The Best Cupcake in All 50 States

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We’re going to sugarcoat it. Twelve years after the advent of the cupcake-only bakery (the California-launched chain Sprinkles is credited with opening the first in 2005), there are a lot of options. We rounded up 50 of the best decadent desserts across the country. So go out, have your (cup)cake—and eat it, too.

1. ALABAMA // WEDDING CAKE, DREAMCAKES BAKERY

Location: Homewood, Alabama

State newspaper Al.com found this shop, well, quite dreamy—giving them top honors in a 2012 hunt. Co-owner Jan Potter, a former food stylist, said she focuses on both taste and Instagram-ibility of the treats, telling the paper, “I believe you eat with your eyes first.” Of the 80 flavors on offer—between 18 to 20 are available each day—the paper was most impressed by best seller Wedding Cake, a white velvet confection with almond buttercream.

2. ALASKA // LEMON ROSEMARY SMOKED SALMON, KASTLE'S KREATIONS

Eagle River Alaska
Eagle River, Alaska
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Location: Eagle River, Alaska

A perennial best of winner—most recently named Alaska’s top food truck—the mobile bakery offers flavors ranging from churro to strawberry lemonade. And for the truly brave, there’s the lemon rosemary smoked salmon deity that landed owner Kastle Sorensen and assistant Amy Gruce a victory on a 2013 episode of Food Network’s Cupcake Wars.

3. ARIZONA // FRENCH TOAST, TREEHOUSE BAKERY

Location: Phoenix, Arizona

Who needs buttercream? This dairy-free shop was named best in the state by culinary website The Daily Meal, who declared, “A vegan bakery that makes you forget about the fact that it is vegan is a winner in our book.” And for the truly healthy conscious, many of their rotating 30 flavors—including standout French Toast—are available in gluten-free varieties.

4. ARKANSAS // RED VELVET, PATTICAKES BAKERY

Location: Conway, Arkansas

With a five-star rating on The Knot, brides will want the pros at this Conway shop to bake them a cake (or cupcake tower!) as fast as they can. A self-proclaimed “scratch bakery," the spot’s website says they’re “dedicated to serving desserts reminiscent of a visit to Grandma’s.” A highlight: their traditional red velvet—also available in doughnut form!

5. CALIFORNIA // PUMPKIN MAPLE, SUSIE CAKES

Location: Statewide

Started by Chicago native Susie Sarich—and a stack of 4x6 cards bearing her grandmothers’ recipes—this chain with 17 locations in Northern and Southern California and four in Texas prides itself on using the finest ingredients (think: European-style butter and Ghirardelli chocolate) in treats such as coconut and lemon as well as seasonal standouts such as the pumpkin maple. As the site proclaims, “If you can’t spell it, we don’t bake with it.”

6. COLORADO // CARROT CAKE, GOLD MINE CUPCAKES

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Location: Golden, Colorado

Four years after the mother-and-daughters trio started whipping up recipes for pina colada and macadamia nut cookie in the lone oven in their mom’s kitchen, they’re nabbing honors for their 40-plus flavors. But Yelp reviewers agree the carrot cake is one of their best. The key, says owner and baker Sara Rutter, is their carefully developed buttercream. “Our cake and the frosting are the perfect complement for each other, never having one overpower the other,” she explained to The Denver Post. “Our buttercream frosting was very important to us as we developed the perfect recipe because we didn’t want it to be too sweet and we loved having a soft creamy texture.”

7. CONNECTICUT // BOOZY BREAKFAST, NORA CUPCAKE COMPANY

Connecticut Welcome Sign
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Location: Middleton, West Hartford, and Canton, Connecticut

“Like most good stories, it all started in a bar,” the website for this spot reads, detailing owner Carrie Carella’s journey from bartender to owner of three locations, a mobile food truck, and more than 300 flavors. That list includes cocktail-infused confections such as the blackberry margarita and the Boozy Breakfast, made with maple cake and Jameson chocolate ganache filling, but also more PG varieties such as Lucky Charms and Candy Explosion from the “kiddie gangsters” section of the menu.

8. DELAWARE // CHOCOLATE CUPCAKE WITH OREO COOKIE MOUSSE, SWEET SOMETHINGS

iStock

Location: Wilmington, Delaware

Recently named the best bakery in the state by Yelp reviewers, this shop dishes out nostalgic treats. “There are plenty of places that do ‘cutting edge’ desserts, but for me, it’s about making products you remember as a kid, with grandma,” owner Lee Slaninko told Delaware’s Out & About magazine. “We try and marry that with good service, creative design, and great taste.” Among the appetizing throwback flavors: a chocolate cupcake with Oreo Cookie Mousse.

9. FLORIDA // GUAYABERA, SWEETNESS BAKESHOP

Location: Miami

Just seven years old, the family-owned business has already been recognized by Zagat, Food and Wine Magazine, and the Miami New Times, which named them the best in the city. Though their 275-plus flavor list—the guava-and-cream cheese blend Guayabera is a signature—is impressive, it was their vanilla bean-embedded Thrilla-in-Vanilla that impressed Miami New Times writers, who raved, “They have the perfect density, consistency, moisture, flavor and icing-to-cupcake ratio.”

10. GEORGIA // SWEET POTATO & BOURBON, THE ATLANTA CUPCAKE FACTORY

The Atlanta Cupcake Factory

Location: Atlanta

Shortening is a dirty word at this artisan bakery, whose site proclaims they’re “dedicated to small batch baking and to feeding our customers with integrity.” Standouts such as the Sweet Potato and Bourbon blend (with Kentucky Bourbon cream cheese frosting) on the weekly rotating menu earned the boutique shop the distinction of being named The Today Show’s best cupcake in the country.

