Top 50 Cupcakes in America Slideshow

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#50. Smallcakes Cupcakery — Overland Park, KS
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#50. Smallcakes Cupcakery — Overland Park, KS
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Smallcakes Cupcakery’s slogan is: “Maybe a cupcake will help?” and they offer 15 signature ways to help every day. While the selection is a little chocolate-heavy, their cupcakes are beautifully frosted and decorated. If you only have room for one, be sure to try the Caramel Crunch — a chocolate cake with caramel frosting, topped with sea salt and chocolate pretzels. 
Menu: 5 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Smallcakes

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#49. Abby Girl Sweets — Cincinnati, OH
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#49. Abby Girl Sweets — Cincinnati, OH
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Run by husband and wife Nathan and Andrea Thompson, Abby Girl Sweets in Cincinnati, Ohio gets its name from the Thompsons' nickname for their daughter, Abby Girl. Even more adorably, she is the chief taste tester and has a little cupcake dance to indicate her favorites. No word on whether there's a dance to accompany Double Trouble, but The Daily Meal recommends you try this chocolate cupcake filled with vanilla buttercream dipped in ganache before you move on.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Flickr.com/kitkatherine

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#48. Sweet Mandy B's — Chicago, IL
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#48. Sweet Mandy B's — Chicago, IL
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Sweet Mandy B's started as an in-home bakery serving mostly friends and family traditional comfort desserts, and later grew into a neighborhood bake shop in May of 2002. The pastel colors and old-fashioned decor evoke a sense of warmth and nostalgia for the good old days. Sweet Mandy B's lets their customers decorate their own cupcakes with sprinkles, picks, sugar flowers, simple drawings, or letters — whatever they like. Now that the cold weather's settled in, The Daily Meal would stick to seasonal pumpkin cake with caramel frosting, and maybe consider our logo drawn on top.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 5 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Sweet Mandy B's

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#47. Ava's Cupcakes — Rockaway, NJ
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#47. Ava's Cupcakes — Rockaway, NJ
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Ava's Cupcakes in Northern New Jersey was made famous when, six months after opening, owner Michelle Spell and her team won an episode of Food Network's hit show, Cupcake Wars. With over 20 years of industry experience, Michelle is well-poised to handle the explosion of interest in her new bakery, and it's no wonder. With flavors like Blueberries and Cream and Guinness, Michelle is turning heads with her professional desserts and delicious choices. A must-try is the Chocolate Cannoli, a chocolate cupcake stuffed with homemade cannoli cream, topped with a chocolate dipped cannoli nestled on top of a ribbon of signature chocolate buttercream.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Ava's Cupcakes

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#46. Cupcakes on Kavanaugh — Little Rock, AR
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#46. Cupcakes on Kavanaugh — Little Rock, AR
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Cupcakes on Kavanaugh is built on the work of four generations of bakers, culminating in owner Christy Milligan opening a second location in July 2010. Their shop is based on the philosophy of quality baking and the finest ingredients as fundamental components to their beautiful cupcakes. Christy offers passers-by both traditional and more unique flavors, ranging from Cookies n Cream to Oatmeal Cream Pie. You wont want to miss her Blackrock Bottom, a classic Ghirardelli chocolate cake base with a cream cheese filling, topped with cream cheese buttercream and garnished with mini chocolate chips the height of luxury in a cupcake.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Cupcakes on Kavanaugh

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#45. Magpies Cakes — Knoxville, TN
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#45. Magpies Cakes — Knoxville, TN
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In Knoxville, Tennessee, Magpies Cakes is baking up a storm. In their own words, cake is what we do, and it shows — they offer classic, deluxe, and super deluxe flavors on a daily basis. When faced with decision-making time, The Daily Meal can see how it can be a kid-in-the-candy-store moment, so well help you out. Don't pass by Magpies without trying the Just About Decadent, a chocolate cupcake, smeared with apricot jam, topped with a rich dark chocolate ganache, or the Tropical with Raspberry, a vanilla cupcake, swirled with mango buttercream and topped with a fresh raspberry.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Magpies Cakes

