Clash of the cupcakes


It’s a Chicago showdown as HTR reporter Sarah Kloepping compares three of the city’s elite cupcake businesses

CHICAGO — I’ll admit it. I’m whipped when it comes to the recent cupcake craze.

It’s easy to like cupcakes. Lots of people do these days. But finding good cupcakes — if you have neither the talent nor interest to make them at home — takes a little effort.

The number of cupcake shops and cake-related television shows have increased dramatically the past couple years. The specialized shops have yet to hit the Manitowoc area, but about 500 exist nationwide.

Cupcakes will be the fastest growing part of the baked-goods industry between 2008 and 2013, according to a prediction from Mintel, a Chicago-based market-research firm. Sales during that time are expected to increase by about 20 percent.

This prompted me to begin my own search for the cream of the cake at three
premier Chicago cupcake bakeries.

My recipe for finding the best cupcakes:

Take some Sprinkles, mix in some Molly’s and a little More, blend together a whole lot of sugar and you’re ready to cook.

Sprinkles Cupcakes: The place many credit for the start of the cupcake trend. Hollywood celebrities flock to Sprinkles shops in Beverly Hills, Calif., to satisfy their sweet tooth. Chicago’s Sprinkles opened July 26.

Molly’s Cupcakes: Recently appeared on Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars,” a show where four competing bakeries battle to create the best cupcakes based on flavor, design and overall presentation. Molly’s took home the top prize beating out two California-based baking teams and one from Arizona.

More Cupcakes: Was recognized in Time Magazine and the Washington Post in 2009 for its unique cupcake ingredients.

Here are my ingredients for determining the best of the three:

The choices

Blend mint and chocolate, fill with cookie dough, top with fresh fruit — Molly’s takes the (cup) cake for biggest selection. This shop has the perfect measurements of flavors and variety. Sprinkles was pretty vanilla when it came to its choices, and More could have done with less chocolate. Selections for each store vary daily, but the traditional and most popular flavors are offered every day.

Cupcakes

Cupcakes

Order some fresh baked delicious kosher gourmet cupcakes at http://www.gjcookies.com

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