11. HAWAII // SHAVE ICE, HOKULANI BAKESHOP

Location: Honolulu

This island shop—another Cupcake Wars winner—prides itself on using quality ingredients (pure Grade A sweet cream butter, cane sugar, and fresh eggs) in unique creations such as the Liliko (baked with passion-fruit puree and topped with lemon-zested cream cheese icing) and Shave Ice, a local favorite made with Adzuki beans and drizzled with condensed milk.

12. IDAHO // TOMATO SOUP, SUGAR RUSH CUPCAKERY

Location: Boise, Idaho

A decade of baking wedding cakes—and listening to requests from clients—inspired parent company Family Ties to create a spinoff store offering mini versions of their fun flavors. Among the bakery’s more inventive creations: a tomato soup-flavored option with a cream cheese buttercream.

13. ILLINOIS // MANGO PASSIONFRUIT, SWIRLZ CUPCAKES

Mango Passionfruit Swirlz Cupcake Shop
Swirlz Cupcake Shop

Location: Chicago

Swirlz Cupcakes, the oldest all-cupcake shop in Chicago, layers each buttermilk-made cake with two dollops of frosting. As of their 10-year anniversary in 2016, the shop had dreamed up more than 1700 freshly-made flavors for their rotating list but Food & Wine editors were most impressed with the Mango Passion: a raspberry-and-vanilla cake base topped with mango white chocolate ganache, passion fruit buttercream, white chocolate, and a passion fruit flower.

14. INDIANA // RED VELVET ELVIS, THE FLYING CUPCAKE

Location: Indianapolis

The state’s first cupcake shop when it opened in 2007, the bakery has now expanded to six locations and racked up honors from Buzzfeed, MSN, Paula Deen Magazine, and TheIndyChannel.com for its creatively named treats. One reader dubs the Red Velvet Elvis (with chocolate chunks and cream cheese icing) “unbeatable.”

15. IOWA // BAILEY'S & GUINNESS, CRÉME CUPCAKE

Location: Des Moines, Iowa

Few things pair better with cupcakes than cocktails. After 5 p.m., this Midwest spot turns into a dessert lounge, featuring suggested drink and dessert pairings (including wines from the aptly named Cupcake Vineyard). Or get your sweets and spirits in one fell swoop with this seasonal pick: a chocolate cake with Guinness mousse filling topped with a Bailey’s buttercream.

16. KANSAS // CHOCOLATE TORTE, GIGI'S CUPCAKES

Location: Overland Park, Kansas

Inspired to open up shop in 2008 when her brother said her red velvet treats were better than those at the famed Magnolia Bakery in New York City, Gigi Butler has expanded to 100-plus independently owned locations. But at this spot, the triple-chocolate gluten-friendly torte reigns supreme with the owners vowing it’s the most delicious thing you’ll ever taste.

17. KENTUCKY // UPSIDE-DOWN DIPPED CUPCAKE, HOMEMADE ICE CREAM & PIE KITCHEN

Location: Louisville, Kentucky

Though not touted in its name, the former lunch counter is famed for their upside-down dipped cupcake created when a still-hot vanilla cupcake is thrust bottom-side-up in chocolate or vanilla icing. The result, raves Louisville.com, is a “sugary wonder.”

18. LOUISIANA // RED VELVET, BUTTERCUPS CUPCAKES

Location: Shreveport, Louisiana

Recipes for the banana pudding (topped with crushed vanilla wafers) and their standout red velvet were developed in Kim Hand’s home kitchen. Each treat incorporates what the brand calls "high quality pure ingredients," including real fruit and "rich chocolate."

19. MAINE// MAINE BLUEBERRY, LET THEM EAT CAKE

Maine map
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Location: Kennebunk, Maine

Named one of the top pastry pros by Martha Stewart Weddings, this New England company also earns raves for its artfully decorated cupcakes. Their treats—one satisfied bride dubs their Maine Blueberry with Stonewall Kitchen wild Maine blueberry jam delicious—can be topped with anything from intricately crafted flowers to a fondant lobster.

20. MARYLAND // CARROT, CHARM CITY CUPCAKES

Charm City Cupcakes
Nathalie Cone, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Location: Baltimore

At Food Network star Duff Goldman’s original bakery even the cupcakes—available in such flavors as amaretto cream, chocolate espresso, and staff favorite carrot—are topped with a thick layer of egg white, butter, and sugar-based buttercream and turned into works of art.

21. MASSACHUSETTS // BITE ME, WHIPPED URBAN CUPCAKE CO.

Location: Boston

Though the cakes at this delivery-only brand (a pop-up shop is slated to open soon) stand only at a inch without frosting, they “pack such intense flavor, it’s almost surprising,” raved one Mass Live tester. (The local site named the company tops in the state in 2016.) Another raved that the apple-and-molasses filled Bite Me “packed unreal apple pie flavor into a tiny package” while the java-infused Get Hyped “had some of the purest coffee flavor that I’ve ever encountered in a baked food.”

22. MICHIGAN // DELISH, UNION GENERAL STORE

Michigan sign
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Location: Clarkston, Michigan

Housed in an 1850 parsonage, this outlet is part all-purpose shop (pick up anything from bubble bath to a harmonica), part cupcakery. All the treats, piled high with a generous dollop of frosting and topped with treats such as malted milk eggs and fresh fruit, are worth the calories, but customers especially crave this blend of chocolate truffle and salted caramel.

23. MINNESOTA // HANDLE WITH CARAMEL, CUPCAKE

Minneapolis skyline
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Location: Minneapolis

Of the 70-plus flavors owner and Cupcake Wars grand champion Kevin VanDeraa has created—including those named for celebrities, such as the Taylor Swift, a vanilla cake with sweet frosting and sprinkles—his favorite is the Handle with Caramel, he told Food & Wine. The chocolate cake “delivers caramel in three ways,” he explained, “liquid caramel sauce, whipped caramel and caramel filling.” The topper: chocolate ganache, chocolate drizzle, and a caramel candy.

