Easy Dessert Recipes That Use Only 5 Ingredients

Everyone gets the baking bug every now and then, but novice bakers don’t have many of the specialty ingredients now commonly found on desserts’ ingredients lists, making the hobby a hassle. What’s more, stocking your pantry with all of the flours, oils, and spices can get expensive, and that’s where easy, fuss-free desserts come in. There are still recipes out there that require only a handful of ingredients, and we’re highlighting seven of them today. These desserts still taste delicious even though they’re not devastatingly time-consuming, and you can use your extra time and energy to distribute the sweet treats, rather than slave away in the kitchen.

1. 5-Ingredient Brownies

brownies can be an easy dessert recipe

Brownies | iStock.com

Brownies may boast the title of easiest dessert ever. They can be made in just one bowl and then baked in the oven for 30 minutes or less. This recipe from Baker Bettie corroborates the story. Her formula for rich and fudgy brownies has an ingredients list that caps at 5, and the dessert also takes only 5 minutes of prep time. Once the dessert is in the oven, it’ll bake for 25 minutes before you have warm, chocolately brownies at the ready.


  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup oil or melted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup flour
  • ⅓ cup cocoa powder
  • Large pinch of salt (optional)

Get the full recipe at Baker Betty

2. 5-Ingredient Fudge

fudge brownies

Fudge | iStock.com

Fudge is the perfect fuss-free dessert to keep hidden in your freezer or package up for easy gifts. Recipes for the good stuff yield many servings and fudge can stay good in the freezer for months. Even better, fudge is another dessert that can be made with 5 ingredients, and Chef Savvy has a formula for it. While many fudge formulas require a candy thermometer, you can make this kind without one, and it’ll only take 5 minutes of your prep time.


  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Sea salt for serving

Get the full recipe at Chef Savvy

3. 5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cookies | iStock.com

If you have peanut butter and sugar in your pantry, then you can make this recipe featured on Tablespoon for peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. These cookies couldn’t be easier or more delicious, thanks to peanut butter serving as their healthy fat source. The other ingredients are sugar, an egg, chocolate chips, and baking soda, and the cookies will bake in the oven for 10 minutes before they’re ready to cool and be eaten.


  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup milk chocolate chips

Get the full recipe at Tablespoon

4. 5-Ingredient Single Serve Chocolate Cake

Dark chocolate cake

Chocolate cake | iStock.com

If you’re craving cake but only baking for one, make yourself this single serve chocolate cake from Briana Thomas. Made in the microwave in a microwave-safe bowl, this cake recipe calls for 5 ingredients and doesn’t require you to preheat your oven. It’s also sugar-free, gluten-free, and nut-free, but certainly not taste-free. The cocoa powder pairs with the egg, sour cream, and sweetener to yield a serving of moist chocolate cake that will kick your craving without sending you into a sugar coma.


  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • 2 level tablespoons cocoa powder
  • Sweetener of choice, to taste
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder

Get the full recipe at Briana Thomas

5. 5-Ingredient Chocolate Avocado Pudding

chocolate pudding

Chocolate pudding | iStock.com

Ready for some healthy chocolate pudding? Make this chocolate avocado pudding from The Pretty Bee, and feel good about the healthy fats you’re feeding your body. No butter or oil is found on this recipe’s ingredients list, but avocado makes a star appearance, as do cocoa powder and almond milk. This 5-ingredient pudding is vegan and paleo-friendly and can be made in a food processor. It’s thick, creamy, chocolatey, and doesn’t taste remotely healthy.


  • 1 medium avocado, ripe
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons honey for paleo diet, or 2 tablespoons agave nectar for vegans
  • 6 tablespoons almond milk
  • Optional: pistachios or other nut for topping

Get the full recipe at The Pretty Bee

6. 5-Ingredient Strawberry Shortcakes

Strawberry shortcake

Strawberry shortcakes | iStock.com

Next, check out these 5-ingredient strawberry shortcakes featured on Serious Eats. Bypass the grocery store bakery and instead make these sweet treats at home. When they only require 5 ingredients and 10 minutes of prep time, there’s no reason to resist. All you need are strawberries, sugar, self-rising flour, heavy cream, and vanilla extract, and you’re good to go. Strawberry shortcake is a good example of a nostalgic dessert that seems a lot more complicated than it is, but with this recipe from Serious Eats, you can clear up the confusion with your sweet tooth thanking you for your research.


  • 1 quart strawberries, quartered or sliced
  • ½ cup sugar, divided
  • 5 ounces (about 1 cup) self-rising flour
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Get the full recipe at Serious Eats

7. Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

Banana Ice Cream, strawberry

Peanut butter banana ice cream | iStock.com

Last but not least is peanut butter banana ice cream. If you’ve never heard of the healthy ice cream, you’ve been missing out. Fix the situation by checking out this recipe featured on Food Network. It yields an ice cream dessert that doesn’t require any sophisticated kitchen appliance, but rather, only a high-speed food processor. The recipe also enlists only 3 main ingredients and then the toppings are your choice. You’ll blend your bananas in the mixer, while adding in peanut butter and some honey to keep it sweet. Out comes a creamy ice cream that is devoid of dairy, making this guilt-free treat a delicious and nutritious cure for your overactive appetite for dessert.


  • 2 to 3 ripe bananas
  • 1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons honey (test banana sweetness)

Get the full recipe at The Food Network

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