20 Fast and Easy Desserts in Under 30 Minutes

If life is as busy for you as it is for me, then these recipes should come in handy.

Minimal prep times and brief baking times, and desserts that are satisfying, taste wonderful, and everyone will think you slaved over them.

Sometimes the quick and easy recipes trump the far more time-consuming and complicated ones, and that’s what these recipe are about.

20 Fast and Easy Desserts in Under 30 Minutes averiecooks.com

None of the following recipes use a mixer – everything is mixed by hand, usually in own bowl. And everything is ready in a half hour or less:

1. Nutella Cinnamon Rolls with Vanilla Glaze – They give traditional cinnamon rolls a serious run for their money and ready in under a half hour

2. Salted Caramel Pretzel Blondies – Salty and sweet, crunch and gooey, soft and chewy

3. Coconut Peanut Butter Magic Cake Bars – Like Magic Bars or Seven Layer Bars with a cake base rather than graham cracker base

4. Cinnamon Sugar Chocolate Pretzels (no-bake, vegan, GF) – Ready in 5 minutes and so much better than you can imagine based on the simple recipe. My husband begs for these

5. Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Ganache – The best chocolate cake and the easiest. Never use a boxed mix again with this one-bowl, whisk-together cake that’s ready in under a half hour

6. Baked Cinnamon Bun Donuts with Vanilla Cream Cheese Glaze

7. Seven Minute Microwave Caramels (no-bake, gluten-free) – They sound too good to be true but it really works. Caramels in the microwave and no candy thermometer required

8. Coconut White Chocolate Chip Blondies – Dense, rich, and almost fudge-like

9. Snickerdoodle Cookie Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF) – A healthy granola bar that tastes like cookies

10. White and Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Chocolate Cake Bars – All the decadence of cheesecake, minus the work

11. Ritz Cracker Stuffed Peanut Butter Cups (No Bake, Vegan)

12. Browned Butter Rice Krispies Treats (no-bake with vegan and GF options) – The best RKTreats  I’ve ever had and I’m a connoisseur. These are my favorites

13. 10-Minute Homemade Hot Fudge (GF) – Dense, rich, thick, decadent and easy. No need to ever buy it again

14. Nutella Brownie Truffle Bites (no-bake with vegan and GF options)

15. Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF) – My favorite granola bar for producing Quaker Chewy-style bars. Customizable, fast, easy and very popular with readers

16. Marshmallow Caramel Oreo Cookie S’Mores Bars

17. Cinnamon Oatmeal Date Bars with Chocolate Chunks (no-bake, vegan, gluten-free) – Bars that taste like a bowl of cinnamon raisin oatmeal, topped with chocolate

18. The Ultimate Fudgy Caramel Brownies – My favorite brownie recipe, to date. Dense, rich, fudgy and easy. Never used a box mix again with these whisk-together brownies

19. Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls (no-bake, vegan, GF) – One of the most popular recipes on my site since 2009. Healthy cookie dough that tastes like the real thing

20. Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars – A new favorite bar that’s dense, rich, smooth, soft, chewy, supremely moist and loaded with peanut butter cups

Do you have a favorite fast and easy dessert?

Please leave links to your favorite recipes. I love hearing about quick and easy recipes that are longtime favorites of yours.

Thanks for the Odwalla Juices Giveaway entries


60 Responses to “20 Fast and Easy Desserts in Under 30 Minutes”

  1. Elizabeth @ Confessions of a Baking Queen — April 14, 2013 at 12:06 am (#

    Such a great round up! You have me oohin and ahhin wanting to get out of bed and make a few of these recipes right now!! Especially that hot fudge sauce, it keeps looking at me! LOL

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 14, 2013 at 3:38 am (#

      Trust me, it’s happened to me before. I’ll see something in a mag or on a blog, and I HAVE TO make it…no matter the hour!

  2. Ellen — April 14, 2013 at 1:41 am (#

    This cinnamon infused chocolate shake I made totally made me think of you, fellow cinnamonster:)

  3. Carol | a cup of mascarpone — April 14, 2013 at 3:55 am (#

    What a wonderful round-up of quickie recipes! Love them all – but right at this very moment, those nutella cinnamon rolls are jumping off the screen at me!!! YUM! Have a great Sunday, Averie!

  4. Eva @ Eva Bakes — April 14, 2013 at 4:14 am (#

    Thanks for compiling this list, Averie! It is wonderful having such a wide range of easy and hassle-free desserts all in one place!

  5. Laura Dembowski — April 14, 2013 at 5:13 am (#

    I love having some easy dessert recipes on hand. I love making elaborate desserts like layer cakes sometimes, but others I’m just not in the mood.

  6. Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat — April 14, 2013 at 5:18 am (#

    Everything sounds fantastic!! I love the idea that you can prepare a delicious dessert in a reasonable amount of time!

  7. ashley - baker by nature — April 14, 2013 at 5:35 am (#

    Wow, I’m in awe of this awesome list. Averie! I also want one of everything!

