31 No-Bake Desserts for Summer
The last thing you want to do on a hot, summer day is turn on the oven. But when company is coming, you've been tasked with dessert for the potluck, or just have a craving for something sweet and indulgent, what else can you do? These are our best no-bake desserts that will keep your kitchen cool, and everyone around the table pleased.
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Bugle Bars
Creamy, crunchy, rich, salty, and sweet all at the same time—these no-bake, chocolate-peanut butter bars are everything. Crisp crushed Bugles (one of our staffs’ junk food favorites) make for an fun and amazingly delicious twist on a typical crumb crust. They lend the perfect hit of salty, crispy, buttery goodness in the base of this cookie bar, and topping the assembled bars with a another handful of the the whole chips is a playful touch that lets folks know what’s in store when they bite into this salty-sweet situation. These decadent cookie bars were a huge hit in the test kitchen, and recipe developer Ivy Odom notes that they would be “perfect for tailgates, school parties, or for eating in front of the TV, with wine and the rest of the bag of Bugles, after a long day at work.”
No-Bake Fudgy Toffee Bars
These gooey bars will be your new favorite no-bake cookie. Serve chilled for less mess.
Chocolate Infinity Pie
This pie has it all. It's full of chocolate flavor, has a silky-smooth texture, and it's also gluten-free. Also, to make this pie vegan, be sure to use vegan chocolate chips. With this fantastic pie recipe, everyone gets to indulge.
Vegan Mini Pumpkin Spice Bites
For a guilt-free, vegan dessert that's sure to get you in the fall spirit, there's no better option than these adorable mini pumpkin spice bites. Encased in a simple walnut-pecan-date crust, the key to this autumnal treat lies in the silken tofu filling. Providing a creamy consistency without affecting flavor, silken tofu is the best kept vegan dessert secret.
Vegan Chocolate-Hazelnut Tart with Fresh Berries
Take one bite of this chocolatey, decadent “clean eating” dessert, you might not believe that it’s raw, vegan, gluten-free and paleo… but low and behold, you don’t need excessive sugar or other processed ingredients to make a next-level dessert. Easy to prep, and filled with rich chocolate-hazelnut flavor, this vegan dessert is perfect for anyone following a special diet or simply trying to clean their eating habits up a bit. Serve it for a special occasion, or just as a “treat yo-self” indulgence—since there’s no need to crank up the oven, it’s especially ideal to satisfy a summertime sweet tooth.
Mini Vegan Key Lime Icebox Pies
This “custard” has an insanely rich and silky mouthfeel born from a partnership between avocado (which also provides the natural green coloring) and tofu. The blend of fats released from the ground nuts and a bit of added coconut oil combined with the sugary moisture of the dates create not only a cohesive crust, but one that is deep in flavor and wonderfully crisp once chilled.
The Ultimate Unbaked Brownies
These incredible brownies are a lot of things all at once: they're no-bake, vegan, and gluten-free. They're also incredibly delicious, and feature a luxurious layer of chocolate ganache on top.
Vegan Dark Chocolate Coconut Tart
After you take one bite of this deeply decadent “clean eating” dessert, you might not believe that it’s raw, vegan, gluten-free and paleo… but low and behold, you don’t need excessive sugar or other processed ingredients to make something magical. This show-stopping dark chocolate tart offers an incredibly rich chocolate flavor and silky pudding-like texture—but it’s so easy to whip up, even the most inexperienced baker/dessert-maker will look like a pastry pro bringing it to the table. Perfect for anyone following a special diet or simply trying to clean their eating habits up a bit, this dark and decadent tasting treat perfectly satisfies both the sweet tooth and chocolate indulgence cravings. And since there’s no need to crank up the oven, it’s especially ideal for summer.
Vegan Coconut Cream Tart with White Peaches and Blueberries
This nutrient-rich twist on coconut cream pie is lusciously smooth and decadent… it’s also vegan, paleo, gluten-fee, and raw. In other words, you’re looking at a tart with a stacked resume. Perfect for a special occasion, especially if you’re looking to clean up your diet a bit, this show-stopping vegan dessert offers rich, toasty flavor and sweet tooth satisfaction—without adding refined sugar. And since there’s no need to crank up the oven to make it, this treat especially ideal for summer. Keep in mind, whipping coconut cream can sometimes be tricky. If you forget to refrigerate your cans overnight or if too much of the liquid gets mixed in, it will most likely separate. But not to worry—mixing in a bit of tapioca flour (arrowroot would also work) can bring the mixture back together in a snap. To save yourself time, go ahead and place your mixing bowl and whisk attachment in the fridge to chill as soon as you are ready to start prepping your tart.
No-Bake Strawberry Nutella Cheesecake
Strawberry season is an indicator of two things; it means the sun is out and the oven is off. Take a break from a hot kitchen to make this easy, fresh and stress-free no-bake Nutella flavored cheesecake. The hazelnut spread not only gives the cheesecake a velvety texture and chocolatey taste, but it also helps stabilize the pie to set up a creamy yet firm consistency when chilled. The addition of condensed milk adds a touch of milky sweetness and the lemon juice creates a mellow, zesty flavor that balances the cheesecake’s sweetness. You can prepare the crust a day ahead and also chill cheesecake overnight. This cheesecake will be a hit at any summer event, and it’s a great way to use up the season’s favorite berry.
