Showstopping Christmas dessert recipes - Netmums (2024)

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Netmums Editorial

Can't stand Christmas pud? These stunning desserts are a worthy alternative to the traditional pudding and are all guaranteed crowd-pleasers. From a dark chocolate yule log and free-from chocolate fondants to a starry mulled-cider trifle, here are some alternative Christmas desserts the whole family will love ...

15. Yule log

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Have a go at making this retro favourite. Go for a traditional milk chocolate sponge filled with buttercream, or give it a foodie twist with our recipe for dark chocolate and beetroot yule log.

Not convinced? Just like adding carrots to a cake, beetroot keeps a sponge really moist and tender, and its natural sweetness means you need less sugar. Bonus veg points, too!

Dark chocolate yule log recipe

2. Profiterole snowmen

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Everyone loves profiteroles, and they'll love them even more when you stack them up and turn them into snowmen.

The profiteroles are filled with cream, drizzled with a simple white chocolate sauce and decorated with chocolate chips and cola laces.

Profiterole snowmen recipe

3. Iced trifle slice

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This dessert is our secret weapon for tired parents who need to rustle up a Christmas dessert.

Thanks to a few clever hacks, like using store-bought custard and fruit compote, this iced trifle only needs 10 minutes prep, before you can shove it in the freezer to chill.

Best of all, you can make it up to a month ahead.

Iced trifle slice recipe

4. Buche de Noel

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Everything sounds fancier in French: Fact. It's certainly true of 'buche de Noel' which is the French version of a yule log.

This one is filled with cream and mandarin slices, topped with gold-dusted truffles and white chocolate zig zags for a showstopper finish.

Buche de Noel recipe

5. Winter fruit pavlova

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This colourful dessert looks great as part of a Christmas party spread and it's easy to make, too.

Bake a star-shaped giant meringue then top with whipped cream, mint and seasonal fruits like pomegranate and juicy persimmon.

Winter fruit pavlova recipe

6. Mulled cider trifle

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Wow! Serve this mulled cider trifle at Christmas and everyone will be raving about it for months.

This stunner has layers of boozy jelly, star-shaped ginger biscuits, spiced custard and candied fruits. This is one for the adults only!

Mulled-cider trifle recipe

7. Cranberry cheesecake

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If the family hates Christmas cake, why not dish up a cheesecake instead?

This gorgeous cheesecake has a simple but stunning topping (no decorating skills required!) made with fresh cranberries. Look out for them on offer in the supermarkets from November onwards.

Cranberry cheesecake recipe

8. Black forest chocolate tart

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Believe it or not, you don't need to switch the oven on to make this stunner.

Make a buttery shortbread base, top with dark chocolate ganache and black cherries in syrup. To finish you can go the easy route with fresh cherries, chocolate shavings and whipped cream.

Or ... follow the step-by-step instructions in our recipe to make these chocolate shards and curls.

Black forest chocolate tart recipe

9. Hazelnut meringue wreath

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Turn a classic pavlova into a festive wreath with our easy recipe.

Pavlova makes an ideal dessert after a heavy Christmas meal, as the light-as-air meringues will be a lot easier for a full tum to cope with than a slab of Christmas pudding.

Top with roasted plums. This is also a make-ahead recipe, as you can make the wreath and plums in advance and assemble before serving.

Hazelnut meringue wreath recipe

10. Free-from chocolate fondant

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If you've got any coeliacs or dairy allergies in the family, this is the perfect alternative to traditional Christmas desserts.

These rich chocolate puds with a melting middle are free from gluten and dairy, and are made with coconut flour and sugar. Serve with a dollop of coconut yogurt, or double cream for those who don't need to avoid dairy.

Free-from chocolate fondant recipe

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