Save on Pinterest

47 Make-Ahead Spring Desserts

You'll always be ready to sweeten someone's day with these make-ahead spring desserts that highlight seasonal ingredients like rhubarb, lemons, cherries and even Peeps.

1 / 47
Simple Lemon Mousse Exps Ft20 259309 F 1014 1 2

Simple Lemon Mousse

This classic, simple lemon mousse recipe is the refreshing dessert you need. Serve it with fresh fruit or eat it alone. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
2 / 47
Banana Crumb Pudding Exps Cpbz21 164749 E10 20 3b 1

Banana Crumb Pudding

Friends and family ask me to make my thick and creamy banana pudding for all occasions. They can't get enough of the wonderful flavor of the fruit and the vanilla wafer crumbs. You can also top the classic Southern treat with meringue instead of whipped cream. —Yvonnia Butner, Pinnacle, North Carolina
3 / 47
Macaroon Cherry Pie Exps Ppp19 12506 C04 03 6b 4

Macaroon Cherry Pie

I use homegrown cherries in this bountiful pie with its unique crunchy coconut topping. But I've found that purchased tart cherries yield a dessert that's nearly as delicious. I always bake this pie around Presidents Day or Valentine's Day, but it's popular with my family in any season. —Lori Daniels, Beverly, West Virginia
4 / 47
Angel Strawberry Dessert Exps32651 Cx952288b12 21 2b Rms 3

Angel Strawberry Dessert

This angel dessert is a wonderful treat when fresh strawberries are readily available. Every time I make this pretty strawberry angel food cake, someone asks for the recipe. —Theresa Mathis, Tucker, Georgia
5 / 47
Frozen Grand Marnier Soufflés Exps Tohjj20 242325 E02 05 3b 2

Grand Marnier Frozen Souffles

This delicious frozen souffle is perfect for when the weather is warm and will impress just about anyone. It’s a great make-ahead dessert! —Andrea Potischman, Menlo Park, California
6 / 47
Chipotle Orange Baklava Exps83368 Th132104b06 20 31bc Rms 3

Chipotle-Orange Baklava

Citrus, cinnamon and smoky chipotle peppers make my version of this flaky, sweet pastry so unique. It's really rich, so a little goes a long way. —Christine Neary, Portland, Oregon
7 / 47
Strawberry Gelato Exps Sdam18 212175 D11 30 2b 6

Strawberry Gelato

You'll love this smooth and creamy gelato with bright strawberry flavor and just a hint of sea salt and honey. —Shelly Bevington, Hermiston, Oregon
8 / 47

Contest-Winning Rhubarb Meringue Pie

My husband’s grandmother was an excellent cook, but she didn’t always share her secrets. Luckily, we have her rhubarb pie recipe. I added one of my favorite crusts and a never-fail meringue. —Elaine Sampson, Colesburg, Iowa
9 / 47
Lemony Limoncello Tiramisu  Exps Tohca20 237222 B02 26 5b 4

Lemony Limoncello Tiramisu

This limoncello tiramisu is a delightful citrus twist on a classic Italian dessert. It’s always a favorite at holiday meals or warm-weather gatherings! —Deena Resnick, Oregon City, Oregon
10 / 47
Apple Cake For Passover Exps Ft19 115174 F 1105 1 1

Apple Cake for Passover

Adding a dollop of whipped cream is a sweet addition to this Passover cake! —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
11 / 47
Strawberry Cookie Cups Exps Cbz16 197286 C05 12 3b 2

Strawberry Cookie Cups

I learned to bake beside my mom and grandmother. When I was on break from college, I knew just how to entertain myself: I made cookies. Sharing this recipe with my mom and grandmother was a proud moment.—Andrea Zulauf, Livonia, New York
12 / 47
Peeps Sunflower Cake Exps Wrsm17 39605 C03 22 5b 5

Peeps Sunflower Cake

The inspiration for this cake came from one of my favorite flowers, the sunflower. The yellow peeps make eye-catching flower petals, and I carefully placed chocolate chips in a circular pattern to resemble the seeds in the middle of a sunflower. This cake is easy, but looks quite impressive. —Bethany Eledge, Cleveland, Tennessee
13 / 47
Bing Cherry Amaretti Fool Exps Fttmz20 97027 E03 04 6b 1

