Italian Dessert Recipes | The Daily Dish

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Italian Dessert Recipes

Top 10 Italian Desserts and Treats

1 Comment | Written on May 30, 2014 at 5:00 am , by

Last week we showcased 10 of our favorite ways to prepare an Italian-style meal and dinnertime.  This week, we are showing off our 10 favorite Italian-inspred desserts and treats!

From fresh fruit to coffee and biscotti – there’s something for everyone in this sweet lineup!

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No-Bake Dark Chocolate Amaretti Slices

6 Comments | Written on August 21, 2013 at 12:00 am , by

This week we are asking you to show-off your Best Chocolate Chip Recipe Ever  in our weekly contest.  Remember this can go beyond just chocolate chip cookies!  Any recipe that uses chocolate chips is fair game…feel free to get creative and have fun with it!

In the spirit of this contest, I wanted to share this no-bake dessert recipe that uses a bag of dark chocolate chips.   Take a look!

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Best Cookie Ever – Italian Ravioli Cookies

2 Comments | Written on June 13, 2013 at 12:00 am , by

The winning recipe in our “Best Cookie Ever” contest takes an Italian classic and turns it on it’s head.  This is a dessert ravioli!

I think there might be a trend developing here.  This recipe follows in the footsteps of last years $1,000,000 Pillsbury Bake-Off Grand Prize winner, Pumpkin Ravioli with Salted Caramel Whipped Cream.  If you love ravioli for dinner, why not enjoy it for dessert too!

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How to Make Fresh Ricotta and Homemade Cannoli

11 Comments | Written on November 30, 2012 at 12:00 am , by

You are in for a treat today!

First I am going to show you how easy it is to make your own fresh ricotta cheese at home.   Then, demonstrate how you can take that ricotta and use it in a simple and authentic cannoli.  Finally, in the Italian spirit of not letting anything go to waste, I am even going to show you a fun trick for leftover vanilla bean pods.

Is your mouth watering yet?!

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One Pumpkin, Two Great Recipes!

4 Comments | Written on October 14, 2011 at 5:00 am , by

Did you see the “How to Make Pumpkin Puree” article yesterday?  Today, I am going to show you how to make two delicious dishes from your homemade fresh pumpkin puree.  With one pumpkin, you can create an entire family meal!  It is cost effective and delicious.

Yesterday I demonstrated How to Make Pumpkin Puree on DaytimeTV and tomorrow I will be talking about these recipes on the radio!  Check out and you can listen in to a live stream from your computer.  It will air Saturday 10/15 at 4 PM on 590 KTIE in San Bernardino, CA.

For dinner whip up this unique and easy Pumpkin Chorizo Pizza.  If you are a fan of pepperoni pizza, give this version a try.  You won’t believe the flavorful pumpkin sauce instead of the traditional tomato-based pizza sauce!

Pumpkin-Chorizo Pizza  (click here to view and print recipe)

2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided

12 ounce purchased pizza crust

1/4 cup finely chopped shallots

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes

1 cup fresh pumpkin puree

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 cup cubed fontina cheese

1/4 pound thinly sliced Spanish chorizo

1 Tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves


Additional olive oil and chopped sage for garnish (optional)

Heat oven to 425 degrees.  Brush 1 tablespoon olive oil over crust; set aside.  Heat remaining tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add shallots, garlic, and pepper flakes to hot pan.  Sauté for 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Stir in pumpkin puree, smoked paprika, and salt.

Cook, stirring, until sauce is thickened and hot.  Spread sauce evenly over pizza crust; scatter with cubed fontina. Arrange sliced chorizo evenly over top and sprinkle with chopped sage.

Place pizza on a cookie sheet or directly on oven rack, if preferred.  Bake for 12 minutes or until crust is golden and cheese is melted.  If desired, drizzle a little olive oil over pizza and sprinkle with additional chopped sage.

Traditional Italian cannoli is given a seasonal twist in this recipe.  Pumpkin puree is incorporated in the filling and pumpkin seeds garnish the ends. 

Pumpkin Cannoli  (click here to view and print recipe) 

8 ounce container mascarpone cheese

3/4 cup fresh pumpkin puree

3/4 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup whole milk ricotta cheese

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/2 cup chopped pumpkin seeds (pepitas), divided

2 Tablespoons mini chocolate chips

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

12 purchased cannoli shells (two 4-ounce boxes)

Additional powdered sugar for dusting


In a large mixing bowl, stir together mascarpone cheese, pumpkin puree, powdered sugar, ricotta, and pumpkin pie spice until blended.

