30 Unique Wedding Dessert Ideas Your Guests Will Love
The average couple spends between $350 and $450 on a wedding cake. Skip this tradition or add something unexpected to the menu with one or more of these 30 unique wedding dessert ideas. Find memorable wedding cake alternatives along with helpful decor, supply, and DIY recommendations. Then, learn how to estimate how many desserts you’ll need based on what you plan to serve and how many guests you have.
Explore 30 unique wedding dessert ideas your guests will love:
Keep reading for ideas that include delicious options for wedding showers, wedding rehearsal dinners, and wedding receptions.
1. Chocolate-covered wedding strawberries on top of silver cupcake wrappers.
Buy or make these adorable tuxedo strawberry designs with a traditional piped icing bag and melted chocolate.
2. Single-serve macaroon-and-milk shots.
Use light pink or white macaroons with a variety of milks such as blueberry lavender almond milk or traditional chocolate milk.
3. Colorful wedding date flags in an assortment of stacked donut holes.
Stack the donut holes on a tiered cake stand or in paper cones.
4. Mini-layered strawberry shortcake cups.
Put flat, compostable wooden spoons in each one for a stylish serving utensil that’s also eco-friendly and easy to clean up after the event is over.
5. White and dark chocolate-dipped pretzel rods covered in sprinkles and icing.
Use edible silver sugar balls on white icing to elevate the look.
6. Wedding dress or ring-shaped cupcake display.
You can also recreate you and your partner’s initials just by arranging the wedding cupcakes in the shape of letters on a decorative tray.
7. Rainbow-colored fruits on a skewer.
Layer blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, watermelon, cantaloupe, pineapple, and honeydew in that order.
8. Individual cheesecakes with fruit, chocolate, and caramel.
Serve them in wrappers that match your wedding colors or use custom craft cupcake holders with your initials and wedding date printed on them.
9. Slices of apple, pumpkin, or cherry pie with scoops of vanilla bean and chocolate ice creams.
Substitute full slices for mini pies or tartlets as a light spring or summer wedding dessert.
10. Layered cookie-and-icing cakes.
Alternate thin 10- to 12-inch round chocolate chip cookies with homemade vanilla icing for a faux naked cake design. DIY it using insightful tips from this chocolate chip cookie layer cake recipe.
11. Wedding Hershey’s kisses.
Serve you and your partner’s favorite flavors in two separate bowls with special labels so guests can have fun choosing between them. Order personalized Hershey’s kisses online. Or make your own using ¾” round Avery labels and one of their many user-friendly design templates you can order or print at home.
12. Cappuccino brownies for post-dinner coffee and tea.
Make them look fancier by laying a piece of clean paper lace over the top of the sheet and dusting powdered sugar on it. Carefully remove the paper lace to reveal a quilted sugar design that will instantly give plain brownies a wedding facelift.
13. Hand-frosted vanilla bundt cakes with simple white designs.
Pair this modern wedding dessert idea with large, brightly colored flower blooms such as sunflowers or orange buttercups to complete the look.
14. Mini churros dipped in chocolate, caramel, and marshmallow sauces.
Contain any messes by serving individual churros in sauce dipping cups. Arrange each sauce option in its own row so guests can easily find their favorite.
15. Cookies shaped like you and your partner.
Or turn a picture of your faces into an edible treat. Order from online companies such as Parker’s Crazy Cookies.
16. Strawberry and chocolate chip cannolis dusted with powdered sugar.
Dip the ends in smashed pistachios, sprinkles, or Oreo cookie crumbs to add even more variety.
17. Instagrammable donut wall.
DIY a wood donut display with a pegboard or shelves as your base and a calligraphy stencil for your lettering.
18. Cream cheese and tropical fruit pizza.
Kiwis, mangos, and dragon fruit taste delicious with dark chocolate or mint and honey schmears.
19. Monochrome dessert menu for an upscale take on a budget-friendly wedding cake alternative.
For example, you can create an all-white wedding candy bar with vanilla bean marshmallow cubes, white M&Ms, and white chocolate covered pretzels.
20. Wedding carrot cake pops on striped skewers.
Or make some carrot cake ball truffles for a healthier vegan dessert option.
21. Key lime, tart lemon, and zesty orange graham cracker crust bites.
Serve them in mini mason jars, bake them in graham cracker cookie cups, or layer it all in a plastic shooter with a fresh citrus wedge.
22. White chocolate and rainbow sprinkle-dipped marshmallows and cereal bars.
Use a food-grade calligraphy monogram stamp to personalize it with your initials.
23. Toasted cinnamon and sugar, chocolate chip, and cheesecake bagels.
Pick your bagels up the morning of your wedding so they’re are as fresh as possible. Serve with a variety of fun cream cheese such as pumpkin spice, lemon dill, and kimchi.
24. Heart-shaped S’mores station.
Fill a heart-shaped bowl with clear aquarium pebbles from the Dollar Store and a lit Sterno can for toasting marshmallows.
25. Sweet and salty flavored popcorn bar.
Serve them in galvanized silver buckets or small wood barrels for a rustic twist.
26. Boozy Limoncello floats with vanilla bean gelato.
Mix with sparkling water or prosecco and serve in a fountain glass. Add a yellow and white-striped paper straw and garnish it with a mint leaf.
27. Midwest puppy chows in a variety of flavors.
Make this tasty chocolate and peanut butter Chex treat with mix-ins such as nuts and M&Ms in 15 minutes or less.
28. Kids cereals with flavored milks.
Personalize this nostalgic wedding dessert bar with you and your partner’s favorite childhood cereals. Or DIY a portable version with this cereal and milk bar recipe tutorial.
29. Assorted take-home cookie bar.
Stamp plain cookie treat bags with your initials and wedding date. Hand out colorful twist ties to help guests seal their goodies.
30. Gourmet hot chocolate bar.
Offer alcoholic mix-ins such as peppermint, cinnamon, and marshmallow liqueurs. Contribute non-alcoholic treats such as chocolate wafer sticks, strawberry-flavored marshmallows, and candy canes too.
Do you have to serve dessert at a wedding?
No, but it is a tradition! Serve wedding cake by itself or alongside a few different types of desserts. Or skip the cake altogether and offer an assortment of the other delicious treats listed above. Make your wedding dessert choice based on what you and your partner want to eat, what you think your guests will love, and what is realistic within your budget.
How many desserts should you have at a wedding?
You should have a minimum of two so guests can choose what they like best. Serve a 3-tier, 12-inch round cake to feed roughly 55 guests. Multiply all mini and single-serve wedding cake dessert alternatives by 2.5 times your total guest count to get an accurate estimate of what you need. Make sure to multiply your total guest count by 3.5 if you want them all to be able to take home some treats as wedding favors at the end of the night.
What do you serve at a dessert reception?
Serve eight to ten different types of mini desserts at your dessert reception. Pair them with beverages such as coffee, tea, and wine. Include a variety of chocolate, caramel, and fruit-based options. Add in some unique snack ideas such as spicy crackers and cubed cheese, rosemary and herb popcorn, or mini meatballs to balance out the sweets. Also, make it clear on your invitation that your reception will only serve desserts and drinks so that guests can prepare ahead of time.
Take a look at even more unique wedding dessert ideas!
You now know 30 unique wedding dessert ideas that can fit most themes and budgets. You’re also ready to plan the rest of your menu with a number of simple math tips and snack pairing suggestions. Up next, get inspiration from these beautiful celebrity wedding cakes.