There’s nothing better than eating a delicious meal, especially when that meal is rounded off by an indulgent dessert. Whether it be a slice of chocolate cake or a bowl of homemade gelato, dessert is just one of those things that everyone seems to enjoy. These days, many restaurants now dedicate themselves to the art of sweet cuisine, with some establishments even offering desserts as the main meal. And with so many luscious desserts to choose from, it can be hard to find the best ones.
Currently, some of the best desserts in the country can be found in New York City, with various restaurants and bars each offering their own signature dishes. Made from fresh and local ingredients, New York is home to some of the most indulgent desserts in the world, which really have to be seen to be believed. So if you want to know which New York desserts are the best, then you have come to the right place.
In the following article, we have compiled a list of the best desserts in NYC, so that you can find the perfect dessert for you and your palate. Not only are these desserts some of the best dishes that the city has to offer, but they are also bursting with flavour and are the very definition of what a sinful dessert should be. So if you want to know more about each one, just take a look at our list and see which dessert catches your eye – we promise you won’t be disappointed with the results…
- Where: Levain
- Location: Various
For the first entry on our list, we have decided to take a more simple approach and what’s more simple than a delicious chocolate chip cookie? Located at various Levain bakeries across the city, these cookies are about the size of your head and are known for their sinfully gooey centres.
Packed with chocolate chips and toasted walnuts, these luscious cookies are bursting with butter and sugar and can be enjoyed fresh from the oven. Just make sure you get them before they run out, otherwise you might never get the chance to sample these amazing baked goods for yourself.
- Where: Serendipity 3
- Location: 60th Street
We understand that frozen hot chocolate may sound like an oxymoron, but it is still one of the best desserts that the city has to offer. Located at Serendipity 3, this signature dessert is usually served after a round of burgers and salads, with the icy treat remaining a popular choice among locals and tourists alike.
Essentially a chocolate slushie, this dish is a cool and refreshing twist on a classic dessert and comes topped with whipped cream and a sprinkling of chocolate flakes. However, this enormous dessert should only be enjoyed with friends and family, as it can be extremely difficult to finish on your own.
- Where: Peacefood Cafe
- Location: Various
If you have been searching for one of the best vegan desserts in New York, then look no further than this delicious carrot cake. Featuring a spicy sponge that has been topped with a creamy frosting, this cake is one of the best in the whole city and can be enjoyed by vegans from all over the world.
Although the Peacefood Cafe is known for its questionable decor, they make up for their shortcomings by serving delicious and healthy food, with this particular dessert ranking as one of the best carrot cakes that the city has to offer.
- Where: Spot Dessert Bar
- Location: Prince Street
The creation of Pichet Ong, this gourmet dessert combines Japanese and American flavours to create a culinary masterpiece unlike any other. Featuring a delicate miso sponge that has been drizzled with butterscotch sauce, this dessert is served with a scoop of condensed milk ice cream and a dollop of mascarpone.
Seeing as there are very few desserts that meet the same standards, we had to put this sinful treat on our list. So if you want to sample a dish that completely redefines what dessert can be, then this is the best place to start.
- Where: Four & Twenty Blackbirds
- Location: Dean Street
Based in Brooklyn, this famous pie shop is known for baking salt into the crust of its numerous desserts, resulting in a unique flavour that you won’t find anywhere else. So if you manage to pay this establishment a visit, we recommend that you order a slice of their signature honey pie.
Encased in a rich and buttery crust, this pie contains a delicious custard that has been infused with honey and topped with a sprinkling of sea salt, with the combination of flavours and textures coming together to create a pie unlike any other you have ever tasted. It doesn’t take much to make a good pie, which is why this particular dessert can only be described as mind-blowing.
- Where: Misi
- Location: Kent Avenue
Owned by Missy Robbins, this restaurant caused a wave of controversy upon its initial opening, with customers noting the limited menu and sparse selection of dishes. However, this does not mean that the establishment has gone completely overlooked, especially when it comes to dessert.
Although the restaurant only offers a single gelato, it probably ranks as one of the best and most unique recipes in the whole city. Flavoured with olive oil, this light and creamy dessert is a refreshing addition to any meal and will stay with you long after you have finished your final spoonful.
- Where: Butter & Scotch
- Location: Franklin Avenue
Is there anything better than a delicious s’more? We didn’t think so and then we tried this amazing pie. Produced by one of New York’s finest feminist establishments, this dessert is the definition of indulgent and features the classic combination of chocolate, graham cracker and toasted marshmallow.
One of the best things about Butter & Scotch is that all proceeds are donated to Planned Parenthood, with the cafe using its delicious treats to promote activism and change in the local community. So if you want to influence the world and enjoy a classic dessert, then you need to add this bakeshop to your list.
