Celebrating National Dessert Day with a look back at some of my favorite desserts, including Pumpkin Beignets at Disneyland.
Today, October 14th, is National Dessert Day! I admit, I’m a little burnt out over all these food holidays. I can barely keep track of how many there are. But how can I not get behind this sweet one? To celebrate, I am sharing a list of my favorite desserts in Los Angeles.
When it comes to desserts that aren’t too complicated (like cake and cookies), I am happy to make them myself. But once you get fancy with frosting, need to roll out dough, put it through a machine (or, God forbid, a FRYER) I go straight to the experts. Here’s a look down memory lane – bakeries and ice cream shops that I love going to in Los Angeles. With a couple of my own recipes sprinkled in. (By the way, do you say “sprinkles” or “jimmies?”)
Cakes and Cupcakes
- Valerie Confections – Valerie is such an enormously talented baker. I got to watch her in action at a food competition event, where I ate a slice of her Earl Grey Blueberry Cake just moments after it got frosted.
- SusieCakes – I can appreciate cupcake art, but honestly, I just want some really good frosting on a really good cake. SusieCakes definitely delivers – click through the link to read her basic cake tips too!
- Strawberry and Blueberry Ice Box Cake – This is my most popular recipe on the blog, and it’s so insanely easy. Some people argue it’s not really a “cake.” But if Ina Garten calls these kinds of desserts “cakes” then who am I to call it something else?
- Sweet Lady Jane – Best cherry pie in Los Angeles. Hands down. End of story.
- The Pie Hole – Their apple pie won my Pies Around the World search! They now have locations all over LA – including my neighborhood, Hollywood.
- Fishing with Dynamite – Key Lime Pie at the end of your meal at this Manhattan Beach restaurant is a must.
- Milk Jar Cookies – Courtney Cowan makes my favorite kind of cookie – thick, chewy, and big enough to constitute an entire meal. They deliver their cookies in Los Angeles too – with a bottle of milk!
- Cake Mix Stuffed Cookies – I make this for every potluck event once Halloween is over, because I have so much leftover chocolate candy. They’re always a huge hit, and people like to guess what’s stuffed inside their cookie.
- Triple Chocolate Nutella Cookies – Death by chocolate, with only five ingredients.
- Salt and Straw – It is no secret how much I love Tyler Malek and his crazy creations. Abe and I went to the Larchmont Village shop the other day and tried some of their new Halloween Ice Cream. I have to say I am not a fan of the Dracula’s Blood Pudding (it has liver in it) or the Essence of Ghost. But The Great Candycopia is a must-order – Salted Butterscotch Ice Cream with Whoppers, PB Cups, Heath Bars OH MY.
- Scoops Gelato – My original true love – I actually bring my favorite food buddy Leslie Durso there recently and she gives their vegan gelato the stamp of approval.
- Jeni’s Ice Cream – When we want to go out for ice cream, we go to Jeni’s in Los Feliz, then take a drive around the Hollywood Hills. It’s my favorite date night.
- Primo’s Donuts – I love everything about this family-owned business. They make the best Buttermilk Bars!
- The Donut Man – It’s been years since my first visit, but I still remember their fresh strawberry-stuffed donuts with so much fondness.
- Fonuts – I never thought a baked, vegan, gluten-free doughnut would win me over.
One of my sweetest memories is filming the Disneyland Halloween Foods video one year ago. Since it was on Snapchat, the footage is now gone. But here is something that survived – Mickey Shaped Pumpkin Beignets from the Mint Julep Bar! This year they actually are switching over to Butterscotch Beignets. I have yet to visit the park to try them myself, but I know they are probably just as sugary and delightful as these guys.
Video: Pumpkin Beignets at Disney