dinner party desserts to make ahead

Article Outline

  1. Introduction
  2. Benefits of making desserts ahead for a dinner party
  3. Tips for choosing make-ahead dessert recipes
  4. Make-ahead dessert options for a dinner party
    a. Make-ahead cakes and pies
    b. Make-ahead tarts and pastries
    c. Make-ahead puddings and custards
    d. Make-ahead frozen desserts
  5. Recipes for make-ahead dinner party desserts
    a. Recipe 1: Chocolate mousse cake
    b. Recipe 2: Lemon tart
    c. Recipe 3: Tiramisu
    d. Recipe 4: Frozen strawberry cheesecake
  6. Presentation and serving tips for make-ahead dessert
  7. Conclusion

Dinner Party Desserts to Make Ahead

Hosting a dinner party can be a delightful experience, but preparing everything from scratch on the day of the event can be overwhelming. One way to reduce stress and ensure a smooth evening is by making desserts ahead of time. In this article, we will explore the benefits of make-ahead desserts for a dinner party, provide tips for selecting the right recipes, and offer some delicious make-ahead dessert options along with their recipes.

Benefits of Making Desserts Ahead for a Dinner Party

Making desserts in advance offers several advantages. Firstly, it saves time on the day of the party, allowing you to focus on other aspects of the meal preparation. Secondly, it ensures that the desserts have enough time to set and develop their flavors, resulting in a more delicious final product. Lastly, it gives you the flexibility to serve a wider variety of desserts without the pressure of last-minute preparations.

Tips for Choosing Make-Ahead Dessert Recipes

When selecting make-ahead dessert recipes for a dinner party, there are a few key factors to consider. Firstly, choose recipes that are known for their ability to hold well in the refrigerator or freezer without compromising taste or texture. Secondly, opt for recipes that can be prepared in advance without requiring last-minute assembly or decoration. Lastly, consider the dietary preferences and restrictions of your guests to ensure that the desserts are suitable for everyone.

Make-Ahead Dessert Options for a Dinner Party

There are various types of desserts that lend themselves well to make-ahead preparations. Here are some popular options:

Make-Ahead Cakes and Pies

Cakes and pies are classic dessert choices that can be made ahead of time. Simply bake the cake or pie, allow it to cool completely, and store it in the refrigerator or freezer until the day of the dinner party. Some examples include moist chocolate cake, creamy cheesecake, or traditional apple pie.

Make-Ahead Tarts and Pastries

Tarts and pastries are elegant dessert options that can be prepared ahead of time. The crust can be baked in advance and stored separately, while the filling can be made a day or two before the party. On the day of the event, simply assemble the tart or pastry and serve. Lemon tart, berry galette, and chocolate croissants are all excellent make-ahead choices.

Make-Ahead Puddings and Custards

Puddings and custards are indulgent desserts that can be made well in advance. Prepare the creamy base, pour it into individual serving dishes or a larger dish, and refrigerate until set. Examples of make-ahead puddings and custards include vanilla panna cotta, chocolate mousse, or caramel flan.

Make-Ahead Frozen Desserts

Frozen desserts are perfect for make-ahead preparations, as they can be made and stored in the freezer until ready to serve. Options include ice cream, sorbet, and frozen cheesecakes. Prepare the dessert according to the recipe, place it in a freezer-safe container, and enjoy a refreshing treat without the need for last-minute preparations.

Recipes for Make-Ahead Dinner Party Desserts

Now that we’ve explored the different types of make-ahead desserts, here are four delicious recipes to inspire your next dinner party:

Recipe 1: Chocolate Mousse Cake


  • Dark chocolate
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Whipped cream
  • Vanilla extract


  1. Melt the dark chocolate and let it cool slightly.
  2. Separate the eggs and whisk the egg yolks with sugar until pale.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
  4. Gently fold the melted chocolate into the egg yolk mixture.
  5. Fold in the whipped cream and vanilla extract.
  6. Finally, fold in the beaten egg whites.
  7. Pour the mixture into a springform pan and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  8. Serve chilled, garnished with chocolate shavings or fresh berries.

Recipe 2: Lemon Tart


  • Pie crust
  • Lemons
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Butter


  1. Preheat the oven and blind bake the pie crust.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, zest, eggs, sugar, and melted butter.
  3. Pour the lemon mixture into the pre-baked pie crust.
  4. Bake in the oven until the filling is set and slightly golden.
  5. Allow the tart to cool completely before refrigerating for a few hours.
  6. Serve chilled, dusted with powdered sugar and garnished with lemon slices.

Recipe 3: Tiramisu


  • Ladyfingers
  • Coffee
  • Mascarpone cheese
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Cocoa powder


  1. Dip the ladyfingers in coffee and arrange them in a single layer in a serving dish.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the mascarpone cheese, egg yolks, and sugar until smooth.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
  4. Gently fold the beaten egg whites into the mascarpone mixture.
  5. Pour half of the mixture over the layer of soaked ladyfingers.
  6. Repeat with another layer of soaked ladyfingers and the remaining mascarpone mixture.
  7. Dust the top with cocoa powder.
  8. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  9. Serve chilled, cut into squares or slices.

Recipe 4: Frozen Strawberry Cheesecake


  • Graham cracker crust
  • Cream cheese
  • Sugar
  • Vanilla extract
  • Strawberries
  • Whipped cream


  1. In a bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth.
  2. Fold in the chopped strawberries.
  3. Pour the mixture into the graham cracker crust.
  4. Freeze for at least 4 hours or until firm.
  5. Before serving, let the cheesecake sit at room temperature for a few minutes to soften slightly.
  6. Top with whipped cream and additional strawberries, if desired.

Presentation and Serving Tips for Make-Ahead Desserts

To ensure your make-ahead desserts shine at the dinner party, consider the following presentation and serving tips:

  • Decorate the desserts with fresh fruits, chocolate shavings, or edible flowers.
  • Serve individual portions for an elegant touch.
  • Pair desserts with complementary sauces or toppings.
  • Use decorative serving dishes or platters to enhance visual appeal.
  • Provide dessert forks or spoons that match the theme or style of the party.


Hosting a dinner party can be a delightful experience, and with make-ahead desserts, you can impress your guests without the last-minute stress. By selecting the right recipes and following our tips, you’ll be able to prepare delicious desserts ahead of time, allowing you to enjoy the party and spend quality time with your guests. So, next time you plan a dinner party, consider the convenience and deliciousness of make-ahead desserts. Bon appétit!

Custom Message: Thank you for reading our article on dinner party desserts to make ahead. We hope you found the information helpful and inspiring. If you have any questions or would like more recipe ideas, feel free to leave a comment below. Happy hosting!

Leave a Reply