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#44. Goodie Girls — Glendale, CA
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#44. Goodie Girls — Glendale, CA
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Annette Starbuck first founded Goodie Girls in November 2011, and this talented baker is on her way up. Without formal culinary training, Annette emerged as the winner of Cupcake Wars Kentucky Derby episode, and is ready to open a second location in California. There, Annette hopes to dabble in homemade caramels and chocolates. Her cupcakes are beautifully created, with pillows of frosting fluffy enough to nap on. Try the Scottie cupcake — a vanilla oat cake with tart raspberry honey filling and whiskey frosting, topped with toasted oats and a raspberry drizzle.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Goodie Girls

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#43. Magnolia Bakery — New York, NY
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#43. Magnolia Bakery — New York, NY
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This is it, folks the one that started it all. Magnolia Bakery is often credited with kicking off the cupcake craze way back when, thanks to a Sex in the City reference. Magnolia's iconic cupcakes are frosted in their classic pastel color palette and decorated with hand-colored sprinkles, making them instantly recognizable in a crowd. The Daily Meal questions the wisdom of offering a red velvet cake without cream cheese frosting (though it is an option if you request it), and advises you to go for the Hummingbird instead a banana, pineapple and pecan cake with sweet cream cheese icing, topped with toasted pecans.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Magnolia Bakery

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#42. Georgetown Cupcake — Washington, DC
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#42. Georgetown Cupcake — Washington, DC
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Katherine Kallinis Berman and Sophie Kallinis LaMontagne are co-founders of the hit DC cupcakery, Georgetown Cupcake. The sisters have taken a single dessert and carved a lifestyle out of it as stars in TLC's DC Cupcakes, as well as authors of bestseller The Cupcake Diaries and soon-to-be-released book, Sweet Celebrations. Their cupcakes feature an inward swirl of frosting that is both distinctive and attractive. A must-try flavor is the Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl, a Valrhona chocolate cupcake with a creamy peanut butter core topped with a rich Callebaut chocolate ganache icing and a peanut butter swirl.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Flickr.com/alifayre

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#41. Dozen Bake Shop — Pittsburgh, PA
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#41. Dozen Bake Shop — Pittsburgh, PA
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In Pennsylvania, Dozen Bake Shop has been transformed over the years from a small cupcake shop to a full-service bakery and cafe. They are dedicated to using local suppliers, environmentally-friendly practices, and even small-scale farming. It's clear their cupcakes are geared more towards a mainstream audience and less artisanal from the RIP Diet tombstones on top of some Halloween-themed cupcakes. Regardless, the cupcakes themselves are well-made, and we hope you'll be persuaded to try the Pumpkin Chai.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Dozen Bake Shop

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#40. Bee Sweet Cupcakes — New Orleans, LA
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#40. Bee Sweet Cupcakes — New Orleans, LA
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If you're ever in New Orleans, be sure to stop by Bee Sweet Cupcakes. They bake from scratch daily with the finest European chocolates, Madagascar vanilla, and fresh fruits, but don't take our word for it — head into the store and watch the staff bake and decorate the cupcakes yourself. Bee Sweets menu is an exercise in American culture, with references to I Love Lucy, Roger Rabbit and Pearl Jam. The Daily Meal recommends you try the I Heart Bananas Foster, a banana cake filled with caramel and a sprinkle of rum, topped with a cinnamon nutmeg butter cream frosting and a drizzle of caramel.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Bee Sweet Cupcakes

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#39. The Cupcakery — Las Vegas, NV
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#39. The Cupcakery — Las Vegas, NV
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The Cupcakery in Las Vegas, Nevada is owned and operated by Pamela Jenkins. She left her job at the Golden Nugget casino seven years ago to open her own shop, and the rest is history. Nowadays, Pamela's known around town as "Cupcake", and serves up the best little cupcakes in Vegas. Her pastry talents and creativity are indisputable. After all, what more can you say about someone whose Grasshopper cupcake is better than a Thin Mint? If you're looking for a more adult flavor, pick up the Kir Royale, a moist raspberry cake drenched in bubble champagne frosting.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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The Cupcakery

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#38. Cupcrazed Cakery — Fort Mill, SC
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#38. Cupcrazed Cakery — Fort Mill, SC
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Based in Fort Mill, South Carolina, the team at Cupcrazed Cakery is a winner of Food Networks popular Cupcake Wars show. They're known for unique flavors, gluten-free and vegan options, as well as exceptional customer service. In addition to the regular flavors, Cupcrazed offers anywhere from 6 to 12 daily specials in things like Raspberry Oreo and Creme Brulee. If you're looking for a seasonal flavor, Cupcrazed will be happy to sell you a pumpkin caramel cupcake with cinnamon buttercream and candied pecans.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Cupcrazed Cakery

