30 Picture-Perfect Desserts for the Fourth of July
It’s time to celebrate—and eat! Show off your patriotic spirit with these fun, festive, and colorful Independence Day treats.
The stars (and stripes) of the show
Dessert is delicious, no matter how you slice it, but there’s something particularly wonderful about picture-perfect, Fourth of July–themed treats. Scrumptious, festive desserts are some of the best 4th of July ideas. Practically bursting with patriotism, these 4th of July desserts also have just the right amount of kitsch and whimsy with their reds, whites, and blues to match your 4th of July decorations. And while these desserts will be the stars of your Fourth of July celebration—sometimes quite literally!—don’t forget about the 4th of July appetizers! And learn the best 4th of July games to play while you indulge, too.
Fruit flag cake
Is it really the Fourth of July if you don’t have a flag cake? The quintessential patriotic dessert, this Cool Whip–topped version has a pecan crust and layers of cream cheese and vanilla pudding hiding under its fruity stars and stripes. Assemble it in a 13×9-inch baking dish. Just be warned: This dessert will go fast, and your secret recipe probably won’t be a secret for long.
Independence Day cookies
Stars and stripes forever—unless you’re talking about these delectable sugar cookies, which will disappear in minutes. The secret ingredients that make them irresistible? Cream cheese and a hint of lemon extract.
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You can never go wrong with fudgy brownies. But for Independence Day, you can add a festive flair to this party favorite with chocolate frosting and red, white, and blue icing. To pipe the stars perfectly, use a pastry bag.
Patriotic ice pops
Fourth of July desserts don’t need to be baked goods! Nothing relieves the heat of midsummer like an ice pop. These healthy pops come together quickly by blending and freezing just a few good-for-you ingredients—vanilla yogurt, honey, and berries. (Yes, that’s it!) All you need is a blender and a set of popsicle molds. You can easily snack on them while watching your local fireworks display.
Crackling star pops
Regular old Rice Krispies treats get a patriotic makeover with this Crispy Star Pops recipe. For even heating and less of a chance of burning, use a Dutch oven to melt the butter and marshmallows. Mix in the cereal, press into a baking pan, and cut out star shapes with a cookie cutter. Top with melted white chocolate and red, white, and blue sprinkles.
No matter how much you love baking, sometimes you just don’t want to turn on the oven, especially on a hot summer day. This no-bake Star-Spangled Lemon Icebox Pie solves that problem. And it makes a delicious addition to your repertoire of 4th of July desserts, of course!
Check out this clever and nostalgic recipe created by Darlene Brenden of Salem, Oregon. “Our neighborhood has a big potluck on the Fourth of July, so I decided to make cookies that resemble Bomb Pops. These were a big hit!” she says. Pro tip: You can turn these cookies into “pops” by putting frosting in the middle of two and inserting a popsicle stick.
“These sweet little parfaits take everything that’s good about cheesecake and make it way easier. You get the rich creaminess, graham cracker crunch, and bright berry flavor all in a fun individual portion,” notes the Taste of Home Test Kitchen. Plus, if you’re having a socially distanced get-together, individual portions are the way to go to reduce potential germ transmission.
Beignets and berries
While this Springtime Beignets and Berries recipe simply calls for a dusting of powdered sugar and an assortment of berries to arrange around your beignets, you can also make a quick berry whipped cream and pipe it inside for a fun surprise, says Kathi Hemmer of Grand Junction, Colorado.
Spiked ice cream
“It’s about time someone created an ice cream sundae just for adults!” says Emory Doty of Jasper, Georgia. So, what makes this a grown-up recipe, exactly? Vodka-spiked strawberries and blueberries! The fancy dark chocolate sauce and slivered almonds don’t hurt, either. Serve in old-fashioned ice cream glasses for the perfect touch.
