St Patricks Day is a spirited holiday – literally. In addition to wearing green and adding food coloring to desserts to make them look more festive, many cooks and bakers reach for Irish beer, whisky or other spirits and liqueurs to capture the flavor of the holiday. They’re great to bake with because they produce some flavorful desserts that are great for grown ups. And if you want to use a little food coloring, that is absolutely fine, too.
- The Little Epicurean‘s Irish Whiskey and Stout Chocolate Cake is a great example of a St Patrick’s Day dessert for grown ups – although you could enjoy this any time of the year. The layer cake is made with chocolate stout cake and its layers are soaked in whisky simple syrup to give it a lot of flavor and to keep those layers moist. A whisky cream cheese frosting holds everything together and a drizzle of chocolate glaze finishes of the flavorful cake before serving.
- I enjoy making clafoutis for both breakfast and dessert, and I would say that Lea & Jay‘s Caramel Apple and Irish Whiskey Clafoutis would work well as an indulgent treat for either of those categories. The tender clafoutis is a bit like a custardy pancake, and this one is loaded up with tender caramel-cooked apples. The caramel leftover from cooking the apples is reserved and a splash of whiskey is added to it, so you can use the caramel as a syrup when you’re serving the dish to tie everything together.
- Another St Patrick’s Day breakfast tie-in comes from Blahnik Baker‘s Guinness Pistachio Sweet Rolls with Irish Cream Cheese Glaze. The fluffy buns are made with a Guinness-spiked yeasted dough, which has a rich flavor from the addition of Guinness, though the flavor of the beer in the finished product is going to be relatively subtle, so you won’t feel like you’re having a beer with breakfast. The dough is rolled out and filled up with brown butter, brown sugar and pistachios. The rolls are finished with an Irish cream cheese glaze to add a little extra sweetness and to make them perfectly sticky before serving.
- The Beer Mug Cupcakes with Baileys Filling posted on Tablespoon are almost too cute to eat. The chocolate cakes are baked in wide mouth mason jars to give them vertical sides, and after they have baked and cooled you can get to decorating. The cupcakes are filled with a Bailey’s Irish Cream ganache and wrapped in a carefully textured layer of yellow fondant, which gives them the look of a mug of beer – especially once the handle is attached – and gives the cupcakes some structure. They’re topped off with a head of whippped cream foam just before serving.
- If you are feeling lucky on St Patrick’s Day, you might want to bake up a Lucky Charms Swirled Bundt Cake from Chelsea’s Messy Apron. This cake is a good choice for kids of all ages because it is so colorful that it will be hard to resist taking a slice. The bundt cake is a moist vanilla cream cheese pound cake that has a generous amount of Lucky Charms marshmallows mixed in along with a swirl of bright green batter. The marshmallows add a little bit of sweetness but don’t exactly hold their shapes during baking, which is why you’re going to want to reserve some for garnishing the cake because you’ll want everyone to see exactly what went into it!