If you know me, then you know that I love Easter! I love everything Easter represents and stands for. I also love having an excuse to celebrate a holiday in the spring with family! Easter always seems to be a beautiful, sunny day and I marvel at the springtime blooms all around me. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Easter brunch… I LOVE it (remember this brunch from a few years ago?)! My family goes back and fourth between going out for Easter brunch and staying in and cooking a big, beautiful brunch at home.
This year, Easter will be a little bit different. Due to COVID-19, we won’t be able to go to church or go out for Easter brunch. However, I know that a beautiful Easter brunch at home will be filled with just as much love as an Easter out around Charleston. One of the best parts about family style at home Easter brunches are the yummy, springy Easter desserts and goodies of the holiday!
Homemade Easter Dessert Recipes
I really gravitate toward fruit-forward desserts, especially in the spring, which, in my opinion, go hand-in-hand with Easter! Below are a few of my favorite homemade Easter dessert recipes that are both delicious and easy! P.S. how adorable is my blue and white apron from Bon Aprontit!? I’m in love! Bon Aprontit makes the most special aprons and they are a great small female-run company to support right now.
Maple-Sweetened Banana Muffins (as seen in this post!)
I absolutely love this recipe and I always get so many compliments on these delicious muffins! If you need to whip up something sweet that is relatively healthy, quick, and super easily, then you’ll love this recipe. In addition, the ingredient list is simple and you only need one mixing bowl! You can also go crazy and add your favorite additions like chocolate chips, nuts, or coconut flakes! P.S. These yummy muffins are what’s pictured in this blog post!
– ⅓ cup melted coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil
– ½ cup maple syrup or honey
– 2 eggs, preferably at room temperature
– 1 cup packed mashed ripe bananas (3 bananas)
– ¼ cup milk of choice or water (I used almond milk)
– 1 teaspoon baking soda
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– ½ teaspoon salt
– ½ teaspoon cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling on top
– 1 ¾ cups white whole wheat flour or regular whole wheat flour
– ⅓ cup old-fashioned oats, plus more for sprinkling on top
– 1 teaspoon turbinado (raw) sugar or other granulated sugar, for sprinkling on top
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit (165 degrees Celsius). If necessary, grease all 12 cups of your muffin tin with butter or non-stick cooking spray (my pan is non-stick and didn’t require any grease).
2. In a large bowl, beat the coconut oil and maple syrup together with a whisk. Then add the eggs and beat well. Mix in the mashed bananas and milk, followed by the baking soda, vanilla extract, salt and cinnamon.
3. Add the flour and oats to the bowl and mix with a large spoon, just until combined. If you’d like to add any additional mix-ins, like nuts, chocolate or dried fruit, fold them in now.
4. Divide the batter evenly between the muffin cups, filling each cup about two-thirds full. Sprinkle the tops of the muffins with a small amount of oats (about 1 tablespoon in total), followed by a light sprinkling of sugar (about 1 teaspoon in total). Bake muffins for 22 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.
5. Place the muffin tin on a cooling rack to cool. You might need to run a butter knife along the outer edge of the muffins to loosen them from the pan. These muffins will keep at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. They keep well in the freezer in a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months (just defrost individual muffins as needed).
Recipe from Cookie + Kate
Lemon Tart with Almond Flour Crust
To say I’m obsessed with this recipe would be an understatement. I’ve made it a handful of times for my family and everyone oohs and aahs over it. It’s so good that Edwin asked me which bakery I bought it from the first time I made it and was so pleasantly surprised to learn that it was homemade! This recipe is also amazing because it is gluten-free! I love all spring cakes from pound cake to carrot cake to coconut cake but this one is special because it’s so light. In addition, the whipped cream and fresh fruit on top make for the perfect “icing on the cake!”