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#37. Bernice's Bakery — Missoula, MT
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#37. Bernice's Bakery — Missoula, MT
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A Missoula landmark, Bernice's Bakery has been around since 1978. Their baking philosophy is centered on providing quality food at reasonable prices and striving to build community through friendly service and sustainable environmental practices. Bernice's employs an overnight shift of bakers that work through the night to serve fresh croissants, bread, scones, and muffins in the mornings. At least eight cupcake flavors are kept in rotation at all times, ranging from traditional vanilla and chocolate, to the more eclectic Pancakes and Bacon. Want a Montana cupcake adventure? Ask for Chocolate Cherry Coke.

Menu: 6 out of 10

Presentation: 7 out of 10

Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Bernice's Bakery

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#36. Suite 106 Cupcakery — Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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#36. Suite 106 Cupcakery — Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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Suite 106 Cupcakery and its owner, Christiana Grammer, is a two-time Cupcake Wars champion, winning both the Cupcake for a Cause and Cupcake Champion Spiderman episodes. Christiana learned to bake from her mother, and combines those childhood lessons with gourmet, organic, all natural ingredients and artisan techniques to create these award-winning cupcakes. The storefronts offer the winning flavors on a rotating basis throughout the week, from Pancakes N Bacon on Sunday to Pumpkin Pie on Saturday. In the area? Pick up a Chocolate Salted Toffee.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 8 out of 10

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Suite 106 Cupcakery

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#35. Cake Studio — Anchorage, AK
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#35. Cake Studio — Anchorage, AK
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Cake Studio is the second boutique bakery to come from Head Chef Will in Anchorage, Alaska. Classically trained in traditional European pastry preparation, Chef Will has also been featured on Food Network's show, Food Finds. His cupcake creations, however, are anything but traditional. With flavors like Lemon Lavender and Vanilla Cherry Chip, Cake Studio is sure to satisfy cupcake lovers in Anchorage, Alaska. You might also be interested in trying the luxurious Chocolate Merlot cupcake.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Cake Studio

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#34. Baked — New York, NY
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#34. Baked — New York, NY
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Located in Red Hook, Brooklyn, Baked was founded by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito, who call themselves dessert archaeologists because they dig, research and eat their way through the regional desserts of America. Their own desserts are as impressive as any found around the country, with a distinctive poof of frosting resting on top of each cake base. Instead of a typical swirled frosting, Baked's cupcakes have smooth, rounded tops a unique decoration that is all their own. When you check them out, make sure to ask for the Caramel Apple cupcakes.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Baked

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#33. The Flying Cupcake — Indianapolis, IN
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#33. The Flying Cupcake — Indianapolis, IN
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Voted the best cupcakes in Indiana, The Flying Cupcake certainly lives up to its reputation of quality, locally-sourced products. Each cupcake is delectably flavored with creative names such as The Bees Knees (light honey pear cupcake scented with ginger and topped with honey buttercream), Straw-Berry Manilow (strawberry cake with milk chocolate sour cream icing topped with stars and musical notes), and Bart Simpson (chocolate cupcake topped with peanut butter cream cheese frosting and rolled in real Butterfinger candies). If none of those appeal to you, go for the zucchini cupcake loaded with pecans and topped with cream cheese, known as the Zucchini Bikini Buster.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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The Flying Cupcake

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#32. SusieCakes — San Francisco, CA
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#32. SusieCakes — San Francisco, CA
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Need yet another reason to visit California? SusieCakes is waiting to provide you with the ultimate neighborhood experience at their all-American bakery. Their philosophy is "If you can't spell it, we don't bake with it" (though we'd be interested in seeing how many people can spell Scharffen Berger Cocoa). Susie's signature cupcakes are all frosting-filled and come in a fairly standard assortment of flavors. Try the signature Mocha cupcake if you ever stop by.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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SusieCakes

