Save on Pinterest

The Best Desserts of 2020

We've collected our very best dessert recipes just for you. Discover the highest-rated, most-popular desserts that came out on top this year.

1 / 50

Apple Pie

I remember coming home sullen one day because we’d lost a softball game. Grandma, in her wisdom, suggested, “Maybe a slice of my homemade apple pie will make you feel better.” One bite, and Grandma was right. If you want to learn how to make homemade apple pie filling, this is really the only recipe you need. —Maggie Greene, Granite Falls, Washington

Get Recipe

(Psst! Check out our Recipe of the Year.)

2 / 50
Homemade Vanilla Ice CreamTaste of Home

Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

We don’t want to brag, but as far as vanilla ice cream recipes go, this one is the best. And with only four ingredients, it just might be the easiest, too. No ice cream maker? No problem. Just follow the directions below to learn how to make homemade ice cream by hand. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

3 / 50
Creamy Caramel Flan

Creamy Caramel Flan

A small slice of this impressively rich, creamy, caramel flan dessert goes a long way. What a delightful finish for a special meal or holiday celebration. —Pat Forete, Miami, Florida

4 / 50
Rhubarb Crisp Exps Cimz19 4530 C01 09 6b 3

Rhubarb Crisp

I found this strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe on a box of Quaker Oats about 20 years ago. It’s quick and easier to make than pie. It’s versatile, too, because you can add strawberries in spring or apples in fall. I usually pop it into the oven shortly before we sit down to eat so it’s still warm for dessert! —C.E. Adams, Charlestown, New Hampshire

5 / 50
Peach CobblerTaste of Home

Peach Cobbler

I created this peach cobbler recipe myself with a few tips from my mom and grandma. Because it’s so quick and easy, this cobbler can be made in minutes to suit any occasion. I’ve used it for a breakfast fruit dish, dinner dessert and light snack. —Martha Betten, North Manchester, Indiana

6 / 50
Chocolate Chip Blondies Exps Cmz18 10578 B10 20 6b 13

Chocolate Chip Blondies

Folks who love the flavor of the classic cookie will enjoy that same great flavor in these chocolate chip bars. This blondie recipe can be mixed up in a jiffy, tastes wonderful, and is perfect for occasions when company drops by unexpectedly or you need a treat in a hurry. —Rhonda Knight, Hecker, Illinois

7 / 50
Strawberry ShortcakeTaste of Home

Strawberry Shortcake

I grew up helping my mom make a lot in our farmhouse kitchen; strawberry shortcakes, roasts, soups and pies. This sunny strawberry shortcake recipe brings back memories of family summers on the farm. —Janet Becker, Anacortes, Washington

8 / 50
Grandma’s Rice PuddingTaste of Home

Grandma’s Rice Pudding

My sisters and I always loved the recipe for rice pudding our grandma made. After she passed away, I took it upon myself to try and find the secret to her rice pudding. It took quite a bit of experimentation, but I finally got it right! And I’m glad to share this easy recipe here. —Margaret DeChant, Newberry, Michigan

9 / 50
Classic Chocolate CakeTaste of Home

Classic Chocolate Cake

If you need to learn how to make chocolate cake from scratch, this easy homemade chocolate cake recipe is a perfect place to start. It appeared on a can of Hershey’s cocoa way back in 1943. I tried it, my boys liked it, and I’ve been making it ever since. —Betty Follas, Morgan Hill, California

10 / 50
First Place Coconut Macaroons Exps Hrbz17 4383 C09 01 3b 16

First-Place Coconut Macaroons

These coconut macaroons are my husband’s favorite and earned me a first-place ribbon at the county fair. I especially like the fact that this recipe makes a small enough batch for the two of us to nibble on without lots left over. —Penny Ann Habeck, Shawano, Wisconsin

11 / 50
Mom’s Fried ApplesTaste of Home

Mom’s Fried Apples

Mom often made these fried apples for me while I was growing up. The recipe is very dear to me. —Margie Tappe, Prague, Oklahoma

12 / 50
Vanilla Meringue Cookies Exps Ft20 45262 F 0811 1 2

Vanilla Meringue Cookies

Want to learn how to make meringues? These meringue cookies are super light and airy. They’re the perfect fat-free treat. —Jenni Sharp, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

