25 Hanukkah Desserts To Make All 8 Nights Extra Sweet

Every single night needs a next-level dessert.

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sufganiyot jelly donuts

Hanukkah (December 18 to 26, 2022) is here, and what better way to celebrate than with a variety of sweet desserts? We've got everything from classic donuts, cookies, and cakes to cheeky and classic twists on them that we think you’ll love. Check out our 25 Hanukkah desserts for ideas—we’ve got enough for all 8 nights, and then some.

If you’re unfamiliar, Hanukkah is a holiday commemorating the miracle of one day’s worth of oil lasting for eight, thus sparking the tradition of eating foods fried in oil. If you make nothing else this Hanukkah, you’ve got to make sufganiyot, or fried jelly donuts. Want to avoid the hot oil, but keep with the “fried” Hanukkah tradition? Try our citrus olive oil cake, our pistachio chocolate chip cookies (with olive oil instead of butter), our apple cider donut cake, or our funnel cake. They’re perfect for a more modern celebration.

Speaking of, need a dairy-free, kosher dessert to serve after your meat-heavy dinner? Take a note from many modern Jewish households and go vegan! Try our vegan chocolate chip cookies, our sorbet, or our vegan sugar cookies. This way, everyone can enjoy a sweet treat, no halachah (Jewish law regarding meat and dairy) waiting necessary.

Just because keeping kosher is serious doesn’t mean all your Hanukkah desserts have to be! Take our sugar cookie dreidels—sure, you can’t actually play with them, but they’re so cute, no one will mind. Especially if when you do play, you play for our homemade gelt (made so easily in a mini muffin tin). Another tradition we’re turning on its head is making latkes, or potato pancakes. Though traditionally savory, if you want to bring that potato action firmly into dessert territory, try our potato candy or our latke cookies. They’ll be the perfect playful addition to your Hanukkah dessert spread.

Want even more Hanukkah ideas? Check out our favorite creative Hanukkah latkes, our top Hanukkah cookies, and our best Hanukkah appetizers too.

dreidel cookies
Andrew Bui
1 of 25
Sugar Cookie Dreidels

You can use your favorite homemade sugar cookie dough or follow our lead and use a couple store-bought logs. These will turn out so cute, no one mind either way! These work with any small candy, from the mini M&M's we used here to Nerds or Skittles, so have fun with it.

Get the Sugar Cookie Dreidels recipe.

vegan chocolate cake
Park Feierbach
2 of 25
Vegan Chocolate Cake

Keeping kosher and craving dessert? This vegan chocolate cake is for you and yours. Thanks to a couple of smart swaps and a secret ingredient or two, we bet you might not even be able to guess it’s completely egg- and dairy-free.

Get the Vegan Chocolate Cake recipe.

hanukkah gelt
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Hanukkah Gelt

♫ "Dreidel, dreidel, dreidel..." ♫ If you truly want to take your game over the top, play for homemade gelt! They're super-easy to make at home (we used a mini muffin tin), and you can decorate them however you like.

Get the Hanukkah Gelt recipe.

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This lightly fried, gorgeously dusted, low-key sugary jelly donut serves as a reminder that life can be sweet sometimes—which is exactly why we make it exclusively for the most festive of Jewish holidays. You can really fill the donuts with whatever filling makes you happy... as long as it's sweet.

Get the Sufganiyot recipe.

lakte cookies with toasted potato sticks and apple caramel
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Latke Cookies

No Hanukkah celebration is complete without a big plate of crispy, craggly latkes. If you're more of a sweets fan but want to keep with tradition, we've got just the cookie for you. Our favorite part? A homemade apple caramel as a nod to the applesauce often enjoyed with potato pancakes.

Get the Latke Cookies recipe.

kugel vertical
Parker Feierbach
6 of 25
Sweet Noodle Kugel

Kugel is basically the Yiddish/Jewish word for casserole. While there are many savory versions (such as this giant-latke-esque potato kugel), we have a soft spot in our hearts for this eggy, cinnamon-y sweet version too.

Get the Sweet Noodle Kugel recipe.

poached pears
Erik bernstein
7 of 25
Poached Pears

Poaching slightly under-ripe pears makes them tender and sweetens them, while allowing them to maintain their structure. Once poached, they can be served warm or cold, garnished with a caramel reduction of the cooking liquid, and accompanied with everything from dairy-free ice cream to whipped cream to yogurt.

Get the Poached Pears recipe.

chocolate babka
June Xie
8 of 25
Chocolate Babka

A Jewish sweet braided bread loved by all, babka is stuffed, rolled, then baked with a variety of fillings. Chocolate babka tends to dominate the flavor popularity contest, but there's a certain appeal to a cinnamon babka that just can't be denied—which is why this recipe sneaks both into the mix.

Get the Chocolate Babka recipe.

black and white cookies
Andrew Bui
9 of 25
Black & White Cookies

Black & whites are a NYC Jewish deli classic, and we can't get enough of them, any time of year. Light and moist, these vanilla-, almond-, and lemon-flavored cookies are the closest you might get to biting into a cloud.