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#31. Cupcake Jones — Portland, OR
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#31. Cupcake Jones — Portland, OR
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For Oregon natives Lisa Watson and Peter Shanky, Cupcake Jones is a labor of love. They like to joke that, because they are locally grown themselves, Cupcake Jones uses local ingredients whenever possible. Their attention to detail and apparently extensive candy experience — their menu includes both a hand-candied rose petal and carrot — allow this shop to slide into number 31 on our slideshow, proving that quality is definitely better than quantity. Try the Velvet Painting, a red velvet cake filled with vanilla bean pastry cream topped with cream cheese icing and a hand candied rose petal.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Flickr.com/heliosphan

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#30. Red Velvet Cupcakery — Washington, DC
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#30. Red Velvet Cupcakery — Washington, DC
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The Red Velvet Cupcakery in Washington DC goes above-and-beyond in offering customers the ultimate luxury experience. Cupcakes are sold in customized liners with Red Velvet Cupcakery's logo on it, and you can even get one served with a gold leaf garnish. On your cupcake tour of Washington DC, stop by Red Velvet Cupcakery and pick up a Summertime. Zested lemon gives this cake an extra kick and marries with their infamous whipped cream cheese topping, smothered in coconut.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Red Velvet Cupcakery

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#29. CutieCakes — Cheyenne, WY
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#29. CutieCakes — Cheyenne, WY
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CutieCakes is Cheyenne, Wyoming's first cupcake bakery, and they're off to a great start — despite the challenges of high-altitude baking. Mindy and Michelle Bortz are the sisters behind the cupcakery, running a fully successful bakery by night while working other professions by day. Their favorites are the Cookies & Cream and Carrot, but The Daily Meal's pick would have to be Snickers where a chocolate cupcake is filled with caramel and topped with whipped caramel frosting, drizzled with more caramel and topped with crumbled Snickers bars.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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CutieCakes

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#28. Huckleberry Bakery and Café — Santa Monica, CA
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#28. Huckleberry Bakery and Café — Santa Monica, CA
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Huckleberry Bakery and Cafe is owned and operated by the husband and wife team of Zoe Nathan and Josh Loeb. Both native to Santa Monica, their concept for a local artisan bakery that provides a warm casual atmosphere has really taken off. While a few more vanilla cupcakes on the menu wouldn't hurt, the cupcakes that are there are beautifully decorated in a simple, elegant way. The must-try flavor of this Santa Monica bakery would be Zucchini Carrot with Cream Cheese Frosting.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Huckleberry Bakery and Cafe, Emily Hart Roth

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#27. Hello Cupcake — Washington, DC
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#27. Hello Cupcake — Washington, DC
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After learning to bake at the apron strings of her Greek mother, owner and executive pastry chef Penny Karas says she brings the Greek Mother philosophy to Hello Cupcake, from the high-quality baked goods to the helpful and inviting staff. She also dabbles in the occasional matchmatching. Otherwise, Penny is busy offering customers an extensive line of daily flavors, including the classic vanilla and chocolate, of course — but not everyone sells carrot, lemon and peanut butter every day. If you're in the area, pick up a Pumpkin Spice cupcake spiced pumpkin cake, topped with brown sugar streusel, vanilla cream cheese frosting, and salted pepitas.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 5 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Flickr.com/Mr. T in DC

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#26. Sweet! by Good Golly Miss Holly — Orlando, FL
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#26. Sweet! by Good Golly Miss Holly — Orlando, FL
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Sweet! by Good Golly Miss Holly was founded by Hollis Wilder, the first two-time champion of Cupcake Wars. Not only does she bake, Miss Holly also travels and delivers motivational talks and presentations about empowerment, success and personal growth. The Daily Meal likes to think that obtaining these cupcakes will open up avenues for personal growth and with a wide variety of flavors, they're sure to please. The must-try flavor of this Florida bake shop? The Tiramisu — an espresso soaked cake, cream cheese frosting, and dark chocolate curls on top.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Sweet! by Good Golly Miss Holly

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#25. Sift Cupcakery — Napa, CA
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#25. Sift Cupcakery — Napa, CA
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After making their third appearance on a Food Network cupcakes competition, it's safe to say Sift Cupcakery knows what it's doing. While you may be tempted to order a Mr. Man (for the gingerbread buddy garnish, of course!), don't decide until you've seen the Battle Royale. This is a Cupcake Wars winner, made with almond cake with a blueberry tequila filling, topped with acai berry cream cheese frosting.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 6 out of 10

