38 No-Cook Desserts Too Easy Not To Try

Ice Cream Sandwich Cake
Photo: Caitlin Bensel

Although Southern cooks love to bake beautiful layer cakes, tricky meringues, and flavorful bread pudding recipes to show off their skills, there's not always time for an elaborate dessert. When you're in a last-minute rush (or if it's just too darn hot to cook during Southern summers!), turn to our favorite no-cook desserts. Not only are these delicious desserts no-bake, but they're also no-cook, which means you don't even have to turn the stovetop on. From classic icebox pies to fun milkshakes and multi-layer treats, there is a no-cook dessert for every event you can imagine. Give no-cook peanut brittle or bourbon balls as a Christmas hostess gift. End your child's birthday party on a memorable note with an ice cream sandwich cake. Or show off fresh summer produce at the Fourth of July cookout with a peach icebox cake or watermelon popsicles that both kids and adults will love. If you're short on time, don't preheat that oven—stick with our best no-cook desserts.

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Blueberry-Cheesecake Ice-Cream Pie

Recipe: Blueberry-Cheesecake Ice-Cream Pie

This refreshing recipe is so much easier than its mouthful of a name lets off. The simple shortbread piecrust is filled to the brim with blueberry goodness and topped with whipped cream, blueberries, mint, and lemon twists, making it company-ready after a little time in the freezer.

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Cucumber-Basil Granita
Alison Miksch

Recipe: Cucumber-Basil Granita

Recipe: Raspberry Limeade Granita

Recipe: Orange Cream Granita

These flavorful fruity shaved ice desserts are a breeze to make. Throwing a party? Add your favorite spirit for slushy cocktails.

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Lemon Meringue Ice-Cream Pie

Lemon Meringue Ice-Cream Pie
Jennifer Davick

Recipe: Lemon Meringue Ice-Cream Pie

Ice cream pies are fit for any occasion. Made with homemade lemon curd, this confection is bursting with citrusy flavor. The best part is it can be made a week in advance.

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Homemade Ice Cream

Strawberry-Pretzel Ice Cream
Hector Manuel Sanchez

Recipe: Avocado-Key Lime Pie Ice Cream
Recipe: Sea Salt Ice Cream
Recipe: Homemade Cookies-and-Cream Ice Cream
Recipe: Blueberry Ripple No-Churn Ice Cream

A new freezer favorite has arrived: An assortment of easy homemade ice creams to provide an endless array of sweet and creamy ideas for any occasion. The secret to these dreamy treats? A heaping spoonful of your ice cream of choice between soft-baked cookies from your bakery. Go large or small—just don't go with the crunchy kind.

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Quick & Tasty Banana Pudding

Quick & Tasty Banana Pudding
Van Chaplin

Recipe: Quick & Tasty Banana Pudding

This super easy banana pudding calls for just four ingredients: a banana, thawed whipping topping, prepared vanilla pudding, and vanilla wafers.

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Orange Sherbet Punch

Orange Sherbet Punch
Photographer Victor Protasio, Food Stylist Ali Ramee, Prop Stylist Heather Chadduck

Recipe: Orange Sherbet Punch

This old-school recipe has all the makings of a classic Southern punch. It is sweet, slightly creamy, fruity, and there is always an occasion for it.

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Strawberry-Orange Trifle

Strawberry-Orange Trifle Recipes
Photo: Beth Dreiling Hontzas

Recipe: Strawberry-Orange Trifle

Fresh fruit makes for a light dessert sure to satisfy everyone at your table, especially when it's layered with lemon curd whipping cream and topped with crumbled shortbread cookies.

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Lemon Granita

Lemon Granita Recipe
Photographer: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Stylist: Christine Keely; Food Stylist: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipe: Lemon Granita

Imagine a fresh glass of lemonade, but make it flaky and icy, like a snowflake. It's a summer-perfect, no-cook dessert that will make everyone ask for more.

