Some may see a shot glass and think of their favorite libation. I, on the other hand, see the perfect portion size for a delightful dessert.

After a meal or heavy appetizers, these small party treats are the perfect size to satisfy your sweet tooth. With only a few ingredients, these desserts are quick and easy, and look great displayed on footed cake plates. They can also be made in clear plastic disposable cups with miniature silver-finished disposable spoons found at your local party store.

Make them a day ahead and they are perfect for an after-theater social, weekend picnic or outdoor gathering. Here is a list of suggestions to get you started.

If you keep these three layers in mind, your shot glass desserts will show your guests just how creative you are.

Layered Delight

First layer

Cookies, pound cake, brownies, lady fingers, graham cracker crumbs, granola, vanilla wafers

Second layer

Puddings, whipped cream, cream cheese, lemon curd, preserves, yogurt, Nutella, peanut butter

Third layer or topping

Crushed candy bars, diced fruit, canned pie filling, toasted coconut, candied coffee beans, nuts

Cherry Cheesecake

  • 1 small box Jell-O No Bake Cheesecake
  • ½ can cherry pie filling

Follow directions for cheesecake on box. Place 1-2 tablespoons of crust mixture in each shot, followed with a layer of cheesecake mix and top with cherry pie filling.

Candy Crunch Brownie Delight

  • ½ pan of prepared brownies
  • 1 small box of chocolate pudding, prepared
  • 2 cups of whipped cream, whipped
  • 4-6 oz. crushed toffee pieces or chopped candy bar

Fill bottom of glasses with small pieces of brownie, pour chocolate pudding on top of brownies, top with whipped cream and crushed toffee pieces.


  • 12 ladyfingers
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 1 cup whipped cream, whipped
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 8 oz. mascarpone cheese
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder Candied coffee beans

Cut or break ladyfingers into two or three pieces. Dip each in coffee quickly and place in bottom of shot glass. In a mixer, beat egg, egg yolk and sugar for four minutes until light pale. Add the mascarpone and mix until incorporated. Fold in whipped cream. Fill shot glasses with the cream mixture and top with a dusting of cocoa and a coffee bean.

Lemon Cream Shots

  • Pound cake (fresh or frozen)
  • 10 oz. jar of lemon curd
  • 2 cups whipped cream, whipped
  • Raspberry for garnish

Cut cake into cubes and fill shot glasses. Mix lemon curd and cream together. Pour over cake and top with raspberry.


About the author: Debbie Denissen is a McKinney food connoisseur and caterer who travels the world with her husband learning about the latest culinary trends. Contact her at