13 / 50
Sweet Potato Pie Exps Ghbz18 1203 B08 15 3b 6

Sweet Potato Pie

This creamy sweet potato pie is subtly spiced and slices beautifully! We suggest baking up a few sweet potato pies around the holidays to give to friends and family. — North Carolina Sweet Potato Commission

14 / 50
Dirt Dessert Exps Diyd20 36973 B02 26 1b 2

Dirt Dessert

Grab your spoon! This sweet dirt pudding recipe is just so good! —Kristi Linton, Bay City, Michigan

15 / 50
Hot Milk Cake Exps Ft20 386 F 0402 1 Home 1

Hot Milk Cake

This simple, old-fashioned milk cake tastes so good it will surprise you! As I remember my mom’s delicious meals, this dessert was always the perfect ending. Mom always used “a dash of this and dab of that” to come up with what we thought was “the best”! —Rosemary Pryor, Pasadena, Maryland

16 / 50
Chocolate Cheesecake Exps Fbmz16 15807 B05 18 5b 1

Chocolate Cheesecake

Everyone’s a chocolate lover when it comes to this special dessert. It melts in your mouth, and it’s very smooth and fudgy. For a fun taste twist, spoon cherry or strawberry topping over each slice right before serving. —Sue Call, Beech Grove, Indiana

17 / 50
Old Fashioned Carrot Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting Exps Mcsmz17 14593 D01 05 7b 5

Old-Fashioned Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

A pleasingly moist cake, this treat is the one I requested that my mom make each year for my birthday. It’s dotted with sweet carrots and a hint of cinnamon. The fluffy buttery frosting is scrumptious with chopped walnuts stirred in. One piece of this homemade carrot cake is never enough—better than all the other carrot cakes recipes I’ve tried!—Kim Orr, West Grove, Pennsylvania

18 / 50
Big Soft Ginger CookiesTaste of Home

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

These nicely spiced, big soft ginger cookies are perfect for folks who like the flavor of ginger but don’t care for crunchy gingersnaps. —Barbara Gray, Boise, Idaho

19 / 50
French Silk Pie Exps Diyd19 33993 E12 11 6b 4

French Silk Pie

I first made French silk pie when I was in high school. Years later, I tinkered with the recipe until I was happy with it. Now it’s one of my husband’s favorites. —Lisa Francis, Elba, Alabama

20 / 50
Basic Cookie DoughTaste of Home

Basic Cookie Dough

Skip the store-bought cookie dough and learn how to make cookies from scratch—it’s easy! Thanks to this basic cookie dough recipe, you can turn everyday ingredients into five sensational sweets. Bake some right away, then pop the extra dough in the freezer for later. —Gloria McBride, Payson, Utah

21 / 50
Peach PieTaste of Home

Peach Pie

I acquired this delicious peach pie filling recipe some 40 years ago, when my husband and I first moved to southern Iowa and had peach trees growing in our backyard. It's been a family favorite since then and always brings back memories of both summer and those happy early years. — June Mueller, Sioux City, Iowa

22 / 50
Pumpkin BarsTaste of Home

Pumpkin Bars

Pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting are the ultimate fall treat. But my family likes them so much, they ask me to make them all year long! —Brenda Keller, Andalusia, Alabama

23 / 50
Homemade Chocolate Pudding Exps Diyd19 7927 B04 16 3b 3

Homemade Chocolate Pudding

This delightful pudding is always a treat and easy to whip up using common pantry ingredients. I usually top the pudding with M&M's. My husband likes whipped topping on his and our daughter loves to dip fresh strawberries in hers. —Carrina Cooper, McAlpin, Florida

24 / 50
Easy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies Exps Diyd19 44945 B05 01 2b 12

Easy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

This easy oatmeal cookie recipe is great with a glass of cold milk! With their peanutty flavor, these scrumptious cookies hit the spot. Plus, they couldn’t be easier to make! —Marilyn Blankschien, Clintonville, Wisconsin

25 / 50
Best Angel Food Cake Exps Ft20 14878 F 0430 1 Home 1

Best Angel Food Cake

For our daughter’s wedding, a friend made this lovely, angel food cake from a recipe she’s used for decades. It really is one of the best angel food cake recipes I’ve found. Serve slices plain or dress them up with fresh fruit. —Marilyn Niemeyer, Doon, Iowa

