Let Them Eat Cupcakes

16 May

So obviously candy is my favorite sweet treat. . However, if I am desperate and there are no chocolate covered gummy bears around, I will settle for cupcakes because after all, frosting is all sugar.

It’s a good thing I live in New York City where it seems there is a bakery on every block. With so many choices, I often struggle with the very important question; where should I go to get my sugar fix?  In honor of Sprinkles Bakery opening in New York City I decided to find out once and for all who actually makes the best cupcakes.

The Plan

It’s simple.

1)   Go to a few well known bakeries and buy 1 vanilla and 1 chocolate cupcake.

2)   Convince some coworkers to try said cupcakes in a blind taste test. (*Team Chocolate will be sampling the chocolate cupcakes and Team Vanilla will be sampling the vanilla cupcakes)

3)   Declare a winner.

The Goods

  Two Cupcakes from each of the following places:

Sprinkles Cupcakes (Cupcake A)


Magnolia Bakery (Cupcake B)


Crumbs Bake Shop (Cupcake C)


 Panel of Expert Judges (in Alphabetical Order)

Team Chocolate (aka the team that will be trying the chocolate cupcakes)

 Edward, Esther and Josanne

 Team Vanilla

Allison (Me), Chris and Corinna

 Team Bonus*


 * Because I was one of the first 500 people at Sprinkles to say “Red Apple” I got a free Red Velvet “bonus” cupcake.



Team Chocolate

  • Team Chocolate had a hard time making a decision, as all of the cup cakes were great!
  • One teammate commented that “cupcake A (Sprinkles) and cupcake C (Crumbs) were very difficult to decide between. I eventually chose C because it was much richer. Cupcake B (Magnolia) was my least favorite as it was completely dry and definitely lacking some key ingredient.”
  •  In the end, Team Chocolate unanimously choose Crumbs Chocolate Cupcake as their favorite

 Team Vanilla

  • Team Vanilla also had a hard time making a decision.
  • One team member gave the following review:

Cupcake A (Sprinkles) the “cake was sweet; a bit oily, though still fluffy while the frosting was very sweet and buttery – just how I like my icing. This icing is for people who seriously crave butter and sugar. My favorite (icing) of the three.”

Cupcake B (Magnolia) the “cake was lighter, less oily than A. Fluffiest of the three and my most preferred (cake). The frosting was Sweet, but less buttery than A.”

Cupcake C (Crumbs) the “cake has more of a vanilla flavor than the other two. The frosting was not as sweet as the others and doesn’t taste like it’s made with butter. This was my least favorite of the three.

  • Another teammate felt that the cupcake from Sprinkles was “too dry” and the cupcake from Crumbs was “too sweet.” Their favorite was Magnolia as they thought that they had a “good icing to cake ratio”.
  • The last teammate (me) had a really hard time making a choice. The Magnolia cup cake was my favorite. I thought the cake was moist and the frosting was just the right amount of sweet. For me, a close second was the Sprinkles Cupcake but I thought the cake was a little dry.  In all fairness this may be because I waited for 40 minutes to get the cupcake and it was therefore not as fresh as the others.

Team Bonus

  • Team Bonus reported the following “The best part – the frosting. Perfectly balanced cream cheese frosting makes the cupcake. The cake itself was good; a very light chocolate. Personally if I am having chocolate (which is not often, as I’m not a chocolate fiend), I prefer a rich, dark, or even German chocolate. But that’s me. The texture is pleasant, not overly moist but certainly fresh; not at all crumbly. My greatest wonder…the button garnish. I get it’s their logo, but was it supposed to be eaten? I expected sugar, but what I tasted was the texture of a Necco wafer and the taste of a communion wafer.”

 So at the end of the day it seems like if you want to get the best vanilla and chocolate cupcakes you need to go to two different places.


Chocolate Cupcake- Crumbs Bakery

Vanilla Cupcake- Magnolia Bakery or Sprinkles Cupcakes (This team couldn’t agree)

Did my panel get it right? Do you know of any other great bakeries?  My panel and I are more than happy to re-create this challenge. 


3 Responses to “Let Them Eat Cupcakes”

  1. cancerandcandy May 17, 2011 at 12:04 am #

    I had little time and sadly there is no buttercup right near work. Maybe I need to do it again!

  2. alison nakash May 17, 2011 at 7:26 am #

    Wish I was there for the tasting! Can’t wait to try Sprinkles! You are a girl after my own heart!

  3. Grace R May 17, 2011 at 9:58 am #

    Next time include buttercup! Their vanilla is delish.

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