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Cranberry Trifle

Cranberry Trifle – A gorgeous dessert perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas! Layers of vanilla pound cake, cream filling, and cranberry sauce.

Cranberry Trifle

When it comes to the holidays, having festive desserts that are perfect for feeding a crowd is a must! Trifles are always my go-to because they are so gorgeous and elegant with lovely layers of delicious dessert perfection.  I knew that for Thanksgiving this year, I just had to make a cranberry trifle. Cranberry sauce is my favorite part of the classic Thanksgiving meal and I just love any dessert with cranberries in it. I decided to make the trifle with layers of pound cake, homemade cranberry sauce, and a delicious cream filling.

Common Questions About Making a Cranberry Trifle

What is a trifle?

A trifle is a layered British dessert that typically made with lady fingers, custard, and other fillings such as fruit, sponge cake, whipped cream, etc.

What is a cranberry trifle?

A cranberry trifle is a variation on a classic trifle which uses vanilla pound cake, homemade cranberry sauce, and a delicious cream filling.

What variations can I make on this recipe?

There are some great variations you can make on this recipe such as –

  • You could use angel food cake or white cake instead of pound cake. I suggest using a boxed cake mix or pre-made to save time.
  • Add a homemade custard layer! I’ve tried this before and I loved it but I skipped it in the final recipe as some people find custard a bit tricky to make.
  • Add a bit of eggnog to the cream filling. Add up to 3 tablespoons in the cream filling.
  • Try using a different cranberry sauce recipe! I’ve used my apple cider cranberry sauce in this recipe before and it was delicious.

Can I use homemade pound cake?

Yes! Feel free to use your favorite pound cake recipe.

What other types of trifles can I make?

There are so many amazing varieties of trifles! Some of my favorites are –

Looking for more holiday recipes? Check these out!

Yield: 12 Servings

Cranberry Trifle

Cranberry Trifle

Cranberry Trifle - A gorgeous dessert perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas! Layers of vanilla pound cake, cream filling, and cranberry sauce.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

Ingredients

Cranberry Sauce

  • 24 oz fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup water
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Zest of one orange

Cream Filling

  • 8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream

Other Ingredients

  • 2 store-bought pound cakes (12 ounces each)
  • Sugared cranberries (for garnish)
  • Candied orange zest (for garnish)

Instructions

Cranberry Sauce

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine cranberries, cinnamon, water, orange zest, and sugar.  Cook on medium heat for 12-15 minutes.  Transfer to a bowl and chill.

Cream Filling

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract until well combined. Slowly add in heavy cream, beating until soft peaks form.

Assembly

  1. Cut the cakes into 1 inch x 1 inch cubes and place half of the cake cubes at the bottom of the trifle dish.
  2. Cover the pound cake with half of the cranberry sauce spreading it so it is even. 
  3. Top with half of the cream filling.
  4. Repeat with the remaining cake, cranberry sauce, and cream filling.
  5. Top with candied orange zest and sugared cranberries as garnish (optional) and keep chilled until ready to serve.

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