Pretty much everything is bigger in Texas and that includes their desserts. They are not just big on portion size but flavor too with a variety of fruit and chocolate-based ingredients.
That could be pineapple for a Hummingbird Cake, bananas in a Texas Banana Pudding, or a huge serving of sheet cake covered in chocolate mayonnaise.
A lot of these desserts are great for social gatherings such as Bananas Foster which you can light up. There are also desserts served with ice cream like Peach Cobbler or even made from ice cream like an Ice Cream Sandwich or Fried Ice Cream.
In this guide, we will detail 20 famous Texas desserts you need to try that go big on flavor.
These desserts can be typically found in restaurants across the state or in state fairs. Instead of heading out, you can entertain your guests and prepare any one of these desserts at home.
To give it its full name, the Southern Hummingbird Cake is a wonderfully moist Texas dessert. Prepared with soft and ripe banana, you may be surprised how well it works with sweet pineapple for a tropical flavor.
Chopped pecans also give the cake a moreish crunch, all topped with a rich frosting made from cream cheese and pineapple juice.
You can prepare a Texas Banana Pudding in advance and simply store it in the refrigerator. It will keep for a couple of days, maybe three when covered in plastic wrap.
There are layers of vanilla wafers, sliced bananas, vanilla pudding, caramel drizzle and a crunchy graham cracker crumble topping. When it is ready to serve, use a ladle to create a dish full of every component.
If you really want to impress your guests, create a dessert that can light up a room, literally. Cook banana slices in melted butter with cinnamon and brown sugar then add a healthy serving of rum, tip the pan, and light it up.
Make sure you have a fire extinguisher or a lid for the pan nearby to put the flames out and then serve with ice cream. Few desserts are as impressive to serve in front of a crowd of guests.
A really simple Texan dessert that still goes big on taste is Frozen Bananas. You can make your own by inserting a popsicle stick into a peeled banana then freezing them for around an hour.
Separately melt chocolate with coconut oil and pour it on then sprinkle with your favorite toppings. It really is that simple.
Having a crispy shell surrounding ice cream may seem a little strange but it is a Texan favorite. Form balls of ice cream wrapped in plastic wrap and let them firm up in the freezer.
Blitz up some pecans and graham crackers to cover the ice cream then dip in beaten eggs and corn flakes before putting back in the freezer.
Once ready, fry the ice cream balls in deep, hot oil and serve but be careful as the shell may still be hot.
Try to use fresh peaches for this classic Texas dessert. Simply pour the buttermilk batter onto melted butter then sprinkle with sugared peaches and bake.
Serve the cobbler warm and then serve it with a dollop of vanilla ice cream. This is an exceptionally fruity and rich dessert that is still heavy on tradition.
7. Funnel Cake
If you know your Texan fairs, you should be familiar with Funnel Cake. You can recreate the batter at home then drizzle it into hot oil and cook until lightly golden brown on both sides.
Dust with powdered sugar when ready to serve and you may imagine you are back at the fair.
This is such a quick and easy dessert, simply grab a jelly roll pan and fill it with a simple cake batter. The frosting is simply made from milk, cocoa powder, butter, and powdered sugar.
When it is ready to serve, cut out squares and make sure it is still warm.
For a more decadent sheet cake, create your sheet cake as you would normally and then top it off with chocolate mayonnaise.
That final layer is essentially softened cream cheese, butter, vanilla extract, cocoa powder, powdered sugar, and heavy cream. While the sheet cake is still easy to prepare, the frosting should be placed on quickly.
Though Sopapillas technically come from New Mexico but are also called Mexican doughnuts, they are enjoyed across the border in Texas too.
These pieces of puffed dough are delicious when fried and served with a drizzle of honey.
Believe it or not, the German Chocolate Cake does in fact come from Texas. The name actually comes from Mrs George Clay who used a baking chocolate by the American baker, Samuel German.
You will need sweet German chocolate (obviously), though you can also throw in brewed coffee instead of hot water for a truly rich and deep flavor.
The cake recipe is relatively simple too though you will need egg yolks and buttermilk with egg yolks in the coconut-pecan frosting too.
For a big traditional dessert you can create a batch of, consider Texas Cowboy Cookies. Like the best cookies, these are crispy on the outside, soft and chewy on the inside and buttery all over.
Loaded with chocolate chips, the oatmeal keeps it all together for pretty much the perfect cookie.
You no longer need to find an ice cream truck or head to the store to have your own ice cream sandwich. Soften your favorite ice cream then crack on to create your chocolate dough.
You want it nice and flat with a few holes to then bake until firm. Once the cookies have cooled down, create a rectangle from the ice cream, and place on the cookie shells then serve quickly before it all melts.