24. MISSISSIPPI // COCONUT, SUGAREE'S BAKERY

Mississippi sign
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Location: New Albany, Mississippi

As their website declares, this small batch bakery is “dedicated to the preservation of our culinary heritage in the Deep South.” As such, the pastry chefs whip up caramel by browning granulated sugar, and for the classic coconut flavor, they pour a hot butter glaze over freshly baked cakes. Their aim, they explain, “is to make the richest, moistest homemade cakes available.”

25. MISSOURI // 24 KARAT CARROT CAKE, JILLY'S CUPCAKE BAR

Jilly's Cupcake Bar 24 Karot Cake
Paul Sableman, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Location: St. Louis

Bring a friend when you visit this St. Louis shop. Chefs Casey Shiller and Dana Holland—two-time winners on Cupcake Wars—churn out gourmet cupcakes that, when stuffed and iced, weigh in at roughly a half pound. One luxe option: the 24 Karat Carrot Cake, filled with vanilla whipped cream and topped with cream cheese frosting, toasted coconut, white chocolate shavings, and gold dust. Or sample from the seasonal menu—caramel apple, banana pudding, and pumpkin cheesecake are on tap for fall!

26. MONTANA // LAVENDER CUPCAKE, BERNICE'S BAKERY

Location: Missoula, Montana

Around since 1978, this landmark insists they never cut corners to make their chocolate, wine, cream, and poppy seed cakes. On their site, the company vows, “All of our fillings, frostings, and toppings are made fresh, from scratch. Actual Lemons are juiced to make the Lemon Curd. Real Raspberries are cooked down and squeezed out by hand to make the Raspberry Puree.” For a special treat, request the shop's signature lavender cupcake, available in wine and chocolate varieties.

27. NEBRASKA // SWEET AND SALTY, JONES BROS. CUPCAKES

A Jones Bros Sweet and Salty cupcake next to a box.
Zane Mulligan, Flickr // CC BY ND 2.0

Location: Omaha, Nebraska

Plans for the family-run business were first discussed around the Joneses’ kitchen table. Today, it’s expanded into a full café that sells tart yogurt, espresso, wine, and homemade small-batch ice cream, but the top seller is still their Sweet and Salty cupcake: chocolate laced with caramel and sea salt, then topped with chocolate buttercream and caramel drizzle.

28. NEVADA // CHOCOLATE-DIPPED CHERRY, FREED'S BAKERY

Location: Las Vegas

A frequent winner in the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Best of Las Vegas book, the wedding cake specialists also whip up tasty cupcakes using signature ingredients like European butter cream and Bavarian crème filling. One to try: the chocolate dipped cherry with a literal cherry on top.

29. NEW HAMPSHIRE // CANNOLI, QUEEN CITY CUPCAKES

Queen City Cupcakes
Queen City Cupcakes

Location: Manchester, New Hampshire

A popular choice in New Hampshire Magazine’s best of list, the store specializes in flavors that entice both kids (the chocolate-and-marshmallow Hot Cocoa or the Chocolate Chip Cookie with a brown sugar base and cookie crumbles on top) and adults, such as the Guinness cupcake with beer baked right in. But the Cannoli—an almond cupcake with almond buttercream topped with dessert pieces, chocolate chips, and pistachios—receives extra raves.

30. NEW JERSEY // CHOCOLATE RASPBERRY TRUFFLE, CUPCAKE MAGICIAN

Location: Red Bank, New Jersey

No wizardry is used in making 600 daily cupcakes at this mom-and-pop shop—just plenty of fresh buttercream and chocolate ganache. The result, gushes a blogger at Flavor Chronicles of the stuffed Chocolate Raspberry Truffle variety, is “heaven.”

31. NEW MEXICO // RED VELVET, SMALLCAKES

Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

"Maybe a cupcake will help?" is the slogan of this sugary franchise, named one of USA Today’s top ten spots. But if their 18 signature cake flavors—including birthday cake, peanut butter cup, caramel crunch, and their “famous” red velvet—aren’t enough to satisfy your sweet tooth, add a scoop of their homemade small batch ice cream.

32. NEW YORK // BLACK & WHITE, LITTLE CUPCAKE BAKESHOP

Location: New York City In the land of Magnolia (the brand Carrie Bradshaw preferred on Sex and the City) and Billy’s Bakery, this Brooklyn-launched family-owned company stands out for its take on classic New York City treats. One Food & Wine writer lauds their snack-size version of the Brooklyn Blackout cake (a blend of chocolate cake and rich pudding) as “tastier than 99 percent” of the other ones he’s had. Even better: the Black & White, a cupcake adaption of the vanilla-and-chocolate cookie.

33. NORTH CAROLINA // ASSORTED PEPPERED CUPCAKE FLAVORS, THE PEPPERED CUPCAKE

Mango & Pineapple Pepper Jelly
Mango & Pineapple Pepper Jelly Cupcake

Location: Charlotte, North Carolina

Though sweets such as salted caramel and crème brulee are among the roughly 100 options on the menu, as the name suggests, this spot is known for its savory cakes baked with jalapenos, habaneros, and fresh cracked pepper and topped with one of 15 preserves such as mango and habanero or pear, mint, and wasabi.

34. NORTH DAKOTA // VANILLA, SWEET TREATS CUPCAKE BAR & BAKERY

Bismark, North Dakota
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Location: Bismarck, North Dakota

If you prefer to DIY your desserts, this Midwest eatery is your spot. Sugar seekers choose from classic cake bases—vanilla, chocolate, marble, red velvet, and seasonal varieties—then add frosting and toppings to suit their fancy.