Bing Cherry-Amaretti Fool

When Bing cherries are in season, I make this fruity custard-style fool. The sweet cherries and whipped cream balance perfectly with the sour cream. —Mary Ann Lee, Clifton Park, New York
14 / 47
Creamy Biscoff Pie Exps Tohjj20 242479 E02 05 4b 4

Cookie Butter Pie

I tasted Biscoff cookie spread at a grocery store one day, and it was so delicious that I decided to create a no-bake pie with it. You can make this pie your own by substituting peanut butter or another kind of spread for the Biscoff spread and then matching toppings. —Katrina Adams, Mount Olive, Alabama
15 / 47
Freezer Strawberry Shortbread Dessert Exps Bdsmz17 48992 B03 03 4b 4

Freezer Strawberry Shortbread Dessert

When I’m planning party menus, I appreciate dessert recipes like this; you can make and freeze it up to two weeks before serving. A refreshing slice is welcome after a big meal.—Cassie Alexander, Muncie, Indiana
16 / 47
Coconut Egg Nests Exps Ft19 22500 F 1120 1 3

Coconut Egg Nests

Looking for an Easter activity that kids will enjoy assembling and eating? Try these sweet birds nest cookies. They're a snap to make and call for just a few ingredients. —Tonya Hamrick, Wallace, West Virginia
17 / 47
Classic Tres Leches Cake Exps Hc17 28462 C12 16 8b 2

Classic Tres Leches Cake

Tres leches means “three milks.” This cake gets its name because it uses three kinds of milk—evaporated, condensed and cream. This cake’s light and airy texture has made it a classic in Mexican kitchens for generations. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
18 / 47
Passover Rainbow Cookies Exps Toham20 245372 B11 13 6b 3

Passover Rainbow Cookies

The name "rainbow cookies" is actually a bit of a misnomer for these classic New York treats. To make the pretty layered cookies, you’ll bake three thin cakes, spread jam between them and coat with smooth melted chocolate. —Shannon Sarna, South Orange, New Jersey
19 / 47
Elegant Orange Blossom Cheesecake Exps165183 Cw2376972c10 25 3b1 Rms 4

Elegant Orange Blossom Cheesecake

The aroma of orange zest hints at how heavenly this delicate cheesecake tastes. Gingersnap cookie crumbs make a distinctive crust, while glazed orange slices become a blossomlike topping. —Sharon Delaney-Chronis, South Milwaukee, Wisconsin
20 / 47
Sunny Citrus Cheesecake Exps Bwcr21 162523 B03 09 21b

Sunny Citrus Cheesecake

This beautiful layered cheesecake takes a bit longer to make, but the end result is so worth it! Citrus seems to be the perfect ending for an Easter meal, and the bright flavors really shine in this dessert. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin
21 / 47
Contest Winning Strawberry Pretzel Dessert Exps Cf2bz20 22384 E11 20 5b 6

Contest-Winning Strawberry Pretzel Dessert

I love the sweet-salty flavor of this pretty layered dessert. Sliced strawberries and gelatin top a smooth cream cheese filling and crispy pretzel crust. I think it’s best when eaten within a day of being made. —Wendy Weaver, Leetonia, Ohio
22 / 47
Apricot Almond Torte Exps46662 Bos3149327b02 08 6b Rms 4

Apricot Almond Torte

This pretty cake takes a bit of time, so I like to make the layers ahead of time and assemble the day of serving, making it an easier option for entertaining. —Trisha Kruse, Eagle, Idaho
23 / 47
Sweet Tart Lemon Jell O Exps Sdam17 17673 D12 06 7b 2

Sweet & Tart Lemon Jell-O

With its sunny lemon color, this gelatin mold brightens up any table. I usually make two molds for parties because it disappears so quickly. —Patricia Ryzow, Thousand Oaks, California
24 / 47
Tangy Rhubarb Fool Exps Fttmz19 31902 E03 15 10b Rms 2

