Sweets

Recipe: Cherry Pie Bars — Recipes from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

I firmly believe that summer is a time for uncomplicated desserts meant for celebrating all the sweet fruit at our fingertips. This year I'm swapping my pie dish for a trusty 9x13-inch pan and this easy bar dessert reminiscent of a classic cherry pie. Sweet cherries are unmistakably the star of this dessert, although I have no doubt you'll love the almond-scented, buttery crust just as much.

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Recipe: Towering Strawberry Shortcake — Stylish Layer Cakes from Tessa Huff

(Image credit: Christine Han)

Strawberry shortcake is the ambassador of summer, showing off juicy berries like jewels. It's usually a humble dessert built on a biscuit, but here we turn it into a towering showstopper of cake, whipped cream, and fresh strawberries. Yet it brings drama without fuss; this is layer cake the easy way.

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Recipe: The Ultimate Fresh Blueberry Cobbler — Easy Dessert Recipes

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

I grew up close enough to Maine to know that summer wasn't summer unless there were heaps of blueberries involved. That meant not only spending at least a few Saturdays at U-pick farms, but also drives up the coast that involved stopping on the side of the road whenever we saw a glimmer of wild berries. Blueberry muffins, pies, and cobblers were soon to follow. I still can't go a summer without churning these three things out of my kitchen.

This is the cobbler I am making this year. It's the ultimate because it's exactly what a good blueberry cobbler should be: It's sweet and juicy, bound to stain your teeth a little, and just asking for the biggest scoop of vanilla ice cream. It's also got a tiny secret that makes it the "blueberriest" of blueberry cobblers — and it's not just adding more blueberries.

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Recipe: Flag Cake — Easy Dessert Recipes

One of my favorite annual traditions is making this super-simple flag cake with my daughter. Yes, turning a cake into an American flag is somewhat cliché, but if you consider this the best way to dress up berry shortcake then it's as fun to make as it is to share.

This charming, whipped cream-frosted cake has a colorful surprise inside. It's what makes this vanilla-cake-meets-berry-shortcake recipe stand out from the rest.

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How To Make Vegan Cashew Ice Cream — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

This creamy, dreamy, basically mind-blowing ice cream is vegan. It only requires three ingredients (four if you insist on counting the salt) and no cooking. I wouldn't believe it myself if I had been there for the failed recipes that finally led to this triumphant one.

All ice creams require a correct ratio of fat to liquid in order to freeze into tiny crystals that are still soft, pliable, and, most importantly, creamy. Many vegan ice creams use coconut milk to add fat and flavor to non-dairy milks to achieve that creamy result. Here, cashew butter turns the non-dairy milk of your choice into a rich, buttery ice cream. Sweetened with maple syrup to keep it vegan, the resulting ice cream tastes like cashew meets caramel in one smooth, cooling scoop. Here's how to make this cashew ice cream at home.

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How To Make the Best Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream — Ice Cream Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Good chocolate ice cream has contrasting allure. It's rich, cool, and creamy with dark roasted flavors only cocoa can impart. This chocolate ice cream is for the real die-hard chocolate-lovers in the group. It's sweet and malty, with the tiniest bitter tones to balance that sweetness. Almost right in the middle between dark chocolate and milk, it's the kind of chocolate ice cream that doesn't leave you wishing there was more chocolate in the mix or less.

After tasting and testing several chocolate ice cream recipes, I can firmly say this is the best one I've tried yet. For starters, this ice cream's base doesn't require tempering eggs with hot cream, so it's easier to make. It has not one but three types of chocolate, and it doesn't freeze up impossibly hard to scoop, thanks to a secret ingredient.

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