35. OHIO // BUCKEYE, FATE CAKES

Location: Columbus, Ohio

The Buckeye—based off the state nickname and the most requested dessert—is a peanut butter-and-chocolate combo that has this shop's customers raving. “The first bite I had was fabulous!” wrote one fan. “The icing was to die for!”

36. OKLAHOMA // NEOPOLITAN, PINKITZEL

Location: Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Oklahoma

Resplendent in black-and-white checked floors and chandeliers, this cafe describes itself as part Willy Wonka, part Alice in Wonderland and part Marie Antoinette. Their treats are just as fanciful. Candy-inspired cakes are topped with buttercream or cream cheese icing then wrapped in signature damask paper. One favorite: the Neopolitan, with strawberry and vanilla buttercream and a cherry sour.

37. OREGON // SESAME CARAMEL BOMB, KYRA'S BAKE SHOP

Location: Lake Oswego

Diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder at age 20, founder Kyra Bussanich went gluten-free and found herself disappointed with the dessert options on the market. Experimenting with millet, tapioca, potato, and cornstarch, the Le Cordon Bleu-trained pastry chef (a four-time Cupcake Wars winner) developed a slate [PDF] of tasty creations, including this mix of coconut, salted caramel, and toasted sesame that the Cooking Channel has dubbed “heaven.”

38. PENNSYLVANIA // APPLE CRISP, SWEET FREEDOM

Location: Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania and Philadelphia

The gluten-free trend is taken one step further at Sweet Freedom, where the chocolate, vanilla, banana, and apple crisp—a must-try, per Food Network—cupcakes are both vegan and devoid of any corn, wheat, peanuts, and soy. Highly processed sugars are always nix, according to their site, which swears, “The only sweeteners we will ever use are the most natural and unrefined of sugars that are gentler on your body.”

39. RHODE ISLAND // ZEPPOLE, SWEET INDULGENCE

Sweet Indulgence Zeppole Cupcake
Heidi Hope Photography for Sweet Indulgence

Location: Cranston, Rhode Island

Decorated with anything from intricate flowers to unicorn horns, these sweets—ranging from apple pie down to the seasonal Zeppole, topped with a fried Italian pastry—look as good as they taste, earning them the honor of best cupcake in the state by Rhode Island Monthly readers.

40. SOUTH CAROLINA // LEMON CURD, SUGAR BAKESHOP

Location: Charleston, South Carolina

In their renovated four-seat shop, New York City transplants and architects-turned-bakers Bill Bowick and David Bouffard showcase their homemade creations inspired by the treats of their youth. Indulgences such as the by-order-only Lady Baltimore (almond cake with sherry-soaked raisins and a meringue topper) have earned raves from the likes of Southern Living, Bon Appétit and Food & Wine. But it’s their “sweet and tart” Lemon Curd cupcakes that the editors of Travel + Leisure swear are a “must-try.”

41. SOUTH DAKOTA // CHOCOLATE PB ATTACK, OH MY CUPCAKES!

Location: Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Among the customer-beloved signature treats at this people-pleasing bakery (their mission, they declare, is to make people smile with cupcakes): the chocolate PB attack cupcake, a gluten-free palate-pleaser infused with creamy peanut butter and topped with a whipped peanut butter buttercream.

42. TENNESSEE // PROZAC, MUDDY'S BAKE SHOP

Muddy's Bakeshop Prozac cupcake
Justin McGregor, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 

Location: Memphis, Tennessee

The family-owned business’s mission is to make people happier—a goal they achieve with their smartly named customer favorite, a chocolate cake topped with their “famously delicious” chocolate buttercream.

43. TEXAS // BASILBERRY CUPCAKE // SKULL & CAKEBONES

Location: Austin

Cooking Channel praises the “herbacious-ness” of this vegan cake (the shop specializes in all-natural, vegan, non-GMO delicacies made with locally sourced foods) packed with basil and topped with a strawberry buttercream.

44. UTAH // CARAMEL POPCORN, ALISHA'S CUPCAKES

Location: Pleasant Grove, Utah

Every month, this twin sister duo offers a new crop of sweets from their list of 100-plus, but one treat takes the cake. This sweet-and-salty combo, topped with their made-from-scratch caramel popcorn, was featured on Cupcake Wars.

45. VERMONT // VERMONT MAPLE BACON, MY LITTLE CUPCAKE

Location: Burlington, Vermont

As the name suggests, all the treats at this bakery are miniature-sized, but packed with local and premium ingredients. Take the Vermont Maple Bacon topped with Vermont maple buttercream and, naturally, a slice of bacon.

46. VIRGINIA // 9:30 CUPCAKE, BUZZ BAKERY

Location: Alexandria, Virginia

The bestseller at this brunch place is this rich devil’s food cake filled with vanilla buttercream, coated with chocolate frosting, then dipped in chocolate glaze. Comparing it to “a giant Hostess cupcake,” pastry chef Tiffany MacIsaac told Food & Wine it’s “for people who love chocolate, and they’re superhappy with it."

47. WASHINGTON // SALTED CARAMEL, CUPCAKE ROYAL

Location: Seattle, Washington

While seasonal favorites like the Pumpkin Cardamom delight at this Northwest favorite, the Salted Caramel, finished off with house-made caramel buttercream, Fleur de Sel, and dark chocolate curls is “hands-down” the most popular declares Food & Wine.

48. WEST VIRGINIA // OREO AND CREAM, LIL' BIT OF HEAVEN CUPCAKES

Location: St. Albans, West Virgina

Yelp reviewers rated this chocolatey treat—from the husband-and-wife-run bakery—tops in the state. A fudge cupcake filled with chocolate ganache and a white chocolate Oreo butter cream, topped with more of that buttercream and a chocolate-dipped Oreo, their site declares it’s “a chocoholic’s dream!”