Tangy Rhubarb Fool

I came up with this recipe because I love mousse, and because it’s an easy way to enjoy rhubarb in a dessert that’s light and refreshing. —Alan Mortensen, Dwight, Illinois
25 / 47
Rhubarb Tart With Shortbread Crust Exps160800 Hca2379809c05 23 3bc Rms 2

Rhubarb Tart with Shortbread Crust

Here’s a perfect ending to a grilled springtime or summer meal! Between the creamy texture, the pretty color and the buttery crust, this recipe is simply delightful. —Emily Seefeldt, Red Wing, Minnesota
26 / 47
Yogurt Ricotta Cheesecake Exps Thfm19 229041 B09 27 5b 2

Yogurt-Ricotta Cheesecake

I have always liked Italian ricotta cheesecakes, but they have too much sugar for me. I made a light version, and my family couldn’t even tell the difference! I serve mine with sugar-free strawberry ice cream topping and fresh strawberries. —Diane Shipley, Mentor, Ohio
27 / 47
Sky High Strawberry Pie Exps Jmz18 1067 C03 02 4b 3

Sky-High Strawberry Pie

This pie is my specialty. It's fairly simple to make but so dramatic to serve. The ultimate taste of spring, this luscious pie has such a big, fresh berry taste. I've had many requests to bring it to gatherings. —Janet Mooberry, Peoria, Illinois
28 / 47
Danish Rhubarb Pudding Exps Sdam19 17646 E12 06 10b 2

Danish Rhubarb Pudding

My grandmother used to make this pudding. It's one of my favorite traditional Danish desserts. —Kay Sundheim, Nashua, Montana
29 / 47
Lemon Chess Pie With Berry Sauce Exps62599 Th2379801a07 25 6bc Rms 1

Lemon Chess Pie with Berry Sauce

This is one of those old-fashioned Southern desserts that makes everyone feel good. The easy-as-pie berry sauce gives it color and a tantalizing tang. —April Heaton, Branson, Missouri
30 / 47
Cherry Chewbilees Exps2672 Ck133085a06 14 5bc Rms 6

Cherry Chewbilees

This is a good dish to carry to potlucks and parties. It’s a hit at home, too—my husband rates it as one of his favorite desserts. —Debbi Smith, Crossett, Arkansas
31 / 47
Jelly Bean Bark Exps22470 Th143191d11  13 8bc Rms 2

Jelly Bean Bark

Homemade Easter candy really doesn't get easier than this. It's so simple—all you need are three ingredients, a microwave and a pan! —Mavis Dement, Marcus, Iowa
32 / 47

Cherry Fudge Truffle Coconut Cheesecake

Cherries and chocolate come together in this dazzling coconut cheesecake. It’s a showstopper! —Jeanne Holt, Mendota Heights, Minnesota
33 / 47
Lemonade Layer Cake Exps23603 Hc1154010b03 08 3b Rms 1

Lemonade Layer Cake

Lemonade concentrate gives both the cake and frosting fantastic flavor. I like to garnish this dessert with lemon slices and mint leaves. —Jana Randich, Phoenix, Arizona
34 / 47
Cool Strawberry Cream Exps Bdsmz17 17769 C03 02 1b 7

Cool Strawberry Cream

This fruity, luscious dessert makes a wonderful ending to a special dinner. When fresh strawberries are not available, substitute two packages frozen unsweetened strawberries, thawed and drained, for the fresh. —Joyce Cooper, Mount Forest, Ontario
35 / 47
Bird Nests Exps Hca18 118377 D08 29 2b 3

Bird Nests

This is a fun, kid-friendly recipe I pulled together a few years ago. My kids love helping me make these. —Jessica Boivin, Nekoosa, Wisconsin
36 / 47
Layered Lemon Pie Exps Wrsm17 30948 D04 13 5b 2

Layered Lemon Pie

This is a great ending for almost any meal that kids and adults all enjoy. The creamy lemon filling is always a hit with my husband. —Elizabeth Yoder, Belcourt, North Dakota
37 / 47
Mango Almond Icebox Cake Exps Sdam18 212133 D12 01 3b 3

