Warning, the Instagrammable food NYC guide you are about to read was written by a super savvy local and is not for the faint of heart, or stomach.
Read ahead at your own risk since continued reading of this article may result in acute hunger, copious amounts of drool, increased moist towelette usage, a spontaneous trip to NYC, and overzealous diet termination. You also may want to have a look at this incredibly handy, Instagram hashtags cheat sheet, at least if you really up step your Instagram game up a notch and get a devoted legion of Insta-awesome groupies ASAP.
If the worst should happen, and you do impulsively book a trip to NYC:
Please use this guide sparingly, and at the great annoyance of your primary care physician.
Always prepare accordingly and pack an ungodly number of elastic waist pants so that you can easily roll yourself from one NYC foodie mecca to another (additional plastic bibs may or may not be essential).
But above all else:
Please eat responsibly. Friends don’t let friends run to the bathroom while they devour all the Instagrammable food in NYC.
That is all. You have been warned.
Please proceed with the utmost caution and enjoy all of my fantastically wonderful and delightfully delicious picks for the 30 top Instagram spots in NYC…FOR FOODIES!
***No Spanx were destroyed during the making, or researching, of this post.***
This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure for more information. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.
1. Birthday Cake Croissant
Can we slow our roll for a second and pay homage to the awesomeness that is the birthday cake croissant from Union Fare Bakery?
Because not only can this decadent treat be renamed food crack:
But it has a magical, swoon-worthy, pink interior that is mixed with rainbow sprinkles to create the perfect, Instagram foodie shot of your dreams.
But it gets better!
These buttery, flakey, carb loaded, bits of goodness, come in a variety of innovative flavors like red velvet, birthday cake, and matcha.
Besides a puddle of drool, you get a perfect balance of textures and flavors with the contrast between the sweet and creamy, birthday cake interior, and the extra crispy, savory, croissant exterior.
A must-see, NYC foodie destination for anyone who has a sabertooth tiger size sweet tooth.
Address: 7 E 17th St, New York, NY 10003 (Between 5th Avenue and Broadway)
***While you’re in the Flat Iron District, mix in a little history with your food tasting and check out this Flatiron Food and History Tour***
2. Sweet Moment Latte Art
Between the super Instagrammable, blue, neon sign that reads “sweet moment” and the delicious coffee, tea, and desserts (think Bingsoo, waffles, cake, ice cream, etc.), what’s not to love about this charming, Chinatown cafe?
Throw in some fantastic decor and a spacious seating area, and I may never leave since you can actually find a place to sit, even at 1:00 pm on a Saturday (I was amazed and felt like I had just seen a unicorn).
If I’m honest, you’re here for one thing and one thing only…Sweet Moment’s mad adorable tea art!
Definitely, the cutest beverage that I’ve ever seen since this cream art latte has the face of an adorable little cartoon bear.
Made from either cold brew coffee or black tea:
This tea art comes in an assortment of fun flavors like chocolate, matcha, taro, and red velvet.
The drinks are yummy but super sweet. So the real draw here is that you can take a picture of a latte that makes Winnie the Pooh look like a heinous beast.
I almost couldn’t drink my latte because it was THAT cute.
But you know what they say?
I did it all for the gram. Oh God, I’m turning into one of those social media obsessed, self-involved idiots who spend thirty minutes taking selfies in the bathroom (insert shameless duck face here).
Address: 106 Mott Street New York, NY 10013
3. 10 Below Rolled Ice Cream
I know it says 32 Below on the cup but that’s just because I bought this sundae at the Urbanspace Food Market on 32nd Street, in Herald Square.
So I pinkie promise:
This is still 10 below even thought the cup says 32 below. They’re just trying to be super snazzy and name the sundae 32 below since this outpost sits on 32nd street.
But aside from the pretty in a picture, is the ice cream here really worth the $5 price tag?
A thousand times yes since this fine purveyor of rolled ice cream is home to some of the most BANGIN’ ice cream in all of NYC!
Not only does 10 Below use fresh, organic ingredients, but they make their ice cream right in front of you!
Kind of like dinner and a show, only 10,000 times cheaper.
Inspired by the traditional ice cream making process in Thailand:
10 below starts with cold plates that are cooled to -10 degrees (hence the name).
See? It all makes sense.
Fresh cream is then poured atop the chilled plate and instantly frozen, (“Let it go, let it go! Can’t hold it back anymore!” Sorry, the Disney magic took over for a few.) creating a smooth, rich, sweet custard.
The ice cream is then sprinkled with your choice of add-ins, which are crushed and then mixed in to create the perfect, confectionary treat.
Fresh, delicious ice cream rolls in two minutes, without any added fats or emulsifiers (Feel free to oh and ah you artisanal loving hipster you)
They literally look like little ice cream tacos that are sure to make anyone’s stomach, and heart, happy, with unique floors like Cookie Monster (Yum), Fruity Bam Bam (Yum), and I love you a latte.
You may have seen those Insta-Awesome pics of ice cream tacos floating around social media.
Those tacos are indeed from 10 below but when I visited, I saw no evidence of taco-shaped waffle cones available for purchase.
If you visit, definitely ask around and see if they have any of these Uber-awesome ice cream cones.
Address: 10 Mott St NY, NY 10013 (Chinatown), with multiple locations
4. Black Tap Milkshake
If you’ve seen an internet video featuring massive milkshakes that are overflowing with confectionary delights, like cake and brownies, then you’ve already witnessed these infamous milkshakes in their natural habitat.
THAT video is from the legendary, milkshakes Gods who permanently reside at Black Tap.
And I solemnly swear that these milkshakes are just as delicious as they look.