Fold in 1/4 cup of the pumpkin seeds and the mini chocolate chips; set aside.  In a chilled mixing bowl, whip cream until stiff peaks form.  Fold into pumpkin mixture.

Cover and chill for 1 to 2 hours.  Right before serving, pipe pumpkin filling into cannoli shells, going all the way to the ends.  Sprinkle the ends with remaining 1/4 cup chopped pumpkin seeds.  Sprinkle shell with powdered sugar and serve.

Nutella Dessert Sandwiches

3 Comments | Written on September 22, 2011 at 5:00 am , by

This recipe is dedicated to one of my favorite Mixing Bowl groups….

Nutella + Anything = Awesome

Really, what more is there to say?  The decadent chocolate/hazelnut spread is a little slice of heaven.  If you like sandwiches, you will go gaga for these dessert sandwiches!  The combination of Nutella and pistachios create the perfect balance of sweet and salty, with a satisfying crunch and a pop of color.

This recipe couldn’t be easier.  Here is what you will need:


-Pound cake


Nutella Dessert Sandwiches (click here to view and print recipe)

8 slices pound cake

8 tablespoons Nutella, or other chocolate hazelnut spread

2 tablespoons shelled pistachio nuts, finely chopped

Spread 4 of the pound cake slices thickly with the chocolate spread and sprinkle with the chopped pistachio nuts in an even layer.  Place the remaining pound cake slices on top of the chocolate and nuts and press down gently.   Using a sharp knife, cut the sandwiches in half diagonally and serve immediately.

Lemon Blueberry Individual Tiramisu Trifles

3 Comments | Written on June 28, 2011 at 5:00 am , by

Our latest winner not only has a zest for life, she loves her microplane.  The perfect combination during “Lemon Week!”   Round of applause for our latest winner, Janice Elder!

Janice says, “I try to cook and eat with the seasons as much as possible, and I frequent farmer’s markets for the freshest and healthiest options.   My favorite cooking tools are silicone spatulas, microplane zesters and great knives.

Lemon Blueberry Individual Tiramisu Trifles

A great make ahead dessert–individual servings of blueberries with lady finger cookies and a creamy, lemon flavored sauce.


  • 2 fresh lemons, juiced and zested
  • 2 tbsp Limoncello liqueur
  • 1 17.6 oz container plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup prepared lemon curd
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 30 ladyfingers
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries


Combine lemon juice, reserving zest, and Limoncello, then set aside. In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, blend together yogurt, lemon curd and sugar, beating until well blended. Cut each ladyfinger crosswise into 3 pieces. Arrange 5 ladyfinger pieces into each of 9 wine glasses or small bowls, then drizzle each serving with about 1 teaspoon Limoncello mixture. Spoon on 1 tablespoon of blueberries, then top with 2 tablespoons of yogurt mixture in each glass. Repeat layers, then sprinkle evenly with reserved lemon zest and a few fresh blueberries. Cover and chill at least 1 hour.

Number of Servings: 9

Congratulations!  Tell us how you came up with this fantastic recipe!

“Given the choice between lemon or chocolate, I will opt for the golden orb every time!  While I like traditional tiramisu, I pondered how it would taste if given a lemon makeover, and this was the result.”

What inspired you to enter the Better Recipes weekly contest?

“Better Recipes features dishes that are approachable, sensible and delicious.  Being selected by such a prestigious judging panel is quite an honor for me.”

Why do you think your recipe stood out to the judges?

“It’s very simple yet elegant and colorful.  Can be made ahead, and is reasonably healthy with the addition of Greek yogurt and blueberries.  The small amount of limoncello adds an amazing flavor boost.”

Do you have any advice for others interested in entering our recipe contests?

“Like most everything else in life, persistence is important.”

Finally, do you have any plans for the prize money?

“Any and all will go into the Elder travel fund.  We love adventures and our bucket list is extensive!”

Cannoli Ice Cream Sandwiches

8 Comments | Written on May 26, 2011 at 5:00 am , by

If you are searching for a sweet treat to serve this holiday weekend, look no further!  This creative recipe from user “JayneNee” will satisfy and impress your guests.  Imagine all the flavors of a classic Italian cannoli, in the convenient form of an All-American ice cream sandwich.  Pizzelle cookies hold together a soft and sweet ricotta center.  Filled with mini chocolate chips, chopped pistachios and a hint of orange, you will find yourself sneaking a scoop even before you prepare the sandwiches!

