Ah, the holidays - and, oh, the stressthat comes with them when you're trying to bake for a houseful ofguests who have rampant sweet tooths and visions of sugarplums dancingin their heads. One way to make things a little easier for your nextget-together: Plan ahead and have dessert delivered to your door. Because we care about you, dear readers, we decided to sacrifice ourswimsuit-­ready figures and sample treats from all over the country.(It was a tough job, but someone had to do it.) Here, for your reading- and eating - pleasure, are the best of the best. - Haley Shapley

  • Image about Apple Pie (1) Heritage Pie Company


Apple Pie (1)
Heritage Pie Company

Whose grandmamade this? No, really - that's a serious question with this pie, whicharrives so fresh, you could pass it off as homemade. At five pounds,this monstrous dessert is filled to the brim with apples - 10 to 12 ofthem, to be exact. We've made piecrust this tender and good only in ourdreams. $35. (877) 816-1400, www.heritagepie.com

Starry Night (2)
Elegant Cheese Cakes

Choosingthis winner was a piece of cake - since it's the prettiest cake we'veever seen. Although it's heavy on the fondant icing (which we forgive,as that's what makes it look so good), the gift inside (vanillacheesecake with a hint of peppermint on a chocolate-cookie crust) isworth a little unwrapping. $99. (650) 728-2248,
www.elegantcheesecakes.com

Chocolate Mousse Cups (3)
Williams-Sonoma

These chilled treats were so good, they inspired our taste-testers to invent words such as scrumdeliumptious and yumazing.With the three different flavors of creamy, melt-in-your-mouthchocolate, you can't go wrong serving these for any occasion. $43 for aset of 12 (four of each flavor). (877) 812-6235, www .williams-sonoma.com