Black Tap is an actual restaurant that is known for their beer and craft burgers, but why waste the calories, and the Instagram glory, when you can go straight for the dessert menu?
Phew. Glad we agree on the important things in life.
And once you FINALLY get your hands on this holy grail of dessert menus, choose from an assortment of classic shakes or, walk on the wild side and, order one of their “Crazy Shakes”.
I know, the price is a bit steep at $15 a shake.
But it’s so worth it with flavors like sweet n’ salty peanut butter shake, cotton candy strawberry shake, the (vanilla) cookie shake, Sour power black cherry shake, and the Brooklyn blackout chocolate shake.
No matter what you order, you can’t go wrong since all of these confectionary delights are the stuff that dessert utopia is made of.
Whenever I dine here though:
My personal motto is, “Go big, or go home”, which is why I always order the Cake Shake.
This cake batter-flavored milkshake is served with a vanilla frosted rim, rainbow sprinkles, and a huge slice of funfetti cake on top that is garnished with whipped cream, more rainbow sprinkles, and a cherry.
So delicious and sure to make all your Instagram homies jealous.
This milkshake has a $2 supplement since they only make a limited quantity per day.
Address: 529 Broome Street between Sullivan and Thompson streets (with two other locations)
5. DŌ Edible Cookie Dough
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From the outside:
DŌ looks like just another ice cream shop.
But when you gasp in horror at the insanely long line of people who are impatiently waiting to get inside, you begin to realize that this place is something special.
Opened in ye olde 2017:
DŌ is the first shop to exclusively sell gourmet, edible cookie dough to the eagerly awaiting, cookie dough worshipping, citizenry of NYC.
Specially made with heat-treated flour and pasteurized egg product:
All of the cookie dough served here is absolutely safe to eat without baking.
My days of secretly eating raw cookie dough and continually exposing myself to Salmonella, under the guise of “making cookies”, are long gone.
So, whether you want to eat your cookie dough by the pint or have it served to you in a vibrantly colored ice cream cone, you’ll definitely find a dessert here that you’ll love.
You can even add in a variety of toppings or order cookie dough that has been expertly mixed with edible brownie batter, in the heavenly, and aptly named, Brookie Dough.
My fave flav has to be the Dunkadoo, which is made with sugar cookie dough, vanilla icing, sprinkle dust, and graham crackers.
All of my Lisa Frank lovin’, 90’s girl dreams about eating funfetti flavored Dunkaroos have finally come true!
I guess the sugar cookie, chocolate chip, brownie batter, confetti, and snickerdoodle flavor cookie doughs are alright too.
Just as a little FYI though:
All of the cookie dough here is ridiculously sweet. That’s why, unless you want to go into diabetic shock, you may want to split a cone, or cup, with a friend.
And if that STILL isn’t enough incentive to get you here:
You’ll be delighted to know that most of their Cookie dough flavors are also made in gluten-free, vegan, and grain-free varieties.
So that friend you have, you know, the one who can’t eat anything except air?
Yeah, you can bring them here. They’ll love you forever.
Address: 550 LaGuardia Place (at West 3rd Street)
6. Ring Dings from the Ring Ding Bar
Remember those Drakes snack cakes from your youth (not to be confused with the inferior Ding Dings from Hostess)?
Those chocolate cakes with chocolate icing and a cream filled center?
These childhood snack cakes have gotten an ultra-modern makeover at Ring Ding Bar.
Owned and operated by Madeline Lancing, who catapulted to culinary fame after winning the cooking competition Chopped:
This Tribeca sweet shop has transformed this classic, hand-held, 1950s snack cake into a culinary marvel, with high-quality ingredients and unique flavor combinations like Pistachio Raspberry, PB & J, Red Velvet, French Toast, Lemon Creme, S’more, and more!
Gone are the days of preservative laden, mass-produced snack cakes that could survive even a nuclear holocaust.
In their place:
You’ll find hand-crafted, fluffy layer cakes, coated in chocolate, and packed with flavorful fillings that recapture the spirit of your youth and then elevate it to the next level.
Treat yo’self to a much-needed dessert break and step into a world of whimsical fun by ordering one of the shops beautiful, Rainbow Ring Dings.
This perfect little addition to your Instagram feed is a rainbow almond pound cake, dipped in blue chocolate, and filled with multi-colored layers of vanilla cream!
A delicious way to add a pop of color and fun to an otherwise drab day.
7. Chocolate from L.A. Burdick
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Looking for the most adorable chocolates EVER?
Then why not try the adorable, homemade snowmen, mice, and penguins at L.A. Burdick?
These are the cutest, and tastiest, little chocolates that I’ve ever seen (and eaten)!
The penguins are so adorable that I almost couldn’t eat them.
I managed to bite their little heads off, the barbarian that I am.
I swear though:
I’m not some dubious, Hannibal Lector type person.
But back to the chocolate.
The penguins are made with whipped dark chocolate and a lemon ganache that is accented with limoncello. They are then finished off with a fine pair of almond wings.
If only some Harry Potter level sorcery could enchant these little chocolates and get them to dance and sing, a la Happy feet, then my life would be made.
While I was here:
I totally splurged and nibbled on some the chocolate mice too.
I can report that they are just as adorably delicious with their toasted almond ears and silky little tails.
I felt like a total psychopath for eating them but how could I resist with epic favors like dark chocolate orange, milk chocolate mocha, and white chocolate cinnamon?
And while I enjoyed all of these delectable, flavors:
My fave was the white chocolate, which I kind of mauled since he was so tasty.
Sorry, little guy, but you were just too delicious for your own good.
Address: 156 Prince St, New York, NY 10012
8. Cookie and Milk Shot from Dominique Ansel Bakery
Ever heard of the Cronut (AKA croissant doughnut hybrid)?
