Dessert Boxes Perfect for Giving

Jess Desserts specializes in macarons in flavors such as salted caramel, lavender honey and almond raspberry. 

Writer: Karla Walsh
Photographer: Duane Tinkey

The holiday season is hectic enough, so this year consider outsourcing your baking to the pros. Cut down on the stress and mess by ordering desserts from these local bakers.

Sift N Sprinkle prepares decadent dessert trays loaded with cookies, macarons, cupcakes and more. 

Sift N Sprinkle

After losing her corporate job during the pandemic, Alisa Woods turned her passion into a career. Learning from her grandma who frequently competed in the baking competitions at the Iowa State Fair, Woods followed suit, racking up a stack of blue ribbons. Unsure of what route to take next, “I decided to do the thing that got me excited most—bake.” 

Now baking out of her certified home kitchen, Woods prepares cakes for weddings, birthdays and beyond. But she’s also a pro at epic, showstopping dessert trays overflowing with dipped pretzels, cupcakes, macarons, homemade candies and more. If her pop-up sale dessert trays aren’t sizable enough, Woods can also create a full dessert table to act as your party centerpiece. 

Keep up with her creations, sign up for the email list, and see her current menu at

Jess Desserts bakes biscotti perfect for dipping with a cup of coffee.

Jess Desserts

Since September 2018, culinary specialist Jess Anderson has rarely been far from her signature apron. She dons it while baking and hosting stands at the Valley Junction and downtown farmers markets. Although Anderson’s specialty is macarons, she can make any sweet. During the off-season, she offers monthly dessert boxes packed with sweet rolls, scones, toaster pastries, cupcakes and her signature macarons. 

Follow @jessdessertsdsm on Instagram to keep up the latest selection, visit to see her custom order menu, or contact her at to get the dish about current offerings and availability. 

Prairie Rose Desserts

A graduate of the baking and pastry program at the Culinary Institute of America, Holly Evans baked her way through several French hotels and restaurants, later returning to Des Moines as pastry chef at Proof restaurant and general manager of Creme Cupcake. 

Now, Evans has “retired” from cakes to focus on brunch boxes (a dozen assorted breakfast pastries including croissant, Danish, pain au chocolat and more), custom sugar cookies, and her “Mac Attack Weekends,” which feature a rotating menu of six-packs of customizable, colorful macarons. Each Christmas, she offers a pre-order treat box with sugar cookies, macarons, brownies, caramels, almond bark and homemade marshmallows. 

Follow @prairierosedesserts on Instagram, see the current menu at or email to place a custom order. 

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