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Sift Cupcakery

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#24. The Sweet Lobby — Washington, DC
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#24. The Sweet Lobby — Washington, DC
Description

The Sweet Lobby in Washington, DC knows how to stay on top of waves. First, it was their sensational cupcakes meant to delight all the senses. Then, they expanded to Parisian macarons, another tasty trend sweeping the nation. Finally, The Sweet Lobby offered special Obama and Romney themed baked goods for Election Day 2012 — they've truly capitol-ized on their location near Capitol Hill. As for the cupcakes, each is baked daily, topped with decadent, yet light, frostings. The Daily Meal's must-try flavor: Ginger-White Chocolate (a vanilla cupcake, infused with fresh ginger, topped with a whipped white chocolate-fresh ginger frosting and finished with white-chocolate dipped candied ginger).
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 8 out of 10

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Khalid Naji-Allah

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#23. Cupcake Royale — Seattle, WA
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#23. Cupcake Royale — Seattle, WA
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Theres plenty of brand-new cupcake shops on this list, but Cupcake Royale isn't one of them. Founded in 2003 as Seattle's first cupcake bakery and cafe, they were also the first non-New York cupcakery ever. Cupcake Royale's embraced Seattle's global reputation for great coffee, offering delicious artisan espresso along with their delicious desserts. Each treat is baked with an intentional muffin top, creating a unique silhouette and cupcake experience. (After all, everyone knows the best part of a muffin is the top.) Try the Tiramisu it's vanilla buttercake, topped with mascarpone whipped frosting that's blended with a reduction of their favorite coffee and dusted with cocoa powder. In the cafe, they'll serve it to you "affogoto-ized" on request, or drowned in espresso.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Cupcake Royale

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#22. Baked by Melissa — New York, NY
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#22. Baked by Melissa — New York, NY
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Melissa opened the first Baked by Melissa shop in 2009, and never looked back. Inspired by the care-free rock 'n roll culture of the 60s and 70s and the idea that people should be able to taste more flavors without a guilt trip, Baked By Melissa has skyrocketed to the height of NYC cupcake fame. The miniature cupcakes are adorably squat but pack a powerful punch. The Mini of the Month for November 2012 is the Apple Pie a la Mode, made of apple cake, vanilla icing, caramel cream cheese stuffing, and a graham cracker crumble topping.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Baked by Melissa

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#21. Jilly's Cupcake Bar and Cafe — St. Louis, MO
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#21. Jilly's Cupcake Bar and Cafe — St. Louis, MO
Description

The Daily Meal likes to see a place that knows where its priorities lie — Jilly's Cupcake Bar and Cafe started as a cupcake concept, only later expanding to full entree items. These gourmet treats weigh nearly half a pound each, hefty enough to stand on their own against the likes of brunch. The devil is in the details, and Jilly's got plenty of them, from a real miniature slice of pecan pie garnishing their So Fly Pecan Pie cupcake, to filling Apple Pie a la Mode cupcakes with baked cinnamon apples. Need another reason to walk in? The French Silk cupcake — a chocolate cake filled with chocolate mousse, topped with chocolate buttercream, large chocolate curls, and dusted with powdered sugar — is just calling your name.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 9 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 5 out of 10

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Flickr.com/Rachel from Cupcakes Take the Cake

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#20. Kara's Cupcakes — San Francisco, CA
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#20. Kara's Cupcakes — San Francisco, CA
Description

Sometimes people have trouble living up to their parents' expectations. Kara Haspel Lind, of Kara's Cupcakes, is the daughter of a dentist. When Kara left her job as an advertising sales executive to enroll in pastry school, no one knew she'd turn out to be the founder of a West Coast icon. Her bakeries are all green-friendly, from baking with local organic ingredients to using compostable boxes and utensils, so you can feel good about saving the environment while enjoying a sweet snack. Kara's Cupcakes have an adorable signature fondant topper, and a distinctive frosting silhouette. In the neighborhood? Pick up a Fleur de Sel chocolate cupcake with caramel filling, chocolate ganache frosting and fleur de sel.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 8 out of 10

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Kara's Cupcakes

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#19. Oh My Cupcakes! Gourmet Cupcakery — Sioux Falls, SD
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#19. Oh My Cupcakes! Gourmet Cupcakery — Sioux Falls, SD
Description