For a fruity, tangy Texas dessert, create an Orange Creamsicle Cake and you can even use a box of vanilla cake mix. Most of the flavor comes from orange jell-o, orange zest, and freshly squeezed orange juice.
Even the frosting is easy to do with a can of mandarin oranges, a packet of instant vanilla pudding mix, and Cool Whip.
Another popular Southern dessert is the Sock It To Me Cake which involves a tender butter cake. The star of the show is the cinnamon streusel filling of pecan brown sugar topped with a vanilla glaze.
You will need a Bundt cake tin though you can use a range of spices including cardamom, allspice, and nutmeg.
You can use a can of Coca-Cola to add really sweet and moreish notes to a chocolate cake. This is essentially a cake created from a batter which is infused with Coca-Cola.
The end result is a denser, richer, darker chocolate cake though it does use a lot of cocoa powder. Make sure you use a can of Coca-Cola and not Diet Coke as you want the genuine article for this recipe.
Yes, Carrot Cake can be a Texan dessert too and this loaded version comes with raisins, shredded coconut, and chopped nuts.
The lemon cream cheese frosting may be the crowning glory with their fresh lemon zest or a few drops of lemon oil.
For a stylish and classy dessert, the defined layers of a Chocolate Delight Dessert should wow your guests. At the bottom is a layer of crushed graham crackers, followed by sweetened cream cheese, and chocolate pudding.
On the very top is whipped topping and chopped pecans. It is truly a marvel to look at all those layers and delicious to taste.
If you want to create a batch of donuts, you can fry up some Pillsbury Grand Biscuits or premixed quick bread dough instead of making your own dough.
Cut out your donuts, fry them one at a time and spoon on a mixture of melted chocolate chips with whipping cream.
Top it off with marshmallow cream, crumble over a brownie, sprinkle over more mini chocolate chips, and drizzle on some chocolate syrup.
20. Bourbon Balls
For a really simple but flavorful dessert, create a batch of Bourbon Balls. Combine crushed vanilla wafers, light corn syrup, confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, finely chopped pecans, vanilla extract, and bourbon.
Shape the mixture into small balls sized around three-quarters of an inch in diameter. Roll the balls in either confectioners’ sugar, shredded coconut, or cocoa.
You can also use rum instead of the bourbon if you wish but it may not taste as Texan.
Bonus Section: Pies
For flavorful Texas desserts, there are a range of pies to choose from. This includes the traditional Pecan Pie which is also the state dessert of Texas.
There is also a Buttermilk Pie, which is almost like a custard pie but easier. Finally, there is a Red Velvet Pie which is akin to a Red Velvet Cake in a pie shell.
A list of Texas desserts is not complete without Pecan Pie.
You can create a sweet crust pastry shell or simply buy one yourself. With chopped pecans, light corn syrup, and vanilla extract, the filling is deliciously rich and easy to create.
For a classic Southern recipe, create a Buttermilk Pie. With a sweet crust pastry shell, a luxuriously creamy filling and a cracked sugar top.
Essentially, a Buttermilk Pie is a classy, decadent version of a custard pie. You only need a few ingredients from your pantry too and the filling takes care of itself in the oven when baked.
You are likely aware of a Red Velvet Cake yet put it in a pie casing, cover it with whipping cream and you have a whole new dessert. Simply create a crust from melted butter, sugar, and chocolate graham cracker crumbs.
The filling is pretty similar to a Red Velvet Cake with heavy whipping cream, buttermilk, and red food coloring being included. The topping is sheer indulgence with heavy whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla extract.
There are some truly decadent desserts from the state of Texas. Most are relatively common like an Ice Cream Sandwich, Carrot Cake, Cookies, and Sheet Cake.
However, the Lone Star State also excels at pies like the state dessert; Pecan Pie as well as Red Velvet Pie, and Buttermilk Pie.
If you really want to impress your guests, consider a Texas-themed party at a barbecue with a tasty dessert like Orange Creamsicle Cake or Banana Pudding to finish it off.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Known As The State Dessert In Texas?
It should come as little surprise that the official state dessert, or state pie, of the Lone Star State is a Pecan Pie, it became the state’s official dessert in 2013.
You can find it on restaurant menus all across the state and it should be found at a traditional state fair too. The Pecan Pie is also known as the state’s most popular dessert.
Which Texas Dessert Is Known As A Texas Funeral Cake?
While funerals may not be the ideal occasion for a dessert, you should see a chocolate sheet cake.
This dessert is common at funeral potlucks as it can be easily distributed, fit to feed a whole crowd, and easy to create.