Best Dessert in Salt Lake City

10 Best Reveals Salt Lake City's Best Spots to Enjoy Great Coffee and a Sweet Bite to Eat

Many, many restaurants serve dessert in Salt Lake City, and nearly every restaurant serves coffee. But at most restaurants, the coffee and the sweets come after a meal - and are not the primary focus of the eatery. 10Best has scoured the streets of Salt Lake City and uncovered a sweet group of eateries focusing primarily on scrumptious treats. And it turns out that, if you visit many of these restaurants, you’ll take a miniature vacation to Europe.

Perhaps no European country is more renowned for its desserts - specifically pastries - than France. Brining this country’s remarkably tasty, flaky, and oft cream-filled pastries to South Salt Lake City is Pierre Country Bakery & Café. Whether you’re looking for eclairs, café au lait… or perhaps sandwiches and fresh bread, you’ll find a cornucopia simply brimming with deliciousness and an emphasis on local and sustainable ingredients.

Farther north in Salt Lake City - as well as in Europe - Bruges Waffles & Fries brings Belgium’s most delicious treats to downtown Salt Lake City: Liege waffles and Belgian frites (fries). Top the waffles with any number of sauces, and pack the fries into a traditional Belgian sandwich. No matter which way you go, you’re not walking out of that place hungry - guaranteed.


Located in Salt Lake City's east side, the Red Butte Cafe offers its guests a special chance to enjoy high-end, casual eating. Combing a laid-back atmosphere with top-notch foods, Red Butte Cafe has invented an eclectic/ Southwestern menu comprised of tasty items, all offered at a moderate price. Enjoy a brunch and a cup of coffee, or a glass of wine over lunch or dinner. Or come in between mealtimes and enjoy a dessert with an espresso and a conversation with friends. The dessert menu at the Red Butte Cafe exceeds the ordinary ice cream-and-cake selection; Red Butte's bakery offers a dozen or more truly unique and delicious items at any given time.

Recommended for Dessert because: Though most know it for its fresh, delicious meals, Red Butte Café also offers some of Salt Lake's most delicious cakes and pastries.

Local Expert tip: At the Red Butte Cafe, it is a shame to not save room for dessert!

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Born in the restaurant's namesake city, Bruges, Belgium, owner Pierre Vandamme brought with him Belgium's famous yeast-raised Liege waffles. Endowed with the traditional sugar pearls in the dough, these waffles are served hot and eaten with the toppings of your choice: creme fraiche, Belgian chocolate sauce, various berries, crunchy speculoos spread or vanilla bean ice cream. Not enough? Try any of the special combinations which feature waffles and various decadent stuffings. Similarly, their frites (or fries) are served with an impressive choice of aioli sauces, or in combination with a sandwich - or IN a sandwich. This is no health food store, but instead a delicious European treat in the heart of Salt Lake City.

Recommended for Dessert because: Winner of perhaps the Utah's most competitive food award: Best French Fries of Utah, by popular vote in City Weekly.

Local Expert tip: Don't shy away from the unknown; if you're unfamiliar with the various toppings and sauces, just ask - they're delicious!

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This two-story cafe is one of Salt Lake City's longest-running, most classic cafes. Serving delicious, roasted coffees (ranging from lattes to dark espressos) throughout the day, alongside a fairly extensive food and pastry menu, this is a go-to favorite of locals. Guests are free to sip a cup of drip coffee and use the wireless, or to meet with friends and enjoy a full meal filled with fresh ingredients. Outside seating makes the Roasting Company a popular late night gathering spot as well. A variety of scrumptious lunch and dinner options are available, and the staff makes sure that there are plenty of fresh breads and pastries available all day long.

Recommended for Dessert because: Salt Lake Roasting is an ultra-classic Salt Lake City institution, serving delicious coffee and food in a spacious, well-lit space with a low-key feel.

Local Expert tip: The Salt Lake Roasting Company is a perfect place to visit if you don't feel like a full-service meal - and if sweat treats and good coffee are important parts of your morning.

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This artsy coffee shop and deli is a great place to stop in whether you're looking to grab a quick bite or sit and linger with a delicious cup of coffee and a good friend. The homemade sandwiches are served in generous portions, and the freshly brewed coffees hail from all over the world, including Italy and Guatemala. They also have a limited selection of beer and wine available if you're not in the mood for coffee or tea. But the menu isn't the only attraction; you'll find an impressive, rotating display of work from local artists.

