Carnival may already be in its second week, but Mardi Gras fans in the Valley still have time to score one of the event's most popular traditions before Fat Tuesday, February 12: King Cake.
Akin to coffee cake, the ring-shaped creation is popular for its sugar toppings in the traditional Mardi Gras colors of purple, green and gold as well as the tiny baby (usually plastic) placed inside the baked and braided Danish dough. Got the slice of cake with the baby? Congratulations, you get to hold the next King Cake party.
Last week, we featured Barb's Bakery as a spot to kick-off Carnival with a King Cake. Today, we're listing six more, which means lots of choices depending on your party size and budget. But take note: Most ask that you order in advance, so plan accordingly.
Honey Moon Sweets No matter what the size of your Mardi Gras party, chances are this Tempe establishment from husband and wife team Tim and Joan O'Connor offers a size of King Cake that will fit. Made with a cheese filling baked into the dough, sizes include individual 10" round cakes ($45) as well as cakes big enough to feed 25 people ($48), 50 people ($96), and even 100 people ($175). Order three days in advance.
Flavors of Louisiana This Louisiana-style restaurant in the West Valley features King Cake in five flavors: cinnamon, cream cheese, strawberries and cream, lemon and cream, and pralines and cream. The cakes are 12" in size, feed about 10-12 people, and cost $20. Orders need to be placed 24 hours in advance.
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Karsh's Bakery This Central Phoenix kosher bakery, in business since the 1960s, serves up a 9" King Cake (enough for 8 - 10 people) for $15. Available in cinnamon, almond, cherry, apple, or blueberry, once you decide on a flavor, place your order 24-hours in advance.
AJ's Fine Foods With eleven locations across the Valley, it shouldn't be hard to find a King Cake at this upscale grocery store chain. For $30, and preferably, a three-day advance notice, an AJ's bakery can set you up with a cinnamon-flavored King Cake for 10-12 people. Baker Wee This family owned North Phoenix bake shop can make your King Cake to order and with whatever filling you'd like. The cake feeds around 6 to 8 people, costs $14.99, and requires the order be placed one day in advance.
Scratch Pastries Get your King Cake customized by working with a pastry chef at this cheery French patisserie and café in Scottsdale. With a week's notice, you can order a King Cake large enough to feed 10-12 people, and with your choice of filling, for $45.