Well, if you have then you’ll be delighted to know that the expert bakers at Dominique Ansel Bakery started the entire craze.
Believe it or not:
A new cronut flavor is released every single month, a flavor that will never again be repeated.
You now have a fantastic excuse to visit every month and try a brand spankin’ new cronut.
I for one am not a huge fan of the cronut. I tried it and was left kind of underwhelmed (if you want to try one, pre-order them so you don’t wait in line).
When I visit Dominique Ansel bakery, I always get the cookie and milk shot.
Served daily, after 3 p.m (they sell to go packs if you want to buy one earlier):
These fun little cookie shots are created by taking an ooey-gooey, chocolate chip cookie and molding it into the shape of a cup.
This cookie cup is then coated in chocolate, creating a watertight seal that holds all of the accompanying, vanilla-infused milk.
Oh la la, we just got fancy.
Without a doubt, one of my favorite desserts in all of NYC.
If you’re looking for a slightly snazzier dessert for the ‘gram, then try their What-a-melon soft serve which is basically soft-serve ice cream inside of a giant watermelon cup.
A perfectly refreshing dessert for a hot summer day.
PSST: The ice cream window is only open 3 PM – 9 PM on Wednesdays and Thursdays, 12 PM. – 10 PM on Fridays and Saturdays, and 12 PM – 9 PM on Sundays at their West Village location. Also, be sure to enter through the side door and not through the main entrance for the ice cream counter.
Address: 189 Spring Street (between Sullivan and Thompson)
New York, NY 10012
9. A Bubble Waffle Sundae from Eggloo
Serving up FLIPPIN’ delicious, Hong Kong-style egg waffles that all the Instagram kids love:
Eggloo takes this iconic, NYC dessert to the next level by adding fresh soft serve, or traditional, ice cream (with your choice of drizzles and toppings) to your egg waffle of wonder.
But time out:
What makes this Hong Kong-style waffle different from a regular old, Ego waffle that you’d find in the frozen food section of your local grocery store?
Glad I made you ask that question.
Traditionally known as Gai Dan Jai, or “little eggs”, these waffles are made with a uniquely sweet, egg-based batter that gives this sweet treat an extra-crispy exterior that is perfectly complemented by the fantastically soft, cake-like interior (AKA food crack in its purest form).
Excuse me while I wipe the not so lady-like drool from my mouth.
For maximum Instagrammable-ness:
Order an original egg waffle with vanilla ice cream, fruity pebbles, strawberry Pocky, and rainbow mochi.
Too good. I literally licked my fingers clean.
But, if you want to be a true, Instagram baller, you can also order an Eggloo rose, which is an egg waffle served with an ice cream rose that is made in the flavor of your choice.
Talk about top, Instagrammable food NYC.
And for my vegan homies, Eggloo does indeed serve vegan waffles and ice cream!
Can I get a woot, woot?
No? Right, swiftly moving on.
Address: 60 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10013
10. Banana Pudding from Magnolia Bakery
Magnolia Bakery is practically a New York City, baking institution,
And while these sultans of sugar were originally known for their moist, fluffy, and oh so flavorful cupcakes, they have since expanded their dessert repertoire to include…BANANA PUDDING (don’t order their blondies, I was not a fan)!
That’s right, the banana pudding is where it’s at.
This delightfully creamy, fruit packed pudding is bursting with rich, banana flavor that makes you feel as though you’re the Chiquita banana lady herself.
You have the option of ordering either the classic banana flavor or the ultra-daring, chocolate-banana instead (you rebel you).
Just do yourself a favor and grab an extra spoon since everyone will want a taste!
Magnolia Bakery also creates new and exciting flavors of banana pudding every single month.
You now have the perfect excuse to mosey on over, but just to do research and take some Instagram pics.
Clearly, you’re not here to TASTE anything. LoL.
Address: Grand Central Terminal in the lower dining concourse (multiple other locations).
***If you love cupcakes as much as I do, then check out this 2-hour cupcake tour of Greenwich Village! Super fun and super tasty!***
11. Doughnut from Doughnut Plant
Looking for a dessert that is totally delicious and totally Instagram worthy while in NYC?
Then look no further than Doughnut Plant, a world-famous, doughnut purveyor with a variety of unique flavors that are just as beautiful as they are delicious.
They have varieties of doughnuts that I didn’t even know existed. Just choose from doughnut types like cake doughnuts, yeast doughnuts, dough seeds, etc. and fantastic flavors like Creme Brûlée, Tres Leches, Carrot Cake, etc.
What Doughnut Plant is really known for, is it’s use of high-quality ingredients, to create amazing doughnuts that are packed to the brim with flavor.
Just think heaven in your mouth and you have some idea of just how good these doughnuts really are.
But with all these flavors to choose from, which doughnut should you get?
Easy, the Brooklyn Blackout cake doughnut.
This doughnut s a chocolate lover’s dream since it is a cake doughnut that has been filled with chocolate, dipped in chocolate, and sprinkled with, you guessed it, chocolate sprinkles.
One of my favorite doughnuts in the whole wide world and worth every single calorie (I hate running but would run a marathon for this doughnut).
If you’re doing it all for the gram, then a chocolate covered doughnut isn’t exactly the most aesthetically appealing doughnut out there.
For maximum Instagramability, I recommend the Flor de Jamaica Doughflower.
Shaped like a rose, this doughnut gets it’s beautiful, purple color from a glaze that is made of REAL flowers.
And when you finally do take a bite of this divine doughnut creation, you’ll be treated to a sweet, lemony-tart, berry-rich flavor that is totally refreshing.
