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How to make your favourite desserts using whisky

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Whisky isn’t just for drinking. Sure, we love a dram of Ballantine’s Finest with friends. We also don’t shy away from shaking up a whisky cocktail, from the usual to the unusual. But our scotch also works in the kitchen.

Whisky can be sweet, smooth, fruity and creamy. So it naturally works well with desserts. From berry puddings to chocolate bakes, here’s our favourite whisky desserts, each of which are easy to make and seriously delicious. Make them the classic way, or make them your way with Ballantine’s.

Which whisky goes best with dessert?

You’re not going to want to use your best bottle of whisky in the kitchen. Save that for sipping alongside your dessert. But we recommend using a blend you’re familiar with. One that brings smooth complexity to your cooking. 

You can’t go wrong with Ballantine’s Finest. Our signature scotch has an age-old recipe that’s earned a fair few awards over the years. It’s perfectly soft, sweet and spiced, with subtle flavours of milk chocolate, vanilla and red apple. If it’s something sweeter you’re after, try pouring Ballantine’s Barrel Smooth. Selectively finished in caramelised oak barrels, this is our smoothest whisky yet.

Best whisky dessert recipes

Cranachan

We’re kicking off with a classic. If you really want to do a whisky dessert right, start with this Scottish tradition. Cranachan is a deliciously fruity pudding that puts Scotland’s ingredients at the forefront; toasted oats, sweet honey and tangy raspberries, folded into whisky whipped cream. Epic.

Serve up this must-have dessert on Burns Night to join in the Scottish celebrations. It’s also great for spring, summer or whenever you get that craving.

Whisky chocolate cake

Not much can make a chocolate cake better. Except whisky. The boozy addition adds extra richness and depth to this sweet bake. Strictly for adults only.

There’s a few ways to spike your favourite recipe. The simplest is to pour about a cup into the mixture, replacing some of the wet ingredients. You can also go with a whisky ganache, buttercream or caramel sauce to drizzle on top.

Whisky milkshake

Ok. This one’s more of a dessert cocktail than a traditional pudding. But once you take a sip you’ll get what we mean. It kicks off with ice cream. Followed by chocolate. And a good dose of whisky. The Whisky Milkshake is the ultimate dessert drink for cosy festive nights, over the top movie nights and those nights you need a bit of TLC. And it’s super simple to make. Blend it all together and then go nuts on toppings – you can add any kind and any amount you want. We love a simple marshmallow and cream mix just as much as a giant cookie garnish.

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Whisky Milkshake

Rich and creamy with a kick. If you can’t decide between dessert or whisky, this shake is for you. Strictly for over 18’s.

TRY IT

Chocolate mousse and whisky cream

The simplest way to make a dessert using whisky is with cream. Whisky is already a smooth spirit, so mixing it with cream just makes it even smoother. Carefully fold in a tablespoon of scotch to a carton of whipped cream and add sugar to taste. Then add it to your favourite desserts.

The easiest is chocolate mousse. Leave your chocolate and cream mix to set before topping with a layer of whisky cream and dusting with cocoa. There’s no better way to comfort your sweet tooth.

Whisky affogato

If you like your desserts simple and small, try this whisky twist on an Italian classic. An affogato is as easy to create as it’s quick to eat. One shot of hot espresso gets poured over ice cream and an optional pour of alcohol. In this recipe, it’s not optional.

Start by popping a scoop of ice cream into a small glass. Vanilla’s best for a simpler serve. But there’s no rules here. Rum and raisin, chocolate chip, stracciatella gelato – try it with your favourite mix. You’ll then pour the coffee, add the whisky and then it’s time to get stuck in before the ice cream melts.

Whisky sticky toffee pudding

A grown up twist on your favourite childhood dessert. This whisky twist on a classic home comfort takes Sunday lunch to new heights, making it seriously rich and extra warming. 

You’ve got two choices – add whisky to the sticky toffee sauce to pour on top, or go the whole hog and add scotch to the mixture. Either way, you can’t go wrong. Pour in a glug whilst no one’s looking and they’ll thank you later.

Discover more ways to use Ballantine’s in the kitchen. From whisky and Chinese food pairings to the best snacks to serve with whisky. And don’t miss our collection of cocktails to sip as you get stuck in.

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