The Oh My Cupcakes! Gourmet Cupcakery in South Dakota may not have much in the way of local competition, but it clearly does well when compared to titans of the industry. Their mission is simple, to make people smile with cupcakes. Oh My Cupcakes! really hit the spot for The Daily Meal with their extra attention to detail — the Root Beer Float even has a straw pushed into the frosting. Try the Stuffed French Toast, a delectable cinnamon-maple cupcake filled with a cream cheese filling, then topped with cinnamon buttercream.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Oh My Cupcakes! Gourmet Cupcakery

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#18. Buzz Bakery — Alexandria, VA
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#18. Buzz Bakery — Alexandria, VA
Description

Buzz Bakery is led by Chef Tiffany MacIsaac, whose team produces everything from cakes, pies, cupcakes, and chocolates, as well as coffee and lounge fare. They operate under the philosophy of ingredients matter, freshness matters, and people matter. While the menu may leave something to be desired in the way of variety, the presentation is beautiful and classy. Each of the limited time flavors is worth tasting, such as the Coco Loco (a coconut chiffon cake with key lime filling, rum Italian buttercream, and toasted shaved coconut.)
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 9 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Flickr.com/wild-eyed

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#17. Billy's Bakery — New York, NY
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#17. Billy's Bakery — New York, NY
Description

Billy's Bakery in New York City provides its customers classic American baked goods in a warm, friendly atmosphere. The 1940s-style stores fill with the smell of baking cupcakes every morning, bringing forth waves of nostalgia for Grandma's kitchen. But Grandma's never baked like this before — each classic cupcake is topped with a memorable swirl of frosting, gracefully piped with a hollow center. If you ever get the chance to stop by any of its three locations, go for a Banana Nutella Cupcake.
Menu: 6 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Billy's Bakery

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#16. Angel Cups — Fargo, ND
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#16. Angel Cups — Fargo, ND
Description

This Fargo, North Dakota bake shop just opened in fall 2010, but has already been making quite a splash. Angel Cups is at the forefront of the craze in Fargo as the first cupcake-themed shop in the area, offering a variety of cupcakes and boxed lunches to intrigued customers. And they're not afraid to jump into the thick of it — with flavors like Stuffed French Toast and Bananas Foster, Angel Cups is ready to compete with the heavyweights of the country. The Honey Pear, a flavor profile we rarely see, is another great option for first-timers.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Angel Cups

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#15. Cake Dreams — Rockville, MD
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#15. Cake Dreams — Rockville, MD
Description

Cake Dreams is a small artisan bake shop created with the goal of reviving an appreciation for food that just plain tastes good. And, apparently, they're doing things right — the team from Cake Dreams recently came out on top in Cupcake Wars. If you want to pretend you're a judge on the show, order a Cannoli cupcake — it's the winning recipe from their episode.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Cake Dreams

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#14. Molly's Cupcakes — Chicago, IL
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#14. Molly's Cupcakes — Chicago, IL
Description

Molly's Cupcakes, with locations in both Chicago and New York, offers a well-rounded menu to fit the needs of anyone who walks in. But just in case you're the exception, they'll let you create your own, too. Pick a cake, choose a frosting, and dress it up with tasty toppings and, as if that weren't enough, take it over to the Sprinkle Station for some colorful finishing touches. If you're in a rush, snag a Ron Bennington, their most popular flavor, made with chocolate cake, peanut butter filling, and ganache on top, garnished with butterscotch and Butterfinger pieces.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 8 out of 10

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Molly's Cupcakes

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#13. Robicelli's — New York, NY
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#13. Robicelli's — New York, NY
Description

Matt and Allison Robicelli are the dynamic duo behind Robicelli's in New York. Primarily a wholesale operation (they bake out of a 19th century factory in industrial Brooklyn), their cupcakes are quirky and creative, just like the owners. It takes serious courage to sell a cupcake with chicken on it, and Robicelli's does it multiple times a year. Certain extra special touches help the cupcakes sell themselves — crumbled homemade all-butter pie dough on the pumpkin caramel and caramel shards on the tres leches. Be sure to try the Bourbon Caramel Apple you wont want to miss out on apple cake with bourbon salted caramel buttercream, roasted apple and caramel sauce.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 6 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Donny Tsang

