20 Quick Fruit Desserts That Are Sweet and So Refreshing

wine dessert sauce
Bryan Gardner

When you're crunched for time but want to make a sweet treat for family and friends, consider one of these quick fruit dessert recipes. They may come together fast, but they don't lack in the flavor department. Take our Quick Red-Wine Dessert Sauce, pictured here, for example. Paired with pound cake, fresh berries, and a scoop of vanilla ice cream, it's a complete, creative dessert that no one will know you whipped up on the fly. And that's the beauty of all the desserts you'll find here; each one comes together in 45 minutes or less, and that includes any time needed for prepping, baking, and chilling. They're also seasonally inspired—you'll find desserts featuring juicy blueberries and strawberries, plump peaches and apricots, figs, and citrus fruit.

We have several delicious variations of upgraded fruit salads. Instead of simply cutting up melon, grapes, and berries, we've created stunning displays of fruit complete with sweet, crunchy toppings. This Tropical-Fruit Salad with Coconut Crunch will transport you to the island of your dreams. Arrange sliced papaya, mangoes, pineapple, and strawberries on a platter and top the mix with our genius combination of poppy seeds and unsweetened shredded coconut. Or try Tropical Fruit with Coconut-Pistachio Crunch; this recipe calls for lychee, banana, and star fruit, but we encourage you to use whatever sweet produce is in season.

Looking for something a little more elegant? We have just the dairy-free answer—Roasted Cherries with Tofu "Panna Cotta," which is cozy and comforting. The best part is that it comes together in 30 minutes total.

From patriotic berry trifles to fruit sauces that you can serve with ice cream or pound cake, these quick fruit dessert recipes are sure to end your dinner on a sweet note.

01 of 19

Roasted Cherries with Tofu "Panna Cotta"

tofu panna with roasted cherries
Ren Fuller

Panna cotta is a traditional Italian dessert made with heavy cream and gelatin. Enjoy this vegan version made with silken tofu, which is topped with fresh caramelized cherries and raspberries.

02 of 19

Cara Cara Oranges with Toasted Honey Meringue

grapefruit dessert
Marcus Nilsson

This bright pink variety of Navel oranges are elevated with dollops of whipped, toasted meringue. Egg whites are beaten with honey and the seeds of a vanilla bean, which are then transferred to individual baking dishes and broiled until the meringue is toasted. Set alongside the citrus rounds.

03 of 19

Boozy Melon Three Ways

boozy melon fruit in glass bowls
Bryan Gardner

Did someone say happy hour? Cool off on a hot summer day with your choice of tequila-soaked watermelon, gin-soaked honeydew, or vodka-soaked cantaloupe for a quick fruit dessert. Of course, feel free to try all three if you're hosting a few people.

04 of 19

Tropical-Fruit Salad with Coconut Crunch

Tropical-Fruit Salad With Coconut Crunch
Petrina Tinslay

Everyone loves fruit salad but you'll wow the crowd by topping sliced seasonal fruit with our homemade coconut crunch. Start by whisking egg whites, orange-blossom honey, vanilla paste, grated Meyer-lemon zest, poppy seeds, and unsweetened shredded coconut, bake, and sprinkle over fresh fruit.

05 of 19

Red, White, and Blue Berry Trifle

Red, White, and Blue Berry Trifle

The ultimate patriotic sweet, serve this quick fruit dessert from Memorial Day to Labor Day. In a springform pan, layer ladyfingers with mashed sweetened raspberries and whipped cream, then top with nearly a pound of fresh blueberries.

06 of 19

No-Bake Key Lime Cheesecake

no-bake key lime cheesecake
Armando Rafael

This easy, egg-free cheesecake comes together quickly. There's no need for a water bath and long baking time in this no-bake recipe. A combination of cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk are beaten until fluffy, then Key lime juice and zest and pure vanilla extract are added for flavor.