  8. Tieghan — April 14, 2013 at 5:48 am (#

    Whoa! Love this link up! You have the best dessert recipes! So many amazing ones to choose from, but the peanut butter cup bars with the sweetened condensed milk you made lats week look amazing!

  9. Paula — April 14, 2013 at 6:34 am (#

    This round-up makes me want dessert for breakfast–but several of these would be very appropriate for a Sunday am treat! I have made a few (granola bars, PB cups, nutella truffle bites, and caramel brownies). All delicious! It’s always really difficult to choose what to make when I scroll through your recipes–everything always looks so good. I made the sandwich bread and left my comments on that post. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  10. Monica — April 14, 2013 at 7:37 am (#

    Seriously – what a great body of work you have, Averie! I love the layout of all the recipe photos together. I know that for me, at least 75% of what I make has to be easy, quick and simple yet delicious. That chocolate cake and the nutella rolls are calling my name!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 14, 2013 at 3:11 pm (#

      Thanks for saying you like the layout! I liked it too. I don’t do too many collages but figured what the heck, I would for this one :)

  11. Colleen @ What's Baking in the Barbershop?! — April 14, 2013 at 8:06 am (#

    Gah! So many awesome recipes here! I really want to try your chocolate cake recipe!

  12. Mary Frances @ The Sweet Tooth Life — April 14, 2013 at 8:13 am (#

    Stop torturing me! This makes it all the harder to decide! I think I’m going to make your peanut butter crumble bars tomorrow…but all these look delicious.

  13. Laura (Tutti Dolci) — April 14, 2013 at 8:28 am (#

    I’m pretty sure I need one of each, please! :)

  14. marla — April 14, 2013 at 9:15 am (#

    So many stunners here Averie ~ especially those pretty cinnamon rolls :)

  15. Gloria @ Simply Gloria — April 14, 2013 at 12:11 pm (#

    Averie, you have just solved my problem with having all of these delectable treats in one place! Every Sunday my niece and youngest son make a sweet treat together– I teach them techniques on how to make the treat, and then she gets to take it home to share with the fam. So, today we’re going to make your White and Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Chocolate Cake Bars! They’re way excited! (=

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 14, 2013 at 3:09 pm (#

      YAY! That is so sweet of you to bake with them every weekend! LMK how the bars turned out for you!

    • Gloria @ Simply Gloria — April 15, 2013 at 11:35 am (#

      Well, Averie…let me just say this first– my hubs rarely will eat sweets. And he ate half the pan! They were all gone within 1 hour of cutting them up! The kids gobbled them up! Now, I have to make more this week so “I” can enjoy them all to myself! You’re the best, Averie! Loves!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 15, 2013 at 12:59 pm (#

      Oh so glad to hear these were a huge hit with you…and your non-dessert eating hubs and the kids! Thanks for the great feedback and trying them! :)

  16. Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe — April 14, 2013 at 12:43 pm (#

    What a great round-up of quick and easy desserts, Averie. So many of these are calling to me! But especially that chocolate cake with chocolate ganache. I’ve been meaning to try that for a while now!

  17. Katie — April 14, 2013 at 2:21 pm (#

    Great round-up, Averie! I love anything that comes together fast.

    Honestly, all my recipes for cookies are done in less than 20 minutes. I have no patience, so I can’t be bothered if they take any longer than that. But, if I had to pick a favorite, I’d say that a spoonful of sunflower seed butter, homemade and straight from the jar, is my favorite “dessert”. Yeah, it is dessert. To me, anyway.

  18. Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) — April 14, 2013 at 2:43 pm (#

    Boy oh boy do I ever need this! Wow, this is a perfect guide for my crazy schedule!!

  19. Marie @ Little Kitchie — April 14, 2013 at 3:32 pm (#

    This is a dangerous list… :)

  20. jackie @ marin mama cooks — April 14, 2013 at 7:26 pm (#

    Hey girl! Love this great recap post. I mean who doesn’t like a quick and easy dessert? When I first saw this post, I thought maybe you had launched another book. I was like, you go girl! Those ritz peanut butter cups are totally on my to-make list.
    My favorite quick and easy dessert is to make s’mores in under the broiler. My favorite quick and easy desserts are my no campfire s’mores http://www.marinmamacooks.com/2012/07/no-campfire-smores/ and homemade dark chocolate magic shell http://www.marinmamacooks.com/2012/08/homemade-dark-chocolate-magic-shell-cooking-with-kids/. I always have the ingredients for both recipes on hand at all times because my kids love dessert every night. Have a great night girl! xoxo, Jackie

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 14, 2013 at 7:40 pm (#

      Dessert every night is mandatory here :) And love those links – thanks for the reminders!

  21. Stephie @ Eat Your Heart Out — April 14, 2013 at 7:43 pm (#

    Ok…you know what really got me? “all in one bowl”

    The less dishes to wash, the more I love a recipe!!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 14, 2013 at 9:24 pm (#

      Me too b/c I handwash all my baking equipment b/c the dishwasher beats it up so I am the same way!

