16 Great Quarantine Baking Recipes

16 Great Quarantine Baking Recipes

Baking recipes to try when you're stuck at home!

Cooking and baking has seen a major resurgence due to the stay-at-home orders. While I hope this will all be over soon and am saddened for the people suffering and losing family members, I'm happy that at least one good thing that has come out of all this. And, I'm thrilled that baking is making people's quarantine time feel more fulfilling.

Depending on where you live, some ingredients may be difficult to find, but if you have the inclination, here's my personal hit list of my favorite (mostly) springtime baking recipes.

1. Blueberry Tartlets from Rodica Godlewski at Cooking is my Inheritance

Everything is cuter when it's small and these little guys are just too pretty not to make! They are so simple to put together and you'll fall in love with the fresh blueberry and lemon zest filling.

These make showstopping, but simple appetizers, or a light dessert. I love that the recipe uses store-bought dough for when you don't feel like making it from scratch. And, you can cook the blueberries directly from frozen. It's just an assemble and bake situation.

Be sure to check out Rodica's stunning food photography on her Instagram. She makes a beautiful challah braid and you'll fall in love with her moody images and interesting recipes.

Blueberry tartlet photos by Rodica Godlewski of Cooking is My Inheritance

2. Beatty's Chocolate Cake from Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa

It's not surprising that my go-to chocolate cake is from Ina Garten. Queen! This is the best, straightforward, unfussy chocolate cake around. Since this recipe uses coffee instead of boiling water, it is intensely chocolatey. The frosting is very light and fluffy and I highly recommend it. Don't be scared off by the raw egg yolk, just make sure your egg is pasteurized.

3. Famous Department Store Blueberry Muffins from King Arthur Flour

These really simple muffins never fail. My husband and I actually had a bake-off with these muffins (he does not bake) and his turned out...edible, even though he used baking soda instead of powder and ignored half the instructions!

I cook from King Arthur recipes a ton. Because they're a baking school, their recipes are meticulous and I love that they always provide grams, which is a MUST for me. They also have great resources on their site for baking tips and other info. If you're ever in the Vermont area, make a detour to their shop and take a class, if you can!

4. Persimmon Cookies from my Grandmother, Jean Brown

These cookies are so intertwined with my childhood that I'm probably biased, but they're my favorite cookies in the world! Persimmons might be a bit hard to find as they are currently out of season and even when they are in season, they aren't the most pervasive fruit.

However, I'd be remiss to leave this recipe out since they are easy to make and something a bit different from cookie recipes you usually see.

I love them so much, I hang her framed recipe on my living room wall.


1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or shortening
1 cup chopped nuts
1 cup raisins
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 cup persimmon pulp
1 teaspoon baking soda dissolved in pulp
2 cups
all purpose flour


Persimmon Cookies from My Grandmother, Jean Brown


Cream butter and sugar. Add nuts and raisins. Beat egg and add pulp and soda. Add to above. Add sifted flour and dry ingredients. Drop by teaspoon on greased cookie sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes in 350°F oven.

Note: Use American persimmons, not Japanese

5. Pumpkin Bread from my Great-Grandmother Jennie MacArthur

This recipe has been in my family for at least four generations and there's a reason! It's super moist, a crowd favorite, and foolproof. If you only do one recipe on this list, this should be it. Also, this recipe doubles well and makes great mini loaves for little gifts.

Pumpkin might be hard to come by right now with grocery stores being a bit under-stocked and since pumpkin is off-season. But, it's worth a look.


1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 cups sugar
1 cup canola oil
4 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups pumpkin pie mix
2⁄3 cup water
2 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups sifted flour
1⁄2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup chopped walnuts


Pumpkin Bread from my Great-Grandmother Jennie MacArthur


Beat the first 8 ingredients together. Blend in remaining ingredients in order listed. Grease 3 loaf pans. Fill about half full. Bake in pre­heated oven at 375°F for about one hour.

Let cool at least ten minutes before removing from pans. 

If using regular loaf pans, each pan takes three cups of batter. If using 9 mini loaf pans, each pan takes one cup of batter and bake for 35 minutes.

6. Chocolate Mousse Cake with Raspberries from King Arthur Flour

Guys, I'm not a big chocolate person, but this cake is incredible. The light mousse and surprise raspberries bring this cake to another level. It's a bit more involved because of the mousse filling, but it's not technically difficult. If pressed for time, you can make the mousse and frosting ahead.

Always use the optional espresso powder! You can't directly taste it, but it really amps up the chocolate flavor.

7. Japanese Milk Bread Rolls from King Arthur Flour

I love how easy this recipe is. Japanese milk bread is the lightest, tenderest, and fluffiest bread I've had. The warm flour and water roux in the tangzhong method helps to activate the gluten before all the ingredients are mixed together. It's an unusual technique for bread, but it's not difficult.