Address: Multiple Locations (Personally, I think the outpost in the lower level concourse of Grand Central Terminal is the most convenient location. Plus, this location has a special “Grand Central” doughnut, which is made with turquoise frosting and star sprinkles to mimic the ceiling of Grand Central Terminal. Totally Insta-worthy).
12. Taiyaki Unicorn Ice Cream
In terms of Instagram awesomeness:
You can’t really beat the Unicorn Taiyaki pictured above.
I mean legit:
What’s cuter than a little fish with pink and white, swirled ice cream, that is adorned with rainbow sprinkles and an ultra-snazzy unicorn horn and ears?
Yeah, the correct answer is definitely nothing.
This iconic, NYC dessert spot always makes me mad nostalgic for Seoul, South Korea (a place where I taught English for a year in case you have no idea why this dessert makes my heart yearn for Korea).
This adorable, traditional, Korean, fish-shaped treat is definitely not for everyone.
I LOVE it and think it’s SUPER delicious, especially since each fish shaped cone is made on-site, with fresh, soft serve ice cream that is churned in small batches to help preserve its integrity and flavor.
Since this dessert’s “ice cream cone” is filled with a sweet, red bean paste, some people may find it absolutely disgusting.
So worst case scenario:
Just devour the ice cream and throw out the cone but, I swear, it’s MUCH tastier than it sounds.
You can feel good about visiting Taiyaki since this company is committed to using high-quality ingredients, from environmentally/socially responsible vendors, while reducing the negative impact of product production on the environment.
Aww, thanks Taiyaki! You’re so sweet (lame pun intended)!
Address: 119 Baxter St, New York, NY 10013 (they have a second location in Brooklyn too).
13. Sprinkles Cupcake ATM
Want all of your out of town homies to think you’re the coolest person ever?
Then tell them all about this cupcake ATM., and pray to God that they haven’t been here before so that they’ll be duly impressed by this modern miracle.
Every time I mention this place to a cupcake ATM virgin, it’s like their inner child takes over as they become ultra-giddy and start frolicking around everywhere.
Which makes TOTAL sense since this ATM makes Willy Wonka seem like a man with NO imagination.
But aside from the novelty of this specialized ATM:
Sprinkles Cupcakes are actually really good since they’re always fluffy, moist, freshly made, and flavorful, with the perfect ratio of icing to cake.
I love their red velvet and cinnamon sugar flavor cupcakes, but it all just depends on what you’re into.
If you want:
You can also order their Sprinkle cupcake which is made with vanilla birthday cake, vanilla buttercream icing, and rainbow sprinkles; a cupcake that comes with the perfect pop of color for the ‘gram.
***For any of my dietarily restricted friends, Sprinkles also has vegan and gluten-free options available.***
Address: 780 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10065 (they have a location at Brookfield Plaza as well)
14. Cereal and Milk Ice Cream from Momofuku Milk Bar
Started in 2008:
Milk Bar is a cozy, unassuming, little bakeshop that has been not-so-quietly redefining what dessert means to NYers across the city.
Known for creating uniquely delicious treats like the Compost Cookie (aptly named since it literally has everything in it), the birthday cake truffle, and the Crack Pie, which I think has now been renamed the Milk Bar Pie, this is definitely one of my favorite bakeries in all of NYC.
Also of notable fame, and Instagram glory, is the Cereal Milk soft serve ice cream (obviously only available in-store).
Made with milk, cornflakes, brown sugar and a dash of salt, this beautifully rich ice cream tastes exactly like the milk at the bottom of a bowl of cornflakes!
And if that’s not enough cornflakes goodness for you:
There’s also a generous helping of cornflakes on top to add a little crunch to your silky smooth ice cream.
I tried this ice cream and was SUPER disappointed. I thought it had this weird, gross, salty flavor that made me take one bite and throw it out.
Definitely give it a try since a lot of people seem to love this ice cream.
Address: 251 E 13th St New York, NY 10003 (This is the original East Village location, but there are 8 other bakeries around the city).
15. Pink as F*ck Latte from Pietro Nolita
Pietro Nolita is a virtual paradise of pinkness that is located in the ever-trendy neighborhood of, DUH, Nolita.
And while this restaurant’s fantastically vibrant exterior is magical, and definitely one of the most Instagrammable places in NYC, the true awesomeness is inside.
Head straight to the bar and order a delicious coffee to go…which will be served to you in the ever immortal, and totally NYC, to-go cup that says, “Pink as [email protected]$k.”
It’s as amazing as it sounds. Plus, every inch of Pietro Nolita is covered in Pepto Bismol pink, but in a good way.
Between the kickass to go cup and the insanely beautiful decor, this place really is an Instagrammer’s paradise.
This restaurant doesn’t open until around 11 am on Saturdays.
Don’t be like me and get here SUPER early because then you’ll just stand there, like a totally awkward creeper, just waiting for the place to open (not that I did that or anything).
Don’t feel super weird about walking inside and ordering a cup of coffee to go.
The cool peeps that work here are super nice and know exactly what you want and why.
Because, trust me:
You’re not the first person who has come here just to grab a badass, coffee cup of their own.
Behold the power of Instagram. Scary huh?
Address: 174 Elizabeth Street New York, NY 10012
16. Ice Cream from Soft Swerve NYC
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This charming little ice cream shop on the Lower East Side will leave you thinking:
I scream, you scream, we all scream for Soft Swerve NYC ice cream!
Which makes sense since their ice cream comes in truly unique, and totally Instagrammable, flavors like Ube (purple yam), Macapuno Coconut, Hong Kong Milk tea, and Black Sesame.
No way will you find this crazy flavors anywhere else.
