sauce Topping: In a saucepan that’s placed over medium-high heat, put 4 cups of cranberries (fresh or frozen), half a cup of orange juice, one-third of a cup of maple syrup, and half a teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Place the lid over the pan and let it boil until the cranberries have popped and you see that the sauce has reduced and thickened. This should take about 10 minutes, however, if you find that it hasn’t reached the right consistency, you can boil it for a few more minutes.
With this, your final top layer is ready and you can pour it over the cheesecake filling. For the final step, leave it in the fridge for about 4 hours, after which is ready to be sliced and served.
2. No-Bake Pumpkin Pie Truffles
Pumpkin is usually the star of most Thanksgiving desserts. But when you’re not in the mood to make pumpkin pie, here’s what you can make for a decadent dessert that’s just as yummy, if not more.
First, you will need to crush 10 full graham crackers in a food processor until you are left with fine crumbs, then leave this aside, according to Diary of a Debutante.
Next, you can use the same food processor to mix 3 ounces of cream cheese, half a can (15 ounces) of pumpkin puree, and 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice. Once you get a smooth mixture, add the crushed graham crackers into the mixture. (Keep aside 1 or 2 tablespoons of the graham crackers behind to dust over the final dessert).
When the mixture is well combined, you can put it in a owl and leave it in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when it’s not sticky anymore. Then, roll the mixture into balls, i.e., the truffles, roughly 1-inch in size. Make sure the mixture is still cold while you do this. Place them on a wax paper and let them freeze for about two hours more.
Once you see that your truffles are chilled enough, you will have to melt some white almond bark in the microwave. Dip each truffle, one by one, into the melted almond bark. Get an even coat all over the truffle and then place them on a wax paper to let them harden. Finally, sprinkle the remaining mixture of graham cracker crumbs over the coated truffles.
In case the coating of the truffles look translucent, you can dip them into the melted almond bark once more. Give them enough time to harden before you let your guests devour them.
3. No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars
Creamy with a delectable cinnamon crust, these Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars will make a dessert that the entire family falls in love with.
Crust: First, you’ll need to make the bottom crust for the bars. For this, crush 4 cups of Malt-O-Meal Cinnamon Toasters cereal in a blender or you can use a rolling pin to crush them in a resealable bag, according to The Blond Cook. Then, mix the crushed cereal with a quarter cup of packed dark brown sugar and half a cup of melted butter.
Once this is done, take an 8×11 dish and press the cereal mixture into the bottom of the dish to create the base of the dessert.
Cheesecake mixture: To make the cheesecake mixture, take 1 (8-ounce) package of cream cheese (softened), 1 cup of pumpkin puree, half a cup of granulated white sugar, and 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice. Blend all of these ingredients together in a mixer and once you see that the mixture is smooth, add two and a half cups of whipped topping and gently stir it into the mixture with a spoon.
Now that your mixture is ready, pour it evenly over the cinnamon cereal crust and let it chill in the refrigerator for about 4 hours. When it’s firm, you know it’s ready. All you have to do now is slice it up into bars for serving. You can even add a dollop of whipped topping or sprinkle some pumpkin pie spice over if you’d like.
4. No-Bake Caramel Apple Trifle
This one will look wonderful on your Thanksgiving dinner table and you will love it even more when you dunk your spoon into the yummy layers of delicious goodness.
Begin by melting 2 tablespoons of butter with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon over medium heat. Then, stir in 4 medium apples (peeled, cored, and sliced) along with 3 Tablespoons of water and one-third of a cup of sugar. Cover the pan and stir the apples occasionally. It should take about 4-6 minutes until you see that the apples have softened, according to Spend With Pennies.
In a separate dish, mix 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon of cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of water. Then, add this mixture to the pan and keep stirring as the apples cook. Ideally, the filling should be thickened while the apples are soft, but let them not be mushy. Take the filling off the pan and let it cool, according to Centsless Meals.
Take 1 pound cake (16 ounces) and cut them into cubes. Arrange the half of the cake (that you have cut into pieces) into the dish that you will be plating your trifle in.
Get yourself another bowl, mix together 4 cups of heavy cream, 1 cup of powdered sugar, and one third of a cup of vanilla pudding mix. Beat them together until you see that it’s light and fluffy. This should take about 3 to 4 minutes.
Add about half of this cream as the next layer to your trifle. Then, put the apple filling as your next layer. Drizzle half a cup of caramel sauce over this.
You can put the remaining pieces of pound cake as the next layer, put the remaining cream over it. You can even pipe some whipped cream for the top of the trifle and then dust some cinnamon over. Even drizzling some caramel sauce over the top while you serve would be an absolute delight.