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Chocolate Parfaits

Chocolate Parfaits
Southern Living

Recipe: Chocolate Parfaits

Treat yourself with a dessert on the lighter side. We tried using both sugar-free instant and regular pudding mixes. To our surprise, we preferred the flavor of the sugar-free.

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No-Cook Peach Ice Cream

No-Cook Peach Ice Cream
Southern Living

Recipe: No-Cook Peach Ice Cream

Many homemade ice cream recipes require cooking a custard base, but this easy peach ice cream is made from sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, whole milk, and fresh peaches.

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Lemon Tiramisu

Lemon Tiramisu
Photographer Victor Protasio, Food Stylist Ruth Blackburn, Prop Stylist Heather Chadduck

Recipe: Lemon Tiramisu

This refreshing, zesty spin on a classic tiramisu is the ideal treat to serve at your next summer gathering. (Be sure to use soft ladyfingers in this recipe.)

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Classic Peanut Brittle

Classic Peanut Brittle
Charles Walton

Recipe: Classic Peanut Brittle

No Southerner has ever been upset to see a candy tray full of homemade peanut brittle.

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White Chocolate-Covered Strawberries

White Chocolate Covered Strawberries
Micah A. Leal

Recipe: White Chocolate-Covered Strawberries

These white-chocolate covered strawberries make an easy but elegant end to any meal. Or fill up a tin for easy gifting!

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Icebox Cheesecake

Icebox Cheesecake

Recipe: Icebox Cheesecake

This dreamy dessert combines all the cheesecake flavors you love with the ease of an icebox pie.

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Rum Balls

Rum Balls Recipe
Hector Manuel Sanchez

Recipe: Rum Balls

We brought back this recipe that has stood the test of time from our December 1993 issue.

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Peach Milkshake

Peach Milkshake
Jennifer Causey; Food Styling: Loren Wood; Prop Styling: Christine Keely

Recipe: Peach Milkshake

Everything you love about a fruity and refreshing sundae, but drinkable—this milkshake is exploding with summertime peach flavor.

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Ice Cream Sandwich Cake

Ice Cream Sandwich Cake
Caitlin Bensel

Recipe: Ice Cream Sandwich Cake

This nostalgic, crowd-favorite dessert will be the star of every summer party.

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No-Bake Dark Chocolate-Peppermint Sandwich Cookies

No-Bake Chocolate-Peppermint Cookies
Romulo Yanes

Recipe: No-Bake Dark Chocolate-Peppermint Sandwich Cookies

If chocolate and mint are your favorite combo, these sweet cookies are your new favorite homemade version. Go a step further and use a creamy vanilla ice cream between two cookies for a delicious ice-cream sandwich.

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Rainbow Sherbet Cake

Rainbow Sherbet Cake
Photographer: Jennifer Causey; Food Stylist: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipe: Rainbow Sherbet Cake

This frozen treat is sure to be a show-stopper at birthday parties and backyard picnics alike. With a store-bought pound cake, this multi-layered cake couldn't get any easier.

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Watermelon Slushies with Key Lime-Mint Sugar


Recipe: Watermelon Slushies with Key Lime-Mint Sugar

You won't be able to make these crisp slushies fast enough!

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Blackberry-Buttermilk Sherbet

Blackberry-Buttermilk Sherbet
Photographer Victor Protasio, Food Stylist Emily Nabors Hall, Prop Stylist Audrey Davis

Recipe: Blackberry-Buttermilk Sherbet

A sweet-and-tangy sherbet that any Southerner can respect.

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Chewy Chocolate-Peanut Butter Bars

Chewy Chocolate-Peanut Butter Bars
Hector Manuel Sanchez

Recipe: Chewy Chocolate-Peanut Butter Bars

You only need your microwave's help to throw together these easy, delectable bars.