49. WISCONSIN // CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER, CAKE GURU

Location: Appleton and Oshkosh, Wisconsin

Named the 2017 Sweetest Bakery in Wisconsin, this company is known for its oversized Fabu “Lux” Cupcakes. Among the most exorbitant: this chocolate peanut butter blend filled with peanut butter whip and chocolate, then topped with peanut butter frosting and puppy chow.

50. WYOMING // DONKEY TOWN NUTS, ALLA LALA CUPCAKES

Location: Gillette, Wyoming

At Gillette, Wyoming’s first and only cupcake boutique, the treats are sweet and available in jumbo varieties, four times the size of a standard dessert. Bite into the quirkily named Donkey Town Nuts, a mix of chocolate cake, vanilla frosting, and caramel soaked honey-roasted peanuts.

fun

McDonald's Shamrock Shake Is Back—Here's How to Find One

Todd Van Hoosear, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY SA 2.0
Todd Van Hoosear, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY SA 2.0

While most people were still thinking about Valentine's Day, McDonald's quietly added a seasonal favorite to its menu in anticipation of St. Patrick's Day on March 17. The Shamrock Shake, a pale green, whipped cream-topped milkshake that tastes like mint, returned to McDonald's the week of February 11, Business Insider reports.

As was the case in past years, the shake is only available at select locations, but 2019 marks the first time that McDonald's has added a Shamrock Shake locator to its app. If you log in to the McDonald's app and enter your zip code, you'll be shown a map of the restaurants in your area that are selling the item.

Since it first appeared at McDonald's in the 1970s, the Shamrock Shake has grown into one of the chain's most successful special offerings. It's been sold under different names (like the St. Patrick's Day Green Milkshake), and it's inspired different promotional gimmicks (from Uncle O'Grimacey to a straw designed by aerospace engineers), but the minty milkshake itself hasn't changed much over the decades.

The Shamrock Shake comes in small ($2.19), medium ($2.59), and large ($2.99) sizes. It's now available at select McDonald's restaurants while supplies last through March 24.

[h/t Business Insider]

The Best Chocolate Shop in All 50 States

iStock.com/TorriPhoto
iStock.com/TorriPhoto

Chocolate is one of life's sweet, simple pleasures. And luckily, there are plenty of chocolatiers across the country who are happy to help you indulge your chocolate cravings. Whether you have a hankering for truffles, handmade chocolate bars, or chocolate-covered marshmallows, here are the best chocolate shops in all 50 states.

1. Best Chocolate Shop in Alabama: Peterbrooke Chocolatier

chocolate-covered popcorn in a bowl
iStock.com/LauriPatterson

Location: Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Take a bite out of one of the chocolate treats at Peterbrooke Chocolatier, and you'll quickly realize why this shop is a step above the rest. The most fun, decadent confections here are the chocolate-covered popcorn, pretzels, and Oreos.

2. Best Chocolate Shop in Alaska: The Alaskan Fudge Company

Location: Juneau, Alaska

Founded in 1980, The Alaskan Fudge Company makes killer fudge and chocolate treats ranging from Husky Paws (chocolate, pecans, and caramel) to cappuccino truffles. For something lighter, try the white chocolate-dipped apricots.

3. Best Chocolate Shop in Arizona: Chocofin Chocolatier

Location: Fountain Hills, Arizona

This bean-to-bar craft chocolate shop treats the humble cocoa bean with the utmost care and respect. Try their small-batch, handmade chocolate bars, nut barks, and banana macadamia chocolate, in which banana ganache is topped with a salted macadamia nut.

4. Best Chocolate Shop in Arkansas: Sweet's Fudge Kitchen

blocks of fudge on a plate
iStock.com/pamela_d_mcadams

Location: Eureka Springs, Arkansas

Established in 1969, Sweet's Fudge Kitchen focuses on fresh ingredients to make the absolute best chocolates. Besides almond and cashew turtles, the shop also sells a mouthwatering fudge, hard candies, and licorice.

5. Best Chocolate Shop in California: Edelweiss

Location: Beverly Hills, California

Since opening in 1942, Edelweiss has served Hollywood legends including Frank Sinatra and Katharine Hepburn. The shop's assembly line even inspired the famous chocolate factory scene in I Love Lucy's episode "Job Switching." Today, Edelweiss's chocolate-dipped marshmallows (available in flavors such as mocha, mint, and coconut) are super-popular.

6. Best Chocolate Shop in Colorado: Chocolate Lab

Location: Denver, Colorado

For anyone curious about the chemistry of food, Chocolate Lab might be the coolest place ever. Pick up an assortment of their hand-crafted chocolates and uniquely flavored truffles, or stay for lunch and dinner. The menu features soups, sandwiches, and salads that thoughtfully incorporate chocolate. Try the fantastic chocolate balsamic glaze and chocolate barbecue sauce.

7. Best Chocolate Shop in Connecticut: Deborah Ann's Sweet Shoppe

outside view of Deborah Ann's Sweet Shoppe

Frank Di Martino, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Location: Ridgefield, Connecticut

Deborah Ann's Sweet Shoppe has plenty of homemade ice cream, candy, and fudge, but the chocolates are truly the star at this lovely store. Wondering what to get? Start with the chocolate-covered strawberries, then see where your taste buds take you.

8. Best Chocolate Shop in Delaware: Sweet Serenity Chocolates

Location: Seaford, Delaware

Owned by a husband and wife team, Sweet Serenity Chocolates is all about building community through chocolate. The store's most tasty items include the hand-dipped buttercream truffles and cookies and cream bark.

9. Best Chocolate Shop in Florida: Key Largo Chocolates

Location: Key Largo, Florida

This fun, bright shop in the Florida Keys serves truffles, bark, fudge, and cake pops enveloped in luscious chocolate. The handmade chocolate truffles are, appropriately, available in tropical flavors such as coconut rum, key lime, and banana daiquiri.