They offer a ton of awesome toppings too, like Oreos, toasted coconut, cereal marshmallows, Cap’n Crunch, etc., if you decide to make your own ice cream.
When I visited:
I tried one of their “Swerve Specials” and ordered the “Jersey City” which is Ube & Macapuno Ice Cream swirled together, with Toasted Coconut and Mochi (Sooo goood).
The “Broadway,” looked super yummy too since it’s their famous, ube ice cream topped with Fruity Peebles and Marshmallows.
But regardless of what you order:
Do try their legendary, ube, purple ice cream since it’s unique and sweet, but not overpoweringly so.
Try to order one of their colorful cones since I just think it makes any photo that much better.
Address: 858 Allen Street, New York, NY, 10002
17. Canolli from Gelso & Grand
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It’s a miracle that the Gelso & Grand cannoli made my list of instagrammable food NYC.
Why you may wonder, with a cannoli this big and this unicorny?
Not only is this restaurant in Little Italy, an area that I think is culinarily expensive and overrated (I usually only eat Italian food om Arthur Avenue in the Bronx), but this cannoli is huge!
I mean really:
Who needs a cannoli this big? I always feel like enormous desserts are ridiculous and totally wasteful since 9 times out of 10, no one can actually finish them.
In spite of all my major misgivings, I took a trip down to see what this cannoli was all about.
And my verdict?
Surprisingly, I thought it was REALLY good!
This cannoli was fresh and delicious, served quickly, and came with a rich and creamy filing that totally hit the spot.
I also loved that there was an assortment of unique, cream flavors and toppings that you could add to your cannoli to make it extra special, like vanilla bean cream with Reeses, and rainbow sprinkles.
This cannoli costs a whopping $14 but whatever. I thought it was worth it.
How many times are you really gonna order the appropriately named “Holy Cannoli”, which comes with a mallet and a flag in the center that says, “smash me”?
Exactly. This is probably a once in a lifetime, NYC dessert experience.
I know the hugeness of the dessert is one of the reasons why it is so Instagrammable, but it is just way too big.
The menu says it’s made “for two” but unless you and your companion haven’t eaten in a week, you probably won;t be able to finish it all.
If you’re planning a visit, definitely bring a few of your closest, or not-so-closest, friends, to help you devour the biggest cannoli in all of NYC.
Address: 186 Grand Street New York, NY 10013
18. Anything from Sugar Factory
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One of my favorite aspects about NYC is all the different restaurants they have. I know it’s a little overrated, but Sugar Factory is one of my favorite spots to go to! . Most of you already know this, but brunch is my second religion. If you guys are planning a brunch, here are my top 3 favorite NYC brunch spots: . 🌟 230 fifth rooftop- ~$30 all you can eat 🌟Beauty & Essex – boozy brunch 🌟Parker & Quinn- traditional brunch
Clearly, I am totally out of the loop since I had no idea that Sugar Factory was a THING with celebrities.
But clearly it is.
Because apparently, celebrities now have the power to transform everyday lollipops into “ultra-chic”, Couture Pops that are now coveted, designer accessories.
I honestly don’t know whether to laugh or cry, especially since I don’t give a fig about celebrity endorsements.
All I care about is that the food is good and wicked beautiful.
And Sugar Factory delivers on both accounts since it offers guests a truly, one-of-a-kind dining experience with decadent, American Brasserie style food that is sure to please everyone.
Just grab a menu and choose anything from pancakes to crepes to salads to burgers to pizzas.
What Sugar Factory is really known for are their enormous, spiked drinks (like the Lollipop Passion), which are served in the restaurant’s signature, 36-ounce, alcohol-infused, smoking candy goblets (If you have kids, these can also be made without alcohol).
Talk about an alcohol lover’s dream come true!
But, if, like me. you’re not really into the whole, massive alcohol goblet thing (especially since they cost $39 each), you can always try one of their “Insane Milkshakes”.
Since I’m a hardcore fan of pink (both the color and artist), I usually order their “Princess Make a Wish” shake for $21.
Gloriously pretty in pink:
This milkshake is made of vanilla ice cream that is blended with vanilla sauce and rainbow sprinkles.
This decadent dessert is then topped with whipped cream, a marshmallow wheel, a white chocolate KitKat, and a pink frosted cupcake with a birthday candle.
But wait, there’s more!
In case this dessert wasn’t already Instagramable enough for you, the glass that holds the milkshake is then covered in white chocolate and dusted with pink sprinkles.
Total pinkilicious perfection.
However, if you’re not into dessert, you can still snag a coveted, Instagram photo op by ordering the Rainbow Sliders, which are mini-hamburgers that are served on five different, vibrantly colored buns.
Totally over the top?
Maybe, but Sugar Factory is still perfect for a fantastically fun night out.
Address: 700 8th Ave, New York, NY 10036 (There are two other locations in NYC)
19. Ice and Vice Ice Cream
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Only acceptable double vision (📷: @feedyourgirlfriend). Back at Mad. Sq. Eats (til Oct. 8th) in another retro solo moment. Double feature: Movie Night ice cream pie, Poolside, Milk Money, @thekonery pink French vanilla cone, Detention ice cream pie, Peach Pit, Full Scoop, @thekonery birthday cake cone. Now EXCLUSIVELY at Mad. Sq. Eats. #iceandvice #MadSqEats #eatUrban
Unadulterated ice cream mayhem:
Ice and Vice is an experimental ice cream shop on the Lower East Side that handcrafts all of their ice cream, sorbet, and frozen yogurts, in small, customized batches, to help preserve the flavor and integrity of their frozen treats.