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Bourbon Ice Cream Float

Bourbon Ice Cream Float
Caitlin Bensel; Food Styling: Karen Rankin; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis

Recipe: Bourbon Ice Cream Float

Add a little pizazz to your dinner party with a boozy dessert as your nightcap.

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Peach Icebox Cake

Peach Icebox Cake
Iain Bagwell; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe: Peach Icebox Cake

Let summer's finest be the star of this simple, delicious dessert.

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Triple Chocolate Milkshake

Triple-Chocolate Milkshake
Antonis Achilleos

Recipe: Triple Chocolate Milkshake

For true chocolate lovers, only triple-chocolate shakes will do, and that's fine by us. This is a favorite no matter the season. Dress it up with sprinkles or crumbled cookies for an extra wow-factor.

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No-Bake Peanut Butter-Fudge Ice-Cream Pie

No-Bake Peanut Butter-Fudge Ice-Cream Pie
Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Tina Bell Stamos; Prop Styling: Christine Keely

Recipe: No-Bake Peanut Butter-Fudge Ice-Cream Pie

There's nothing better during a hot Southern summertime than a creamy, chilled pie.

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Buttermilk-Peach Popsicles

Buttermilk-Peach Popsicles
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Ginny Branch; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe: Buttermilk-Peach Popsicles

Celebrate summer by the pool with these refreshing pops showcasing bright, juicy peaches.

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Bourbon Balls

Double Chocolate Chip Cookies with Bourbon Ganache
Jennifer Davick

Recipe: Bourbon Balls

Every Southerner knows that sweet, boozy bourbon balls are a party must-have.

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Turtle Trifle

Turtle Trifle
John O'Hagan; Styling: Lisa Powell Bailey

Recipe: Turtle Trifle

This decadent trifle has all the flavor you love from the classic turtle candy.

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Blackberry Floats

Blackberry Floats
Greg Dupree; Food Styling: Rishon Hanners; Prop Styling: Kathleen Varner

Recipe: Blackberry Floats

This yummy float uses sweet, in-season blackberries for a treat that's as beautiful as it is delicious. We have a feeling everyone will be asking for more after one sip.

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Key Lime Ice-Cream Pie

Summer Cakes and Pies Key Lime Ice-Cream Pie
Hector Sanchez

Recipe: Key Lime Ice-Cream Pie

It's hard to go wrong with key lime pie, especially when it involves indulgent avocado-key lime pie ice cream for the filling.

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Chocolate Lasagna

Chocolate Lasagna
Southern Living

Recipe: Chocolate Lasagna

This vintage dessert was made to feed a crowd, so it's perfect for potlucks and big family gatherings year-round.

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Banana Split Pops

Banana Split Pops
Southern Living

Recipe: Banana Split Pops

Everyone loves a traditional banana split, but have you had one in a popsicle?

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Millionaire Pie

Millionaire Pie
Micah A. Leal

Recipe: Millionaire Pie

This tropical treat will make every guest feel like a million bucks.

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Red, White, and Blue Popsicles

Red, White, and Blue Popsicles
Jennifer Causey

Recipe: Red, White, and Blue Popsicles

Don't chase the ice cream truck down—make these nostalgic goodies at home!

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Kool Aid Pie

Kool Aid Pie
Micah A. Leal

Recipe: Kool Aid Pie

We're taking you back to your days of running around the park with Kool Aid stains on your lips (and probably your T-shirt too).

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Watermelon Daiquiri

Watermelon Daiquiri
Caitlin Bensel; Food Styling: Rishon Hanners

Recipe: Watermelon Daiquiri

Summer is the season for a cold, refreshing drink bursting with the best flavors of the season, so we're keeping it simple with a watermelon daiquiri. It's just as good with or without the booze.

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S'mores Pie

S'mores Pie
Jennifer Causey; Food Styling: Melissa Gray

Recipe: S'mores Pie

No oven, no problem. We already know everyone will be wanting some more of this delicacy.

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