Where to get Two Little Red Hens, Doughnut Plant, Balthazar & More (in Midtown)

If you are a big fan of bakeries, Midtown would probably not be your first choice of places to be stuck 40 hours a week. Lower East Side, East Village, Soho, hell, anywhere would probably be better than here. (Though we do have 28 locations of Crumbs!) But don’t curl up into a sugar deprived ball just yet. Some of the best non-Midtown bakeries have items shipped to various shops in Midtown… and who better to uncover the best ones than our contributor, and baked goods expert, Kathy YL Chan (from A Passion for Food.) Here is her list of favorites, along with the location in Midtown you can find them. (Note: some places have multiple locations with a rotating list of sweets. You won’t be guaranteed to find each of these items at all locations on all days… but it’s still a good guide to get you started.)

Two Little Red Hens

  • Actual Bakery Location: 1652 2nd Ave (btw. 85+86th), UES
  • Favorite Item: Brooklyn Blackout Cake

This dark and luscious number never fails to leave me intoxicated in a sugar coma, post-consumption. Regardless, I return to it over and over again. And no, there are never regrets. Tiers of chocolate cake layered with chocolate pudding, finished off with frosting and a smattering of cake crumbs. Too sweet? Of course! But in just the right ways that you would expect and want. Where to get it in Midtown: Dean & Deluca

Sage General Store

  • Actual Bakery Location: 24-20 Jackson Ave., Long Island City
  • Favorite item: Carrot Cake Cupcake

The girls over at Lunch Studio have already spilled wonders on this oversized cupcake creation. Carrot cake and a smother of whipped cream cheese frosting. Simple and classic, no surprises here, just pleasure all around. Where to get it in Midtown: Dean & Deluca

Ceci-Cela Patisserie

  • Actual Bakery Location: 55 Spring Street, Nolita
  • Favorite item: Cherry Danish

A base of flaky pastry (only on non-humid days), a layer of supple pastry cream and cherries studded throughout make this number easy on the eyes and tongue. Ceci-Cela does fruit danishes in other flavors, including pears and plums, but cherry, with a bright tart pucker, is the best. Where to get it in Midtown: Joe The Art of Coffee


  • Actual Bakery Location: 857 Broadway, Flatiron
  • Favorite item: Croissant Bread Pudding

Tisserie’s Croissant Bread Pudding is one of the few bread puddings that I enjoy at room temperature. Torn croissant cuts are soaked in an eggy and cream heavy mixture, then baked till the outer layers turn all golden and crisp. The innards remain custardy, lightly sweetened, and very dense. Where to get it in Midtown: Oren’s

This Chick Bakes

  • Actual Bakery Location: Wholesale Only
  • Favorite item: Vegan Peanut Butter Cookie

The Pomegranate White Tea cookies are fun suprises, as were the Whoopie Pies (which, are sadly, no longer sold), but I’m invariably drawn back to the Vegan Peanut Butter cookie, crumbly and unexpectedly satisfying. This Chick Bakes keeps an interesting rotation of products at Joe’s in Grand Central, so sweets and pastries never get boring with this bakery. Where to get it in Midtown: Joe The Art of Coffee

Doughnut Plant

  • Actual Bakery Location: 379 Grand St., LES
  • Favorite item: Blackout Cake Doughnut

Just as chocolaty and decadent as the Brooklyn Blackout Cake from Two Little Red Hens, but extra special because these are not only coated in cake crumbs but also deep-fried. Oren’s, Dean & Deluca, and Joe’s keep a steady rotation of different flavors from Doughnut Plant, but you can never go wrong with this classic. The Strawberry Yeast Doughnut is always a tasty fallback. Make sure to come in the early mornings for doughnuts – they’re usually sold out by noon. Where to Get it in Midtown: Oren’s, Joe The Art of Coffee, Dean & Deluca

Erica’s Rugelach

  • Actual Bakery Location: Brooklyn, NY (Advance orders only)
  • Favorite item: Raspberry Cinnamon Rugelach

At $1.25 a piece, I like to get a few of these and munch on them throughout the day. Raspberries and cinnamon make an unusual, though perfectly paired combination. I believe that Erica’s makes one of the best rugelach in the city (though I’m open to other suggestions), always generous with the currants and walnuts. The cream cheese pastry dough is always spot on, delicious and consistent. Where to get it in Midtown: Joe The Art of Coffee