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#12. Swirlz Cupcakes — Chicago, IL
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#12. Swirlz Cupcakes — Chicago, IL
Description

This Chicago-based bakery offers a unique two-toned frosting experience on its cupcakes, topped off with attention-grabbing garnishes such as the white chocolate cinnamon bark. Although you're welcome to go after Swirlz's cinnamon honey bun cupcake just for that topping, consider the Twixie, inspired by its namesake: a decadent chocolate cake with a homemade chocolate covered shortbread cookie, salted caramel buttercream, and a caramel drizzle. The best part? Most of Swirlz's cupcakes are vegan, and all are gluten-free — but you wouldn't know it.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Swirlz Cupcakes

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#11. Simply Sweet Cupcake Boutique — Mobile, AL
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#11. Simply Sweet Cupcake Boutique — Mobile, AL
Description

Simply Sweet Cupcake Boutique offers four menus a year, rotating through each season. The Daily Meal loves to see a cupcake shop taking advantage of the season, and Simply Sweet has definitely accomplished that. From flavors like Caramel Apple and Pecan Pie, you're sure to find something to put you in the mood for all this cold weather. If you're looking for a more savory option, Maple Bacon is sure to hit the sweet spot.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Simply Sweet Cupcake Boutique

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#10 Dessert Club ChikaLicious — New York, NY
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#10 Dessert Club ChikaLicious — New York, NY
Description

Although there aren't many flavors on ChikaLicious menu, they make every one count. Hungry diners can choose from things like Triple Chocolate, Meyer Lemon, and Toasted Almond, but what really takes the [cup]cake is their presentation. ChikaLicious cupcakes are clean, simple and elegant, with a light pouf of frosting floating on each. Ready for decadence? Pick up a Nutella Nutbomb today.
Menu: 7 out of 10
Presentation: 9 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Dessert Club ChikaLicious

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#9. Union General Store — Clarkston, MI
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#9. Union General Store — Clarkston, MI
Description

Union General, unlike many others on this list, is not just a cupcake shop. It is, in fact, a modern-day general store. Visitors are treated to a shopping experience filled with old-world charm and whimsical curiosities, leaving with anything from bubble bath to toys and, of course, a freshly baked cupcake. Their signature cupcakes are piled high with a distinctive tower of frosting and have unique names such as the basie and bunnycake. You can't go wrong with the Delish, a chocolate cake with house-made caramel and truffle filling, salted caramel and chocolate icing.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Union General Store

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#8. Happy Cakes Bakeshop — Denver, CO
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#8. Happy Cakes Bakeshop — Denver, CO
Description

How did our #8 winner get its name? Happy Cakes Bakeshop co-owner Sara Bencomo's two year old son Alden is a huge fan of cake. He's so in love with the confection that, instead of "Happy Birthday!," Alden wishes people "Happy Cakes!" And who wouldn't be happy trying one of Happy Cakes' delightful desserts? Each cupcake adds something new to the same old, same old, whether it's a mini Oreo cookie garnish or a maple buttermilk cake base (for French Toast, of course). Want to be happy while eating cake too? Check out the Pumpkin Pie, a pumpkin streusel cake with bourbon buttercream.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Happy Cakes Bakeshop

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#7. Charm City Cupcakes — Baltimore, MD
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#7. Charm City Cupcakes — Baltimore, MD
Description

These award-winning chefs in Baltimore, Maryland not only come up with delicious flavors, they make them look good. Charm City Cupcakes prides itself on turning their cupcakes into breathtaking pieces of dessert not just bake sale fodder. The menu ranges from the everyday, like red velvet and vanilla, to black-tie, such as limoncello chiffon and Jamaican rum. Feel free to drop by anytime Charm City also has a breakfast cupcakes menu, including flavors like apple cinnamon spice and espresso.

