The Finest Tea and Dessert Pairings for an Afternoon Tea with Friends

Afternoon tea is a fun and classic way to mark a special occasion. If you’re planning on hosting an afternoon tea party, you might wonder what kind of desserts and pairings you should serve with your tea. We’ve got you covered! Here are some delectable tea-and-dessert pairings under $50.

Assorted Scones

Scones are the perfect option for a light snack that everyone enjoys. They’re also relatively inexpensive. So if you’re on a budget, assorted scones are a great choice.

We recommend pairing your scones with various flavors: lemon curd and clotted cream, jam and butter, chocolate chip, and cream cheese frosting—the possibilities are endless!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

The best way to enjoy an afternoon tea with friends is to pair your dessert with sweet cookies. Chocolate chip cookies are perfect for afternoon tea because they’re easy to make, and you can buy them from a bakery or grocery store for under $50. You can also find cookies that aren’t overly sweet, making them perfect for dunking into a cup of tea.

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Chocolate chip cookies go well with many kinds of tea—from white teas like Silver Needle to rooibos blends like Rooibos Vanilla Spice. The slight bitterness from the rooibos will offset the sweetness from the chocolate chips, while milk teas will give them a creamy texture that makes for a delightfully chewy treat!

Clotted Cream

Clotted cream is a British classic that is perfect for any occasion and is under $50. It’s decadent and creamy, and it pairs beautifully with many different teas. Our favorite pairing is clotted cream with Earl Grey.

The citrus notes of the tea complement the creaminess of the clotted cream, creating a creamy treat that will blow your mind.


Berries are a classic pairing for afternoon tea. Their tart, sweet flavor mixes well with the rich, creamy taste of scones, and berries are often served on their own as a garnish for cakes and pastries during an afternoon tea event.

If you’re hosting an afternoon tea for friends, berries are a great way to create a luxurious-feeling menu without breaking your budget!

Finger Sandwiches

Finger sandwiches are your bread and butter, so you want to ensure they’re just right. White bread is always the way to go for finger sandwiches, as it goes well with most fillings. Here are some of our favorites:

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  • Cucumber – We recommend slicing a cucumber into thin rounds, then layering them with cream cheese and dill on white bread slices. This sandwich pairs perfectly with tea because it’s light enough not to overpower the flavors in other dishes but still packs a punch in terms of flavor and nutrition.
  • Dill – Dill is one of those ingredients everyone loves—it’s fresh and crunchy without being overpowering or hard to eat. It also pairs well with seafood, so try pairing dill cream cheese or any other kind with salmon on white bread slices for an afternoon tea party favorite.
  • Cream Cheese – Cream cheese has an amazing creamy texture when combined with other ingredients, so if you’re looking for something simple but satisfyingly tasty, look no further than this classic combo. Before spreading it on your bread, you can change things up even further by adding different kinds of herbs or spices like basil or cilantro.

French Macarons

French macarons are small, delicate cakes made from almond flour and egg whites. These macarons have flavored filling, such as chocolate or jam.

Because they’re so delicate, you’ll want to treat them with care when serving them at your tea party. If you put the desserts out on the table for everyone to help themselves, you can serve them in individual paper cups to guests who prefer not to drink their tea with their dessert.

Petit Fours

Petit fours are an easy way to impress guests at a tea party. If you don’t have time to bake from scratch, you can often find petit fours at the grocery store or bakery for under $50.

There are many ways that you can make your own petit fours for an afternoon tea party. Some popular ideas include:

  • Mango and mint macaroons
  • Lemon curd tarts with fresh grapefruit slices
  • Chocolate truffles with raspberry swirl filling

Final Thoughts

Having tea with friends and family is a great way to unwind and catch up. Bringing everyone together in a peaceful setting is a good way to connect and enjoy great times.

If you want to host an afternoon tea party at home, you don’t need a large budget or expensive ingredients. You only need the right desserts to satisfy your sweet tooth and pair perfectly with your tea.