Indecision is all part of the fun when it comes to visiting Yogurt Shack. Each shop features self-serve stations that patrons use to fill their cups with calcium-rich YoCream frozen yogurt?a frosty, certified Kosher treat made with a high count of live natural cultures and no high-fructose corn syrup. But choosing a yogurt may prove deliciously daunting, as the staff rotates the selection of flavors at every store and adds seasonal favorites throughout the year. The lineup can include everything from classic chocolate and vanilla to cake batter and fruity sorbets. Once their decisions have been made, customers can finish their personalized creation by topping the yogurt with fruits, candies, and edible name tags before paying by the ounce at the register.
In 1997, friends Dena Tripp and Debra Shwetz set out to create a luscious, melt-in-your-mouth bundt cake. What began as an endeavor in their own home kitchens soon blossomed into a bustling business with bakeries in 21 states. Rich cocoa browns and soft pastels lend a nostalgic feel to each bakery, where every day ovens warm up cake batter made from fresh eggs, real butter, and cream cheese. Flavors such as chocolate chocolate chip, red velvet, and white-chocolate raspberry are favorite staples, and a new seasonal flavor makes a guest appearance each month. Cakes come in several sizes, from the standard 8- or 10-inch bundt to the single-serving bundtlet and the bite-size bundtini, all crowned with signature cream cheese frosting.
More than 25 breads, made from fresh, natural wheat flour, fill the racks at House of Bread, ready to be toted home and eaten, or sliced for the bakery's hearty sandwiches. The stone-milled flour combines with honey, which serves as a natural sweetener, and natural ingredients to create mouth-watering loaves of challah, raspberry swirl, gluten-free rice bread, and over 20 others. A rotating schedule of breads, muffins, and scones keeps the menu as fresh as the pastries.
Peering into the pastry display case at Sweet Story Bakery is always a treat. That's because head baker and owner Michele Howard not only creates beautiful desserts, but changes the menu every day. One day, she'll be in the mood to create more decadent treats, and so she'll craft Ding Dong cupcakes, cherry chocolate scones, and New York–style cheesecake. But on another, she'll stick to lighter options such as raspberry lemonade cake or salty and sweet cake pops. Other occasions might bring layered Kit Kat bars, lemon bars, and chocolate-dipped pecan wedges. No matter her mood, however, she always cooks up at least one gluten-free dessert to ensure every guest can sate their sweet tooth. She complements her homemade desserts with jars of novelty candy. These pair with desserts to make great last-minute gifts or to put finishing touches on gingerbread-house renovations.
At Mix 'N' Match Creamery, the process of getting an ice cream is almost as fun as eating it. After asking what flavor you'd like, a staff member places cream, sugar, and milk in a metal bowl, then blasts the mixture with a splash of liquid nitrogen that creates a sub-zero environment. As the cold, condensed-water cloud over the mixture evaporates, all that's left is wholesome, three-ingredient ice cream. The flavor options that can be added to the mix are virtually endless, as the team blends their many syrups with unique mix-ins, including chunks of cheesecake, bits of bacon, and crunchy Lucky Charms. The resulting treat can be scooped into a cone or waffle bowl to create a dessert that is easily portable and can be eaten in its entirety, much like a tin can of goat food.