Menu: 8 out of 10

Presentation: 8 out of 10

Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Charm City Cupcakes

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#6. Polka Dot Bakeshop — Charlotte, NC
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#6. Polka Dot Bakeshop — Charlotte, NC
Description

The pride and joy of Charlotte, North Carolina, Polka Dot Bakeshop is an award-winning certified kosher bakery. Fortunately for your taste buds, they pour their hearts into creating a delectable menu for each day of the week. Each week's menu is also appropriately themed, such as All American Week for the election, or Autumn Delights. The Daily Meal's seasonal sweet of choice? The Cranberry Orange, a vanilla bean cupcake with cranberries baked in, topped with fresh orange zest buttercream. Their cupcakes are beautifully designed, though the Popsicle stick in the caramel apple cupcake might be taking things a little too far.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 7 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Polka Dot Bakeshop

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#5. Isabelle's Curly Cakes — Boston, MA
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#5. Isabelle's Curly Cakes — Boston, MA
Description

Isabelle's Curly Cakes in Boston, Massachusetts serves up oversized cupcakes, sure to satisfy even the sweetest sweet tooth without weighing you down. Their signature Italian buttercream frosting starts with a meringue, adding in soft butter for a light, mousse-like finish. Try it on the Chocolate and Peanut Butter Cup, a decadent chocolate cake filled with Reese's peanut butter ganache, topped with a chocolate peanut butter buttercream, and finished with chopped Reese's candies.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Isabelle's Curly Cakes

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#4. Sprinkles Cupcakes — Beverly Hills, CA
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#4. Sprinkles Cupcakes — Beverly Hills, CA
Description

This California cupcakery coming in at number 4 prides itself on a philosophy of simple and satisfying desserts handcrafted from the best ingredients. Sprinkles also regularly runs in-store promotions, where patrons who whisper a secret code word posted on Facebook can receive a free cupcake with their purchase. Which one should you pick? Try the Lemon Coconut — a Madagascar bourbon vanilla cake with lemon coconut cream cheese frosting.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 9 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Sprinkles Cupcakes

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#3. Crave Bake Shop — Portland, OR
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#3. Crave Bake Shop — Portland, OR
Description

If you're ever in Portland, Oregon, stop by Crave Bake Shop. Not only does it serve up creative (and creatively named) cupcakes, all the flavors are gluten-free. Founder Kyra Bussanich was diagnosed with an auto-immune disorder as a young adult, and the lack of gluten-free sweet treats in the market motivated Kyra to start her own shop after graduating from Le Cordon Bleu. The Daily Meal advises you to try her African Yam creation, a spiced yam cake filled with espresso Italian meringue buttercream and topped with clove mascarpone whipped cream.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 9 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 8 out of 10

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Crave Bake Shop

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#2. Cupcakes-A-Go-Go — Madison, WI
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#2. Cupcakes-A-Go-Go — Madison, WI
Description

A funky cafe in Madison, Wisconsin, Cupcakes-A-Go-Go offers a full selection of coffee, espresso and, of course, cupcakes. The Daily Meal was particularly impressed with their variety of cupcake toppings — from glazes to ganaches, mascarpone frosting piled high, or even homemade meringues and marshmallow, torched golden brown. If you're ever in the area, check out the red velvet pomegranate.
Menu: 9 out of 10
Presentation: 9 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 9 out of 10

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Cupcakes-A-Go-Go

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#1. Atlanta Cupcake Factory — Atlanta, GA
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#1. Atlanta Cupcake Factory — Atlanta, GA
Description

The Atlanta Cupcake Factory is a small artisan bakery dedicated to small batch baking. Their philosophy is centered on interesting and unique flavor profiles, evident in offerings like sweet potato cake with Kentucky bourbon cream cheese frosting. Their must-try cupcake? A sugar cookie cake with browned butter, rosemary, and pine nut frosting. Bottom line: when someone goes to enough effort to create a frosting with browned butter, and serves it to you with a fresh rosemary garnish, you take it.
Menu: 10 out of 10
Presentation: 10 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 8 out of 10

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Atlanta Cupcake Factory

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#7. Charm City Cupcakes — Baltimore, MD
Headline
#7. Charm City Cupcakes — Baltimore, MD
Description

These award-winning chefs in Baltimore, Maryland not only come up with delicious flavors, they make them look good. Charm City Cupcakes prides itself on turning their cupcakes into breathtaking pieces of dessert — not just bake sale fodder. The menu ranges from the everyday, like red velvet and vanilla, to black-tie, such as limoncello chiffon and Jamaican rum. Feel free to drop by anytime — Charm City also has a breakfast cupcakes menu, including flavors like apple cinnamon spice and espresso.
Menu: 8 out of 10
Presentation: 8 out of 10
Cake-to-Frosting Ratio: 10 out of 10

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Charm City Cupcakes