  22. marcie@flavorthemoments — April 14, 2013 at 8:17 pm (#

    I love this! I love things that you can put together quickly that taste amazing, and I’m sure all of these fit the bill! They all look great!

  23. Sue/the view from great island — April 14, 2013 at 8:36 pm (#

    I’m taking you at your word…I’m setting aside 600 minutes because I need to make every one of these…:)

  24. Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers — April 14, 2013 at 8:50 pm (#

    Who doesn’t have 30 minutes to make one or two of your desserts? Dam I want to make them all! Averie, you need to have a party, make all of these along with your bread recipes and I am so flying or driving to S. CA! Everything looks amazing!!!!!!!!!!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 14, 2013 at 9:21 pm (#

      You’re so sweet, Jen! I wish I could share it with you. I’ve had to start donating stuff to people b/c I have soooo much. We just can’t get through it all! If we want to fit thru the door :)

  25. Laura @ Gluten Free Pantry — April 14, 2013 at 10:18 pm (#

    I could go for some of those Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Balls right about now…it’s never too late to make a quick easy dessert right?!

  26. Kiran @ KiranTarun.com — April 14, 2013 at 11:34 pm (#

    I want the chocolate cake with ganache. Every day. Oh my.

  27. sally @ sallys baking addiction — April 15, 2013 at 3:02 am (#

    Gosh knows I need quick and easy anything these days – desserts especially. And Averie, you my friend, are the convenience queen! Such a clever round up idea. I am dying to try one of those yummy Nutella cinnamon rolls! Oh and the ritz cracker stuffed pb cups. :) And everything else!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 15, 2013 at 3:19 am (#

      And Averie, you my friend, are the convenience queen! <– necessity is the mother of invention :)

  28. Kayle (The Cooking Actress) — April 15, 2013 at 5:52 am (#

    Loooove this round up! Perfect for when a craving hits and I just wanna throw something together!

  29. Valerie — April 15, 2013 at 11:01 am (#

    A sweet treat that goes from mixing bowl to mouth – in a short amount of time – is always a welcome recipe. (Especially on a lazy Monday!) The cinnamon bun doughnuts are making me week in the knees! :D

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 15, 2013 at 1:00 pm (#

      Sometimes (most times) the quicker recipes are the ones that everyone wants anyway!

  30. Michelle — April 15, 2013 at 2:36 pm (#

    You seriously amaze me. I want to live next to you and come over everyday.

  31. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies — April 15, 2013 at 4:15 pm (#

    I just had a mango for dessert and suddenly that is not cutting it anymore. Whenever you post a picture of those caramel brownies, I swoon a little!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 15, 2013 at 4:55 pm (#

      I had a couple fresh mangoes on hand and while I do love mango, caramel brownies are their own league!

  32. Sylvia @ reelflavor.com — April 15, 2013 at 6:58 pm (#

    Oh my, oh my! All of these look so amazing! I’m bookmarking this page and coming back again for inspiration. Wishing these were sitting in front of me right now!

  33. Megan {country cleaver} — April 15, 2013 at 8:33 pm (#

    Those brown butter krispie treats stopped me in my tracks!! YUM!

  34. Ella — April 16, 2013 at 3:58 am (#

    Oh Wow! These look so yummy ! I have my daughter’s class coming over for her birthday this weekend. I’ll try my best to make some of these (fingers crossed!) Thanks for sharing !!

  35. Nutmeg Nanny — April 16, 2013 at 8:40 am (#

    I don’t think I could possibly pick just one of these to make :) they all look so delectable!

  36. Yasmin — April 16, 2013 at 12:30 pm (#


    This is fantastic–I am tempted to try out all—in your Nutella truffle recipe there is mention of flour but does it not need to be baked or something???if you just chill it woudn’t it taste kind of raw???

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 16, 2013 at 1:53 pm (#

      No it doesn’t taste off in any way. I assure you, they’re pure fudgy goodness as the recipe is written!

  37. Chris Grat — May 3, 2013 at 2:41 pm (#

    These recipes are absolutely INSANE! I was just messing around on pinterest and saw THIS. OH MY GAWD! I have to wipe up all the shoelace drool off of the keyboard now thanks to you. I am definitely going to make these and share with my family and be the envy of every party and family gathering forever!,(insert maniacal laugh here…)BWAAAAAHAAAAAAAHAAAAAAAHAAAAAAAAHAAAAAAAHAAAAAA!!!!!!!
    -Thank You Vey Much for making my Day! :)

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — May 3, 2013 at 3:00 pm (#

      Chris thanks for finding me and funny you should write because tomorrow I have a 20 Cinco de Mayo/Easy Summmertime Entertaining Recipes Roundup going out. I hadn’t done one since this post and tomorrow I have one. Glad you enjoy the recipes & if you make anything, Please LMK!

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