6 Quick, Warm, and Delicious Winter Desserts
When the days are dark and cold, warm up with these sweet treats.
By Lorraine Allen
Here’s one sure way to make the most of a cold, blustery day: Serve up something hot, sweet, and delicious as a special treat after dinner. These desserts are super quick and easy to make, and kids can help prepare them, too. What’s best is they each require just a few ingredients, and are pretty versatile, so you can mix things up depending on your family’s tastes, and what you have (or don’t have) on hand in your pantry.
1. Warm berries and cream: Simply heat up a couple of cups of frozen berries – raspberries, sliced strawberries, blueberries, or a combination – in a pan with a couple of tablespoons of sugar until just bubbling. Serve immediately in heat-resistant glass cups or bowls for a pretty presentation, with vanilla or chocolate ice cream alongside. Top with whipped cream for an extra-special treat.
2. Hot chocolate float: Place a scoop of vanilla, caramel, mint, or chocolate ice cream in a mug and pour hot chocolate over top.
3. Virgin bananas Foster: Cut bananas in half lengthwise, and then cut each piece in half crosswise. Heat 3 tablespoons unsalted butter (or enough to generously cover bottom of pan) over medium heat until melted. Add 2 tablespoons brown sugar (per 4 to 5 bananas), and ½ cup of fresh or thawed frozen orange juice. Cook for 5 minutes, until bananas have slightly browned and sauce has thickened a bit, and serve with whipped cream or ice cream, or crumbled vanilla wafers.
4. Sautéed apples or pears: Slice or dice apples or pears and sauté in a few tablespoons of unsalted butter and a pinch of cinnamon over medium heat until softened. Serve with whipped cream or over gingersnap cookies.
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5. 15-second s’mores: You don’t need a bonfire to enjoy this warm, gooey, kid-favorite treat, and it’s a perfect reminder of summer, too! Simply place two graham crackers on a plate, and top one with a square of chocolate and the other with a large marshmallow. Microwave until the marshmallow has puffed and the chocolate has melted slightly, about 15 seconds, and sandwich together!
6. Chocolate fondue: Last but not least, the most decadent hot dessert of all! In a double boiler or heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, combine 1 cup chocolate chips (dark, milk, or white chocolate), 3 tablespoons butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Stir completely melted and combined. Serve immediately with pretzel rods or skewered fresh fruit for dipping. Don’t forget to keep Bounty on hand for easy clean-up of any spills or drips!
What is your family’s favorite winter dessert?
Lorraine is a freelance parenting, health and food writer, and she shares her cooking adventures and family recipes at MixPlayEat.com.
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