Perfect Desserts for Two

i Christina Lane

Say goodbye to tempting leftovers with these delicious desserts for two.

Want to make a delicious dessert for you and your partner, but don't want to have it sitting around for days after? Christina Lane put together 100 new and absolutely amazing recipes in her book, Sweet & Simple: Dessert for Two, designed for date nights, nights in, or when you just don't want tempting leftovers lying around.

Best Ever Frosted Brownies

The added layer of chocolate frosting makes these chocolate-packed brownies even more decadent.

thenest article image

Makes 2 generous servings

What You'll Need

For the brownies:

  • 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup all purpose flour

For the frosting:

  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 to 3 tbsp milk or cream

Directions

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 325°F and line a 9-inch bread loaf pan with parchment paper.

Step 2: In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the butter, cocoa powder, and sugar. Microwave at full power for 30 seconds. Stir the mixture and return it to the microwave for another 30 seconds. Stir again. Add one more 30-second pulse if the butter isn't mostly melted.

Step 3: Let the mixture cool for 1 minute.

Step 4: Stir in the vanilla and salt.

Step 5: Stir in the egg.

Step 6: Finally, add the flour and stir vigorously for about 1 minute, or 50 strokes.

Step 7: Scrape the mixture into the loaf pan and bake for about 40 minutes. The top of the brownie surface should appear dry and be starting to crack. Do not over bake because you want the inside to be fudgy.

Step 8: Meanwhile, beat together all of the frosting ingredients, adding milk or cream as needed to make the frosting spreadable.

Step 9: Frost the brownies once cool and cut in half to serve.

Cherry Cobbler

As if this cherry cobbler wasn't already to die for, the adorable little hearts make it that much better.

thenest article image

Fills two 4-ounce ramekins

What You'll Need

  • 1 refrigerated pie crust
  • 1½ cups frozen tart cherries
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
  • Coarse sugar, for sprinkling

Directions

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Step 2: Let the pie crust rest at room temperature for about 10 minutes to soften. Unroll it and use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut out about 50 to 60 little dough hearts. Lightly sprinkle the hearts with flour while tossing gently, then set aside.

Step 3: Combine the cherries, sugar, lemon juice, almond extract, and cornstarch in a bowl. Toss very well to combine.

Step 4: Divide the cherry mixture among the ramekins.

Step 5: Place the dough hearts on top of the cherry mixture in each ramekin. I like to pile them all to one side, making two layers, and then put a few stray ones on the bare side for effect.

Step 6: Brush beat egg yolk on top of the dough hearts. Sprinkle coarse sugar on top.

Step 7: Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the dough hearts are golden brown and the cherries are bubbling.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Sticks

Instead of measuring out equal little cookie scoops, flattening out the cookie dough into the pan and cutting it after baking makes these cookie sticks super easy to make. Plus, using mini chocolate chips means way more chocolate per bite. Sign us up.

thenest article image

Makes 1 dozen cookie sticks

What You'll Need

  • 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ tsp fine sea salt
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips

Directions

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F and line the bottom of an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper. Lightly grease the edges to ensure the cookies don't stick.

Step 2: In a bowl, beat together the butter, powdered sugar, and honey with an electric mixer on medium speed. Beat very well until fluffy, about 45 seconds.

Step 3: Add the vanilla and beat until combined.

Step 4: Sprinkle the flour and salt evenly on top of the butter mixture and beat until combined.

Step 5: Finally, add the mini chips and stir until evenly mixed.

Step 6: Press the dough flat into the pan (you might have to lightly flour your hands to help it spread).

Step 7: Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges start to lightly brown.

Step 8: Let cool for 5 minutes, remove from pan, slice, and serve. (Using a pizza wheel is the best way to cut these.)

Doughnut Gooey Butter Cake

This cake has a delicious and gooey center with a glazed doughnut–inspired topping. You won't be able to have just one piece.

thenest article image

Makes one 8-inch square cake

What You'll Need

For the bottom layer:

  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ tsp fine sea salt
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder

For the top layer:

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 6 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3½ cups powdered sugar, plus extra for serving

Directions

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F and line an 8-inch square baking pan one direction with parchment paper (“one direction" means the paper covers the bottom and only two sides of the pan). Lightly spray the exposed sides of the pan with cooking spray.

Step 2: Next, make the bottom layer of the cake. In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the melted butter and sugars.

Step 3: Add the eggs and salt, and whisk well to combine. Finally, add the flour and baking powder.

Step 4: Scoop the mixture into the prepared pan and press flat with your hands. It's a bit sticky—flour your fingers to help spread it evenly.

Step 5: Then wipe out the bowl and start making the top layer of the cake. Add the cream cheese and brown sugar. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Add the eggs and vanilla. Beat until combined. Finally, add the powdered sugar and beat until well mixed and smooth.

Step 6: Pour the top layer onto the bottom layer.

Step 7: Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, until the center only has a slight jiggle. Don't over bake (or it won't be gooey).

Step 8: Let cool completely, then refrigerate or freeze until firm enough to cut.

Step 9: Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve.

Banana Cake and Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

This banana cake is super moist on its own, but with the added dark chocolate frosting, it's otherworldly.

thenest article image

Makes 2 generous servings

What You'll Need

For the cake:

  • 1 large banana, smushed
  • 6 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tbsp neutral oil (or coconut oil)
  • ¾ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ⅛ tsp fine sea salt
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder

For the frosting:

  • 1½ tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1½ tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • A few splashes of milk, as needed

Directions

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 375°F and line a bread loaf pan with parchment paper. (I use parchment paper to line all of the pan, with some extra paper on the edges to use as handles to lift out the dessert.)

Step 2: In a medium-size bowl, smash the banana very well until almost no lumps remain.

Step 3: Next, stir in the sugar, egg, oil, and vanilla extract. Stir very well until blended.

Step 4: Add the sour cream and stir until evenly incorporated.

Step 5: In a separate small bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.

Step 6: Add the dry ingredients to the bowl of wet ingredients and stir until combined.

Step 7: Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 28 to 32 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out mostly clean, with a few moist crumbs clinging to it.

Step 8: Let the cake cool on a wire rack

Step 9: Meanwhile, beat together all of the frosting ingredients until light and fluffy, adding milk as needed to make a smooth, spreadable consistency.

Step 10: Frost the cake with the chocolate peanut butter frosting and serve sliced in half, for two large pieces of banana cake.

Click here to buy this book.

Excerpted from Sweet & Simple: Dessert for Two by Christina Lane. Copyright © 2017. Used with permission of the publisher, Countryman Press. All rights reserved.

the nest

×