25 Brownies, Blondies & Other Desserts That Won't Smush in Your Bag

June 29, 2016

What I've carried on the subway from Manhattan to Brooklyn:

  • A 12-layer Napoleon cake
  • A giant Ikea mixing bowl full of gummed-together soba noodles along with every single vegetable in my apartment, each cooked in a different way
  • All five Ottolenghi books and a plant called Xanadu
  • A sheepskin rug, a bag of extremely pungent Brussels sprouts, and three flattened cardboard boxes
  • Rising cinnamon bun dough, to be shaped and baked at my friend's apartment
  • A vat of burbling sourdough

The other people in the train car—they love me!

Unless you've figured out how to apparate or you're brave enough to host the party yourself, you've probably got travel in store for you this summer. So I beg you: Learn from my mistakes! Make desserts that are easily-transportable, that will not have you gripping the steering wheel for the dear life of the bubbling-hot pie on the floor in the backseat, or massaging your sore biceps the next day.

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These 25 treats, including the one above, fit the bill. They're good for making ahead and they don't threaten to fall apart, topple over, or deflate. If you're worried that they'll melt, freeze them before you start your journey! If you take them out of the pan to cool, just put them back in the pan from whence they came to transport.


P.S. The last two are gluten-free!

Vanilly & Chocolate-Chippy

Nutty & Coconutty



Is there one dessert you always bring to parties? Tell us in the comments!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Francesca Bruzzese
    Francesca Bruzzese
  • Jennifer
  • chefrockyrd
I used to work at Food52. I'm probably the person who picked all of the cookie dough out of the cookie dough ice cream.


Francesca B. June 30, 2016
As someone who is constantly bringing desserts into the office for my colleagues, I love this article (I too have toted all sorts of desserts onto metros, trains, and buses). Great recipes too. My go to portable desserts are these fudge brownies (http://www.pancakesandbiscotti.com/2015/08/perfect-fudge-brownies.html) and these Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookies (http://www.pancakesandbiscotti.com/2015/09/oatmeal-chocolate-chip-cookies.html). Thanks again!! :)
Jennifer June 29, 2016
Two shocking exceptions (I dare anyone to challenge me): Amanda Hesser's (Elizabeth Friend's) almond cake; the NYTimes purple plum torte. Both in the Essential New York Times Cookbook (and likely on line). Both justly famous as world travelers.
chefrockyrd September 2, 2016
Why shocking? I agree with you. They travel well.
Both desserts will make you famous among friends. When I visited my friend in France her neighbor gave her a case- yes a case! of purple plums picked right off of her tree. I made several of the tortes during the time I was there. All were eaten, some with lunch on the terrace, some with afternoon tea and dessert after dinner and if any was left- for breakfast.
That particular cake freezes well too. The almond cake never got that far.