Yummy Desserts in Orlando You Have to Try!
We’ve visited the Orlando area a number of times to visit theme parks but had never ventured outside of the walls of Disney or Universal parks until recently. Boy, were we missing out! Orlando has so many neat things to do and places to eat. In fact, I’d say that it’s one of the most foodie cities we’ve ever visited. Of course, with both of us having a chronic sweet tooth we had to stop at a number of places for a treat. Thus, we wanted to share a few of the best desserts in Orlando you have to try!
Matcha Cafe Maiko
Matcha Cafe Maiko is a quaint cafe that uses authentic ceremonial grade matcha from Kyoto in all of its desserts and lattes. But not only do they have delicious drinks and desserts, but it also has an adorable, Instagramable interior as well. To be honest, I think it’s hard to find places that are cute AND have worthy food/drinks so this was a great find because they EXCEED in both areas.
If you want a latte I recommend getting the hojicha latte or the matcha latte with honeycomb. If you want to spruce it up even more, get a latte with cheese foam on top. For desserts try one of the soft-serve flavors or some shave ice which are perfect for sharing. The moment we took a sip of our lattes we were transported back to the tea plantations in Wazuka and to the tea ceremonies we attended when in Kyoto as well. If you are a fan of matcha or hojicha you won’t want to miss Matcha Cafe Maiko.
Location: 639 N Mills Ave, Orlando // MAP
Hours: Sunday-Thursday 12pm-9pm, Friday & Saturday 12pm-10pm
Light on the Sugar
Light on the Sugar is a family-owned bakery and coffee shop that makes French pastries with Asian-inspired flavors like matcha, ube, taro, and black sesame. Of course, when we went, we had to get a variety of items. We bought ube and matcha cream puffs, a vanilla crepe cake, and one of their macarons which were as cute as it was delicious!
Truly these were some of the best pastries I’ve ever had and I eat A LOT of desserts. I’ll honestly be dreaming about them until we go back to try more desserts in Orlando like their sister bakery Sugar Dough Bakehouse which recently opened. Be sure to check out their Instagram to see what’s new weekly.
Location: 4270 Aloma Ave Suite 112, Winter Park // MAP
Hours: 11am-6pm daily, Closed Tuesdays
Another dessert we first tried in Japan was mochi donuts and we were so excited to find a mochi donut shop in Orlando. Dochi Donuts has delicious flavors of mochi donuts like cinnamon toast crunch, matcha oreo, churro, Nutella crunch, ube glaze, and more.
Even though they open at 11 be sure to get there early if you are wanting a specific flavor because when we showed up at 11:45 they were nearly out of every flavor! I guess we’ll just have to go back for those matcha and ube donuts. But I’m not complaining too much, the ones we got to try were delicious!
Location: 1222 E Colonial Dr Suite B, Orlando // MAP
Hours: Monday-Friday 11am-5pm, Saturday & Sunday 11am-6pm
Hanalei Shave Ice
Hanalei Shave Ice is a newer spot for dessert in Orlando and can be hard to find unless you check out their Instagram for current locations. But it’s absolutely worth the chase! We first had Hawaiian shave ice in Maui and were hooked. The fresh fruit flavors, soft shave ice, and variety of yummy toppings made this refreshing dessert a dream!
So when we heard there was an authentic Hawaiian shave ice truck in Orlando where the shave ice is hand-cranked, you bet we had to find it. We got the Kanoa Sparkle to share which had pineapple, strawberry, and lilikoi (passion fruit) flavors topped with fresh fruit, whipped cream, and glitter.
Location: Check their Instagram for current pop-up locations
Picasso Moments Bakery
We almost didn’t make it to Picasso Moments Bakery on our last trip to Orlando and that would have been such a mistake because it is such a gem. Picasso Moments has what they call “lazy bread” that balances a fusion of Western and Asian bread creating perfectly chewy and flavor-packed sweet and savory bread options.
In addition to having baked goods, they also have a large menu for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, teas, cakes, and other desserts. We decided to purchase a number of the Lazy Breads to-go and they made for the perfect sweet treat or breakfast item the next morning.
Our favorites were the Snowing Cream Cheese Bread, Charcoal Coconut, and Red Bean Bread. They were all subtly sweet but packed flavor which is perfect for those who may not want a super sweet dessert in Orlando but something that still hits the spot, this is for you!
Location: 8231 S John Young Pkwy, Orland // MAP
Hours: Sunday 10am-6pm, Monday-Saturday 10am-7:30pm
The Greenery Creamery
Before heading to Orlando we heard so many terrific things about The Greenery Creamery that it was the first place we stopped after dropping off our luggage at our hotel. The Greenery Creamery has a number of artisanal handcrafted ice cream flavors.
While they serve traditional dairy-based ice cream they also have a wide selection of plant-based ice creams as well all made from organic, local, and natural ingredients. All of their flavors rotate so be sure to follow them on Instagram to see what’s new!
We got a trio of ice creams to share including blueberry lavender, cookie butter, and mead honey. We also loved that The Greenery Creamery is dog-friendly. We took our dog, Bentley on a walk around Lake Eola before we stopped for ice cream and we enjoyed getting to take him in while we ordered and looked at their selection of pup-friendly options of ice cream too!
