6 Absurdly Easy Berry Desserts
These treats are beautiful, sweet, tart—and low-maintenance, to boot.
A Buckle That's as Simple as 1, 2
Nonbakers, rejoice: This delicious raspberry cake is totally foolproof, with just five ingredients and two (two!
) steps. The surprise ingredients here are melted vanilla ice cream and self-rising flour; you stir those together with canola oil and salt, pour them into a baking pan and scatter raspberries over top. In a half-hour, you'll have a golden-brown cake that's terrific spooned into bowls or cut into wedges.
Get the recipe: Raspberry Buckle
Photo: Matt Wittmeyer Photography
Making your own strawberry frosting doesn't take long, and the payoff is huge: Just beat butter, vanilla, sugar and diced strawberries together, and the result is a light, pink and fluffy spread you'll have trouble not eating on the spot. Hold off, though, and pop a batch of refrigerated buttermilk biscuits in the oven; when the rounds are baked and cooled, slice them in half, drizzle a bit of the Italian liqueur limoncello on top then spread the frosting in between the halves to make the ideal after-dinner sandwich.
Get the recipe: Strawberry-Frosted Limoncello "Shortcakes"
A Dessert Built on the Most Basic Staples
Bread and butter play humble supporting roles to this crisp, fruity indulgence. You can either grill sweet, rich brioche rolls you've cut in two and buttered, or pass them under the broiler for a few minutes, until they're lightly toasted. Then, spoon a mixture of creamy mascarpone cheese, sugar and vanilla over each half, sprinkle some fresh blueberries over everything and serve, for a crunchy and satisfying treat.
Get the recipe: Grilled Brioche Rolls with Toppings
The 10-Minute Throwback
may have taken over your Instagram feed, but there's another frozen dessert that deserves some love, too—and it's one you may not have had since you were a kid. Cold and foamy ice-cream floats are just the thing for hot summer evenings. This version includes plenty of fresh strawberries, vanilla ice cream, seltzer and maple syrup instead of the usual chocolate.
Get the recipe: Strawberry Ice Cream Float
A Summery Tart That's Meant to Be Imperfect
If you aren't much for rolling out dough, you'll love this low-maintenance take on the fruit-in-a-crust dessert. Its base is a mixture of flour, butter, sugar, heavy cream and eggs that's very forgiving; if it begins to tear when you roll it out, simply press the pieces back together as you go. Pile in fresh blueberries and chunks of nectarines, then fold the outside edges of the dough in before baking (if the tart ends up being more square-, octagonal- or trapezoid-shaped, think of that as added character). Serve it at room temperature, ice cream optional.
Get the recipe: Rustic Blueberry and Nectarine Tart
A Towering Masterpiece with a Store-Bought Secret
Place this gorgeous-looking trifle down on the buffet table at any gathering, and we promise it'll be the first thing guests dig into. It combines cubes of packaged pound cake; sweetened, Grand Mariner-spiked strawberries; and, tons of whipped cream for a wonderfully over-the-top layered dessert that's easier to put together than it looks.
Get the recipe: Strawberry Trifle