Vegan Pastries and Ice Cream in the Big Apple

Here’s where Manhattan really stands out. So many amazing vegan dessert choices, so little time.

For me, two really stand out from our recent vacation.The Pennsy, which is a food court adjacent to The Garden (as in Madison Square Garden) was closed for remodeling, so The Cinnamon Snail’s food truck was back in business. And what better to have at the Cinnamon Snail but the pastry that started it all for them….their Cinnamon Snail.

It is not for the faint-at-heart. It is gigantic. Now, of course, you could share it…but this is me we are talking about here. No, not sharing. All mine. I will gladly buy one for you to have all your own, and maybe I’ll go out on a limb and offer you a miniscule bite of mine, but that’s as far as I’ll go. As you can see from the photo, I immediately got straight down to the business at hand – devouring my Cinnamon Snail!

Their cinnamon roll itself reminds me more of a delectable yeast donut in that it is soft and slightly sweet, fried but not greasy, with cinnamon sprinkled between the layers. The snail is then dipped in a confectioners’ sugar glaze. Shear perfection!!!

After a day of walking, and then more walking, we decided that we earned some creamy, cool vegan ice cream. Being down in the Village, we headed over to Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream.


While they are not exclusively a vegan ice cream parlor, they always have at least six different flavors as well as vegan coconut whipped cream. I’m sold! I opted for their two-scoop cup. Toasted Coconut Brownie Flavor Sundae and a flavor they call “Planet Earth”, which is made green-ish blue with the addition of Matcha. Richard had the coconut with salted caramel.

Full disclosure — these were not your ordinary scoops of ice cream. Oh my! These were scoops on steroids! And you know I was not at all about to wimp out and skip the coconut whipped cream. Heavens no! But, not to worry, we both managed to savor every single morsel without any problem. Fast forward to more than a month later, and neither of us have been able to stop talking about that ice cream!

While we didn’t get there this time around, DunWell Donuts is another sure-fire winner. If you love light and airy donuts that are done with a definitively creative flair, this is your place.

So that you don’t think we are just dessert centric, next week I will tell you about one dinner that stands out as one of the top three meals I’ve ever eaten. Stay tuned.

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