Recommended for Dessert because: Though Nostalgia is primarily a coffeehouse, it does an outstanding job of offering fresh, diverse treats. Lunch and breakfast are offered, too!

Local Expert tip: Enjoy solitude west of the University of Utah and north of 9th and 9th.

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Alright - Banbury Cross is admittedly not a traditional bakery or coffee shop. However, this Utah institution has been a famous staple of Salt Lake cuisine and culture since its opening in 1986. Specializing in delicious - even gourmet - doughnuts, this unique Salt Lake establishment also offers a variety of other sweet goods. If the glazed, chocolate, old fashioned, raised, maple frosted, cinnamon crumb, strawberry frosted or cake doughnuts won't satisfy you, consider instead trying a cinnamon roll, muffin, orange roll or apple fritter. If you're picking up doughnuts for breakfast, you can also purchase milk, orange juice, and coffee here.

Recommended for Dessert because: All donuts are not created equal - and Banbury Cross serves surprising tasty variations on this sticky, sweet treat. A true Salt Lake City classic!

Local Expert tip: Enjoy a sinful treat after a calorie-burning morning hike.

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This is a great, hidden spot for a mid-morning or afternoon refresher. Beverages are the menu item of choice, with gourmet coffee, espresso and tea selections available. If you have a hankering for something sweet (or have young ones in two), freshly squeezed lemonade, fruit smoothies, ice cream and pastries are also offered. But if you're in the mood for something even more indulgent, you must try the thick, burnt almond milkshake. Given its semi-hidden location inside the Little America Hotel, just southwest of Downtown proper, this gorgeous cafe offers more solitude than most of Salt Lake City's downtown dessert and coffee houses.

Recommended for Dessert because: Situated within the grand interior of the Little America Hotel, Le Petit Café serves delicious espresso, specialty coffees and fine pastries.

Local Expert tip: Don't let Little America's exterior fool you; inside, the place is quite high-brow!

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Carlucci's is a hungry person's paradise. Offering an excellent selection of baked goods, as well as gourmet, cafe-style breakfasts and lunches, this Italian establishment gives you the opportunity to enjoy delicious treats and dishes with flair. The bakery produces more than two dozen varieties of pastries, as well as a large selection of cakes and breads. The breakfast menu contains a broad selection of creative quiches, omelets and other specialties like tofu scramble, yogurt and house-made granola and ham and cheese croissant sandwiches. At lunch time, you can choose from sandwiches that range from hummus to garlic & herb goat cheese, turkey bacon & avocado and baked Italian marinated tofu. Opt for a half sandwich and enjoy the house-made soup or any number of salads.

Recommended for Dessert because: Carlucci's is one of the city's most award-winning bakeries; it was even featured in The New York Times' article, "36 Hours in Salt Lake City."

Local Expert tip: Carlucci's serves coffee and espresso from Cafe Ibis, an excellent and environmentally friendly local roaster.

Read more about Carlucci's Bakery & Cafe →

Tulie Bakery
Photo courtesy of Jennifer Boren

Tulie Bakery enjoys a prime location just north of the 9th and 9th intersection in Sugarhouse, and adjacent to Trio Cafe (one of the city's most popular modern Italian eateries). This tempting little gem offers some of the tastiest and light fare in all of Salt Lake City. With a menu that ranges from hot, pressed sandwiches to pastries and cakes, the Tulie Bakery challenges you to find a reason NOT to visit. For breakfast, try a quiche, bread pudding, pain au jambon or creme fraiche coffee cake. For any other meal of the day, enjoy a turkey, brie and avocado Panini, or perhaps try a sopressata, pesto or mozzarella, tomato and basil one instead.

Recommended for Dessert because: This establishment embodies the hip and artsy vibe of SLC's 9th and 9th neighborhood. Popular and bustling, Tulie is a cornucopia of fresh pastries.

Local Expert tip: This American and European bakery has something for every taste.

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Meet Christine Balaz

Christine Balaz began her unexpected writing career in Salt Lake City with her first book on Wasatch Skiing and Travel in 2006. On the subject of Utah, Christine has written numerous...  More About Christine