We’re not monsters here at MUNCHIES—we do have hearts. We might hate on the seasonal PSL fervor, but can you blame us? (We are fatigued, you guys.) But we’re not dead inside. We, too, crave all the warm spices that make us feel like our insides are full of mulled cider when the leaves start to change. We hold a particular fondness for foods that, when eaten, give us the same feeling as being swaddled in warm, cozy blankets on a crisp autumn morning. Especially desserts. When else, if not during the time of year when the rest of the mammals of North America are preparing for hibernation, can we indulge in so much sugar that we feel like taking a bit of a nap afterward? If it’s sweater weather, it’s cinnamon-nutmeg-ginger weather. If we’ve already pulled our parkas out of the back of the closet, our desserts probably have apples, pears, or squash in them. So here’s a collection of fall dessert recipes that are the physical and culinary manifestation of the concept of “warm and fuzzy.”
Whole vanilla beans might be a little pricey, but to make this traditional Danish holiday dessert, vanilla extract just won’t cut it. Whole bean or go home.
You’ll want to drizzle this coconut milk dulce de leche sauce on everything.
A bit of orange zest in the buttercream frosting on this cake brightens things up.
La, la, la, la we can’t hear you—we think these cookies are basically oatmeal, which means they’re basically breakfast, and you can’t convince us otherwise!
Take this advice from apple historian and farmer Tom Burford to heart: “A good crust can forgive less-than-perfect apples, but a bad crust ruins the pie, apples and all.” (So take care of that crust!)
It’s just like the British to stuff fruit with more (dried) fruit and call it dessert, like chef Fergus Henderson did here. Serve with whipped cream or custard.
Think of this as a creative delivery method for the cheese-plate-as-dessert idea, with the juiciest fall pears you can find.
If this streusel doesn’t check off every single one of the fall dessert requirement boxes for you, I’m not sure what more we can offer. (My god, we’re just one website!)
Now is also the season to dispense with the conceit that dessert even requires some sort of fresh produce and give in to the fact that, really, we’re just here for the butter and sugar. (And some toasted pecans of course.)
If there’s one thing the sisters behind Brooklyn’s Four & Twenty Blackbirds bakery are good at, it’s a custardy pie, like this one with brown butter and pumpkin puree.
Our bud Cara Nicoletti got bored with your traditional Thanksgiving pumpkin pie and decided to spice it up a bit, with some tangy goat cheese in the filling and a rosemary-infused almond cookie crust.
Try your apple pie the gluten-free way for a change.
Breakfast, dessert, afternoon snack—eat these cinnamon buns slathered in cream cheese frosting any time you like.
Take a tip from the movie snack experts at Brooklyn’s Nitehawk Cinema with this popcorn drizzled with maple syrup and honey, then dusted with cinnamon-y cereal bits for a warm and cozy night on the couch.
We didn’t forget you, vegans! This plant-based version of the holiday classic has silken tofu for texture, rather than eggs, and whipped coconut cream on top.
The best part about making a "rustic" layered cake is that it's SUPPOSED to look a little unfinished, so don't worry about your cake decorating skills. You just gotta be able to eat it.