Get the Black & White Cookies recipe.

olive oil cake
Erik Bernstein
10 of 25
Citrus Olive Oil Cake

Frying things in oil is a big tradition on Hanukkah, but we'd get it if you were intimidated by a big vat of hot oil. Instead, make this citrusy, tender cake instead! Lemon and orange zest play super well with the grassy, bright flavors of olive oil.

Get the Citrus Olive Oil Cake recipe.

vegan chocolate chip cookies
Erik Bernstein
11 of 25
Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

These dairy-free chocolate chip cookies are crisp on the edge and pleasantly chewy in the center. They're perfect for serving after any meat-heavy Hanukkah feast.

Get the Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe.

Andrew bui
12 of 25

The perfect homemade fruit sorbet is creamy, smooth, and just as easy as making homemade ice cream. We show you how to use strawberries and raspberries, but mango, peach, blueberries, blackberries would all work well too—as long as you keep the same proportions, you can totally get creative.

Get the Sorbet recipe.

pistachio chocolate chip cookies
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Pistachio Chocolate Chip Cookies

Pistachios add a slightly sweet, nutty flavor that will make these cookies feel a little bit elevated, but still just as classic and comforting. Bonus: These are kosher because they're made with olive oil instead of butter!

Get the Pistachio Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe.

challah rolls
Andrew Bui
14 of 25
Challah Rolls

This particular challah dough is a bit on the sweeter side, and it lends beautifully to a variety of applications, from being a dinner side to an after dinner treat. Hot tip: These rolls taste phenomenal when toasted!

Get the Challah Rolls recipe.

vegan sugar cookies iced and topped with sprinkles
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Vegan Sugar Cookies

Soft, buttery, with crispy edges, these are the classic, quintessential sugar cookie, veganized and ready to bring to any of your Hanukkah gatherings. Whether frosted, sprinkled, or eaten plain right out of the oven, we can't get enough of them.

Get the Vegan Sugar Cookies recipe.

potato candy
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Potato Candy

This classic candy recipe might seem odd when looking at the ingredients (mashed potatoes and peanut butter??), but trust us—it's worth trying. It requires only a few simple ingredients you most likely already have on hand (post making latkes, maybe?).

Get the Potato Candy recipe.

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Funnel Cake

Want to stick with Hanukkah's fried foods tradition, but feel overwhelmed by sufganiyot? Try this free-form funnel cake instead. We were shocked at just how easily these came together, so have fun with it!

Get the Funnel Cake recipe.

lemon blueberry babka
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Lemon Blueberry Babka

A traditional babka is a braided, sweet yeasted bread filled with chocolate. This fruitier take is filled with a blueberry sauce and topped in an easy lemon glaze instead. It's sweet and tart and the perfect stunner to serve for dessert this Hanukkah.

Get the Lemon Blueberry Babka recipe.

vegan cheesecake
Emily hlavac green
19 of 25
Vegan Cheesecake

This dairy-free cheesecake is downright magic. The secret? Soaked cashews!

Get the Vegan Cheesecake recipe.

food, chocolate, cuisine, dessert, dish, chocolate truffle, baked goods, ganache, ingredient, snack,
Parker Feierbach
20 of 25
Chocolate-Covered Oreos

Did you know that Oreos are actually vegan and kosher?! Thank goodness, because dairy-free chocolate + Oreos = true heaven. Swap these in for gelt to take your dreidel game OTT.

Get the Chocolate-Covered Oreos recipe.

thumbprint cookies
Ethan Calabrese
21 of 25
Thumbprint Cookies

This dough is firm, almost like a shortbread, so to make sure it doesn't crack, roll it into balls until smooth and firm, and then gently press your thumb in the center to make sure it doesn't crack. Gently. Feel free to use whatever jam you prefer.

Get the Thumbprint Cookies recipe.

Lucy Schaeffer
22 of 25

Rugelach is a pillowy soft and flaky filled pastry-turned-cookie filled with jam or a sweet walnut and brown sugar mixture. The cream cheese dough is surprisingly easy to make and to roll, any imperfections are part of the charm. We can't get enough!

Get the Rugelach recipe.

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This dough is made with flour, sugar, yeast, and lemon zest. The loukoumades are then drizzled with melted chocolate, covered in cinnamon and honey, and sprinkled with pistachios. Yum!

Get the Loukoumades recipe.

cheese blintzes  delishcom
June Xie
24 of 25
Cheese Blintz

There's a good reason why this well-loved Ashkenazi Jewish dish is so popular year-round across brunch and dessert menus everywhere: Blintzes are decadent but delicate, creamy yet balanced. Our secret ingredient: nutmeg! It makes the cream taste richer without being too fatty, and tames the tartness of the fruit as well.

Get the Cheese Blintz recipe.

apple cider donut cake
erik bernstein
25 of 25
Apple Cider Donut Cake

This super-sized version of an apple cider donut comes together in no time, and there's no actual deep frying involved. That's a Hanukkah miracle in our book!

Get the Apple Cider Donut Cake recipe.

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