9 Best Desserts in Metro Phoenix

pom cafe pomegranate chocolate cake.jpg
Dayvid LeMmon
One of Pomegranate Cafe's many delectable (and health-conscious) desserts

As author of Chow Bella's "Dessert First" column, I tasted my share of sweet in this city. (To say photographer Dayvid LeMmon and I enjoyed the research is an understatement.) What follows is the absolute best of the best.

Restaurants change their dessert menus on a regular basis -- seasonally or even weekly -- so it's nearly impossible to round up a list of current favorites guaranteed to be on the menu. If these exact dishes aren't available when you stop by, we bet you'll get your pick of exciting new offerings that our favorite sugar wizards are whipping up in the kitchen.

Pomegranate Chocolate Cake at Pomegranate Café

This Ahwatukee eatery's menu is full of fresh, locally produced ingredients, so it's always a good idea to get a salad, wrap, or daily special. What you might not expect from such a health-focused establishment is that the desserts are some of the best in the Valley -- and they're vegan, too. The raw, cheese-less cheesecakes are creamy and packed with fresh fruit flavor, and the handmade candy bars are delicious. But our fave is the signature layer cake made from spelt flour and organic cocoa. There's just enough tart pomegranate flavor without overpowering the chocolate. Stop in for a slice, or pre-order a whole cake for your special occasion.

See also:
- "Dessert First" Archives
- Cronut™ Battle: Herb Box vs. Karl's Quality Bakery

Pane Bianco Chocolate Cake.jpg
Dayvid LeMmon
Mama Bianco's famous flourless chocolate cake

Flourless Chocolate Cake by Francesca Bianco

Erase all previous memories of boring, flavorless flourless chocolate cakes and sink your teeth into this version by Mama Bianco. It's extremely fudgy without being too dense, and it's soft and moist, almost mousse-like but heavier. The rich and sophisticated flavor is thanks to 80 percent dark Valrhona chocolate, which pairs perfectly with the slightly tangy, mostly sweet Meyer lemon marmalade. This cake is regularly available at Pizzeria Bianco, Pane Bianco, and Trattoria Bianco.

Lauren Saria
What makes Churn's ice cream even better? Pretzel cones and cookie sandwiches!

Ice Cream at Windsor/Churn

You could think of Churn as a separate establishment run by super-restaurateurs Upward Projects (Postino, Federal Pizza). Or, you could say that the desserts at Windsor are so addictively delicious that they warrant their own storefront. Either way, if you manage to drive past this unstoppable duo without stopping for a cocktail and a bowl of ice cream, you have a monk's sense of willpower. There's not a bad flavor in this ice cream case, but the most popular is rightfully butter pecan -- so rich it's like licking melted butter off your fingers, with the added bonus of candied pecans. To really wow your palate, mix it with Vietnamese coffee ice cream and top with toffee pieces.

Pepper T. (Yelp)
Butternut squash pop with tamarind-chocolate syrup

Push-Pops at Bink's Midtown

Childhood-inspired desserts will always be a hit, with recent trends including Pop-Tart-like pastries and Hostess-style cakes. Kevin Binkley and the culinary team at Bink's Midtown has their own throwback on the menu: Push-Pops. The flavors are changed up pretty frequently, but the concept remains the same: ice cream layered with sweet sauces and packaged in a plastic tube, with something like granola for your dipping pleasure. Don't expect flavors like bubblegum and cherry. Instead, you'll find butternut squash with chocolate and tamarind, or chai tea with pineapple chutney and carrot cake crumble. This is one playful sweet treat that grownups will enjoy just as much as the little munchkins.

Location Info

Pomegranate Cafe

4025 E. Chandler Blvd., Ahwatukee, AZ

Category: Restaurant


5223 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant


5223 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Music

Pane Bianco

4404 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Pizzeria Bianco

623 E. Adams St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Trattoria Bianco

4743 N. 20th St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Bink's Midtown

2320 E. Osborn Road, Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Phoenix City Grille

5816 N. 16th St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Nobuo at Teeter House

622 E. Adams St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Cowboy Ciao Wine Bar & Grill

7133 E. Stetson Drive, Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Urban Beans

3508 N. 7th St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: General

Tertio Wine Bar

3508 N. 7th St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Music

Christopher's Restaurant and Crush Lounge

2502 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

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PegnBob Briggs
PegnBob Briggs

How about FnB and Charleen Badman 's Butterscotch Pudding????

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