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No-Bake Eggnog Lush

Finally, a festive dessert that you don’t need your oven for.

Maybe it’s just me, but I tend to prefer an eggnog-flavored treat over an actual glass of eggnog any day. Because while the core flavor of eggnog is great – creamy and spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg – a whole thick glass of it is just… a lot. That’s why I love this lush. It is rich in eggnog flavor but it goes down a lot smoother than a glass of the stuff. It also happens to be super easy to make – you don’t need your oven, you don’t need your stove, just a handful of convenient ingredients and a little bit of time.

You might be asking, “What on earth is a lush?” Well, let me tell you. A lush is a creamy layered confection that always involves a cookie crumb crust and some combination of no-bake cheesecake, pudding, and whipped cream. This particular version starts with Nilla wafers, which are crushed into crumbs and mixed with butter, a bit of sugar, and some cinnamon and nutmeg to form a sweet winter-spiced crust.

But the warming spiced flavor doesn’t stop there. The second layer is made up of cream cheese, a little more cinnamon, and some rum extract to round out that egg nog flavor. That’s mixed with some whipped topping and powdered sugar so it’s like spreadable cheesecake filling and it goes over the cookie crumbs. (Chilling in between the layers doesn’t hurt matters.)

The next layer is the pudding layer, which involves instant vanilla pudding and a few cups of eggnog, and the final flourish is a simple layer of whipped topping. And that’s all the work you have to do! The only other step is to chill it until it’s firm enough to slice and serve.

What I love about this is that the eggnog flavor runs all the way through – there’s actual eggnog in the pudding layer, rum extract and cinnamon in the cheesecake, and cinnamon and nutmeg in the crust. But even so, you don’t feel like you’re getting punched by eggnog, since there’s the crunch of the cookie crust, silky cheesecake, and the airier whipped topping. A festive delight that’s no trouble at all to make!

Serves 12

20m prep time

2h inactive

Rated 4.7 out of 5
Rated by 6 reviewers
For the crust:
  • 12 oz Nilla wafers
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
For the cream cheese layer:
  • 8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon rum extract
  • 8 oz frozen whipped topping, thawed (such as Cool whip)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the pudding layer:
  • 2 (3.4 oz each) boxes vanilla instant pudding
  • 3 cups eggnog, chilled
For the topping:
  • 8 oz frozen whipped topping, thawed (such as Cool whip)
  • Cinnamon or nutmeg, for dusting, optional
To make the crust:
  1. Using a food processor or a rolling pin, crush Nilla wafers into fine crumbs. Mix with melted butter, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg and press into a 9x13-inch baking dish.
  2. Transfer to freezer while you work on the next layer.
To make the cheesecake layer:
  1. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually add powdered sugar, and mix until smooth. Add rum extract and whipped topping, along with the cinnamon, and mix on low speed until combined. Spread mixture evenly over crust.
To make the pudding layer:
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the pudding mix and chilled eggnog. Once it begins to thicken, spread evenly over cheesecake layer.
  2. Spread whipped topping evenly over the pudding layer, cover with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve, at least 1 hour. Dust with cinnamon or nutmeg before serving, if desired. Enjoy!
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