Sweet berry salad
Confectioners’ sugar, cream cheese, and heavy whipping cream put a decadent spin on a traditional fruit salad. Best of all, this Two-Berry Fluff Salad whips up quickly and you don’t have to wait for baking or chilling time to dig in. Just mix up the “fluff” and eat!
Featuring arugula, blueberries, feta cheese, watermelon, and a light vinaigrette, this savory fruit salad makes a pretty addition to any Fourth of July desserts table.
Frozen lemonade for the Fourth
This frozen lemonade is a drink and a dessert all in one! “This patriotic drink is as pretty as it is tasty,” notes Shawn Carleton of San Diego, who created this festive concoction. “Layering cherries, blueberries, and lemon juice, we created a striped lemonade that sings with Fourth of July pride.”
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Beautifully layered berry pie
A variation on a classic, this Red, White, and Blue Berry Pie is bound to be your family’s new favorite. It’s made with blueberries and raspberries, as well as a sweetened cream cheese and Cool Whip layer, and reviewers rave that it has “amazing flavors” and comes together easily.
Red, white, and blue striped jello
Talk about a show-stopping centerpiece on your dessert table. “Almost as spectacular as the fireworks, this lovely [dish] makes quite a ‘bang’ at our July 4th meal,” says Sue Gronholz of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.
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Oatmeal cookie ice cream sandwiches
You can’t go wrong with a good ice cream sandwich. This homemade treat, garnished with red, white, and blue sprinkles, will please your party guests of all ages.
Patriotic ice cream cupcakes
Ice cream and cupcakes?! You better believe it—these Fourth of July desserts have it all. Blue moon ice cream forms the blue layer of these tasty treats, and the white is marshmallow. And the red is red velvet, of course! These are for when regular cupcakes just won’t cut it for your Fourth party!
This shortcake is as summery as it gets! Blackberries, strawberries, and more strawberries form the topping of this delicious cake.
Berry-patch brownie pizza
Brownies that look like a pizza?! Topped with festive fruits, this dessert mixes and matches favorite berries over delectable chocolate and cream cheese topping.
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Red, white, and blueberry poke cake
Fourth of July desserts don’t get much prettier than this! The colorful filling is made by combining flavored gelatin with real fruit and drizzling over box-mix white cake.
Star-studded blueberry pie
Your party guests will have stars in their eyes when you bring out this beauty! You start with a basic blueberry pie (with optional gooseberries!) and dress it up to perfection with stars made of the remaining pie dough. The Taste of Home Test Kitchen recommends baking the star cutouts in advance and making sure not to skip the 30-minute resting time before baking.
Cola cake with strawberries and cream
Want to fall in love with a new flavor this Fourth? (Or are you scoffing because you live in the South and are very familiar with cola cake?) Yes, you add cola to your cake batter (and marshmallows!) for this snazzy twist on a cake, garnished with sour cream frosting.
Berries & cream torte
This tasty dessert has a breakfasty flair. The sweet layers of cookie are delightfully offset by the fruit flavors.
Berry white ice pop
Another yummy frozen treat for your collection of red, white, and blue desserts! You make the base of this pop with milk, honey, and vanilla, and freeze the fruit inside.
Patriotic cookie & cream cupcakes
Cookie crumbs are the not-so-secret ingredient of these scrumptious, easy 4th of July desserts. You fold them into your batter as you make these patriotic treats, frosting and all, from scratch! But whipping these up is simple, and they’re sure to be delicious.
Introduce some bite-size red white and blue desserts to your party table. These tasty little tartlets contain different fruits and are just enough to satisfy hungry partygoers.
Red, white ‘n’ blue torte
Oh yes, another torte—but a very different take on one for sure! This is one of the simplest of these easy 4th of July desserts—it uses frozen pound cake and raspberry (or strawberry) and blueberry fillings to achieve its impressive striped look. Top it off with whip for a perfect light dessert. While you’re enjoying your 4th of July desserts, share mouth-watering photos with these picture-perfect 4th of July captions.