It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to test out the area’s best desserts.
Cobble Hill Eatery and Dispensary
219 2nd St SE, Cedar Rapids
Cobble Hill is a favorite restaurant of the area for a few fundamental reasons: exceptional food, service and atmosphere. Just like the main courses, the desserts are constantly redefining Iowa cuisine. With a seasonal menu that is regularly changing, you never have the same meal or dessert twice. For example, a winter squash dessert highlights the taste of the season and shatters your preconceived notion that vegetables cannot be in a dessert. Another dessert course that is highly recommended is the chocolate tart with luscious banana, butterscotch mousse and coffee gelato. The textures, balanced flavor profiles and stunning plating will wow your eyes and palate. The butterscotch mousse is so mouthwatering that it could be served as a dessert on its own. As always, this food destination is the closest thing to a Michelin-starred experience you’ll find in the central Iowa area. You will never have desserts quite like the ones you have at Cobble Hill.
El Super Burrito and Lupita’s Bakery
3300 Johnson Ave NW, Cedar Rapids
Nestled away in the hustle and bustle of western Cedar Rapids is a staple Mexican food establishment well-known for its fantastic tacos, soups and tamales. From those new to Mexican cuisine to the veterans of taco Tuesdays, there is always something to satisfy a craving when it strikes. While the selection and quality of the main dishes are renowned in the local community, the variety of baked pastries and desserts should not be overlooked. El Super Burrito and Lupita’s Bakery often have a rotating selection of goods in their eclectic cases, but the classics like warm churros, flaky turnovers, colorful bandera cookies and cake-like conchas are always scrumptious and recommended by the handful. The friendly staff will be more than happy to explain any of the items to those new to Mexican baked goods and desserts. If you’ve never had the opportunity to try authentic Mexican desserts, don’t forget to include some in your next order at this wonderful restaurant.
Crêpes de Luxe Café
309 E College St, Iowa City
Who doesn’t love a delicious crêpe? Luckily, here in Iowa City we are in presence of one of the great crêpe masters of the world. With a strong French influence, chef and creator Hicham Chehouhani artfully prepares crêpes as authentic as those you would eat at a Parisian cafe. The sweet crêpes titled Le Reve and Crêpe du Chef are not to be missed as delectable desserts, but make sure to ask the incredibly friendly staff what is trending at the time; inspiration and seasonal ingredients change the selections at this quaint restaurant, and the new ones can be the best surprises. Gluten-free and buckwheat batters are available for those with sensitivities, and there is no sacrifice in flavor or delicacy. Trust me, you will not have a better crêpe anywhere in Iowa than at Crêpes de Luxe Café!
The best cookies in the CRANDIC
Decadent desserts certainly have their place, but sometimes you just need a cookie—the kind of straightforward, homemade cookie you never quite managed to pull off in your own kitchen—as a sugary afternoon pick-me-up.
Chocolate Chip Cookie
Her Soup Kitchen
625 S Dubuque St, Iowa City
The Little Village offices are sometimes too close for comfort to this hidden lunch gem. Whenever the craving strikes, we need only walk a literal 20 feet to fresh-baked cookies.
Tip Top Cakes
708 5th St #7, Coralville
All the treats at this bakery are great, but the cookies are what seal the deal. The Ginger Lime cookie is exceptional. It’s the size of your head, and if you don’t like ginger cookies, well, maybe we can’t be friends.
Dairy-free Super Nutty Oatmeal Cookie
New Pioneer Food Co-op
22 S Van Buren St, Iowa City
1101 2nd St, Coralville
3338 Center Point Rd NE, Cedar Rapids
This is one of those allergen-free cookies that doesn’t make you feel like you’re missing out. Not on a dairy-free diet? You might just find yourself regularly trotting past the nearest co-op to pick one up anyways.
501 7th Ave SE Ste B, Cedar Rapids
This is a cookie with both excellent crumb and balanced flavor. White chocolate can sometimes feel too sweet, but even with the addition of dried cranberries, this one keeps the sugar in check.
Cornmeal Lime Cookie
450 5th St SE, Cedar Rapids
Generously sized, the unique texture of this cookie is really what sells it. Get your fill of these crumbly treats after browsing the books at the Cedar Rapids Public Library. No one wants the cookie crumbs you left between pages 42 and 43.