1. Mac ‘n’ Cheese
Sarita’s Macaroni and Cheese (NYC)
Known as “S’mac,” this café serves huge cast-iron skillets of mac ‘n’ cheese filled with pretty much anything imaginable. If dairy’s not your thing, there are vegan options too.
MADD (London, England)
Everything on the menu at this dessert shop in the U.K. contains mango in some form. There are smoothies, milkshakes, ice cream sundaes, and baked goods in dozens of combinations. If you’re up for it, there are four cocktails and three shooters on the menu, all combining mango and some kind of booze.
3. Rice Krispy Treats
Treat House (NYC)
This bakery on Manhattan’s Upper West Side serves only Rice Krispies treats. The idea for the bakery came about when the owners’ sons were making the treats for a bake sale. Flavors include blueberry pie, red velvet, and pink bubblegum. And if you don’t live in the area, nationwide delivery starts in September!
This café in the West Village specializes in all things oatmeal. There are sweet and savory oatmeal bowls, some simple (peanut butter banana oatmeal), and some more complex (sundried tomato, pesto, and parmesan oatmeal). There are sandwiches too, on house-made bread baked with rolled oats and oat flour.
The Meatloaf Bakery (Chicago, IL)
Unlike traditional bakeries, this one focuses on meats, not sweets. The Meatloaf Bakery serves a variety of meatloaf styled to look like cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and pies (think mashed potato icing and vegetable sprinkles). The gimmick is working; the store opened in 2008 and is still going strong.
6. Rice Pudding
Rice To Riches (NYC)
The store is set up like a traditional scoop shop, but rice pudding replaces ice cream. There’s the “Old Fashioned Romance” (traditional rice pudding, nothing on it), as well as quirkier flavors like “Keylime Love Letter,” or “Sex Drugs and Rocky Road.” And, if you really can’t get enough, you can take home an 80-ounce container for just $40.
Xooro (locations throughout California)
This mini-chain serves nothing but variations on the churro. And Xooro takes flavor offerings way beyond the classic cinnamon-sugar dusting. “Jordan’s Favorite” is filled with Nutella and covered with white and dark chocolate, and the “Tortoise” is a dulce de leche fritter coated with milk chocolate and pecans.
8. Peanut Butter
Peanut Butter & Co. (NYC)
This specialty peanut butter brand has an eponymous sandwich shop in the West Village that serves 20 different peanut butter-based sandwiches — yes, there’s a PB&J, but there’s also one with spicy peanut butter, grilled chicken, and pineapple jam — and 10 peanut butter-filled desserts.
9. Greek Yogurt
Chobani Soho (NYC)
No, it’s not froyo. At this store, you’ll find vast quantities of plain Chobani Greek yogurt (yes, the same thing you buy at the grocery store), alongside a variety of mix-ins. Choose a classic combo of fruit, yogurt and granola, or get adventurous and order your Greek yogurt with cucumber, dill, olive oil and pita chips.
Potatopia (Edison, NJ)
This spud-centric restaurant has been around since 2011, and a NYC location is slated to open any day now. In addition to a selection of potato-based “Signature Meals,” diners have the option to build their own entree by selecting one of nine potato bases (smashed potato, au gratin, curly, baked sweet potato, etc.) and adding any combination of vegetables, proteins, cheese, and sauce.
Nutelleria (locations worldwide)
FINALLY, the world’s favorite chocolate spread has its own restaurant! The cafés (now only in Europe, though a mysterious Facebook page hints at an upcoming New York location) serve all things Nutella, and are owned by Ferrero Rocher.
12. Breakfast Cereal
Cereality (Dallas, Texas)
Four years ago, this “bar and café” debuted with locations throughout the country. It seems many people didn’t see the beauty in a breakfast cereal restaurant, though, because only one location remains, inside Dallas-Fort Worth Airport (there’s also a small kiosk inside a Virginia hospital). The café has dozens of brand-name cereals that you can combine and top with things like fruit, nuts, and candy.
For those New Yorkers who are bored with ice cream, gelato, frozen yogurt, frozen custard, and the unidentifiable “frozen dessert” that is Tasti-D-Lite, there is a sweets shop in the East Village that specializes in pudding. There are 10 flavors available by the cup, as well as pudding sundaes and “puddin’ pops,” which are frozen and dipped in chocolate.