The 15 Best Places for King Cake in & Around New Orleans

Kaylee Giacomini

I love everything about Carnival season in New Orleans - the parades, decor, and overall joviality of the city always manages to brighten the winter down here. Best of all, it’s King Cake season! Although you technically can find King Cake at all times in New Orleans, the period between the Catholic Holidays of Epiphany and Ash Wednesday is when it’s socially acceptable to eat this decadent brioche. A traditional King Cake is a ring shaped dough formed to mimic the shape of a crown in honor of the Three Kings of Epiphany. The cake is then adorned in glaze and purple, green, and gold sugar. A plastic baby figurine is also embedded into the cake, and if you end up getting the slice with it you must buy the next King Cake. Each year, my friends and I go on a mission to find the best King Cakes in the city - here are some of my favorites.

Tags: Foodie Travel

  • Gambino's Bakery, United States

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    • kaylee

      When my Dad lived in New Orleans in the 80’s Gambino’s was his top pick for best King Cake in the city, so naturally it’s mine as well. Growing up he used to get it shipped from the Big Easy to Delaware each year for Mardi Gras. Today, Gambino’s is just as good as I remember it. I’m a purist when it comes to King Cake and will always love their traditional variation, but they have a variety of delicious fillings to choose from too.

  • Willa Jean in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      This year, the phenomenal brunch spot Willa Jean is serving a caramel crunch King Cake. Place orders 48 hours in advance, and when you arrive for pickup be sure to stay for breakfast. If their King Cake is anything like their famous biscuits, it just may be the best in the city.

  • HI-Do Bakery, United States

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    • kaylee

      Hi-Do is a traditional cake similar to the late McKenzies - the bakery that invented putting a baby in King Cakes. Although you can no longer shop at McKenzies, Hi-Do is a great option for those NOLA old-timers with nostalgia over the long closed bakery. Their cake is doughy, traditional, and forfeits icing for extra sugar sprinkles.

  • Dong Phuong Bakery & Restaurant in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Did you know that New Orleans has one of the largest Vietnamese communities in the United States? Dong Phuong is the oldest and most established Vietnamese bakery in the city, opened in 1982. They make a phenomenal classic King Cake, but one of their most unique is the coconut.

  • Manny Randazzo King Cakes, United States

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    • kaylee

      Randazzo’s is one of the best spots in the city to find King Cake. In 2012, the bakery was so well established that their Pecan Praline King Cake was voted “the King of King Cakes.” Their King Cakes are so famous that they are all that the bakery is devoted to making nowadays.

  • Antoine's Famous Cakes, United States

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    • kaylee

      Antoines is the home of some of the city’s most unique King Cakes, but one thing that also sets them apart is their Queen Cakes. Antoine’s King Cakes have a choice of over 5 fillings, and they manage to fit all five into the Queen Cake. This variation is perfect if you’re as indecisive as I am.

  • Laurel Street Bakery in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Laurel Street is a longtime favorite to get a traditional King Cake in New Orleans. They’re baked in house daily and their semi-sweet brioche is divine. You obviously can’t go wrong with the classic, but if you want to branch out they also do an amazing cream cheese filling.

  • King Cake Hub in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Overwhelmed by the sheer amount of choices to buy King Cake? Me too. My secret to trying multiple King Cakes in one season is to visit King Cake Hub. They have two locations - one permanently in the French Quarter’s Historic New Orleans Collection and a pop-up in Zony Mash Beer project (one of the best breweries in the city!). Each year, they sell King Cakes from around 20 of the best bakeries in the city. They also offer samplings and King Cake by the slice so you'll be sure to find your personal favorite King Cake in New Orleans.

  • Haydel's Bake Shop in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Haydel’s is another top spot for a classic King Cake; they’re 3 generations deep into the tradition of baking them. They use Danish dough, braid each cake by hand, and top them with fondant icing and colored sugars. Their praline pecan filled cake also comes highly recommended.

  • Bittersweet Confections in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Bittersweet Confections has been creating cakes, cupcakes, and other baked goods for 20 years. They gained notoriety as one of the best King Cakes in the city due to their Bittersweet King Cake, which is a brioche dough filled with dark chocolate cream cheese icing and topped with chocolate glaze and ganache. It is possibly the most decadent in the city.

  • Creole Creamery in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Love ice cream? Creole Creamery may just serve the best King Cake you’ve ever had. Not only do they make a phenomenal ice cream King Cake with layers of brioche and their house made custard, they also have King Cake ice cream. The ice cream is a vanilla base with cinnamon swirl and chunks of traditional King Cake.

  • Tartine in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Tartine King Cakes are on the traditional side, but sweeter than many. Their dough is rolled with brown sugar and cream cheese before being baked until brown and topped with the traditional glaze and colored sugar. It is the most reminiscent of a cinnamon roll when it comes to the flavor profile, but much more festive.

  • Piety and Desire Chocolate | New Orleans in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Piety & Desire got its name under the conviction that enjoying fine chocolate is both a religious and seductive experience. Their King Cake stays true to this motto. They hand craft them in shop, and are consistently lauded as the best chocolate King Cake in the city.

  • Breads On Oak in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      I was a vegan for four years. However, now that I eat whatever I want I was skeptical about trying an all-vegan bakery. I first tried Breads on Oak before learning its status and was absolutely blown away. Their King Cakes are fantastic - even without butter, milk, and eggs derived from animals. Try a stuffed variation - their tiramisu King Cake is exceptional.

    • leah I'll be in town this March, and as a plant-based eater, this is so exciting to me!
  • Pythian Market in New Orleans, United States

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    • kaylee

      Still not sure where to get King Cake? After all these suggestions? That’s ok - Pythian Market is the self-declared King Cake hub of Downtown New Orleans (Not to be confused with King Cake Hub - who also has a variety of King Cakes in the French Quarter & Mid City). Pythian is one of my favorite work-spots in the city to grab a bite, enjoy the bar, and do some work from home tasks. While you’re there, check out one of their five varieties of King Cake from famous bakeries all over the city.