When my friends asked me to replicate a roasted pumpkin soup from their recent trip to Austria for their wedding reception last September, I was stumped for a few minutes—not how to make it, but how to serve it. It was a buffet after all and there wasn’t a seated first course where a cup of creamy soup was a natural option. I’d think on it.

But I didn’t need to think long. I walked into Pier One Imports and there on a display sat boxes of shot glasses complete with miniature spoons. I picked up a couple dozen and that’s how first-course cups of pumpkin soup morphed into cocktail-hour shooters. People loved it.

While I may have bought the shot glasses as soup shooters, I had big dessert plans for these little guys. You’ll see a couple of my creations below but you can see even more over at AARP where I write a bi-weekly column.

I wanted these desserts intense—if it’s only a couple of bites, it’s gotta pack a punch—I also wanted them simple—no making cake or pudding or mousse before I could even think about assembly. With these you whip up cream, flavor a little cream cheese, and crush cookie crumbs. After that you’re ready to assemble.

Shot glass desserts are a beautiful blend of ease, decadence, and portion control. Remember to savor every bite. There’s enough to satisfy and when they’re gone, you’re blessedly done.