- Where: Malai Ice Cream
- Location: Smith Street
Considered to be one of the best ice cream parlours in New York City, Malai draws its inspiration from traditional middle eastern cuisine, resulting in unique flavours such as sweet milk, ginger root and cinnamon rose. However, it is their seasonal options that take the crown, especially their signature sweet roti and ghee.
Available in a cone or tub, this ice cream can be served with a wide array of delicious toppings, from cardamom shortbread to peanut chikki. When it comes to sampling ice cream with a cultural twist, there’s no better place than Malai so we recommend checking it out the next time you hit the streets.
- Where: El Castillo de Jagua
- Location: Grand Street
This Dominican diner is considered one of the last remaining relics of old New York, with the restaurant offering authentic dishes and friendly service. So if you happen to pay this historical landmark a visit, we recommend that you round off your meal with a slice of guava tres leches, which is a traditional sponge cake made from three kinds of milk.
Although the guava tres leches is not always on the menu, you can still sample the original recipe whenever you sit down at this quaint spot. So why not do yourself a favour and see why this amazing dessert has found its way onto our list. We promise you won’t be disappointed with what you find.
- Where: Olmsted
- Location: Vanderbilt Avenue
When it comes to frozen yogurt, New York has numerous establishments that offer the delicious dessert from 16 Handles to Pink Berry. However, none of them even compare to this amazing frozen yogurt by Olmsted, which is known throughout the city for its smooth and creamy texture.
Infused with lavender and honey, this whipped dessert is a sweet and floral alternative to commercial fro-yo brands and is the perfect way to round off a delicious gourmet meal. So if you have been looking for a frozen dessert that offers a more refined flavour, then we may have found exactly what you need.
- Where: ABCV
- Location: 19th Street
Sometimes dessert doesn’t have to be a rich or heavy affair, which is why we have added this next entry to our list. Created by Jean-Georges Vongerichten, this establishment celebrates vegetarian food at its finest, with the menu offering a range of culinary dishes with a unique and nutritious twist.
However, one of the best dishes on the menu comes at the end of the meal, in the form of a refreshing grapefruit granita. Essentially a deconstructed slushie, this dessert has been designed to cleanse the palate, releasing a bittersweet note that will beautifully round off your gourmet meal.
- Where: Rice To Riches
- Location: Spring Street
Known for its futuristic decor and wide menu, Rice To Riches offers some of the best rice pudding in the city, boasting a range of unique flavours such as Stubborn Banana, Cherry Birthday Suit and Coconut Coma. However, it is their graham cracker rice pudding that still remains the star of the menu.
Combining creamy rice pudding with sweet graham cracker pieces, this dessert is a symphony of texture and can be purchased in an adorable orange bowl. Entering this establishment is like stepping back into the 1990s, but when you have a bowl of graham cracker rice pudding you are always up for the ride.
- Where: Morgenstern’s Finest Ice Cream
- Location: Various
We all know that Morgenstern’s offers some of the best ice cream in the United States, with the establishment boasting some of the most unusual flavours currently available on the market, from sesame caramel to guava strawberry. However, there is no flavour more unique than that of their signature durian ice cream.
Made from what is considered to be the smelliest fruit in the world, this vibrant dessert offers a layered and complex flavour and is probably one of the most daring ice cream recipes in the city. Just make sure to hold your nose when taking the first bite!
- Where: Magnolia Bakery
- Location: Various
Known throughout New York for their selection of delicious baked goods, Magnolia Bakery also offers another notable dessert in the form of their signature banana pudding, which is light, creamy and bursting with tropical flavour.
When it comes to dessert, it doesn’t come much better than this, so we recommend popping down to your local bakery to see what all the fuss is about.
- Where: Lady M Cake Boutique
- Location: 78th Street
The next entry on our list comes from the Lady M Cake Boutique, which is known across the city for its range of delicious and stunning cakes. However, when it comes to beautiful baking, there’s nothing more visually appealing than their green tea mille cake, which practically glows in the dark due to its vibrant hue.
Made by layering French crepes with a green tea frosting, this cake is then topped with a layer of powdered matcha and is best enjoyed with a steaming hot beverage. It’s not often you come across something like this in New York, so we recommend getting a slice the next time you have the chance.
- Where: Cosme
- Location: 21st Street
Although Enrique Olvera is known primarily for his single-corn tortillas, it’s his cornhusk meringues that will live on in infamy. Featuring an ash-dusted shell, these meringues open to reveal a velvety and supercharged corn mousse, which is the very definition of a culinary dessert done right.
There’s a reason why Olvera is often considered to be the king of New York dining and it’s because of desserts like this one. So the next time you are planning a trip to the Big Apple, why not live a little and give this iconic treat a go.