26 / 50
Leftover Rice Pudding

Leftover Rice Pudding

This rice pudding with leftover cooked rice is a delicious classic. We also like to dress it up with English toffee bits, chocolate and toasted coconut. —Laura German, North Brookfield, Massachusetts

27 / 50
Scottish ShortbreadTaste of Home

Scottish Shortbread

Scottish settlers first came to this area over 150 years ago. My mother herself was Scottish, and—as with most of my favorite recipes—she passed this shortbread recipe on to me. I make a triple batch of it each year at Christmas, to enjoy and as gifts. —Rose Mabee, Selkirk, Manitoba

28 / 50
Easy Fresh Strawberry Pie Exps Tmbbp19 34179 B06 20 3b 3

Easy Fresh Strawberry Pie

For my mother's birthday, I made this strawberry pie recipe instead of a cake. Since it was mid-May in Oklahoma, the berries were absolutely perfect. It was a memorable occasion for the whole family. —Josh Carter, Birmingham, Alabama

29 / 50
Frosted Banana Bars Exps Diyd19 1063 B05 15 3b 19

Frosted Banana Bars

These banana bars are always a hit. I also like to provide them for coffee hour after church. They’re so moist and delicious that wherever I take them, they don’t last long. —Karen Dryak, Niobrara, Nebraska

30 / 50
Upside-Down Peach CakeTaste of Home

Upside-Down Peach Cake

Folks have been flipping over this peach upside-down cake for generations. This dessert is very popular with my family and guests. —Terri Kirschner, Carlisle, Indiana

31 / 50
Winning Apple CrispTaste of Home

Winning Apple Crisp

I live in apple country, and a delicious crisp is one good way to use them that doesn’t take a lot of time. —Gertrude Bartnick, Portage, Wisconsin

32 / 50
Sugar Cookies Exps4249 Bos2930251c11 27 1b Rms 2

Sugar Cookies

This sugar cookie dates back to a Swedish woman born in 1877! Her daughter, Esther Davis, shared the recipe with me and she came up with all the exact measurements, since the original cookies were mixed by feel and taste. These are my favorite cookies and I hope they’ll become yours as well. —Helen Wallis, Vancouver, Washington

33 / 50
Chocolate Mayonnaise CakeTaste of Home

Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake

Mom always made this special chocolate mayonnaise cake for my birthday meal. It is very moist and has a nice light chocolate taste, and the flavorful frosting is the perfect topping. —Deborah Amrine, Grand Haven, Michigan

34 / 50
Biscuit Strawberry Shortcake Exps Qebz20 10622 B01 22 5b 3

Biscuit Strawberry Shortcake

This biscuit strawberry shortcake is the perfect ending to any meal. Homemade biscuits and fresh berries shine in this classic dessert. —Stephanie Moon, Boise, Idaho

35 / 50
Moist Chocolate CakeTaste of Home

Moist Chocolate Cake

This chocolate cake recipe with coffee reminds me of my grandmother because it was one of her specialties. It always brings back fond memories. The cake is light and airy with a delicious chocolate taste. This recipe is a keeper! —Patricia Kreitz, Richland, Pennsylvania

36 / 50
Banana Chocolate Chip CookiesTaste of Home

Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

These soft banana cookies have a cake-like texture and lots of flavor that everyone seems to love. It’s one of the best banana cookie recipes I’ve found. —Vicki Raatz, Waterloo, Wisconsin

37 / 50
Exps2727 Hb133235d07 19 1b Web 14

Sour Cream Pound Cake

Because I'm our town's postmaster, I can bake only in my spare time. When I do, I especially like this sour cream pound cake recipe. This one tastes great as is, or tucked under ice cream and chocolate syrup like a hot fudge sundae! —Karen Conrad, East Troy, Wisconsin

38 / 50
Homemade Peanut Butter CupsTaste of Home

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

I like using pretty mini muffin liners and topping these homemade peanut butter cups with colored sprinkles to coordinate with the holiday we’re celebrating. People can’t believe how simple it is to make this irresistible candy with gooey peanut butter centers. This is how to make homemade peanut butter cups. —LaVonne Hegland, St. Michael, Minnesota

39 / 50
Mom S Custard Pie Exps Ft20 9295 F 0603 1 Home 1

Mom’s Custard Pie

Just a single bite of this traditional custard pie takes me back to the days when Mom would fix this pie for Dad, Grandfather and me. Mom also regularly prepared pies for large gatherings. This dessert was often requested. —Barbara Hyatt, Folsom, California

