Times are tough these days, and there are many ways to plan your wedding to stay within a tight budget. One way is to cut out that catering cost if you choose to have other desserts in addition to or in lieu of a traditional wedding cake. Here are some great do-it-yourself (DIY) dessert ideas that are simple, quick, and easy to prepare if you still want a homemade touch. Money is time, and time is money, so save hours of work by keeping these shortcuts in mind!
Chocolate covered strawberries are some of the most classic sweets that can really bring elegance to any table display. The simplicity of the fresh berries dipped into melted dark chocolate can be dressed up with a white chocolate drizzle, an easy DIY project that even kids can enjoy. In the summertime, grill some halved and pitted peaches, dust with crushed amoretti cookies and a dollop of whipped cream, and your guests will be raving before the end of the evening.
Tarts and Pies
You can find pre-made pie or tart shells at just about any grocery store to save many steps in your DIY desserts. With some jarred lemon curd, a quick swiss meringue and a torch, you can create lemon meringue tartlets in no time. Top them with some fresh blueberries and you have a dainty treat with a beautiful and natural color palette.
If you feel a bit uneasy about making meringue, use a packaged vanilla pudding mix to fill the shells, and top your tarts with some fresh fruit tossed in a simple syrup or apricot glaze. Go the pie route and thinly slice some apples or pears, mix with some sugar and spice, then arrange in concentric circles for a beautiful design to bake off.
Cakes, Cupcakes and Cookies
Who needs boutique cupcake bakeries when you can customize your own, even if they come from a box? Raise the bar of a normal white cake mix and add some orange zest and nutmeg for flavors that will brighten up any fall or winter wedding. For a lighter touch, add a teaspoon or two of lemon extract into the cake batter, and swirl some organic raspberry preserves into a store-bought frosting for an easy take on a chiffon wedding cake classic. To further save on time, you can even buy unfrosted vanilla or chocolate cupcakes and create interesting flavor profiles with a tasty vanilla saffron buttercream, or a green tea cream cheese frosting.
You can take this DIY concept a step further with sheet cake to cut up for your own tiny petit fours. Use some pre-rolled and pre-colored fondant to drape the little cakes, and pipe some flowers or pearls to your heart’s desire.
Canisters of cookie dough can also be your friends – slice and bake off some chocolate chip to fill up cookie jars embellished with ribbon. For a more personal touch, roll out some sugar cookies topped with a monogram motif in pre-made royal icing tinted with drops of food coloring to match your wedding colors.
People tend to eat with their eyes, so elevate a plain brownie square with a little floret of espresso pastry cream, sprinkled with chopped almonds for a decadent take on mocha almond fudge. Sandwich together some delicate madeleines by using an aromatic chamomile tea flavored cream, and tie them in a bow with satin ribbon for a tasty and soothing surprise.
Fill your own tall and slender shot glasses with store-bought crushed chocolate graham crackers, vanilla pudding made from mix, freshly cut bananas, and some whipped cream. Drizzle some caramel sauce on top and sprinkle on a few dark chocolate shavings for an ultra chic version of banana cream pie. Even if your wedding is on a budget, your guests will be impressed with these professional-looking (and tasting!) DIY dessert creations!