For the Crust:
– 2 cups Super Fine Almond Flour
– 1/4 cup sugar
– 1/8 teaspoon salt
– 1/4 cup salted butter, softened
– 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1 large egg
For the Lemon Filling:
– ½ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (about 5-6 lemons)
– 2 teaspoons lemon zest
– ¾ cup sugar, divided
– 3 large eggs
– ¾ cup butter, softened to room temperature
For the Whipping Cream:
– 1 Cup Heavy Cream
– 2 Tablespoons Sugar
– Berries and fresh mint for garnish (optional)
For the Crust:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and lightly grease tart pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, mix together the almond flour, sugar, and salt. Stir in the softened butter until it resembles course crumbs, and then stir in the vanilla extract and egg. Mix until well combined.
3. Use your hands to press the dough evenly into the bottoms and side of the pan. The dough will be sticky. Poke a few holes into the dough using a fork.
4. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Then place a layer of aluminum foil on top if the edges are browning too fast. Cool before making lemon filling.
For the Lemon Filling & Assembly:
1. In a medium saucepan, heat the lemon juice, lemon zest, and 6 tablespoons of sugar until sugar is dissolved, then bring to a boil. Then set aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs and remaining sugar until smooth and no lumps remain.
3. While whisking egg mixture, slowly pour a quarter of the boiled lemon juice to the egg and whisk vigorously until combined. Whisk fast or else your egg will cook and curdle. Pour this egg/lemon mixture back into the saucepan with the lemon juice and whisk over medium heat until it is at a boil. So whisk continually or else there will be lumps. While continually whisking, reduce heat and let simmer until it is thickened like a sauce.
4. Fill a large bowl with ice water and set saucepan in the ice bath until it cools for about 3 minutes, or until it is warm but not hot. Remove from ice bath and add the softened butter in 5 increments, stirring with a rubber spatula until it is completely smooth and butter is thoroughly combined. Pour through a fine mesh strainer to remove any lumps.
5. Pour lemon filling into the baked tart shell and refrigerate overnight or until cooled and set. Spread whipped cream over the tart once chilled and garnish with fresh berries and a sprig of mint.
P.S. Elisabeth & Butter also has a delicious recipe for lemon shortbread bars that are also perfect for Easter brunch for the citrus lovers out there!
Recipe from Elisabeth & Butter
Gluten-Free Carrot Cake with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting
Is there any dessert more synonymous with the Easter holiday than Carrot Cake? Carrot cake is such a crowd pleaser so why not give the people what they want!? I love making this carrot cake because it is a classic recipe and the fluffy cream cheese frosting makes it so sweet and delicious. In addition, this cake recipe is super moist with the perfect amount of spice for carrot cake. It will make you swoon at every bite! It is from my absolute favorite healthy baking destination, Sweet Laurel. If you don’t have the Sweet Laurel cookbook, then I highly recommend it! In addition, it would make for a great Easter gift too.
For the Carrot Cake:
– 3½ cups almond flour
– 1½ teaspoons Himalayan pink salt
– 1 teaspoon baking soda
– 1 tablespoon cinnamon
– 1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
– 1/2 cup maple syrup
– 5 eggs, room temperature (or vegan substitute)
– 2 cups (100 grams) grated carrots
– 1 cup (150 grams) raisins
– 1 cup (125 grams) chopped walnuts
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
– 2 cups (285 grams) raw cashews (soaked about 1 + hour, drained and rinsed)
– 1/2 cup coconut or almond milk
– 1/2 cup maple syrup
– 2 tablespoons coconut oil (melted)
– 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1 capsule powdered probiotic or 2 tablespoons lemon juice
– 1 teaspoon salt
For the Carrot Cake:
1. Preheat the oven 350°F. Grease three six-inch cake pans generously with coconut oil. (This cake can also be made with two 8-inch cake pans instead of three 6-inch cake pans.)
2. Mix almond flour, pink salt, baking soda and cinnamon in a bowl.
3. Whisk together coconut oil, maple syrup and eggs in a stand mixer or whisk wet ingredients together in another bowl.
4. Pour the dry ingredients into wet ingredients along with carrots, raisins and walnuts. Mix well.
5. Divide batter into pans, place pans on large baking sheet and bake about 20 to 25 minutes. Then allow to cool completely.
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
1. Place all frosting ingredients in a high-speed blender. Blend until creamy, frosting like texture is reached. Store frosting in air tight container in refrigerator until use.
2. An hour before serving time, spread frosting on each cake layer, stacking the layers as you go. Place cake in the refrigerator until serving. Optional: decorate cake with organic flowers and herbs.
Vegan swap option: To make the recipe vegan, use a blend of chia seeds and flaxseeds instead of eggs to make the batter. Soak 3 tablespoons freshly ground chia seeds in 9 tablespoons of water at room temperature for 10 minutes; meanwhile, soak 2 tablespoons freshly ground flaxseed in 6 tablespoons of water at room temperature for 10 minutes. Use the two mixtures in place of the eggs in the batter and bake the cake for 10 minutes longer. (Chia and flax must be freshly ground to use as a vegan egg replacement).
Technique tip: For the best appearance and texture, wait to make the frosting until a few hours before serving and frost the cake no more than an hour before serving.
Recipe from Sweet Laurel.
Milk Chocolate Stuffed Peanut Butter Bunny Cookies
This recipe is for the chocolate addicts out there! I also think this recipe is adorable and is a surefire hit with kiddos because the Easter bunny shaped cookies are so sweet. These would also be fun to decorate with kids and a great activity to do this Easter weekend while staying at home. A bunny cake would also be a cute shaped Easter treat to make with kids although I can’t say that I’ve made one myself!
– 1 stick 1/2 cup salted butter, at room temperature
– 3/4 cups light brown sugar
– ½ cup creamy peanut butter
– 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
– 1 egg, at room temperature
– 1 3/4 all-purpose flour
– 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 12 ounces milk chocolate melted
– 12 ounces white chocolate melted
– granulated sugar, for dusting (optional)
– assorted candies, for decorating (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, peanut butter, and vanilla until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and mix until combined. Add the flour, baking soda, and salt. Beat until combined and the dough forms a ball. If the dough feels dry, add 1 tablespoon water.
3. Generously flour your work surface. Divide the dough in half and flatten each half into a disk. Roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Make sure you’re using enough flour or your dough will stick. Cut out the cookies using a bunny cookie cutter. If you don’t have a bunny simply use a circle and make Easter Egg cookies. Using a spatula, transfer the cookies to a parchment-lined baking sheet. To half of the cookies, cut out a small oval at the top of the bunnies ears and 2 ovals at the bottom of the bunnies to create “feet” using a pairing knife (see above photos). Roll out the leftover scraps, and repeat with the remaining disk of dough.
4. Transfer the cookies to the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, until lightly golden brown. Cool on the baking sheet 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
5. Dip each of the cutout cookies in melted white chocolate and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet (see above photo). Let the chocolate harden. Dust lightly with sugar, if desired.
6. To assemble, spread the melted milk chocolate over half of the cookies with no cutouts. Place the top white chocolate covered cookie over the milk chocolate, gently pressing to adhere. Transfer the remaining melted milk chocolate to a ziplock bag and snip a very small portion of the corner off the bag. Use the bag to draw on the eyes, nose, and whiskers. Let the chocolate harden at room temp for 1 hour or for 15 minutes in the fridge.
7. To make Easter Eggs, cut the dough into circles and use your hands to gently shape the circle into an oval to make Easter Eggs. To decorate, draw on lines and dots with melted chocolate.
Cookie Cutter: this is the exact cookie cutter I am using.
Storing: Cookies can be served immediately or let the chocolate firm up and store in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
If you’d like to glaze the cookies: skip using the white chocolate and instead, make a simple sugar glaze. In a medium bowl, beat together 2 cups powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon vanilla, and 1 tablespoon water until smooth and drizzly. If needed, thin the glaze by adding water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until drizzly.
