3 Kid-Friendly Mini Christmas Desserts

They’re easier than decorating a gingerbread house.

Food Network Kitchen’s Miniature Yule Log Yodels.

Food Network Kitchen’s Miniature Yule Log Yodels.

Photo by: Matt Armendariz

Matt Armendariz

When I was growing up, Christmas "baking" mainly meant decorating cookies my mom had made or gluing together gingerbread house parts. In short, it was crafting, not actual messy baking. But back then, I didn’t distinguish between measuring flour and sticking sprinkles on things. It seemed like I was smack in the center of a magical Christmas flurry — and my mom didn’t have to do much hanging over my shoulder to make sure I didn’t mess up something. These three kid-friendly desserts take a cue from gingerbread house-making and start with store-bought components.

Miniature Yule Log Yodels (Pictured Above)

Typically, the log-shaped Christmas cake is a very labor-intensive affair. You’ve got to make the rolled-up sponge cake, sculpt it into a log and frost it and make a bunch of mushroom meringues to go all over it. I think that many families buy their Yule log cakes (a.k.a. Buche de Noels) for this reason. But I realized recently that Yodels — you know, those swirled logs made by Drake’s Cakes — look like tiny little Yule logs. That’s where the idea for these Miniature Yule Log Yodels came in. Let your little one slice them into pieces with a butter knife and frost them with store-bought frosting to create "bark." The only thing mama might want to do is pre-toast the marshmallow mushrooms.

Food Network Kitchen’s Chocolate Christmas Tree Cookies.

Food Network Kitchen’s Chocolate Christmas Tree Cookies.

Photo by: Matt Armendariz

Matt Armendariz

These cute-as-can-be cookies start with unfrosted round sugar cookies, mini peanut butter cups, Hershey’s Kisses and green ready-to-use cookie icing. Yep, you could make your own cookies and icing (just like you could make your own gingerbread house parts), but when you think about it, store-bought is just fine. Plus, that store-bought icing has the perfect consistency for piping. Your little ones will stack the Hershey’s Kisses on top of the mini peanut butter cups to create trees, then decorate them.

Food Network Kitchen’s Twinkling Christmas Tree Lights Cake.

Food Network Kitchen’s Twinkling Christmas Tree Lights Cake.

Photo by: Matt Armendariz

Matt Armendariz

Why is it that sour candy never, ever plays a role in cake decorating? Why can’t we eat our cake and our sour candy too? As a sour candy lover, that was my premise for creating this twinkling Christmas Tree Lights Cake. Kidding! Well, sort of. This craft is super fun to make. You start with an already frosted white cake (which you can buy, or parents can make with store-bought frosting). Your kids will enjoy snipping Sour Patch Kids in half, eating the tops and saving the round bottoms. Finally, all they have to do is press the round pieces into the cake and connect them with black decorating gel from a tube. Bingo, a cake adorned in twinkling Christmas tree lights (all that sour sugar is the twinkle!).

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