Armed with just a single, generations-old cookie recipe, Great American Cookies opened its first store in 1977, and the rest is history. Today, the franchise boasts locations in malls across the country and nabbed a coveted spot on Entrepreneur magazine?s 2012 Top 500 Franchises in the baked-goods category. As the shop?s reputation grew, so did its menu as chefs churned out a mouthwatering roster of gourmet-cookie recipes, each created and carefully tested in Atlanta. The tempting options now include Snickerdoodle, Peanut Butter with M&Ms, and Chewy Pecan Supreme, as well as freshly baked Fudge and Cheesecake Brownies, and Cookie Sandwiches stuffed with frosting. The real show-stoppers, however, are the Giant Chocolate-Chip Cookie Cakes, which can be customized with sweet, celebratory messages or shopping lists penned in colorful icing.
Drawing from an archive of more than 130 flavors, Chadwick's Churn scoops up a dozen varieties of homemade ice cream at a time. The refrigerated roster can tickle all areas of the taste-bud map with luscious lickables such as key-lime pie, candy corn, and cookie dough. Owner Andrea Brooks Mount doles out the dairy in a variety of denominations, from bowls ($3.30–$4) to conical waffles ($3.75–$4.75) to shakes ($4.20–$5). Unlike at buffets or art museums, take-home containers are readily available and encouraged, carrying treats by the pint ($4.30) or quart ($7.40) for extra enjoyment.
Gleaning her baking skills from her mother and grandmother, Gigi opened her first cupcake hub in 2008, drawing upon her entrepreneurial spirit and gift for crafting beautifully topped cupcakes. The franchised cupcakery now has 50 locations, each of which churns out 12 daily-rotating flavors that are made fresh every morning, along with a section of cheesecake cupcakes. Gigi's Cupcakes was also named the official cupcake of the 2013 American Country Music Awards, and was named Best Cupcake in 2012 by Lagniappe and Nashville Scene. The Knoxville shop recently changed management and is now owned by GiGi's brother Randall Butler and offers a selection of more than 40 flavors, including Canadian Maple, Southern Comfort, and Champagne—a bubbly-flavored base topped with an edible pearl. Patrons can pick out sweet treats from the daily selection or preorder them at least one day in advance online, by phone, or via singing telegram.
Roi Shlomo never liked ice cream much. He preferred a tarter treat–yogurt. "I was always eating plain yogurt and adding everything into it," he told the Atlanta Business Chronicle. In 2009, Shlomo turned his favorite snack into a business, opening the first Yogli Mogli in Atlanta. And while patrons can savor tart flavors such as zesty mango tango and watermelon sorbet, the shop also caters to sweeter palates with flavors such as dutch chocolate and dulce de leche.
Live, active cultures and nutrients such as calcium and vitamin B12 make Yogli Mogli's frosty frozen yogurt a healthy treat. The menu includes nonfat options, flavors made with no added sugar, and dairy-free fruit sorbet. On the flip side, those craving decadence can load frosty swirls with indulgent toppings such as cookie dough and chocolate sauce.
Che’s Cupcake Creations’ delicious treats are appetizing both inside and out, as each colorful, carefully frosted cupcake is packed with filling. The rich dainties appear in popular flavors such as classic red velvet, german chocolate, and extra-cocoa-y triple chocolate, as well as the staff favorite—lemon cake built around an orb of raspberry filling. Che’s uses real fruit when constructing its tart cakes such as key-lime pie and pink lemonade, as well as pure butter and flavor oils, which pour into housemade recipes rooted in high-quality ingredients.
Only three years after opening its first shop in Richmond, Virginia, Sweet Frog's yogurt emporiums have multiplied to 100 franchises in fifteen states, as well as one international location in South Korea. Each brightly-colored yogurt shop lets families feast on over 70 flavors of inventive self-serve treats and crunchy or fruity toppings. Their menu includes bakery-inspired flavors such as cinnamon roll, carrot cake, or oven mitt alongside fruit-packed flavors such as pink grapefruit tart or no-sugar-added blueberry.