If you follow me on Instagram, or are friends with me in real life, you probably already know that I was in New York over Memorial Day weekend. It was a great trip. I saw friends, I saw shows, I traveled to New Jersey for a wedding, and I ate dessert. Lots of dessert. See, I wanted to make sure I had material for a NYC post, but all my obligations left our schedule a little disjointed. So I decided to get specific and sacrifice my blood sugar to give you guys a post on cool desserts to seek out in NYC! I know – I’m incredibly selfless.
I hesitate to call this a guide to NYC’s desserts. The city is a vast sugar haven, and I cannot claim to have eaten a wide enough assortment to be any sort of authority on the matter. But I did find some particularly tasty treats. In fact, I can say with full confidence that you can’t go wrong with any of these desserts. Unless of course you’re diabetic, in which case you should probably just close this tab right now.
The trip was short and sweet (literally), but I was able to average one dessert spot a day, which is honestly pretty impressive/alarming considering I was there for four days and outside of the city for one and a half of them. Before you get too concerned for my health, I’ll tell you the secret to my seemingly endless capacity for sugar: friends. It’s friends. I shared, and that’s how I survived this frankly irresponsible quest. Don’t try to eat this volume of desserts on your own. It’s not a good idea. Ok – now that I’ve made that disclaimer, let’s do this!
Levain Bakery (Upper West Side)
351 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10024
Levain Bakery hands down has my favorite cookies in the world. It’s the one dessert spot I make sure to visit every time I’m in New York, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t obsessively seek out a copycat recipe to use at home (though it’s nowhere near as good). The real star here is the chocolate chip and walnut cookie, though we also got the dark chocolate and peanut butter chip, which was quite good.
I should warn you that this place can have some serious lines, but it’s well worth the wait. We got lucky in that while we were waiting in line, some dude came out and told everyone that there was another, bigger location a few blocks away with no wait. Everyone seemed to think he was a fraud and really wanted to lure us into some impostor shop, but I consulted Yelp and it was legit!
Supermoon Bakehouse (Lower East Side)120 Rivington St
New York, NY 10002
If I’m being honest here, I wanted to go to Supermoon Bakehouse because I really liked their branding. They have these holographic bags and boxes, and I’m sorry if this makes me millennial trash, but I needed them in my life.
Branding aside, their baked goods looked dope and they did not disappoint. They’ve got these insane filled croissants and donuts that come in a wide array of flavors. It’s actually eerily similar to a place in L.A. and San Francisco called Mr. Holmes Bakehouse. Like, to the point where Ben and I felt a little uncomfortable because they’d clearly ripped Mr. Holmes off. But upon further inspection, we realized that Supermoon had been opened by a Mr. Holmes alum, which at least feels more kosher.
We got a passionfruit and black sesame brioche donut and a s’more croissant. I loved the passionfruit and black sesame donut, but the croissant was a bit much for me. Don’t get me wrong, it was still good, just… a lot.
Milk Bar (Midtown)15 W 56th St
New York, NY 10019
I debated over whether or not to stop at Milk Bar for this post. It’s consistently delicious, but at this point everybody knows and loves the Momofuku bakery headed by Christina Tosi, so it seemed a bit trite. In the end, though, Milk Bar won out. We had some time to kill before seeing a show, and it was in the area. And honestly, it’d just be rude to avoid Milk Bar. It’s not their fault they’re popular. They’ve earned it.
We kept it simple by grabbing some birthday cake truffles and a cereal milk soft serve, both of which were wonderful. I’d also highly recommend the crack pie and any of their cookies.
Taiyaki NYC (Chinatown)119 Baxter St
New York, NY 10013
For our final dessert spot, we visited Taiyaki NYC. If you’re unfamiliar with taiyaki, it’s that cute Japanese fish shaped cake that you’ve undoubtedly seen on Instagram. They’re typically filled with a red bean paste, soft serve, or both. These had both, and my god were they fun. We got two. The “Unicorn Taiyaki” was filled with a red bean paste and strawberry soft serve, and the “Straight Outta Japan” had a red bean paste and then a swirled matcha and black sesame soft serve. Both were excellent, though unsurprisingly, the “Straight Outta Japan” was significantly less sweet.
Alright, friends, you’ve made it through my massive dessert post. Do you have any favorite NYC dessert spots? Feel free to share in the comments!