Cake, Frosting, Sprinkles, Oh My!

Photo by Erin Shildmyer

A Review of Cupcakes in St. Louis.

Written by Jeannie Liautaud

Maybe it’s their luscious texture. Perhaps it’s their vibrant exterior. Whatever it is, cupcakes are undeniably drool-worthy. The sugary goldmine of gourmet cupcake cafes has spread to St. Louis, featuring several local options to satisfy that sweet tooth.

Jilly’s Cupcakes on Delmar Boulevard is a winner of TLC’s “Cupcake Wars,” and their cakes are nothing short of extravagant. Astounding in size and variety, Jilly’s cakes range from $4-$6, depending on the number of fillings. Jilly’s features over 12 traditional flavors, as well as rotating seasonal ones. A fall option is the White Chocolate Pumpkin Spice, a white-chocolate-mousse-filled pumpkin cake with vanilla buttercream. Though the cake was capped with a mountain of frosting, it was balanced. Moist and flavorful, it lived up to its hype.

Cravings of Webster Groves was voted America’s Ten Best Places for Dessert by USA Today. One would expect that they’d be on top of their cupcake game. However, their onecupcake option was poor. It was a dry white cake with freezer-burnt chocolate cream cheese frosting. The cupcake was bland in appearance, and over-priced at $4. Clearly cupcakes are not Cravings’ specialty, though their shortbread cookies and “Shrewsbury biscuits” in the dessert case looked like potentially better options.

St. Louis Cupcake is a five-minute walk from Webster’s campus. The cozy interior allows visitors to survey owner Stephanie Chapman’s kitchen from the counter. The cakes and frosting are made fresh by Stephanie daily with real butter. For $3, visitors may choose between nine finely-decorated cupcakes, with both daily and seasonal options. A favorite is the Birthday Crumb, a vanilla cupcake with white buttercream and rainbow crumble topping. Overall, St. Louis Cupcake provides rich cake, with an unmatched mom-‘n-pop vibe.

Both Jilly’s Cupcakes and St. Louis Cupcake will be sure to please any cupcake palette with their large variety of freshly-baked goods. Cravings is a funky place to relax, but it may be better to try one of their more eclectic desserts instead of their cupcakes.

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