Turn Off the Oven with 5 No-Bake Dessert Recipes for the Holidays

It’s no secret the kitchen can be a major source of energy use in your home, with several appliances—refrigerator, dishwasher, and oven—accounting for some of the heaviest residential energy use outside of your HVAC system. Energy use in the kitchen rises even higher over the holidays, when many of us entertain large crowds of friends and family.

Upgrade, Upgrade, Upgrade

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: One of the best ways to improve your home’s energy consumption is to upgrade your appliances to Energy Star? certified appliances that operate much more efficiently than older equipment. But maybe you don’t have the time or budget to upgrade your oven or refrigerator before all your aunts and uncles arrive to demand delicious cookies and a perfectly roasted turkey.

Luckily for you, we’ve come up with an easy way to cut down on your energy consumption this holiday season while still creating a delicious, homemade menu for your relatives: no-bake desserts! After all, who doesn’t love a dessert that can be made without turning on the oven? In addition to saving energy, many of these recipes will save you a few steps in preparation compared to their baked counterparts. And we could all use one or two less things to do this time of year. So, dive into our list of five no-bake dessert ideas and skip the oven. 

The Best No-Bake Cheesecake

The holidays are all about comfort. And when it comes to the menu, we all enjoy the classics. One classic dessert that always delivers is a creamy, tangy cheesecake. Check out this delicious, no-bake cheesecake recipe from Food Network that relies on a crumbled graham cracker crust to avoid using the oven. Instead of cooking the crust, here you just pop it in the freezer until firm. Enjoy!

Almond and Goat Cheese Candy Bars

This NY Times recipe is the perfect combination of savory and sweet. These candy bars are sure to please the chocolate and nut lover in your family. Once again, the freezer is used to provide firmness instead of baking in the oven. 

Pumpkin Spice Ice Box Cake

Few things immediately call to mind the taste of holiday desserts and family gatherings like a slice of pumpkin pie. Here, layers of graham crackers, pumpkin puree, and whipped cream combine forces for an irresistible treat without the fuss and baking time of a traditional pumpkin pie. Try out this fun twist on a holiday classic that will leave your family begging for more.

No-Bake Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

It wouldn’t be Christmas without cookies. This recipe for no-bake oatmeal chocolate chip cookies comes from longtime Food Network star Giada De Laurentiis. With fewer than 10 ingredients, this recipe thrives on simplicity. Just because you’re not baking this holiday season doesn’t mean you have to go without cookies.

Espresso Martini Tiramisu

Let’s turn our attention to a classic, no-bake recipe: Tiramisu. Fair warning, this recipe punches up the booze factor of your typical tiramisu a little further with a half cup of coffee liqueur and three tablespoons of vodka. The martini glasses add a touch of sophistication that your family will assume you spent all day slaving over.

We hope these no-bake recipes help you work smarter and not harder in the kitchen, and gives you the extra time to connect more deeply with the people who make the season so special.