Mango Almond Icebox Cake

This recipe was inspired by my friend who asked me to make a mango cake. It's easy to prepare, refreshing, light, and tastes absolutely fantastic. Strawberries can be used as well. —Rachel Simoneau, Danbury, Connecticut
38 / 47
Luscious Almond Cheesecake Exps Gbhrbz17 441 B07 12 3b 2

Luscious Almond Cheesecake

I received this recipe along with a set of springform pans from a cousin at my wedding shower 11 years ago. It makes a heavenly cheesecake. My son Tommy has already told me he wants it again for his birthday cake this year. —Brenda Clifford, Overland Park, Kansas
39 / 47
Orange Chocolate Mousse Mirror Cake Exps Thcom17 210212 D09 12 2b 7

Orange Chocolate Mousse Mirror Cake

A shiny, mirrorlike orange glaze covers a chocolate mousse cake to create a delicious centerpiece dessert your guests will be talking about for weeks to come. —Matthew Hass, Franklin, Wisconsin
40 / 47
Key Lime Cream Pie  Exps Sdjj19 235337 B02 06 5b Rms 2

Key Lime Cream Pie

I am very proud of this luscious no-bake beauty. It’s so cool and refreshing—perfect for any warm-weather potluck or get-together. Wherever I take this pie, it quickly disappears, with everyone asking for the recipe. —Shirley Rickis, Lady Lake, Florida
41 / 47
Cherry Dream Cake Exps19231 Hb133235c07 19 3b Rms 1

Cherry Dream Cake

I serve this cherry cake for holidays because it's so festive and easy. No one will know your secret is adding a package of cherry gelatin to a boxed cake mix! —Margaret McNeil, Germantown, Tennessee
42 / 47

Rainbow Sherbet Angel Food Cake

Talk about a dessert that pops. Sometimes I make this easy cake even more eye-catching by coloring the whipped cream too. Use whatever sherbet flavor combination you like. —Bonnie Hawkins, Elkhorn, Wisconsin
43 / 47
Fresh Strawberries Amaretto Cream Pie Exps134184 Thca2916394d 10 12 13b Rms 1

Fresh Strawberries & Amaretto Cream Pie

Strawberry pie is even more luscious when you cover it with a generous layer of amaretto cream. Keep the recipe in mind whenever you have a bounty of fresh berries. —Charis O'Connell, Mohnton, Pennsylvania
44 / 47
Strawberries And Champagne Cheesecake Exps55781 Th2257746a07 21 21bc Rms 6

Strawberries and Champagne Cheesecake

I bake from scratch because I believe that love—and sweetened condensed milk—are the best ingredients. —Kathryn Work, Louisville, Kentucky
45 / 47
Rhubarb Cheesecake Squares Exps Sdam18 97458 C11 30 1b 2

Rhubarb Cheesecake Squares

It’s rhubarb season, so now’s the time to try this rich and tangy cheese bar. It’s bound to be a hit with the rhubarb lovers you know. —Sharon Schmidt, Mandan, North Dakota
46 / 47
Strawberry Crunch Ice Cream Cake Exps Ft19 242521 F 0627 1 8

Strawberry Crunch Ice Cream Cake

While growing up, I loved treats from the ice cream truck that rolled through my neighborhood. This ice cream cake is inspired by one of those crunchy, strawberry novelties. —Lisa Kaminski, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin
47 / 47
Sour Cream Lemon Pie Exps Thjj18 7804 D02 02 1b 1

Sour Cream-Lemon Pie

I first tasted this pie at a local restaurant and hunted around until I found a similar recipe—now it's my husband's favorite. —Martha Sorensen, Fallon, Nevada

Hazel Wheaton
Hazel is a writer and editor who has worked in the publishing industry for over 25 years in the fields of travel, jewelry arts and food. As the editor of the Taste of Home Christmas Annual (among other titles), she's in the holiday spirit all year round. An enthusiastic baker, she's known for her cookies, cakes and other baked goods. And she still wishes she could cook like her mother.

Popular Videos