All questions

Help! Looking for Christmas desserts that can be baked in advance!

I'm in charge of the desserts for Christmas in my family, but I'm working overtime from here until two days before the big date. I need ideas of desserts that can be frozen and then just thawed before dinner. My family will eat pretty much anything, so fire away :) Thank you in advance for the help!

asked by Anna almost 4 years ago

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

20 answers 2487 views
Pegeen
Pegeen

Pegeen is a trusted home cook.

added almost 4 years ago

Unbaked double-crust fruit pies freeze very well. You just need to add more baking time to defrost them when you finally put them in the oven. You can also freeze unfrosted layer cakes, defrost later, then frost, glaze or add toppings the day before or day of. Same with "loaf" dessert breads or bundt cake. Trifles are easy to assemble (fun for kids as they don't need much precision) and could be made quickly the day before or day of. Nigella Lawson has a very tasty chocolate cherry trifle - check her web site.

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

Anna
added almost 4 years ago

Thanks for the tips - will definitely check Nigella's recipe!

amysarah
amysarah

amysarah is a trusted home cook.

added almost 4 years ago

Many types of cookies, plus brownies, blondies, etc. freeze well. Cheesecakes generally freeze well too (though if you're topping it with fruit, do that after defrosting.) I've frozen flourless (or near flourless) chocolate cakes and they were fine - just serve 'as is' with whipped or vanilla ice cream.

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

Pegeen
Pegeen

Pegeen is a trusted home cook.

added almost 4 years ago

Just saw this great recipe for rugelach (delicious - more of a pastry than cookie)
https://food52.com/blog...

You could also bake and fill little tartlets with lemon curd, jam or conserves, then freeze. Defrost and add a dollop of whipped cream before serving.

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

Anna
added almost 4 years ago

Thanks for the rugelach suggestion - looks tasty!

Marian Bull
added almost 4 years ago

Cake! Cake! Any (unfrosted) cake!

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

Anna
added almost 4 years ago

Any particulars as for the freezing in this case, or just wrap it tight in clingfoil and tupperware and it's ok to go?

ATG117
added almost 4 years ago

wrap each layer in saran wrap, then in foil, and then place in a freezer bag.

plainhomecook
added almost 4 years ago

Fruit cake (I know, I know) should be made at least a month in advance. If you think you hate fruit cake, you could try this recipe - http://chowhound.chow.com.... It is really not what you would expect fruit cake to be and it is very, very good.

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

Anna
added almost 4 years ago

I'm actually fond of fruit cake (go figure), so I'll definitely give this a go. Thanks for the tip!

EmilyC
added almost 4 years ago

This Date, Apricot and Walnut Loaf Cake that was recently featured on the site is SO good. It's a sophisticated version of fruit cake, and it gets better with age so you could bake it three or four days in advance with no need to freeze it. https://food52.com/blog...

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

Pegeen
Pegeen

Pegeen is a trusted home cook.

added almost 4 years ago

I love fruit cake too (but without the green cherries). Nannydeb's "Holiday Fruit & Nut Cake" is very good: https://food52.com/recipes...

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

ChefJune
ChefJune

June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added almost 4 years ago

Most of the do-ahead desserts have been covered here, but I have to add a couple. Frozen mousses are very festive, easy and you MUST do them ahead and freeze them. Also chocolate truffles can be frozen successfully. Just make sure you thaw them completely before boxing them with candy papers, as the moisture would make the little cups soggy.

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

amysarah
amysarah

amysarah is a trusted home cook.

added almost 4 years ago

That reminds me - how could I forget Semifreddo (much like a frozen mousse)? A chocolate one is on our standard Christmas rotation, because my daughter demands it and it's a great make ahead.

kimhw
added almost 4 years ago

I always have chocolate mousse and lemon curd in my freezer. Get a variety of berries, whipped cream, chocolate syrup and people can made their own!

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

aobenour
added almost 4 years ago

Fudge!!

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

Pegeen
Pegeen

Pegeen is a trusted home cook.

added almost 4 years ago

Just saw this article on freezing pies and noticed two things: fruit pies OK to freeze but it doesn't recommend freezing custard or pumpkin pies. And Pyrex or glass pie dishes are not recommended (use tin or ceramic like Emile Henry) because of the sudden temperature shift from frozen to hot - the Pyrex or glass can crack.
http://www.thekitchn.com...

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

ChefJune
ChefJune

June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added almost 4 years ago

Interesting. I've frozen banana cream pie for short periods (like a week) with no noticeable degradation. And although I don't make pumpkin pies, I frequently freeze sweet potato pies (already baked) with no problem whatsoever. As for freezing in Pyrex -- I guess that article is assuming (always a dangerous thing to do) that the pie is going straight to the oven from the freezer. I generally freeze already baked pies, so that's not an issue.

AntoniaJames
AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added almost 4 years ago

Consider a steamed pudding, which will hold beautifully for several months, and indeed, will improve with time if tightly wrapped. Here is my recipe, which can be made in a full pudding mold instead of smaller portions steamed in Mason jars or ramekins. https://food52.com/recipes...

If you don't have a pudding mold, see this marvelous video from the BBC, on how to make do with a bowl, foil, parchment and string: http://www.bbcgoodfood...

To serve on a festive occasion, don't forget a good brandy or sherry sauce! Here is my recipe for the latter. If you don't have sherry, or are not terribly fond of it, substitute brandy, of course. https://food52.com/recipes...

I'll be posting several other recipes for holiday dessert sauces in the next few weeks, too.

Keep in mind that any of the sauces can be used over a simple pound cake, which most people love, and which freezes beautifully. Cheers! ;o)

Are you channeling your best self with this comment? (If you're not sure, check out our Code of Conduct.)

AntoniaJames
AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added almost 4 years ago

Here's a link to a photo of my steamed pudding - can be made to taste much like a fruitcake or not, as you wish. http://instagram.com/p...