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Classic dessert recipes

Diana De Cicco is a food editor and writer based in New York City. She has a master's degree from New York University in Food Studies. Her passions are eating, traveling, and eating while traveling.

Go retro with dessert

If you are craving something new for dessert, try going back a few years and pulling up some favorite classic dessert recipes from the ‘50s, ‘60s, and ‘70s. You can easily update retro desserts with new styles and ingredients for a fun and creative treat that your kids will think is new and you will remember from your childhood.

Go retro with dessert

Strawberry-blueberry jubilee

Makes 6 servings


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 pound fresh strawberries, rinsed, stemmed, and sliced
  • 1/2 pound fresh blueberry, rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 cup Grand Marnier
  • 3 cups vanilla ice cream


  1. Combine sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan; add water and orange juice; bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly, until thick; add the strawberries, blueberries, and orange zest and bring to a boil again, then reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until berries begin to break down.
  2. Take the pot off of the heat and mix in almond extract and Grand Marnier, then carefully light to let the alcohol burn off.
  3. Spoon ice cream into bowls and top with berry sauce.

Checkerboard cupcakes

Makes 12 cupcakes


  • 3-ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/3 cups plus 5 tablespoons milk, divided
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted cake flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plus 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened and cubed
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line a 12-cup cupcake tin with liners.
  2. Melt chocolate over a double boiler, stirring often; set aside.
  3. Beat eggs with 1/3 cup milk and 1 tablespoon vanilla; set aside.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine flour with granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt; beat in 1 cup butter and 1 cup milk until well combined; add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and beat well.
  5. Separate the batter into two bowls and stir the melted chocolate into one of the bowls, batter should be fairly thick; spoon batter into two pastry bags.
  6. Carefully pipe a small amount of chocolate batter into the center of each cupcake liner then carefully pipe the vanilla batter around the edges to create a donut-like effect; repeat steps, alternating flavors to create a checkerboard pattern.
  7. Bake cupcakes 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  8. Let cupcakes cool well. Meanwhile, beat confectioners' sugar with cocoa powder, 6 tablespoons butter, 5 tablespoons milk, and 1 teaspoon vanilla until well combined and creamy. When cupcakes have fully cooled frost the tops.

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