Try the best cupcakes in NYC
Coming in on the Blackout’s heels is this fluffy specimen from beloved Red Hook bakery Baked. Capitalizing on the sweet-and-salty combination, the cap of this chocolate cupcake boasts equally airy chocolate frosting that’s generously sprinkled with flaky sea salt. $2.50
This East Village bakeshop whips up divine cupcakes in fun flavors such as raspberry-topped vanilla, strawberry-topped chocolate and the Elvis, a peanut butter–frosted banana cupcake. That’s a tried-and-true combo, but we like the moist banana cupcake topped with sweet, smooth caramel frosting even more. $3.25
This cozy Washington, D.C. import brings tasty—and adorable—cupcakes to NYC’s Soho. Their signature red-velvet cupcake, crowned with a dome of not-too-sweet cream cheese frosting, is the way to go here. $3
Don’t be fooled by the name of this three-location, two-decade-strong bakery; it’s not just the bread that’s good here. Exhibit A? Amy’s rich devil’s food cupcake, topped with a swirl of smooth, super-chocolatey frosting and Crayola-bright sprinkles—these mini cakes make us feel like a kid again. $2.95
This quaint Williamsburg shop charms sweet-tooths with a wall of bulk candies in old-fashioned glass jars and a tempting cupcake selection in cheery flavors such as cookie dough, mint-and-chocolate grasshopper, and the Everything, whose frosting cap is stuffed with candies and pretzels. Our favorite is the simple but moist and nutty pistachio-on-pistachio, in a cool shade of pastel green. $2.50
The cupcake scene has gotten a lot more crowded since Magnolia’s Sex and the City-spurred ascent to superstardom in the ’90s, but this Bleecker Street favorite still holds its own. Combining the shop’s two most popular—and decadent—desserts, the banana pudding cupcake debuted last year and is easily the bakery’s best. A light vanilla cake filled with banana curd and topped with banana cream and a crunchy vanilla wafer, it’s a slamdunk. $3.50
This hidden-away Ridgewood gem is one of the city’s best-kept cupcake secrets. Offering a mix of classic (red velvet, lemon curd) and trendy (salted caramel, cookies ‘n’ cream) flavors, its most enticing cupcake is the coconut cream, a moist vanilla cake piped with plenty of rich vanilla frosting and finished with a generous shower of sweet flaked coconut. $3
This Chi-town import is deservedly beloved for its signature filled cupcakes hiding soft centers of ganache, fruit curds and more. Its craveable crème brûlée cupcake is a soft vanilla cake filled with delicate burnt caramel custard, with an unusual frosting-free dome of crackly caramelized sugar and fresh berries. $3.75
Opened by one of Magnolia Bakery’s founding partners, this adorably old-fashioned bakery courses with cupcake knowledge. Its bright, festive cupcakes channel childhood nostalgia, in mostly-classic flavors like double vanilla, double chocolate and lemon. Our favorite is the slightly more of-the-times salted caramel, a dulce de leche cake swirled with caramel buttercream and crunchy flakes of sea salt. $3
A perennial favorite among cupcake lovers, this Lower East Side dessert specialist serves up brightly decorated cupcakes with fun-loving names such as Goodie-Goodie (chocolate–peanut butter), Lemon Yummy and Holla Back Girl (banana with cream-cheese frosting). Of the bunch, we’re partial to the strawberry cheesecake, a vanilla cupcake studded with slivers of fresh strawberry and garnished with a whirl of dense cream-cheese frosting. $2.25
Try one of the cities best cookies
We rounded up the best cookies in the city—crunchy or chewy, thick or thin, here’s how the cookie crumbles
Forget about waiting for the chef to cook your food: At Szechuan restaurants like Tang Hotpot, you prepare your dinner tableside. First, choose the broth you’ll use to cook the rest of your dinner: Options include a spicy broth made with beef tallow and more than 30 different herbs and spices ($15), a vegetarian mushroom-herb broth ($15) and a pork bone broth ($12). You can either order toppings like Kobe ribeye ($60), quail eggs ($6) and enoki mushrooms ($6) a la carte, or opt for a combination platter like the Szechuan Adventure platter with beef tripe, beef meatballs with soup filling, swamp eel, vermicelli noodles, winter melon and more ($40 per person). And after a meal of hot foods, an ice-cold dessert is just the thing. Matcha shaved ice with mini mochi and red bean paste ($9) or a scoop of lychee rose ice cream ($5) might hit the spot.
Venue says Authentic Sichuan hotpot at its finest! Join us for Lunch, 12-3:30pm Thursday-Sunday.