CANNOLI ICE CREAM SANDWICHES (click here to view and print recipe)


  • 2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
  • 1 15 oz container whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 cup pistachio nuts, coarsely chopped
  • 12 prepared pizzelle cookies


In a medium bowl, beat heavy whipping cream with an electric mixer on high speed, until medium soft peaks form. Refrigerate until needed. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with metal blade, process ricotta and condensed milk until very smooth and creamy. Transfer mixture to a large bowl. Stir in vanilla extract, orange zest, chocolate chips and pistachio nuts. Remove whipped cream from refrigerator and gently fold whipped cream into ricotta and condensed milk mixture. Pour into a 2 quart container. Cover and freeze until firm and scoopable but not frozen solid, about 3 hours. Place six pizzelle cookies, bottom side up, on a flat surface. Scoop a generous portion of ice cream in the center of each cookie. Place another pizzelle cookie, bottom side down, on top of ice cream, then press gently. Repeat with remaining cookies and ice cream. Serve immediately.

Number of Servings: 6

Gianduja Sandwich Cookies

3 Comments | Written on March 30, 2011 at 5:00 am , by

In my opinion, there are 4 basic food groups.  Meats, grains, vegetables and, of course, NUTELLA!  Who’s with me?  Seriously, is there anything better than a jar of that creamy chocolate-hazelnut spread?  There is even an entire group on Mixing Bowl dedicated to this spreadable perfection:  Nutella + Anything = Awesome.

This recipe was inspired by an Italian chocolate-hazelnut confection called “gianduja.”  The sandwich cookies may sound fancy but they are simple to prepare using a sugar cookie mix.  With toasted hazelnuts and a dash of Frangelico no one will ever know you took a short cut.  Now, crack open a jar of nutella and get cooking!

nutella cookies


Recipe from member “Win13


  • 1 17.5 oz pkg sugar cookie mix
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon Frangelico or other hazelnut flavored liqueur, optional
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • About 2/3 cup chocolate-hazelnut spread (such as Nutella)


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, combine cookie mix, melted butter, liqueur, vanilla, egg, flour, and hazelnuts. Stir until a soft dough forms. Roll dough into 1-inch balls, then roll balls in sugar. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet, then press each with the bottom of a glass to flatten slightly. Bake 9-11 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Cool about 1 minute then remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. For each sandwich cookie, spread a generous teaspoonful of chocolate-hazelnut spread on bottom of 1 cookie, then top it with another cookie.

Number of Servings: 18 sandwich cookies

It’s My Birthday!

5 Comments | Written on September 10, 2010 at 5:00 am , by

You are never too old for a party hat!  This picture is from my 2nd Birthday.

Check out that adorable lion cake my mom created for the party!  Isn’t she so amazing and creative!  (Also, note the Wonder Woman underoos in the corner of the pic.  Wait, am I aging myself?  Does anyone even know what underoos are any more?!)

You are never too old for a lion cake, but when I came across this recipe on our site, I just had to make it!  The actual recipe title is “It’s My Birthday Nutella Grilled Cheese.”  Maybe because it is so ooey gooey and indulgent you can only justify the splurge once a year!  Seriously, it is dangerously good.  But then again, when it comes to Nutella the perfect recipe is Jar, Spoon, Repeat!

nutella sandwich

It’s My Birthday Nutella Grilled Cheese


  • Nutella brand chocolate hazelnut spread
  • Fresh strawberries, sliced thin
  • 1 large package cream cheese, softened
  • White sandwich bread
  • 1 part butter
  • Powdered sugar
  • Fresh mint sprigs for garnish


Spread one slice of bread with a generous amount of Nutella spread. Spread cream cheese on another slice of bread. Lay sliced strawberries evenly over cream cheese. Put together to make a sandwich. Melt a pat of butter in a frying pan and swirl to coat evenly. Cook sandwich on one side until golden brown. Flip and cook on other side until you can see cheese and Nutella are melting. Remove from pan and slice in half to form a triangle shape. Slice in half again. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, and serve with more sliced strawberries and a sprig of fresh mint.

No matter how many years pass, some things always stay the same.  I will most likely look something like this before going out for birthday celebration tonight!