07 of 19

Mixed Grapefruit with Ricotta and Cardamom Honey

Armando Rafael

Infuse honey with toasted green cardamom pods—they add a warm earthiness to the naturally sweet syrup. Then drizzle over fresh ricotta and segmented grapefruit for a quick fruit dessert.

08 of 19

Puff-Pastry Tarts with Stone Fruits and Frangipane


Make use of store-bought frozen puff pastry in this quick fruit dessert that's perfect for summer. Use a variety of seasonal stone fruits such as apricots, peaches, and plums. The fruit is then sliced and layered over individual squares of pastry and homemade almond frangipane.

09 of 19

Grilled Pound Cake with Peaches and Plums

Bryan Gardner

Slice and grill store-bought pound cake (or make our classic recipe in advance!), then top with more grilled fruit and yogurt whipped cream. It's a delightful fruit dessert that comes together fast.

10 of 19

Persimmon Compote

dessert persimmon
Raymond Hom

Bright orange-red and super juicy, persimmons are the perfect topping for ice cream, pound cake, yogurt, and more. To make this quick fruit dessert topping, heat dry white wine, sugar, star anise, and one cinnamon stick with sliced persimmons, cool, and serve any which way.

11 of 19

Tropical Fruit with Coconut-Pistachio Crunch

tropical fruit salad pistachio crunch

This is no ordinary fruit salad. Choose your own adventure based on what's in season. Here, we've used fresh sliced lychees, bananas, star fruit, papaya, and mangoes and topped them with an irresistible crunch made from chopped pistachios, coconut, honey, and lemon zest.

12 of 19

Caramelized Skillet Peaches


Celebrate the bounty of summer peaches with this sweet fruit topping. Caramelize the peaches with lemon juice, ground cinnamon, light brown sugar, butter, and bourbon, then spoon over ice cream.

13 of 19

Strawberry Sauce

pound cake strawberry sauce
Marcus Nilsson

Make this syrupy, ruby red strawberry sauce with just three ingredients—berries, sugar, and lemon juice. From here, mix it into homemade ice cream, serve over Greek yogurt or cottage cheese, or drizzle over slices of pound cake.

14 of 19

Apple Fritters

Apple Fritters
David Malosh

When fall rolls around, you need to make this classic apple dessert. Our recipe calls for basic pantry ingredients like flour, granulated sugar, vanilla extract, eggs, milk, and butter, plus two apples. You won't believe how quickly this treat comes together.

15 of 19

Caramelized Figs with Honey and Cheese

figs honey cheese

Figs are the ultimate winter fruit. Here, we cook them with honey, chopped fennel seeds, and almonds. Serve warm with shaved sheep's milk cheese (we love manchego!) and wheat crackers.

16 of 19

Broiled Apricots with Fresh Ricotta and Pistachios

Raymond Hom

You only need 10 minutes and four ingredients for this quick and easy fruit dessert. Dip halved, pitted apricots in sugar, place in a baking dish, and broil until the fruit is caramelized and juicy. Stuff the apricots with fresh ricotta cheese and sprinkle with chopped pistachios.

17 of 19

Strawberries with Elderflower Cream

Marte Kopperud

If you've never tasted elderflower liqueur, you're in for a real floral treat. Beat the liqueur with heavy cream, zest lemon, and sifted confectioner's sugar for a bright whipped cream. Serve alongside the freshest strawberries you can find.

18 of 19

Caramel Apples

caramel apples
Con Poulos

Kids and adults alike will cheer for caramel-coated candy apples. Make your own caramel sauce (it makes all the difference) using sugar, corn syrup, and heavy cream, then dip apples and let cool.

19 of 19

Strawberries with Creme Fraiche and Sugar

Strawberries and Creme
Jonathan Lovekin

This simple fruit dessert makes a big impact. Each of your guests can dip large strawberries in crème fraîche and sprinkle with confectioner's sugar. The combination of tart berries and cream with sweet confectioner's sugar is a pleasant treat.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles