With more than 700 locations, Jamba Juice proves to the masses that nutrition can be speedy and delicious. Since the beginning, the company’s product philosophy has revolved around choosing whole fruits and other natural ingredients over artificial flavorings, sweeteners, and preservatives. The menu is completely free of high-fructose corn syrup and trans fats, and it offers additional accommodations for vegan and gluten-free diets. Blended drinks dominate the menu, with options including fruit refreshers—made with naturally hydrating, electrolytic coconut water—and pre-boosted smoothies that can fill nutritional gaps with infusions of protein, immunity boosters, or antioxidants that neutralize accidentally swallowed pool water. The drink list also includes organic house-blend coffee and Mighty Leaf teas flavored with hibiscus flowers or peppermint. For those with heartier appetites, steel-cut oats steep in soymilk before being enhanced with toppings such as apples, cinnamon, and brown-sugar crumble. The lunch hour presents a trio of california flatbreads, each packing only about 320–420 calories, which can be pleasantly capped off with cups of Whirl’ns frozen yogurt.
In 1937, something hot, delicious, and glazed rolled through the sleepy town of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Seventy-five years later, Vernon Rudolph's secret doughnut recipe lives on within the hundreds of Krispy Kreme locations scattered across the globe as well as within the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of American History, where Krispy Kreme is heralded as a 20th-century American icon.
The entire doughnut-making process, which customers can view up close and personal at many of Krispy Kreme’s outposts, begins with fresh ingredients and ends with the click of a fluorescent sign bearing the words, "hot doughnuts now." From the original, mold-breaking glazed doughnut to newer doughnut varieties, such as chocolate ice Kreme, glazed raspberry, and glazed chocolate cake, each round dainty pairs with piping-hot coffee for a compact snack easily tucked into a pocket or clown shoe.
Suzanne of Sugar Krayze bakes cupcakes and other desserts to order, in flavors ranging from traditional milk chocolate and vanilla to specialty confections, such as s’mores and cotton candy cupcakes. After baking and singing the miniature cakes to sleep, Suzanne tops each one with a swirl of homemade frosting and whimsical garnishes such as marshmallow fluff, shaved chocolate, and strawberry slices. Suzanne also creates a line of adult cupcakes infused with alcohol.
The Sweet Art of Cake’s pastry pundits whip up gourmet baked goods from traditional, gluten-free, and vegan recipes. Cupcakes ($2.45 each, $28.50/dozen) in flavors such as red velvet and banana crown ruched wrappers with cream-cheese frosting, lemon curd, and an alternative to hair gel. Customize cupcakes with simple icing designs of bees and flowers ($36/dozen) or more elaborate confections such as fondant flowers, marzipan miniatures, and sugar sculptures of The Thinker (an additional $12–$15/dozen). An array of other sweets, such as seasonal holiday pies ($12–$15), triple-chocolate-chip cookies ($1.49 for two), and vegan cheesecake bites ($0.99, available every other weekend) fill the bakery’s cooling racks with golden-brown crusts and enticing aromas. All of The Sweet Art of Cake’s treats are crafted without preservatives, additives, or gelatin.
At So Frais, customers can feel good about adopting a self-serving attitude by crafting their own brightly colored frozen yogurt treats that can be accessorized with a variety of natural toppings, including locally grown fruit. The signature low-calorie, probiotic-rich dairy freeze pours forth in a variety of rotating flavors, creating a sense of surprise as giggle-inducing as finding out your blind date is Cher ($2.95–$10.95). Guests looking to warm up stomach engines instead of freezing them can feast on savory fare such as stuffed pretzels—available in flavors such as cheddar-jalapeño and mozzarella pizza ($3.20)—or airy fistfuls of gourmet popcorn, available in six sweet and savory varietals ($2.49–$5.99). A selection of all natural cupcakes ($1.25–$2.50) and french macarons sound out the saccharine-rich half of the menu ($1–$2), while a mini croissant can help add authenticity to your mid-morning office-place rendition of "frère Jacques" ($1.70).
Much like the concoctions they’re named for, the story behind The Cupcake Shoppe is short but sweet. In 2011, Yolanda Diaz and her daughter Rosie started an online bakery. Within months, their treats became so popular that they had to invest in a full-sized confection facility. Since then, the Cupcake Shoppe has expanded their menu to include traditional, liquor-infused, and specialty cupcakes, including a french-toast-and-bacon version that nabbed top honors at the 2012 San Francisco Cupcake Challenge.
Yolanda and Rosie’s other cakes stretch the size spectrum, from cake pops and mini cupcakes to full-size custom cakes decorated for holidays and special occasions. The ladies also craft caramel apples and cookies that, like most thermometers, work best when dipped in chocolate. Their treats have even attracted some celebrity crushes: comedian George Lopez and 49ers running back Frank Gore have been spotted in the shop, and the cupcakes were also featured in the gift bags at the 2012 Daytime Emmy Awards.
The bakers at Marley's Treats specialize in miniature treats including cake pops and cupcakes in a variety of flavors. They deliver desserts for events and custom designs cupcakes, whipping up standard flavors including strawberry, red velvet, and lemon and specialty flavors including more difficult varieties such as banana split, s'mores, and ube-mango – a purple yam cake with mango buttercream and coconut flakes. Customized cupcakes don intricate decorations ranging from sugar-spun butterflies to Angry Birds characters that stack themselves up and eradicate any nearby pigs upon delivery.