Panini sandwiches may be a favorite for a quick lunch, but the whole purpose of in investing in a Panini press for your kitchen is that you can use it for so many different things. One of the best examples of this is whipping up a quick dessert. Whether this is to satisfy your own devilish late-night sweet tooth, to surprise your family after an otherwise typical weekday dinner, or you were surprised with guests that need something to go with their cup of coffee, Panini desserts are all well-suited for the job.
While you have to make sure that you have the ingredients on hand, you would be surprised what you can create in your Panini press with surprisingly little that can turn out delightfully sweet.
Desert Recipes for a Panini Maker
Angel Food Cake Panini
Using angel food cake is a great example of thinking outside the bread. However, because the whole texture of angel food cake is created by using a batter without using any sort of fat, you don’t want to both press it AND weigh it down with incredibly heavy ingredients like nutella spread. You will end up with mush. Instead, layer it lightly with banana, strawberry, and a few chocolate chips. You still get that gooey chocolate texture aided by the heated banana, but the whole thing stays firm and not too sweet.
Dulce de Leche Panini
Dulce de Leche is a wonderful caramel sauce made by slowly heating up already delicious sweetened condensed milk. Drizzle this delight on a split croissant, layer with strawberries, add in some marshmallows or marshmallow fluff, and finally put just a little bit of brie on there before pressing to get an impressively gooey sandwich that is a completely different flavor profile than your typical dessert Panini.
Apple Pie Panini
Dare to dream, right? You couldn’t possibly capture the same delight that is apple pie in a Panini, yeah? While you won’t get the same flakey crust, the flavor of this ambitious Panini is spot on. By adding a little honey, a few small dabs of butter, apple slices, mascarpone cheese, and brown sugar on thick slice of raisin bread, it is pie come again. Why not serve it was a little ice cream dolloped on top? Of course, then you would have to eat it with a fork, though.
Nutella and Pears Panini
Hey, we had to have at least one nutella Panini on here. It is practically food law. As nutella is so good as a normal spread, but just amazing when it is warmed up just slightly, it makes it kind of one of the more wonderful spreads to put on a dessert Panini. As for the pears, well, naturally they go good with the hazelnut and chocolate flavor, but people put a lot of different fruit with nutella. However, people usually forget about pears. They are an entirely underrated fruit, but just the right balance of sweet and tart to match the spread. As for the bread, you can use sweet bread or just normal bread, but it needs to be big enough to stand up to the melty nutella and the somewhat moist pears. We recommend a nice challah.
Anyone can create a classic s’more Panini without too much thought, but the joy of having your own Panini maker is that you can play with the flavors. By using a more in your face fruit like blueberries, switching the chocolate to a lighter white chocolate and combining all that with a creamy marshmallow fluff, you have a brand new, unique, and yummy twist on the s’more Panini. Oh, of course that should all go on some cinnamon or raisin bread to get a flavor closest to the graham crackers, since you can’t use graham crackers in a Panini press. We know, we tried.
Fig, Goat Cheese, and Honey Panini
If you want something just a touch more healthy than your Panini’s made of two slices of delicious cake, this one has you covered. Using a hearty whole grain bread, add on some fresh fig, a few almonds for crunch, drizzle with honey, and then add on a little bit of goat cheese. You get just the right amount of sweetness from the honeyed fig, but you also get that nice creamy texture and slightly salty flavor from the goat cheese that brings it up to a well-rounded, satisfying, and healthy dessert Panini.
Berries and Cream Panini
Berries in sweet cream is an excellent simple dessert in itself, but you don’t need a Panini press in order to make that. However, you can capture a lot of that wonderful flavor by combining fresh berries and cream cheese between two slice of thick pound cake. When heated, the cream cheese melts and the berries release their juices, this is where they mix wonderfully and some of that is sort of sopped up by the pound cake. As pound cake is typically your go-to dessert vessel for carrying sweet liquid, it creates a wonderful sandwich. Just be sure not to add too many berries or too wet berries. Pound cake can only take so much moisture.
Chocolate and Brie Panini
Do you just want a gooey chocolate Panini you can make really fast and then just get lost in? It doesn’t need to be super complicated, but that doesn’t mean you can’t play with flavors. By adding two thick slices of brie and two big chunks of chocolate together on sourdough, then pressing them together, you created a melty sandwich with sweetness that is only enhanced by the slight salt of the brie. Of course, the brie also lends to a wonderful creamy texture that you want in a chocolate Panini.