Continually pushing the boundaries with dynamic flavors and ultra-premium desserts:
Ice and Vice is known for delightfully quirky, flavor combinations like Basic B (Mexican Vanilla with black lava sea salt), Milk Money (Toasted milk ice cream with sea salt, chocolate ganache) and Opium Den (white sesame ice cream with toasted poppy seeds and lemon bread croutons).
Always weird and forever wonderful:
I usually get the ice cream pie in a cone, a dessert that is made with vanilla ice cream, fruity pebbles, and marshmallow pie crust (I’ve also tried the Sam which is Vietnamese coffee ice cream with donut truffles. Talk about YUMMY!).
I know it’s totally mainstream but whatever, it’s still good. Besides, I’m allowed to be mainstream if I want. LOL.
Feeling extra daring?
Then add a piece of their ice cream pie or ice cream sammie (vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two Mexican spiced brownies) to your ice cream cone for maximum Instagramable-ness.
Address: 221 E Broadway (Clinton Street is the cross street) New York, NY 10002
20. Serendipity Iced Hot Chocolate
Never one to shy away from the truth:
I’ll admit that I’m not a huge fan of Serendipity’s iconic, frozen hot chocolate.
I find the lines long, the restaurant crowded, and the frozen hot chocolate to be overpriced since it tastes more like glorified chocolate milk than anything else.
Now, if it were up to me:
I would. go to Max Brenner’s instead since this restaurant serves amazing hot chocolate in almost any flavor imaginable.
They also make this delightfully decadent chocolate chunks pizza that has milk and white chocolate chunks, with your choice of hazelnut, bananas, peanut butter, and roasted marshmallow (they also serve milkshakes, molten lava cake, crepes, sundaes, brownies, etc. if neither of the aforementioned options appeal to you).
Regardless of how I personally feel about this NYC dessert, I cannot change the fact that this frozen hot chocolate is, and probably always will be, one of the most iconic and photogenic desserts in the city.
This place is extra special to a lot of people since it was featured in the quintessential, romantic comedy of the same name, starring John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale.
A restaurant that undoubtedly, is doing something right, regaurdless of my opinion, since today, they currently have three locations in NYC, and many more across the globe.
And with a long list of famous clientelle like Andy Warhol, Tom Cruise, Marilyn Monroe, Jackie Kennedy and Lindsey Lohan, you’ll definitely earn some BROWNIE points with your Instagram fam if you take some pics here.
The table where John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale sat at in the film has actually become the “Star Table” and is continuously booked by hopeless romantics as they attempt to recapture the romantic feel of the movie.
Want to be really fancy?
Order the Golden Opulence Sundae, which sells for a whooping $1000!!!
But no matter what you order:
Prepare for a long wait since Serendipity does NOT take reservations.
Address: 225 East 60th Street, New York, NY 10022
21. Rainbow Bagel from the Bagel Store
I know you may find this hard to believe:
But there was a time when not everything on the planet was rainbow-ified.
A simpler time when food items were left in their natural color and everyone was totally content with it.
That all changed when Brooklyn’s, The Bagel Store introduced the rainbow bagel onto the NYC foodie scene.
Babies cried (not really), Facebook rainbow bagel videos went viral, and lines stretched out as far as the eye could see…all the way to Coney Island (kidding).
And while the craze has died down a bit:
Rainbow bagel mania is still very much alive and well. I mean, to order bagels from their website, you need to be added to a waitlist (I waited two months to finally be able to purchase these bagels online).
That’s why, if you’re looking to get in on this special type of bagel mayhem, then definitely stop by The Bagel Store on your way to the Bushwick Collective.
And while yes, they do indded offer a wide variety of more traditional bagels, let’s be real, you’re here for the Instagramable-ness of the world famous, rainbow bagel.
During my visit:
I ordered my colorful bagel toasted, with homemade, Rainbow-fetti, which is basically cake cream cheese with rainbow sprinkles (Yes, it’s even better than it sounds).
There are a ton of other, awesome cream cheese flavors to choose from like Nutella, Oreo Cookie and Cream, Unicorn, Cannoli, and more.
But it gets better!
Their menu is also packed with an assortment of bagels in different color combinations, like the Captain America Bagel, the Spiderman Bagel, the Unicorn Bagel, the Cotton Candy Bagel, and the Galaxy Bagel, just to name a few!
No matter what the color palette of your Instagram account is, I’m sure that The Bagel Store has the perfect, delightfully colorful bagel for you.
Address: 754 Metropolitan Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211
22. By Chloe
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Started in 2015:
By Chloe is a vegan, chain restaurant that was named for chef-founder Chloe Coscarelli.
Originally designed as a Shake Shack for Vegans:
This plant-based eatery has become a Millenial oasis and Instagram mecca where you’ll find social media mavens eagerly snapping duck-faced selfies.
But walk inside any of their nine NYC locations and you’ll immediately understand why By Chloe gets so much Insta love.
From their black and white awnings, to their paper-lined metal trays, to their menus with cutesy, emoji-like illustrations, literally, everything here (food included) is designed with maximum Instagram awesomeness in mind.
One of their locations even has an adorable, pink, neon sign that says, “You Batter Believe It”.
I ask you, what is more picture-perfect than that?
And the correct answer here is nothing.
Do try and step away from your camera so that you can savor their delicious Guac Burger, which is a black bean-quinoa-sweet potato patty that is loaded with guacamole, corn salsa, lettuce, tomato, onion, tortilla strips, and Chipotle aioli, all served on a whole-grain bun (with gluten-free options available).
Nom, nom, nom.
However, if you want to maximize your food’s Instagramability, you can always order one of their vibrantly colored cupcakes or legendary chocolate chip cookies.
So good that I’ll take one of everything, please and thank you.
Address: 240 Lafayette Street (But there are seven other restaurants and one bakery scattered throughout the city.)