Recipe from Half Baked Harvest.
Fresh Peach Sorbet
Peach season is gearing up! Peach is one of my absolute favorite flavors and peach sorbet might be the dessert I’d pick if I had a last meal. This recipe is a dream because it’s dairy-free, refined sugar-free and doesn’t require an ice cream machine to make it! With four ingredients, you can have an easy and delicious dessert in no time!
– 5 medium-size ripe peaches (approx. 4 cups)
– 12 tablespoons raw honey
– 1/4 cup vanilla almond milk
– 2 teaspoons lemon zest
1. Remove the pits from the peaches and then roughly dice into 1” cubes. Transfer them to a freezer bag or freezer-safe container then place them in the freezer and allow them to freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.
2. Once they are frozen, remove them from the freezer and transfer to a food processor. You might have to let them defrost for 10 minutes or so so they are able to break loose. Add the honey, almond milk and lemon zest to the processor as well then blend until smooth.
3. Next transfer the mixture to a freezer safe container and then smooth it down with a spoon or spatula. Seal the container and place in the freezer for at least 4 hours then serve cold and enjoy!
Recipe by Making Thyme for Health
Coconut Macaroon Nests with Nutella and Cadbury Eggs
This is such a sweet dessert to serve on Easter morning because it is perfectly on theme. Kids will devour these! I love the idea of placing one of these at everyones place setting at the table when you sit down for brunch. I always stop in my tracks when I see coconut macaroons so this dessert is up there for me!
– 2/3 cup flour
– 5 cups shredded coconut
– 1/4 tsp. salt
– 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
– 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
– 1 cup Nutella
– 1/4 Cadbury chocolate eggs
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, coconut, salt, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla, until dough forms. Drop by spoonful onto prepared cookie sheet. Use your thumb or a spoon to make an indentation in the center to form a nest shape. Bake for 12 – 15 minutes, until coconut starts to turn golden brown. Remove and let cool.
3. When completely cooled, fill each nest with 1 – 2 tsp. of Nutella and top with a few chocolate eggs.
Recipe by Jamie Kamber
Almond Coconut Cake
I love a traditional coconut cake but the addition of almonds makes everything better, which is why I was first inspired to make this recipe! I’ve never gone back and made a regular coconut cake again… this one is a must! It is three layers of delicious moist vanilla and almond coconut cake filled in with the most heavenly almond cream cheese buttercream. My mouth is actually watering as I type this. It’s one of the best Easter cakes!
For the Cake:
– 1-1/4 cups (280 gm) unsalted butter, at room temperature
– 2 cups (400 gm) sugar
– 5 large eggs, at room temperature
– 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
– ¼ teaspoon almond extract
– 3 cups (390 gm) cake flour
– 1 tablespoon baking powder
– ½ teaspoon salt
– 1 cup (240 gm) full-fat canned coconut milk
– 2 cups (170 gm) shredded sweetened coconut
For the Frosting:
– 1-1/2 cups (340 gm) unsalted butter, at room temperature
– 8 ounces (230 gm) full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
– ½ teaspoon almond extract
– 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1/2 teaspoon salt
– 2 lbs (907 gm) powdered sugar
– Additional sliced almonds or shredded coconut for garnish (optional)
For the Cake:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and prepare three 8” round baking pans by lining the bottoms with parchment rounds and spraying the sides with baking spray.
2. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add the sugar. Beat for an additional 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time on low speed and beat to combine, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Stir in the extracts. In a smaller separate bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir half of the dry ingredients into the cake batter and then stir in the coconut milk. Add the remaining dry ingredients and stir just until almost combined. Stir in the shredded coconut.
3. Fill the three prepared pans with equal amounts of batter, smooth the tops, and bake in the preheated oven for about 22-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool to room temperature.