10. Best Chocolate Shop in Georgia: Chocolat by Adam Turoni

Location: Savannah, Georgia

Savannah's charming historic district has two Chocolat by Adam Turoni locations, to the delight of locals and visitors alike. The whimsical stores serve artisan truffles, caramelized chocolate covered hazelnuts, and an amazing Savannah honey chocolate bar, which is made with 72 percent dark chocolate, local wildflower honey, and 24k gold dust.

11. Best Chocolate Shop in Hawaii: Manoa

Location: Kailua, Hawaii

This bean-to-bar chocolate factory and retail store uses single origin cacao from around the world to make a variety of dark chocolate confections. The shop's most popular chocolate bar is made with roasted cacao nibs and coffee beans, but don't overlook the incredible lavender bar, which is made with 60 percent cacao and Ali'i Kula lavender.

12. Best Chocolate Shop in Idaho: The Chocolat Bar

Red and gold-flecked bonbon
iStock.com/TorriPhoto

Location: Boise, Idaho

Customers at The Chocolat Bar can find creative, artistic chocolate treats ranging from orange slices dipped in dark chocolate to hand-painted chocolate footwear. The exquisite chocolate shoes (for eating, not for wearing) include dark or milk chocolate high heels decorated with flowers, polka dots, leopard print, and more.

13. Best Chocolate Shop in Illinois: KC Chocolatier

Location: Chicago, Illinois

Fans of Belgian chocolate should stop what they're doing and head to KC Chocolatier, stat. This East Lincoln Park chocolate shop creates beautiful gift boxes containing all types of chocolate, from truffles and hazelnut creams to cordials and caramels.

14. Best Chocolate Shop in Indiana: The Sound Bend Chocolate Company

Location: Multiple locations, Indiana

This chocolate factory, museum, and retail store in South Bend (with chocolate cafes in multiple other locations) gives visitors a comprehensive overview of chocolate: its history, how it's made, and (most importantly) what it tastes like. The cashew caramel patty and chocolate peanut butter logs will no doubt tempt you, so don't put up a fight.

15. Best Chocolate Shop in Iowa: Chocolate Storybook

chocolate-covered bacon
iStock.com/dirkr

Location: West Des Moines, Iowa

Two words: chocolate bacon. At Chocolate Storybook, you'll find chocolate covered bacon strips, maple bacon chocolate caramels, and plenty of non-porcine chocolate treats. The shop's many holiday-themed gift options include elaborate Valentine's baskets, platters of fancy chocolate-covered strawberries, personalized chocolate Easter rabbits, and, for Christmas, a plate chock-full of chocolate-covered caramels, pretzels, animal crackers, and cookies.

16. Best Chocolate Shop in Kansas: Annedore's Fine Chocolates

Location: Westwood Hills, Kansas

This award-winning chocolate shop specializes in European truffles and holiday-themed chocolate treats. Some of their most delectable chocolates include the vanilla bean, the heart-shaped port wine, and the Irish creme.

17. Best Chocolate Shop in Kentucky: Cellar Door Chocolates

Location: Louisville, Kentucky

With two locations in Louisville, Cellar Door Chocolates makes a lot of amazing chocolate. You can't go wrong with any of the shop's truffles, but the absolute best might be the green chili coconut truffle. It's made with a smooth white chocolate ganache and spicy New Mexican green chili.

18. Best Chocolate Shop in Louisiana: Southern Candymakers

Sign for Southern Candymakers in New Orleans.
rosefirerising, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Location: New Orleans, Louisiana

Southern Candymakers has been famous for its praline and toffee offerings for 27 years, but the shop's chocolate is also top-notch. Order the hand-dipped, chocolate-covered Queen Anne cherries or the chocolate pralines, which are made with jumbo pecans.

19. Best Chocolate Shop in Maine: Wilbur's Of Maine

Location: Multiple locations, Maine

Located in Freeport and Brunswick, Wilbur's of Maine is a welcome sight for anyone with a serious sweet tooth. The shop excels at making classic, simple treats, evidenced by the perfectly flavorful chocolate-covered blueberries.

20. Best Chocolate Shop in Maryland: SPAGnVOLA

Location: Gaithersburg, Maryland

The chocolatiers at SPAGnVOLA cultivate and process organic cocoa beans from the Dominican Republic to make small-batch chocolate bars, truffles, and bonbons. Dark chocolate lovers will absolutely relish the Dominican 75-percent chocolate bar for its nuanced flavors and rich depth.

21. Best Chocolate Shop in Massachusetts: Phillips Chocolates

Location: Boston, Massachusetts

Established in 1925, Phillips Chocolates is Boston's oldest chocolatier, and the shop still makes small batches of chocolate treats by hand. Oprah Winfrey proclaimed the store's basket of turtles to be one of her "favorite things" in 2015. Even the basket itself is edible, and it's filled with milk, dark, and white chocolate turtles.

22. Best Chocolate Shop in Michigan: Alpine Chocolat Haus

Chocolate-covered apples
iStock.com/Imagesbybarbara

Location: Gaylord, Michigan

Gourmet hot chocolate, decorated candy apples, sea salt caramel corn, and chocolate covered potato chips are favorites at The Alpine Chocolat Haus, which has three other locations in Michigan. If you're feeling adventurous, try their ghost pepper caramel corn—it comes in three levels of heat.

23. Best Chocolate Shop in Minnesota: Mademoiselle Miel

Location: St. Paul, Minnesota

Mademoiselle Miel is famous for its terrific honey bon-bons. These treats are filled with local honey, enrobed in single-origin chocolate, and topped with 23-karat edible gold leaf. The shop also sells tantalizing housemade chocolate that is sweetened with local maple sugar.