23. Nomo Kitchen
Not only does this hotel/restaurant serve one of the best brunches in NYC:
But, the decor is absolutely stunning, making this eatery a total Instagrammer’s paradise.
First of all:
The entrance to Nomo Kitchen is covered by a beautifully manicured archway of leaves that will make you make feel like you’ve fallen into a chick flick, but in a good way.
People use this spot for impromptu photo shoots. I literally had to not so politely ask a woman to move because she had been there for a solid half hour and I was becoming a hangry beast.
However, I digress.
There are also benches, tables, statues, and trees that create a charming patio area, in front of the restaurant, where you can sit, relax, and take some photos after your meal.
But once inside:
You’ll truly be astounded since this is where the real magic happens.
Between the modern glass roof, the ample sunlight, the exquisite crystal chandeliers, and the walls adorned with vibrantly colored, street art style hearts, you definitely won’t want to leave without taking a few (hundred) photos.
And then there’s the divine menu, which is filled with amazing brunch items like Lemon Ricotta Pancakes.
Served with a dusting of powdered sugar, fresh mixed berries, and a sprinkling of candied pistachios, you’ll have a hard time restraining yourself from licking your plate.
The avocado toast with a poached egg was also good, but let’s be real.
Pancakes are WAY more fun to eat than avocado toast.
But it gets better!
All the entrees here, besides the steak and eggs, are under $20.
Even if you’re on a tight budget (kind of like your pants after eating here), you can still enjoy some of the finer things in life and add this to your DIY NYC food tour.
Oh and dress up a smidge.
This place is a little fancy smancy but not intimidatingly so. Like no Cinderella style, ball gown necessary.
Born on the blissful beaches of the Yucatan:
Tacombi started out as a little food stand that sold tacos out of a VW bus.
Tacombi has successfully brought the beauty of Mexico’s fun, funky, and vivacious taco culture to the streets NYC, a city that is woefully devoid of delicious tacos (and no, Taco Bell doesn’t count).
Centering their menu around the iconic, food culture of neighborhood taquerias:
Tacombi offers a variety of flavorful tacos and delicious quesadillas (if you order online, you can also get tortas and burritas) that highlight the true breadth and depth of Mexican cuisine.
Since I’m a vegetarian:
I love eating here because there are a ton of un-lame, hearty, and totally flavorful tacos that I can enjoy while self-indulgently snapping selfies with the vintage, VW Bus that resides in one of their restaurants.
And the food here feels like a real, ultra-filling meal and not some whack, side dish that someone tried to pass off as an entree.
Since their tacos are small-ish:
I usually order the Chile Relleno (Beer-battered, fire-roasted poblano peppers with kale, tomatillo, jalapeños, spicy escabeche, and Oaxaca cheese), the black bean and sweet potato (refried black beans, roasted sweet potatoes, queso fresco, and dried chile salsa), and the Avocado Tostada (avocado, pickled red onion, queso fresco, cilantro and dried chile salsa over black bean spread).
The Chile Relleno taco is OBVIOUSLY my fave since it’s deep-fried and smoothered in cheese.
I mean really, what more do you need in life?
Just be sure to take a moment, in between bites, to breath and snap a pic of the fun, vintage decor that is found throughout all the different Tacombi locations in NYC (Think awesome, vintage, Mexican-diner. Only way cooler than I’ll everbe).
Address: 255 Bleecker Street, New York NY 10014 (This location has the best decor, but there are five other locations throughout the city and one in Long Island.)
25. Spot Dessert Bar
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This exclusive Caramel Popcorn soft serve is now available at our 5 St Marks location!! Pop on over 🍿🍿🍿🍦🍦🍦 📷 : @feedyourgirlfriend thank you 🧡🧡🧡🧡
This St. Marks dessert institution is home to an array of wonderfully creative confectionary marvels.
If Willy Wonka had a restaurant, this would be it.
Which makes sense when you realize that this fun New York City dessert shop was created by Iron Chef, Ian Kittichai.
And while there is nothing bad at Spot Dessert Bar:
My current menu favorites are the Cookie Camp (half-baked marshmallow cookie, milk ice cream, and pretzels) and the Coconut Monkeybread (the monkey bread is served fresh and hot, with fall spices, Thai tea drizzle, and coconut milk ice cream).
But one of their most popular desserts is the Matcha Lava or a molten, dark chocolate cake oozing with green tea ganache, and topped with green tea ice cream, and cookie crumbs (don’t ask me why because I don’t get the appeal).
What you get just depends on your fondness for matcha.
I personally think matcha tastes your lawn clippings but that’s just me. Well, not that I eat too many lawns but you know what I mean.
Address: 11 W 32nd St, New York, NY 10001 (with two other locations in NYC)
26. Freeman’s Alley
Hidden in plain sight:
Freeman’s Restaurant is a quaint little eatery that quietly sits at the end of Freeman’s Alley, a peaceful little thoroughfare that is tocked away from the chaotic frenzy of NYC.
It’s along this alley that you’ll find a variety of mesmerizingly beautiful street art pieces that are definitely worth an Instagram shot…or two…or ten.
It all really just depends on your level of enthusiasm for photography.
And while we’re not here to photograph the food per se (even though it is beautifully delicious), you’ll understand why I’ve sent your Insta-lovin’ heart here once you see the building’s quaint, turquoise exterior.
The entire facade of this building oozes quaint, country charm and practically begs for a photo op.
But don’t get me wrong:
The food here is also really good since I’ve tried, and loved, the Skillet Eggs, the French Toast (with orange ricotta cheese and blueberry maple syrup. Talk about heaven in my mouth), and the Banana Buttermilk Pancakes (with vanilla glaze, candied pistachios, and strawberries).
