How to Layer Trifles


A trifle dessert makes a delicious and attractive addition to any buffet table or as the final course at the end of a special meal. Served in a large stemmed bowl it can be a very elegant-looking dish. Trifles are actually much easier to prepare than expected. It can be made several hours or a couple of days in advance and will stay fresh in the refrigerator. It only takes a little bit of extra care to alternate the various layers and prepare this professional-looking dessert, suitable for most special occasions.

Things You'll Need

  • Trifle bowl
  • Long-handled spoon
  • Electric mixer
  • Jar of jam or fruit preserves
  • Whipped topping
  • Instant pudding
  • Milk
  • Sponge cake
  • Canned pineapple, drained
  • Maraschino cherries
  • Bake the sponge cake. Wait for it to cool and remove from the baking pan. Cut the cake into 1-inch cubes. Use the electric mixer to whip the topping. Set aside 1 cup of the whipped topping for garnish. Prepare the instant pudding according to the directions on the box. Mix it together with the whipped topping.

  • Layer the cubes of sponge cake on the bottom of the trifle bowl with your fingers. Drop several spoonfuls of jam onto the cake, as close to the edge of the glass bowl as possible. Use the long handled spoon to arrange a layer of the canned pineapple on top of the cake. Make sure the pineapple pieces are also visible against the sides of the bowl.

  • Add large spoonfuls of the whipped topping and pudding mix on top of the pineapple. Use the back of the spoon to smooth the topping into an even layer. Add another layer of cake cubes on top of the whipped topping. Repeat the layers until there is only 1-inch of space from the top of the bowl.

  • Spoon dollops of the reserved whipped topping onto the top of the trifle. Spread evenly. Place a few cherries around the circumference of the trifle as well as a few in the center. Serve with a long-handled silver spoon.

Tips & Warnings

  • Precise measurements are not important. The trifle will be delicious no matter how many cherries, or how much jam is added.
  • Fresh fruit that is in season can be substituted for the canned pineapple.

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  • Photo Credit George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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