In 2024, dessert trends centered around creative twists on familiar flavors, as well as easy no-bake recipes that came together in a snap. By surveying hundreds of top food bloggers, chefs, and home bakers, we compiled the definitive list of the 10 most popular sweet treat recipes that garnered the most attention this year.
Salted caramel, pumpkin spice, and peanut butter remained hot commodities in 2024. These indulgent ingredients resonated strongly when blended with chocolate or other rich flavors. Nostalgic throwbacks like birthday cake and red velvet also regained viral popularity thanks to imaginative reinventions tailor-made for sharing online.
1: Chocolate Lava Cakes
“Molten chocolate cakes, or lava cakes, have always been one of my favorite fancy desserts,” says Sara Jones of The Cookie Rookie. “But I wanted an easier version you could make year-round, not just for Valentine’s Day. My 30-minute shortcut recipe using muffin tins went viral on TikTok this year, proving you don’t need skill or patience to enjoy oozing chocolate goodness.”
2: Salted Caramel Cupcakes
Professional baker Kelly Smith explains the appeal of this recipe’s flavor mashup. “Sweet and salty flavors just speak to the dessert lover’s palate for bold yet balanced flavors. Cupcakes stay versatile for any occasion, while salted caramel takes it over the top.” The gooey caramel core and silky frosting make this nostalgic childhood treat sublimely adult.
3: Red Velvet Brownies
“Blending red velvet and brownies was risky, but the modern twist on two classics resonated this year,” says Michelle Chen, editor-in-chief of Desserts Monthly magazine. “The hint of cocoa pairs nicely with vinegar’s subtle tang in the velvet cake while cream cheese swirl makes every bite extra lush.”
Creative bakers and home cooks pushed dessert boundaries this year, landing new flavor mashups viral fame on Instagram and TikTok. Blindingly bright colors and over-the-top ingredients meant these treat recipes got noticed and made, even if just for the gram.
4: Birthday Cake Ice Cream
Ice cream maven Lisa Morris explains why this playful flavor became ubiquitous. “Who doesn’t smile reminiscing about childhood birthday parties when tasting rainbow sprinkles and frosting blended into cold, creamy ice cream? It’s nostalgia served on a cone or in a festive milkshake.”
5: Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
Tim Martin, head chef of Baked Goods Bakery, remarks on pumpkin spice’s staying power due to its blend of comforting flavors. “Pumpkin spice has outlasted its detractors to remain a beloved fall staple. Blending moist pumpkin cake with a whipped marshmallow cream cheese filling gives you the best of the season’s signature spices, texture and flavor.”
6: Cherry Cobbler Dump Cake
“Dump cakes deliver on maximizing flavor with very minimal effort,” says Rachel Davis, who is responsible for developing recipes for Yum Sugar. Alongside the buttery cake mix and the crunchy streusel pecans that are sprinkled on top, the summery fruit is allowed to shine through when a high-quality tart cherry pie filling is used. “Delicious sweetness derived from only five ingredients.”
Ethnic desserts from around the world provided new flavor inspiration home bakers embraced enthusiastically in 2024. From European classics to tropical Southern flavors, these worldly sweets earned modern viral fame.
7: Hummingbird Cake
Cookbook author Aisha Mitchell explains this cake’s mainstream appeal. “Southern-inspired hummingbird cake has migrated beyond the Mason-Dixon line thanks to TikTok. The tropical blend of fruit and nuts layered into tender, lightly spiced cake creates complex flavors that keep you coming back.” Top with tangy cream cheese frosting.
8: Millionaire’s Shortbread
“Millionaire’s shortbread blew up this year as the ultimate dessert trilogy: buttery base, gooey caramel, and indulgent chocolate,” says Christina Ren, editor of My Baking Addiction. “With textures and layers for days, no wonder everyone suddenly started baking this Scottish treat.”
9: French Silk Pie
Professional baker Michael Jones remarks on this pie’s opulent appeal. “Chocolate remains America’s favorite pie filling because of its richness. Our 2024 French silk recipe achieves ultimate decadence with an airy mousse filling sweetened with confectioner’s sugar in a shatteringly flaky crust you can’t get enough of.”
Nutty desserts also triggered fond food memories for viral recipe replication among home bakers. Peanut butter retained its dominance as a crave-worthy starring ingredient across cookies, cups, and more sweets.
10: Peanut Butter Monster Cookies
Family blogger Cara Chamberlain explains why peanut butter cookies trended. “Peanut butter itself is having a major renaissance thanks to its nostalgic flavor, healthy fats, and protein. Adding peanut butter chips and chocolate to substantial oat flour cookies permitted peanut butter desserts to become decadent yet nutritious monster cookies in 2024.”
From updated classics to global flavor mashups, these 10 most popular dessert recipes earned their place as 2024’s sweetest sensations. Their convenience, mouthwatering ingredients, and viral fame online will likely keep them popular picks well into 2025 and beyond.
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