For the Frosting:
1. Beat the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the cream cheese and beat to combine, about 45 seconds. Add the extracts and salt, stirring to combine. Also, add the powdered sugar and stir on low speed until incorporated, and then increase speed to beat for about 20 seconds. If you taste your frosting and would prefer it a bit sweeter, add an additional ½ cup powdered sugar. If you frosting it too thick to spread, add a tablespoon of water or milk until it comes to the right consistency.
2. When ready to assemble the cakes, trim any dome off the top of each cake. Spread 1-1/4 cups of frosting on top of the first cake layer and then top it with a second layer of cake. Repeat this process once more and then continue frosting the cake to your liking. If desired, toast some almonds or shredded coconut in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 -15 minutes, stirring regularly, to use as a garnish. This step isn’t necessary. Cake can be stored at room temperature but is best on day of assembly.
Recipe by Wood and Spoon
How to Serve Easter Desserts
Look the Part
While you busy yourself in the kitchen for Easter, be sure to protect your Easter outfit from getting ruined with an adorable apron (like mine!). I shared an interview with the founder of the apron company I’m wearing, Bon Aprontit, and I just love her and her aprons so much! Can you imagine a cuter apron!? P.S. A Bon Aprontit apron is a great Easter or springtime gift to give as well!
Set the Table
Easter is such a fun holiday to collect table decor for and to set the table for! My mom has always collected beautiful pieces for different holidays over the years and it makes me so happy and nostalgic every year when she brings out items I’ve seen since childhood and makes me excited when I see new things she’s picked up. I’ve slowly started to do this and find it to be such a joy!
This year, I think the curated Easter tabletop section at Terrain is beyond gorgeous. I adore this wire egg carrier, this seagrass flower placemat, and this cabbage plate collection.
Land of Belle is my go-to for beautiful yet unique tabletop necessities and decor! It is the best-curated tabletop destination out there.
Williams Sonoma also has a wonderful and extensive Easter Section including an Easter baking section to help inspire your Easter desserts!
My favorite Easter tabletop collections are this Lettuce Ware collection, this Seville collection, and this Famille Rose collection. Which do you love most!?
For kiddos, Anthropologie, Sugar Paper, Maisonette, and Nordstrom have really sweet Easter items! Also, a Sohp Shop soap would make a great addition to any Easter basket this year. Lastly, no Easter is complete without this book!
Prepare Ahead of Time
Save yourself some stress on Easter Sunday and Easter weekend by prepping your Easter desserts early. Each of the above desserts can be made ahead of time and then stored in the fridge or freezer for a day or two while still remaining absolutely fresh! You will feel so prepared if you only have to take your dessert out of the refrigerator to serve on Easter weekend.
What are your favorite homemade Easter dessert recipes!? I’d love to hear your favorite Easter treats in the comments below! Easter candy in Easter eggs and chocolate eggs are a given but I hope this post gives you some inspiration for a new homemade dessert to add to your menu too!
P.S. My dad loves banana pudding but I’ve never found a recipe I love. Does anyone have a great recommendation? xx
Photography by Edwin Eversole
Oh my gosh, these sound delicious!!
I hope you have a great Friday,
Thanks so much Michael!! They are beyond delicious!! I highly recommend the recipe! XO
You could not be any cuter (or sweeter)! Love this post and all these beautiful photos in your Bon Aprontit apron. That lemon tart recipe is definitely being added to my recipe file, it sounds amazing and these tips are right on point! Thank you so much for sharing and hope you have a wonderful Easter celebration!! 🙂
Thanks so much Megan for your sweet comment!! I’m so glad you’re inspired by the lemon tart recipe! It is beyond delicious!!! I hope you have a wonderful Easter too! xoxo
Jillian, I love your enthusiasm on Easter.
Thank you so much! It is one of my favorite holidays!! I love everything the holiday honors, represents, and stands for! I hope you are staying well and looking forward to a nice Easter at home! Thanks for reading my blog! xx