No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Drops
No-bake cookies make even the most oven-shy baker look like a hero. You’ll see them at bake sales, fundraisers, and in millions of homes across the country as an after-school snack. We've cut out a lot of the unnecessary butter and added chocolate chips, providing firmness, texture, and a great gloss to these cookies.
Chocolate Almond Cherry Crisps
These no-bake treats taste like bite-sized candy bars and are terrific with a cup of coffee. Prepare them up to two days in advance, and store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
Ice Cream Sandwich Dessert
Key Lime-Shortbread Icebox Cake
Layers upon layers of fresh key lime, luscious cream cheese, and shortbread cookies make for a delicious no-bake cake with a show-stopping presentation. A thin layer of pistachios adds a crunch to each creamy, bright bite. The taste is light and sweet, making it the perfect ending to a large holiday meal. If you can't find Key limes to juice, try Nellie & Joe's brand.
No-Bake Samoa Pie
Save a stash of Samoas (or Caramel DeLights) in order to make an epic pie that looks, and tastes, just like the classic Girl Scout cookie. Use the back of a measuring cup to press the crust into the pie plate and add heavy cream to the caramel when melting for a smoother, drizzle-with-ease consistency. Serve chilled, as you would a coconut creme pie.
Vegan Mini Peanut Butter Pies
Love peanut butter cups? This is the treat for you. With a rich, chocolatey crust and a deep, nutty, creamy inside, this dessert is for all the peanut butter and chocolate lovers, whether you're vegan or not. Silken tofu acts as a smooth, thickening component for the filling, as well as canned coconut cream. This easy, no-bake dessert packs all the indulgent flavors of your favorite candy bar, yet it's still dairy-free, gluten-free, and made with natural sweeteners.
Oreo Icebox Cake
This decadent Oreo icebox cake is incredibly easy to make and requires only six ingredients. It’s a perfect dessert for kids birthday parties that doesn’t require heating up the kitchen. As is, this cooling cake offers a delightful cookies-n-cream flavor profile, but feel free to switch things up by using your favorite Oreo cookie flavor.
Rebecca's Black Bottom Icebox Pie
Pink Lemonade Icebox Cake
Delicate, thin purchased cookies are the secret to this stunning no-cook dessert. Look for options from Murray or Uncle Al's.
Chocolate-Bourbon-Butterscotch Icebox Cake
A creamy, butterscotch pudding makes for the perfect base to add a touch of bourbon. The boozy treat is layered between chocolate wafers, and topped with a sweet cream.
Horchata Icebox Cake with Spiced Mango
The warm spices and hit of rum from the horchata-inspired mix is just what spiced mangos need in this speedy—but stunning—icebox cake. It's the kind of dessert you may need to make a second batch of, just in case.
Red, White and Blue Ice Pops
Celebrate red, white, and blue all summer long with these patriotic ice pops. The secret ingredient is a blue sports drink, along with cranberrry juice and lemonade.
Deep Eddy Blueberry Lemon Drop Pop
These adult ice pops are the perfect refreshing summer treat. We made ours using Deep Eddy vodka as we find it to be exceptionally vibrant in flavor, but feel free to use your own favorite brand of flavored vodka. Raspberries would also be a delicious fruit to highlight in these bright and boozy pops.
Blackberry-Peach Slow Cooker Crumble
Topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or Greek yogurt, this simple summer dessert is a great way to satisfy the sweet tooth while reaping the nutritional benefits of summer fruit. Keep the peach slices no less than 1/2 inch thick; any smaller, and they may lose their shape when cooked.
Churros and Smoked Chocolate Ice Cream
Swap out your traditional summer desesrt for this fun show-stopper.
Watermelon-Jalapeño Ice Pops
Stovetop Summer Fruit Crisp
Traditional? No. Delicious? Oh, yes. This quick-fix take hits all the highlights of a classic berry crisp--syrupy-sweet fruit, crisp topping, and cool cream--in a fraction of the time.
Lemon-Lavender Ice Cream
With a liight hint of sweetness, the arromatic floral notes of lavender and citrusy lemon make this flower-infused scoop the perfect summer cool-down treat.
Coconut Lime Chia Pudding Pops
Cool-down with a nutritious and creamy, summer treat. Don't have a popsicle mold? That's ok. Use a mason jar! Mix ingredients in a small mason jar, shake, add crushed raspberries, a spoonful of chia pudding, and freeze until solid, 4 to 5 hours. Not only is this method mess-free but it's also super cute!
Cherry-Vanilla Buttermilk Ice Cream
Cool-down with a deliciously creamy, summer treat. Don't have an ice cream maker? That's ok. Mix your ingredients in a small loaf pan (regularly stirring) and freeze until solid, 5-7 hours.
Softened Plums with Vanilla Yogurt
Better and easier than a plum crisp, skip turning on the oven by cooking the plums just on the stove. The ideal summer dessert is fresh, juicy, not overly sweet, and not overly complicated, which is why this end-of-season treat features only 6 ingredients. The plums cook just long enough to soften slightly and release their juices; use a knife and fork to dive in. Sub any toasted nut or seed for the granola.