Affogato

The Best Italian desserts to make at home

Benvenuti! I’m Isabella, and I’m going to share with you the top 10 Italian desserts that will perfectly complement your dinner, either at home or at one of our beautiful Italian Street Kitchen restaurants. These sweet treats rank among the best desserts for after an Italian meal – from creamy tiramisu to crispy cannoli, they represent the finest tradition of Italian desserts. Let’s explore these delightful dolci that will transport your taste buds straight to Italy!

1. Tiramisu

Tiramisu is a beloved classic Italian cuisine dessert that originated in the Veneto region. At Italian Street Kitchen, we make ours with layers of coffee-soaked savoiardi biscuits and a luscious mascarpone cream, dusted with cocoa powder. The result is an dessert that’s both light and indulgent, with a perfect balance of coffee and cream flavours. It pairs beautifully with a glass of sweet Vin Santo. Discover 10 fascinating facts about Tiramisu to impress your dinner companions!

Tiramisu

2. Affogato

Affogato is a simple yet elegant dessert that combines two of Italy’s greatest pleasures: gelato and espresso. We serve a scoop of creamy vanilla gelato drowned in a shot of hot espresso. The contrast of hot and cold, sweet and bitter, creates a delightful sensory experience. It’s an Italian dessert that works perfectly with a glass of Amaretto liqueur. Learn how to make the perfect Affogato at home!

Affogato

3. Panna Cotta

Another dish that ranks highly among the best desserts for an Italian dinner is Panna Cotta, which means ‘cooked cream’ in Italian, and is a silky smooth dessert from the Piedmont region. My creation is assembled by gently simmering cream, milk, and sugar, then setting it with gelatin. The result is a delicate, wobbling dessert with a melt-in-your-mouth texture. I often serve it with a fresh berry compote, and it pairs wonderfully with a glass of Moscato d’Asti.

Pineapple Coconut Panna Cotta

4. Cannoli

Cannoli are crispy pastry tubes filled with sweet ricotta cream, originating from Sicily. Staying authentically Italian, we make our cannoli shells fresh at Italian Street Kitchen, then fill them with a mixture of ricotta, sugar, and sometimes chocolate chips or candied fruit. The contrast between the crunchy shell and creamy filling is irresistible, and this particular Italian dessert is perfect with a glass of Marsala wine.

Ricotta Cannoli

5. Semifreddo

Semifreddo, meaning ‘half-cold’ in Italian, is a semi-frozen dessert that’s like a cross between ice cream and mousse. My preferred method for making this delicious Italian dessert is to use a base of whipped cream, egg yolks, and sugar, flavoured with various ingredients like chocolate, fruit, or nuts. The final outcome is a velvety, luxurious dessert that’s perfect for warm evenings. It pairs well with a glass of Passito di Pantelleria.

6. Panforte

Panforte is a traditional Christmas cake from Siena, Tuscany, and no list of ‘best Italian desserts’ can be complete without it! My panforte is made with a dense mixture of nuts, dried fruits, and spices, held together with honey and sugar. The result is a chewy, flavourful cake that works wonderfully with coffee or a glass of Vin Santo. It’s a taste of Italian Christmas any time of the year

7. Panettone

Panettone is a sweet bread loaf from Milan, traditionally enjoyed during Christmas and New Year. This exquisite dessert features light, fluffy bread studded with candied fruits and raisins. It’s delicious on its own or toasted with a spread of mascarpone, and you can enjoy it with a glass of spumante.

8. Pistachio Stracciatella Gelato

Pistachio Stracciatella gelato is beloved by many Italian dessert enthusiasts all over the world! For this particular gelato I combine two classic Italian flavours: rich, nutty pistachio and creamy stracciatella (milk-based gelato with chocolate chips). By using the finest Sicilian pistachios and high-quality chocolate, the end product is a creamy, indulgent gelato with a perfect balance of flavours and textures. It’s delightful on its own or paired with a shot of espresso.

9. Raspberry Bombolini

Bombolini are Italian filled doughnuts, and the raspberry version is particularly delicious.I make these light, fluffy doughnuts fresh, then fill them with a tart raspberry jam and dust them with sugar. It’s the contrast between the soft dough and the tangy filling that puts the Raspberry Bombolini right up there with the best Italian desserts for so many. If you fancy a wine alongside yours, pair it with a glass of Brachetto d’Acqui.

10. Biscotti

Biscotti, also known as cantucci, are crunchy almond biscuits from Tuscany. For this dessert I love to use a traditional recipe, twice-baking them to achieve that signature crunch. They’re one of those perfect Italian desserts for dipping in coffee, tea, or a sweet wine, such as Vin Santo. 

 

Learn How to Make Italian Dessert Recipes

Want to recreate these delicious Italian desserts at home? Visit our recipe pages to learn how to make authentic Tiramisu and perfect Affogato. With our step-by-step instructions, you’ll be making restaurant-quality desserts in no time!

Try Our Italian Dessert Menu

Experience these delectable Italian desserts and more at Italian Street Kitchen. Our lunch and all-day menus feature a selection of authentic Italian desserts to perfectly end your meal. Book your table today and indulge in the sweet flavours of Italy!

FAQs

What is the most famous Italian dessert?

Tiramisu is arguably the most famous Italian dessert worldwide. Its perfect balance of coffee, cocoa, and creamy mascarpone has made it a beloved treat in Italy and beyond. But it doesn’t end there – other desserts like gelato, cannoli, and panna cotta are also incredibly popular both in Italy and internationally.

What is the best dessert to eat after pasta?

The best Italian dessert after a delicious pasta meal depends on personal preference, but light options like Affogato or Panna Cotta can be perfect. For those with a sweet tooth, Tiramisu or a scoop of gelato can provide a satisfying end to the meal without being too heavy.

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