24. Best Chocolate Shop in Mississippi: Margarete's Fine Chocolates

Location: Tupelo, Mississippi

It's hard to decide between the chocolate cremes, truffles, and nuts at Margarete's Fine Chocolates. Luckily, you can order a basket and fill it with a bit of everything. The triple-dipped chocolate covered strawberries—made with milk, white, and colored white chocolate—are one of their specialties.

25. Best Chocolate Shop in Missouri: Chip's Chocolate Factory

display case of hand-dipped chocolate treats
iStock.com/Luca_Daviddi

Location: Kansas City and Independence, Missouri

Chip's Chocolate Factory is the home of Kansas City Fudge, which is available in over 40 flavors. Visitors can watch chocolatiers make hundreds of chocolate treats in the shop's factory; some of the sweetest include Tiger butter (a combination of peanut butter and Swiss chocolate that melts in your mouth), vanilla caramel turtles, and cinnamon roasted nuts.

26. Best Chocolate Shop in Montana: La Châtelaine Chocolat

Location: Bozeman, Montana

La Châtelaine Chocolat is a whimsical shop inspired by French chocolatiers. The polka-dotted dark chocolate caramel brulé typifies the intricate, artistic designs you'll find on the chocolates. The flavors, including sea salt caramel espresso and strawberry balsamic, are also outstanding.

27. Best Chocolate Shop in Nebraska: Candy Wrappers

Box of cherry cordials.
iStock.com/alpaksoy

Location: Omaha, Nebraska

Candy lovers will find plenty of delightful bulk candy, fudge, and caramel apples at Candy Wrappers, but the handmade chocolate is truly heavenly. Choose between chocolate turtles, cherry cordials, and the popular sea salted dark chocolate caramel swirl popcorn.

28. Best Chocolate Shop in Nevada: Sierra Nevada Chocolate Company

Location: Reno, Nevada

At Sierra Nevada Chocolate Company, you can order chocolate and wine that pair perfectly with each other. If wine isn't your thing, get a bunch of crazy truffles—they come in flavors as wild as watermelon and champagne.

29. Best Chocolate Shop in New Hampshire: Byrne & Carlson

Location: Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Named after founders Ellen Byrne and Christopher Carlson, this sophisticated chocolate shop is what all artisanal chocolatiers should strive to emulate. The store's stunning, handcrafted sweets contain a range of unique ingredients and toppings, including dried fruits, milk chocolate "pearls," crystallized flowers, and dark Belgian chocolate seashells.

30. Best Chocolate Shop in New Jersey: Enjou Chocolat

Location: Morristown, New Jersey

This chocolate shop sells stuffed animals, ice cream, and plenty of chocolate gifts perfect for special occasions and holidays. Some of the best treats here are the pretzel platter—filled with chocolates, chocolate covered popcorn, and, of course, chocolate-covered pretzels—and the milk chocolate-covered potato chips.

31. Best Chocolate Shop in New Mexico: Theobroma Chocolatier

assorted molded chocolates
iStock.com/AnnaPustynnikova

Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Theobroma Chocolatier makes an impressive variety of boxed and molded chocolates. Truffles are available in a variety of flavors, including cappuccino, black forest, champagne, Key lime, and butter pecan. You can also find molded chocolate in the shape of pandas, dinosaurs, business cards, dreidels, and cell phones.

32. Best Chocolate Shop in New York: Aigner Chocolates

Location: Forest Hills, New York

When it comes to chocolate, New York City is a competitive place. But Aigner Chocolates is a step above the rest, as evidenced by the shop's long history. Opened in 1930, Aigner sells (and ships) chocolate barks, cordials, and marshmallows that are made using the kitchen's original kettles and spoons.

33. Best Chocolate Shop in North Carolina: French Broad Chocolates

French Broad Chocolates in Asheville, North Carolina
confusedbee, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

Location: Asheville, North Carolina

French Broad Chocolates makes and serves exquisite truffles, chocolate caramels, and hot sipping chocolate. Our menu recommendation: Knock back some dark sipping chocolate and munch on a strawberry balsamic chocolate truffle. Too much chocolate? No such thing.

34. Best Chocolate Shop in North Dakota: Carol Widman's Candy Co.

Location: Fargo and Grand Forks, North Dakota

Four generations of the Widman family have crafted handmade candy and chocolates, beginning with William Widman in 1885. Although Carol Widman's Candy Co. is well-known for its Chippers (chocolate covered potato chips), the turtles, truffles, and chocolate-covered sunflower seeds are among its many other stellar delicacies.

35. Best Chocolate Shop in Ohio: Wittich's Candy Shop

Location: Circleville, Ohio

Wittich's Candy Shop is one of America's oldest family-operated confectioners—and it shows in the vintage charm of the shop, which is home to an old-school soda fountain. Since 1840 the company has prided itself on creating handmade chocolates with high-quality ingredients and paying tribute to its home state with its Buckeyes, a local chocolate treat (available in milk, dark, or white chocolate) with a peanut butter center.

36. Best Chocolate Shop in Oklahoma: Omega Chocolate

Location: Bartlesville, Oklahoma

Omega Chocolate has been open for just over three years, but the exceptional shop has earned plenty of accolades for its gorgeous, hand-crafted offerings. Coffee lovers will adore the dark chocolate covered espresso beans, and fun creations like their milk chocolate cinnamon roll truffles can practically double as breakfast in bed.

37. Best Chocolate Shop in Oregon: Woodblock Chocolate

chocolate bark with various toppings
iStock.com/digihelion

Location: Portland, Oregon

Husband-and-wife duo Charley and Jessica Wheelock founded Woodblock Chocolate to transform simple cacao beans into delectable chocolate bars. The store sells single-origin bars that come from Peru, Madagascar, and Trinidad, but the most unique option here might be the Japanese-inspired toasted sesame bar.