Elastic waist pants really are a must here since I guarantee that you’ll have a hard time not licking your plate clean.
Just be sure to make reservations in advance since I’m not the only, wannabe hipster who LOVES dining here.
The interior of this restaurant is pretty amazing too, with an assortment of rustic paintings and antler wall hangings that make you feel like you’re in a country cabin and not the middle of NYC.
27. Sweet Churro
Established in 2016:
Sweet Churros sits in NYC’s charming Korea Town and makes a perfect stop either before or after a trip to NYC’s iconic, Empire State Building.
Stop by and you’ll find a small, informal, dessert shop that serves fresh, handcrafted churros, right out of the fryer.
Not surprisingly, lines of hungry customers regularly wrap around the block as New Yorkers clamor to try this Mexican version of fried dough.
And the only thing better than fresh churros?
Why, fresh churros paired with vanilla, soft serve ice cream of course!
The cool, sweet, and smooth ice cream perfectly compliments the hot and crispy churro.
Want some extra, Instagram flair?
Then ask them to dip your churro in Strawberry, Matcha, Fruity Pebbles, or Chocolate Almond flavored, crunchy toppings.
Don’t forget to pair your desert with an assortment of freshly squeezed, fruit-ades since they help cut the sweetness of the churro/ice cream combo.
Address: 11 W 32 Street, New York, NY 10001
28. Cha Cha Matcha
For anyone who doesn’t know:
Matcha is actually a type of green tea (hence the green color) that contains about as much caffeine as a whopping TEN cups of coffee.
Talk about getting more bang for your buck.
So, if any of you coffee drinkers out there are looking for a real caffeine fix, then matcha is your next great obsession.
I tend to think that Matcha tastes like glorified grass clippings since it has an intense, bitter flavor that even eight packets of sugar won’t kill.
However, Cha Cha Matcha is actually different because the Matcha here is delicious! Okay, I did order a latte and throw some sweetener in.
You can still tell that they serve only the highest-quality Matcha (AKA drinks that don’t taste like lawn debris).
The entire cafe has this ultra-funky, almost tropical design that captures the vivacious spirit of the tropics.
Just think of it as an NYC Instagrammer’s dream. And yes, pink IS the predominant color here.
They have a glowing, neon pink sign that illuminates the words “I love you so Matcha!” with glowing palm trees on either side.
See, told ya it was an Instagram mecca of sorts
This place is no longer a well-kept secret (sigh), so there can be long lines here since fellow, wannabe social media influencers spend about 3 hours taking 12,000 photos at their table.
Something I don’t love so MATCHA (sorry, it had to be done).
Try and get here early, like before 10 AM, so that you can take all the selfies you want without feeling like you’re being judged as a self-obsessed, vapid, social media lover who is too busy with social media to actually live life.
You’re not my therapist. Whoops, moving on.
In other news:
This is a great cafe for that friend of yours who hates coffee or who is a total health nut since their cacao coconut energy balls are amazing and actually good for you. And this is coming from someone who considers a french fry a vegetable and thinks Kale should be eliminated from the face of the Earth.
***PSST: If you still want your coffee fix, check out my picks for the 15 best coffee shops in NYC.***
Address: 1158 Broadway, New York, NY 10001 (With two other locations in NYC)
29. Levain Bakery
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I’m doing a little New York foodie happy dance right now because these are seriously the best cookies in New York City.
The cookies here are a thousand times better than the ones my mom used to make.
Actually, what am I talking about? My mom never made cookies.
So the cookies at LeVain Bakery are better than the ones Martha Stewart makes if your mom was an M.I.A. baker like mine.
Not only are these cookies decadently moist and gooey:
But they are enormous, like the size of your head big, the perfect balance of salty and sweet, and come in a variety of flavors like chocolate chip walnut, dark chocolate peanut butter chip, oatmeal raisin, etc.
It should come as no surprise that there’s typically a line out the door (Visit the store at 2167 Frederick Douglas Boulevard in Harlem if you hate lines and people).
That’s okay since these cookies are worth the wait and make a fantastic photo op!
Not sure what to order?
Try theit classic chocolate chip walnut cookie or, my personal fave, the dark chocolate peanut butter chip.
True foodie nirvana.
30. Avocado Appétit Café
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When Avocado Appétit Café opened in NYC, I knew that all my avocado-lovin’ dreams had FINALLY come.
NYC’s first ever avocado cafe has these delectable green fruits everywhere (it’s also one of my fave Instagram spots in NYC).
There are plush avocados on the seats, avocados all over the walls, cute AF sayings like “Let’s AVO-cuddle”, and even avocados in their amazing dishes.
If you’re an avid avocado lover like me (and I mean really, who isn’t?), you NEED to find this ridiculously adorable spot in lower Manhattan.
Like, right now.
And the food? Yeah, it’s equal parts Insta-licious and tasty.
I ordered the light and refreshing, Vegetarian Caprese Sandwich which includes fresh mozzarella, tomato, fresh basil, arugula, and pesto sauce with balsamic glaze served on a brioche bun. Oh yeah, and DUH, avocado.
You can be totally hipster about ordering and get the one and only avocado toast.
But the best part?
This avocado cafe is still relatively undiscovered by the Insta crowd.
So hurry up and visit before a mob of hangry photographers descends upon this delightfully delicious cafe.
Address: 114 Eldridge Street, New York, NY 10002
TADA! You made it through my EPIC list of the most Instagrammable food NYC!
What do you think? Did your favorite NYC foodie spot make my the cut? If not, let me know in the comments below and I’ll check it out!
And if this post makes you want to plan a foodie field trip to NYC, then pin this now and read it again later!