Olive Garden Tiramisu

Looking for a classic Italian dessert for your next dinner? Look no further than this Olive Garden Tiramisu! Espresso, chocolate, and mascarpone cheese make for a delightful and uplifting dessert. It’s a wonderful and easy tiramisu recipe!

a tiramisu with one slice cut

What Makes this Olive Garden Tiramisu so Good

Tiramisu is a classic! And what’s not to like? It’s a beautiful combination of cake, coffee, and brandy or rum. Substitute cream cheese for the mascarpone cheese and you have the perfect dessert.

And you can actually make this dessert ahead of time so you are not rushed the day you have your friends and family over for a special meal.

This dessert has been on the menu at the Olive Garden for as long as I can remember and for good reason. It’s the perfect ending to an Italian meal.

History of Tiramisu

The legend of tiramisu is thought to have started back in the 17th century in Siena, Italy. A dessert similar to the tiramisu recipes we know now was made for a Grand Duke who brought the recipe to Florence.

The modern-day recipe was actually created in the 1960s by a confectioner in Veneto, Italy. A traditional tiramisu is a coffee-flavored dessert made of ladyfingers dipped in coffee and layered with a mixture of eggs, sugar, and mascarpone cheese topped with cocoa.

How to Make this Olive Garden Tiramisu

This recipe strays just a bit from the classic tiramisu but the wonderful flavor remains the same.

Here’s what you need:

  • Sponge Cake
  • Strong Black Coffee
  • Brandy or Rum
  • Cream Cheese
  • Superfine Sugar
  • Cocoa
Olive Garden Tiramisu ingredients

How to Make Olive Garden Tiramisu

The entire recipe is in the printable recipe card further down. But here’s a really quick overview of how to make one of my favorite Olive Garden desserts of all time.

  1. Cut the sponge cake in half lengthwise to make 2 layers.
  2. Blend the coffee and brandy together and pour enough over the bottom half to slightly moisten it.  Be careful not to over moisten the cake.
    sponge cake with espresso
  3. Beat the cream cheese and sugar until completely combined.
    mascarpone cheese mixture for tiramisu
  4. Spread half of the cream cheese mixture over the bottom layer.
  5. Add the second layer and top with the remaining cream cheese.
  6. Sprinkle the top with sifted cocoa and refrigerate for at least two hours.
a sliced tiramisu

What is a substitute for mascarpone cheese?

An authentic tiramisu recipe will use mascarpone cheese. But if you can’t find any, you can use cream cheese instead.

What liquor is in tiramisu?

Normally bakers use brandy in this Italian dessert. Rum has a similar flavor profile and can easily be used if you don’t have any brandy in your home.

How do you serve and store tiramisu?

Tiramisu is known as an icy Italian dessert. It should always be served cold.  Make sure you refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

Leave it out at room temperature for 20 minutes before serving. You can do another dusting of cocoa powder on top before serving. It makes it look fancier and gives it a deeper flavor too.

Tiramisu can stay in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. The cake will get too mushy if left longer than that. But you’ll probably eat it up well before those two days are up!

What do you like to serve with Tiramisu? Let us know in the comments below.

homemade olive garden tiramisu

More Olive Garden Dessert Recipes to Try

Whip up any of these yummy Olive Garden desserts next.

Check out more of my easy dessert recipes and the best Olive Garden recipes here on CopyKat!

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a tiramisu with one slice cut

Olive Garden Tiramisu

Delight your family and friends with a luscious Italian dessert. It's quick and easy to make with this Olive Garden Tiramisu copycat recipe.
5 from 5 votes
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Olive Garden Recipes, Tiramisu
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 2621kcal


  • 1 sponge cake (10 to 12″ and about 3″ tall)
  • 3 ounces strong black coffee
  • 3 ounces brandy or rum
  • 1 1/2 pounds cream cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
  • cocoa powder for sprinkling on top


  • Cut across middle of sponge cake, forming two layers, each about 1 and 1/2 inches thick.
  • Blend coffee and brandy. Sprinkle enough mixture over the bottom half of the cake to flavor it strongly. Don't moisten the cake too much or it may collapse.
  • Beat room temperature cheese and 1 cup sugar until sugar is completely dissolved and cheese is light and spreadable. Test for sweetness during the beating, adding more sugar if needed.
  • On the cut surface of the bottom layer, spread half of the cheese mixture.
  • Place the second layer on top.
  • Spread the remaining cheese mixture on top.
  • Sprinkle top with sifted cocoa.
  • Refrigerate the cake for at least two hours before cutting and serving.


  • An original Tiramisu recipe uses mascarpone cheese but if you can substitute cream cheese instead.
  • Rum is a great alternative to brandy if you don’t have brandy in your home.
  • Tiramisu is served cold.  So make sure you refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.  Leave out at room temperature for 20 minutes before serving.  You can do another dust of cocoa powder before serving.
  • Tiramisu can stay in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.  The cake will get too mushy if left longer than that.
You can find more Olive Garden Recipes at CopyKat.com, the web’s most popular destination for copycat restaurant recipes.


Calories: 2621kcal | Carbohydrates: 610g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 105mg | Sodium: 385mg | Potassium: 139mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 601g | Vitamin A: 960IU | Calcium: 94mg | Iron: 1.4mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home, and CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Lauren

    I made this and the taste was good. However texture was off and not enough cheese layer. Upon examining other recipes I’m thinking 2 cups of heavy cream were maybe missed in the cheese mixture…

  2. Aimee

    I had a little trouble figuring out measurements because I used rum extract instead of alcohol; however, I think it turned out rather well for my first time. Thanks for the recipe. I will definitely be making it again!

  3. Marianna Pascarella

    The tiramisu is definitely the favorite dessert of my husband and can not miss at his birthday. For my children instead I made a variation of the classic tiramisu to make it lighter and more palatable. I replaced the coffee and the cocoa powder with strawberry sauce and I decorated with red currant.
    Congratulations for your blog.
    Marianna Pascarella

  4. H

    Olive Garden’s recipe has lady fingers not spongecake
    This recipe has been online for almost 15 years at this point, so it is possible their recipe changed. I will take this as an action item that this recipe should be updated in the future. Thank you for pointing this out! ~Stephanie

5 from 5 votes (3 ratings without comment)

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