38. Best Chocolate Shop in Pennsylvania: Pierre's Chocolates

Location: New Hope, Pennsylvania

All of the treats at this sweet chocolaterie are handmade in-house. Swiss chocolatier Jean Pierre Meyenberg opened his eponymous shop in 1970 and ran it with his family until 2011, when the shop was purchased by chocolatiers Tom Block and Justin Zaslow. They spent more than a year learning Meyenberg's techniques and recipes, and they've added their own spin, too, creating artisan chocolates that are made in small batches from single-origin cacao grown at family farms around the world. Try the Swiss truffle, the Mint Cookie—which features dark chocolate and crushed mint cookies—or the shop's New Hope Collection, four sweet treats that pay tribute to the town's history.

39. Best Chocolate Shop in Rhode Island: Sweenor's Chocolates

Location: Wakefield and Cranston, Rhode Island

Sweenor's Chocolates first opened in 1955, and the family owned and operated chocolate shop has stayed true to its origins by focusing on fresh ingredients and eschewing preservatives. And, they offer a number of sugar-free chocolates, which are often recommended for anyone with diabetes.

40. Best Chocolate Shop in South Carolina: Christophe Artisan Chocolatier

Location: Charleston, South Carolina

Christophe Paume, a third-generation French chocolatier, founded this charming chocolate shop. Visitors to the shop's two locations in downtown Charleston and West Ashley can sample the brightly colored, hand-painted chocolates and truffles.

41. Best Chocolate Shop in South Dakota: Mostly Chocolates

Location: Rapid City, South Dakota

At Mostly Chocolates, you can sip on something strong from the espresso bar while you choose between truffles, fudge, and other gorgeous confections. You can't go wrong with the chocolate-dipped espresso creme or the Oreo cream truffle, but if you want some added fruit flavors, their truffles also come in peaches and cream, raspberry, and strawberry cheesecake.

42. Best Chocolate Shop in Tennessee: The Goo Goo Shop and Dessert Bar

The Goo Goo Cluster Shop in Nashville.
Brent Moore, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

Location: Nashville, Tennessee

Since its debut in 1912, the Goo Goo Cluster candy bar has delighted kids and adults with its tantalizing combination of milk chocolate, peanuts, caramel, and marshmallow nougat. And you can celebrate all things Goo Goo Cluster at this shop and dessert bar, which serves chocolatey cheesecakes, sundaes, and shakes inspired by the candy bar.

43. Best Chocolate Shop in Texas: Cacao and Cardamom

box of decorated chocolates
iStock.com/digihelion

Location: Houston, Texas

Eating chocolate at Cacao and Cardamom feels like taking a food trip around the world. Stop to sample blends of flavors and spices like their Szechuan peppercorn milk chocolate ganache, garam masala pistachio, black sesame ginger, pineapple fennel caramel, lychee basil, or a caramelized cashew and Vietnamese cinnamon praline.

44. Best Chocolate Shop in Utah: Ritual Chocolate

Location: Park City, Utah

Before you come to Ritual Chocolate, you'll probably want to skip your morning cup of joe. The bean-to-bar chocolate shop serves espresso, sipping chocolate, and a 100 percent pure cacao bar that will jolt you awake with its bitter, nutty taste.

45. Best Chocolate Shop in Vermont: Daily Chocolate

Location: Vergennes, Vermont

The chocolatiers at Daily Chocolate excel at flavor experimentation. Besides the black rum caramel (house made caramel in 72 percent dark chocolate), the coconut and cherry clusters will satisfy even the strongest chocolate craving. Fans of white chocolate should try the lemon lavender almond bark, made with lavender buds and lemon oil.

46. Best Chocolate Shop in Virginia: Gearharts Fine Chocolates

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia

Launched by chefs Tim Gearhart and Bill Hamilton in 2001, Gearharts Fine Chocolates uses "the world's finest chocolate with local sweet cream and pure butter" to create its confections. The shop's signature chocolates include pistachio toffee orange, malted milk hazelnut, and mint julep (which is made with fresh mint Kentucky bourbon). The chocolates are available for purchase online.

47. Best Chocolate Shop in Washington: Oh! Chocolate

Lightly colored truffles in rows
iStock.com/kobeza

Location: Mercer Island, Washington

Since 1985, Oh! Chocolate has earned a reputation as the top chocolate destination in Washington. Chocolatiers make small batches of delightful truffles in flavors such as champagne, mango habanero, and Pacific NW blackberry.

48. Best Chocolate Shop in West Virginia: Holl's Chocolates

Location: Vienna and Charleston, West Virginia

Before immigrating to the United States in 1958, Fritz Holl worked as an apprentice to his uncle in a pastry and chocolate shop in Zurich, Switzerland. Today, Holl's Chocolates—the company he founded in 1986—is still family-owned (Fritz's son, Dominique, runs it with his wife, Michelle) and still sells authentic Swiss chocolate. The store's chocolate lollipops (which come in milk, dark, and white chocolate varieties) are melt-in-your-mouth spectacular.

49. Best Chocolate Shop in Wisconsin: Wilmar Chocolates

Location: Appleton, Wisconsin

Chocoholics rejoice in the staggering selection of chocolate covered caramels, truffles, and butter toffee at Wilmar Chocolates. The shop's confections, which are made with authentic Wisconsin butter and cream, regularly win awards at the Wisconsin State Fair.

50. Best Chocolate Shop in Wyoming: Donells Candies

Location: Casper, Wyoming

Donells Candies has been a Wyoming staple since 1956, selling handcrafted confections such as dark chocolate cherry cordials and milk chocolate coconut clusters. Nut lovers rave about the dark chocolate peanut and pecan clusters.

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