The milk also lends the bread its soft texture. If you've made bread before, everything aside from the tangzhong will feel familiar.

8. Blueberry Meringue Cookies from Oh Sweet Day Cookbook

These mini pavlovas are a great step up from your basic meringue cookie. They're light and crunchy, bursting with fresh flavor and a touch of sweetness. Adding the twist of the blueberry sauce is so fun, beautiful, and delicious!

Meringues are so simple, but very finicky. They're just eggs whites, cream of tartar (in this case, cream of tartar and lemon), sugar, and flavoring. If you haven't made them before, be sure to read up on them. Here's a little guide on some meringue do's and don'ts. I also have egg white baking tips in my Baking Binder Printable Kit.

They cook for a looooong time. So be sure you're not going anywhere for a bit. Oh, wait...quarantine...right.

9. Joy's Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with Pecans from King Arthur Flour

I know, I'm the only person in the world who isn't into chocolate chip cookies! That's why I love making these jazzed up versions with brown butter, pecans, and sea salt. Yes, please!

I always have tons of these in my freezer, to bring out in case of guests or other snacking emergencies.

My freezer is usually stocked with already baked cookies because I don't want to have to worry about preparing a baking sheet and preheating the oven before guests arrive.

However, you can also make the dough and freeze the dough balls, then bake them up from frozen if you know people are coming over (sometime in the distant, non-pandemic future) and have your house smell like freshly baked cookies.

10. Rhubarb Custard Cake from Epicurious

I'd never had rhubarb until working in a garden in New Hampshire. But holy smokes, I love it! Custard is a cinch to make and the rhubarb gives it a great tartness. Also, this can be made ahead, which is always a bonus!

11. The Easiest Loaf of Bread You'll Ever Bake from King Arthur Flour

It's in the title. Yeast bread can be intimidating at first, but this is a great recipe for your first loaf. King Arthur's step-by-step recipe includes gifs to illustrate the technique. So, if you can procure some bread flour and yeast, give it a whirl!

12. Strawberry Shortcake from NY Times Cooking

If you don't have a NY Times membership, take advantage of them opening up some of their recipes to the public because of COVID-19 with this perfect spring/summer dessert! So fresh and light, strawberry shortcake is a cinch to put together. Always satisfying, this recipe is a delicious classic.

13. Popover from Ina Garten

Popovers are incredibly easy and quick to make! The recipe calls for popover pans or custard cups, but I always just use a muffin tin, which works fine.

14. Cinammon Baked Donuts from Ina Garten

Who doesn't love donuts? I love baked donuts because I don't need to risk burning my house down attempting to fry them, and they are so much lighter than yeast donuts. All you need is a donut pan. They couldn't be more simple.

15. Raspberry Crème Fraîche Tart with Lavender Honey from Epicurious

Bye-bye, winter! Bring on the berries! So simple and so elegant. Love the fruity floral notes of the lavender honey. This dish is great by itself, but I love it with a little ice cream, too.

16. Cream Puffs and Eclairs from King Arthur Flour

These are for the more adventurous and those with some time on your hands. If you haven't made cream puffs or eclairs before, they take a little skill or some practice to get the components right. They are made from pâte à choux or choux pastry. It should be crispy on the outside and airy on the inside. It's imperative to have it rise correctly so there is space for your filling.

Making the choux pastry is the most technical part of the dish, however, the filling and toppings are easy peasy! Some people cut the cream puffs and eclairs in half, then pipe in the filling, but I prefer to make a hole underneath and pipe them in that way. If you do it that way, you just need to make sure you've filled them all the way and the proper amount.

Don't let all this deter you though, even if you don't get picture perfect eclairs on your first try (spoiler alert: you won't), they'll still be impressive and delicious! Choux pastry is also a great dough to master, as it can be used for multiple desserts. This is a GREAT guide to making choux.

For piping the eclair shells, you can use an open star tip, french tip, or round tip. I prefer the french as it gives them a more finished look. You can also just cut a hole in the tip of a piping bag or ziplock bag, but a piping tip gives you more control.

Don't forget to check out my new Baking Binder Kit and use it with your next baking project! The kit contains a page of handy baking conversions, four pages of my essential "baking success" tips, a shopping list, recipe pages, and more.

Recommended: Ten Tips to Organize Your Pantry and Keep it that Way

What are your biggest quarantine baking challenges? Comment below.

As always, I'd love to hear any comments or questions you have about baking! Please share your projects with me, in the comments below, or on Instagram, with the hashtag #midniteoilmedia.

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Posted by Kelly O'Toole in Baking, 0 comments