Location: 420 E Church St Unit 112, Orlando // MAP
Hours: Sunday-Thursday 12pm-9pm, Friday & Saturday 12pm-10pm
READ MORE: A Sweet Guide to Ice Cream in Japan
Amorette’s Patisserie is a French-style bakery that has artfully designed pastries located in the nearby Disney Springs area of Orlando. In French, amorette means “little love” which you can find in all of their delicious confectionaries. While they have a number of delicious pastries like eclairs, tars, cakes, and more. We decided to go with one of their signatures, the Mickey Mousse which has a chocolate chiffon cake, dark chocolate mousse, and white chocolate mousse.
Location: 1536 E Buena Vista Dr #1A, Lake Buena Vista // MAP
Hours: Sunday 11am-11pm, Monday-Thursday 12pm-11pm, Friday & Saturday 11am-11:30pm
Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew
Another spot to get a yummy dessert in Orlando is Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew which is also located in Disney Springs. Of course, you can get a donut and coffee separately but if you can’t decide I suggest getting one of their specialty combinations like the Reese’s Nitro which is perfect for peanut butter lovers and has nitro cold brew, oat milk infused with Reese’s PB sauce, peanut butter, and vanilla syrups and comes with a Peanut Butter Explosion donut.
Like any good donut shop, if you want a specific flavor like purple glazed ube, cinnamon toast crunch, or fruity pebbles you’ll want to get there early. However, if you aren’t picky (I mean all of their donuts are amazing!) they stay open late so you can get a delicious donut at any time.
Location: 1504 E Buena Vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista // MAP
Hours: Sunday-Thursday 9am-10pm, Friday & Saturday 9am-11pm
We’ve been to Orlando a number of times since moving to Florida and for some reason every single time we cannot seem to acquire cookies from Gideon’s Bakehouse. The first time we went to their shop in Orlando and it happened to be closed (or sold out?) and then the next few times we tried to stop at their Disney Springs location only to find a line wrapping around the building and a virtual queue that lasted hours. However, our luck recently changed and we were FINALLY able to score cookies from Gideon’s Bakehouse and let me tell you, they were absolutely worth the wait (and the hype)!
Gideon’s Bakehouse all started when Steve Lewis, the creator of Gideon’s found what he thought was an antique cookbook published in 1898. However, inside he found notes and doodles all over the margins from what appeared to be the imagination of a child who dreamed of becoming a baker. The name written on the back of the book was Gideon and thus, Steve decided to open a bakery in honor of this little boy’s dream.
The interior of Gideon’s Bakehouse is what I would describe as Victorian-era goth with shelves filled with old books, intriguing works of art, and other antiquities. Honestly, I’m absolutely obsessed with it but I’m sure you care more about the baked goods.
Once you are inside you’ll be in another line with other patrons where you’ll get to see the current cookie and cake flavors inside a glass case. But have no fear, you don’t have to make a mental note of what you want because the list of the options is also located on a chalkboard inside, and on our visit, we were given a paper with the flavors for the month.
Once we reached the register we then ordered what we wanted and watched as each cookie was individually wrapped in paper and placed carefully in a box then a paper bag. I love that they wrapped them in paper because let’s be honest, the Florida heat is no joke and I was worried they’d all melt together.
Anyways, we took our cookies home and immediately unwrapped the chocolate chip cookie first. I mean, we had to considering it’s the one that started it all. My initial impression was that there was A LOT of chocolate on the cookie. But once I took that first bite I was tasting fireworks like Remy in Ratatouille when he combined the strawberry and cheese. I was worried these cookies were going to be too hyped up to deliver but they did not disappoint and I can now confidently say that Gideon’s has some of the best cookies I’ve ever had and I make an effort to get them every time I’m in Orlando or Lake Buena Vista.
Here are the flavors we’ve tried:
- Traditional Chocolate Chip: The flakes of sea salt on top really helped balance out the sweetness.
- Pistachio Toffee: Perfect for those who want something a bit saltier.
- Peanut Butter Crunch: Peanut butter cookie with peanut butter chips and crunchy honey-roasted peanuts.
- Triple Chocolate: I was worried this one would be too chocolatey but somehow it wasn’t. What kind of magic is this?
- Cookies & Cream: A cookie stuffed with an unbelievable amount of Double Stuf Oreo cookies. If I’m being honest, this one has probably been my least favorite because it was a bit too sweet for me, but it was still good!
- Dark Coffee Cake: A coffee cake cookie with a chocolate cookie base! This cookie is only available at their Disney Springs location after sunset until sell out!
- Calavera Cookie: Chocolate Churro Cookie (special cookie of the month). I wish they had this one year-round because it was SO GOOD.
- Sea Turtle: Another special cookie of the month I tried and will now cry over that they don’t have it year round. This delicious cookie has their classic chocolate chip with homemade caramel, giant candied pecans, and sea salt.
Things to Know Before You Go:
- You can only buy 6 cookies per person. This is so they don’t run out quickly but, to be honest, I don’t think you’ll need more than that because they’re huge cookies. In fact, they weigh around 1/2 lb each! Although I’ll admit we have purchased more and froze them at home.
- You can preorder cookies online at their East End Market location. This is a sure way to get your hands on Gideon’s Bakehouse items (especially if you have a favorite cookie flavor!). Preorders are not available at the Disney Springs location.
- If you plan to visit the location at Disney Springs know about the Virtual Queue. When it gets busy enough Gideon’s switches over from a traditional line to a “virtual queue” which allows visitors to shop, dine, or resume other activities in Disney Springs then once you get a return text you can come back to the regular line (approx. 15-minute wait from that point). You can get added to the virtual queue by talking to the Gideon’s staff member who will come around to the line with an iPad to check you in. Read more here.
Which of these desserts in Orlando would you want to try first?!