Warmer days call for desserts that are cool, creamy, and refreshing. From peppermint ice cream to lemon meringue pie, here are our favorite recipes.
Bruno Neveu — former pastry chef at the Ritz-Escoffier cooking school in Paris — helped us decipher Escoffier’s bare-bones recipe.
Sea Salt Ice Cream
If you’re tired of wintery cakes and cookies by March, it might be time to break out the ice cream.
Blackberry Cream Pie with Toasted Oat and Sesame Crumb Crust
Phoebe Lawless of Scratch Bakery in Durham, North Carolina makes cream pies all summer long that incorporate different fruits as they become available. This recipe works just as well with strawberries, peaches, cherries, or whatever is in peak season. It’s also a great way to use fruit that is just beyond its usability, whether bruised or overly ripe.
This sweet pudding-like dessert from Sickles Market in Little Silver, New Jersey, gained popularity in the United Kingdom during the 17th century. You can discard the solids after straining the berries, but we love eating them on top of it along with freshly whipped cream.
Don’t let the appearance of these cream puffs intimidate you — this dessert is both fun and easy to make at home. Even though this is the classic recipe, let your imagination run wild and stuff these little puff dandies with coffee, chocolate, or peanut butter ice cream, if you like.
See the recipe for Pastry Puffs »
Oloroso sherry and cognac add a little zing to a classic whipped dessert–try adding a little raspberry purée or a few chopped white peaches. See the recipe for Syllabub »
There’s no denying the appeal of a classic banana split—ice cream, bananas, whipped cream, plenty of flavored syrups, and maraschino cherries.
Sprinkled on top of these delicate meringues—which float in a vanilla custard—are praline roses, caramel-coated almonds dyed a bright pink. The color’s a bit shocking, but they’re a staple of Lyonnaise pâtisseries and lend a nice crunch and color to this white-on-white backdrop. Get the recipe for Meringue Floating in Crème Anglaise »
Peanut Butter Bourbon Milkshake
Maple syrup and a healthy dose of bourbon add a delectable kick to this grown-up take on a peanut butter milkshake, served at Seattle’s Skillet Diner.
Few desserts are as pretty and as easy to make as this meringue-and-fruit confection, named after Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova.
Pistachio Ice Cream
Sweetened whole milk flavored with crushed cardamom, saffron, and pistachio is frozen in molds to create these impressive, sculptural desserts.
Tricolored Bavarian Cream
In this classic Swiss dessert, gelatin is used in a creamy custard that’s set between two layers of tart raspberry and strawberry cream.
David Lebovitz’s Mocha Sherbet
This chocolate and espresso delight from David Lebovitz is a rich fudgy combination of favorite flavors that is surprisingly light and refreshing.
Nutmeg Ice Cream
Serve this spiced ice cream on its own or scooped on top of warm fruit crisps, cobblers, or pies, particularly apple.
Peanut Butter Pie
Peanut butter and confectioners’ sugar form a crumbly base for this pudding pie.
Layers of coconut sponge cake, raspberries, tapioca, and bourbon-stewed peaches in easily portable mason jars make this trifle perfect for summer picnics. The compote and the cake can be made up to two days ahead; store them in airtight containers in the fridge. Get the recipe for Peach-Raspberry Trifle »
This Middle-Eastern-influenced tart heaps white chocolate-orange ganache accented with rose water into a pistachio shortbread crust. Pomegranate meringue shaped to form rose petals makes for a show-stopping finish.
White Chocolate-Cardamom Panna Cotta
Sweetened with white chocolate only, this rich, Middle Eastern-inspired panna cotta gets its distinctive floral aroma from an infusion of blistered cardamom.
White Chocolate-Cream Cheese Mousse
In this updated take on a classic French dessert, cream cheese adds stability and a pleasing tang, which balances the sweet white chocolate without overpowering it.