40 / 50
Tennessee Peach Pudding Exps Ft20 33743 F 0624 1 1

Tennessee Peach Pudding

This out-of-this-world is one of our favorite, easy peach recipes. I was raised in Oklahoma, and we used Elberta peaches right off our trees when we made this outstanding cobbler. —Virginia Crowell, Lyons, Oregon

41 / 50
Grandma S Red Velvet Cake Exps Thnd16 42588 C07 27 2b 6

Grandma’s Red Velvet Cake

In our family no one thinks it’s Christmas without this Red Velvet Cake recipe. I baked the first one for Christmas in 1963 when I found the recipe in the newspaper and my Mother kept the tradition going into the ’80s. It’s different than other Red Velvet Cakes I’ve tasted over the years, since this one tastes only mildly chocolate and the icing is as light as snow. —Kathryn H. Davison, Charlotte, North Carolina

42 / 50
Strawberry Pretzel DessertTaste of Home

Strawberry Pretzel Dessert

This make-ahead strawberry pretzel salad will disappear quickly. —Aldene Belch, Flint, Michigan

43 / 50
Funnel Cakes Exps Ghbz18 8333 C08 09 4b 6

Funnel Cakes

This funnel cake recipe is simpler to make than doughnuts, and it's just as good. Funnel cakes have been a favorite of ours since we came across them living in the Ozarks. —Mary Faith Yoder, Unity, Wisconsin

44 / 50
Peanut Butter Chocolate DessertTaste of Home

Peanut Butter Chocolate Dessert

The desserts of my dreams have both chocolate and peanut butter. So, when I came up with this rich chocolate peanut butter dessert, it quickly became my all-time favorite. It’s a cinch to whip together because it doesn’t require any baking. My family loves this chocolate peanut butter cup lasagna! —Debbie Price, LaRue, Ohio

45 / 50
Favorite Banana Cream PieTaste of Home

Favorite Banana Cream Pie

This homemade banana cream pie recipe is my mom’s specialty, and this dreamy dessert has a wonderful banana flavor. It looks so pretty, and it cuts easily, too. —Jodi Grable, Springfield, Missouri

46 / 50
Exps40152 Cw163681d12 09 2b 4

Lemon Chiffon Cake

This moist, airy lemon chiffon cake was my dad’s favorite. Mom revamped the original recipe to include lemons. I’m not much of a baker, but whenever I make this dessert my family is thrilled! —Trisha Kammers, Clarkston, Washington

47 / 50
Chewy Oatmeal CookiesTaste of Home

Chewy Oatmeal Cookies

I packed chocolate chips, raisins, nuts and cinnamon into my oatmeal cookie recipe. These soft cookies are easy to make. Best of all, our kids love them! —Janis Plageman, Lynden, Washington

48 / 50
Incredible Coconut Cake

Incredible Coconut Cake

I found this coconut cake recipe in a newspaper many years ago and modified it to suit my taste. This is my all-time favorite cake, and my family and friends absolutely love it. —Lynne Bassler, Indiana, Pennsylvania

49 / 50
Favorite Pumpkin Cake Roll

Favorite Pumpkin Cake Roll

This pumpkin roll recipe is great to keep in the freezer for a quick dessert for my family or unexpected guests, to take to a gathering or to give as a yummy gift. The recipe is in such demand, I use a 29-ounce can of pumpkin to make four cake rolls at a time. —Erica Berchtold, Freeport, Illinois

50 / 50
Blue Ribbon Butter Cake Exps Ghbz18 37065 B08 15 1b 10

Blue-Ribbon Butter Cake

I found this buttercake recipe in an old cookbook I bought at a garage sale and couldn’t wait to try it. I knew it had been someone’s favorite because of the well-worn page. —Joan Gertz, Palmetto, Florida

Sue Stetzel
Sue has been part of the Taste of Home family for over 16 years. Her collection of magazines dates back to the premier issue in 1993. When she isn’t writing, she’s answering your burning cooking questions and working with our team of Volunteer Field Editors.
Christina Herbst
Christina is an Assistant Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in content creation and SEO optimization. She enjoys trying out local foodie restaurants and coffeehouses and adding copious amounts of garlic and cheese to any recipe she can get her hands on.