  • Actual Bakery Location: 80 Spring St., Soho
  • Favorite item: Sticky Bun

Everyone knows about Balthazar’s Sticky Bun. And if you don’t, you should be thoroughly ashamed of yourself. This is not your usual doughy and plush bun. This is a crisp and flaky number – imagine sticky glazed croissant laced with sweet pecans and raisins. It’s tiny in size compared to the average sticky bun, but you’ll quickly discover that looks are deceiving once it hits the bottom of your belly. Where to get it in Midtown: Oren’s


  • Actual Bakery Location: 667 Tenth Ave. (btw. 47+48th), Hell’s Kitchen
  • Favorite item: Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti

Chocolate. Hazelnut. A classic combination. Merge the two in a piece of BisCoLatte’s biscotti, and dunk in your morning mug of coffee. BisCoLatte ranks high in my books precisely because they cut their biscotti on the thin side. Too thick -> breaks your teeth. Cut it thin and you’ll expose the optimal amount of surface area for coffee dunking. Where to get it in Midtown: Joe The Art of Coffee

Corner Cafe & Bakery

  • Actual Bakery Location: 1645 3rd Ave (btw. 92+93rd), UES
  • Favorite item: Chocolate Farm Muffin

The Chocolate Farm Muffin is the “lightest” of the sweets mentioned in this post, even with a generous swirl of cream cheese in the batter. It’s not dark, not very decadent. Remember the texture of Betty Crocker and Duncan Hines chocolate cake mix? Think something along those lines, only really really tasty. I could easily down three of these muffins in a sitting. Where to get it in Midtown: Joe The Art of Coffee

Dean & Deluca (Multiple Locations)

  • 620 8th Ave. (on 41st St.), 212-221-0312
  • 1 Rockefeller Plaza (on 48th btw. 5+6th), 212-664-1372
  • 9 Rockefeller Plaza (on 49th btw. 5+6th), 212-664-1363
  • 235 W. 46th St. (btw. 7+8th), 212-869-6890
  • 156 W. 56th St. (btw. 6+7th), 212-586-2970

Oren’s Daily Roast (Multiple Locations)

  • Grand Central Terminal (2 Locations)
  • 830 3rd Ave. (btw. 50+51st)

Joe The Art of Coffee, Grand Central Terminal (in the Graybar Passage)

Post and photos by Kathy YL Chan

Other posts by Kathy on Midtown Lunch:

Everything You Wanted to Known About FreeFoods NYC But Were Too Cheap to Try
A Food Porn Guide to Navigating Your Way Through Cafe Zaiya
More From Dainobu: The Good, The Bad, & The Udon
Hawaiian Island Grill Won’t Remind You of Oahu, But This Fat Guy Didn’t Mind


  • tisserie on broadway closed. i think they relocated to 50′s east side but not sure.

  • I’m pretty sure Dean & Deluca also has the Balthazar sticky bun

  • $1.25 each for rugelach? I don’t think so. I’ve never had those, so I cannot compare, but the Just Rugelach guy (or the Not Just Rugelach guy) at the farmers markets – he’s at the UN – has the best I have ever tasted. And it’s something like $1.50 for 3. Chocolate hazelnut, cinnamon raisin, and two other flavors I can’t remember. I think it’s still under $10 for a pound, but I’m not positive.

  • Ceci-Cela pastries are also available at Manhattan Espresso on 49th between Lex and 3rd.

  • words cannot describe the Donut Plant. it is out of this world. GO! Go immediately!

  • When I used to work in LIC I ate Sage cupcakes at least once a week…I ate at Crumbs once and threw up, no more cupcakes in midtown for me.

  • ~Girlie~Food~

  • There’s actually a Tisserie in Midtown too – Park Central Hotel
    870 7th Avenue. They also have good sandwiches and quiches for a lighter lunch option (yes, I know…not for this site).

  • Zabar’s has the best chocolate rugelach in the universe. They are expensive and worth it goddamn it!

  • I’m always surprised that the Blackout cake doughnut (from Doughnut Plant) gets such rave reviews…it’s good, but in my opinion the creme brulee is far superior.

  • Killer post Kathy. The Tisserie bread pudding is going to the top of the list. Dishes has Balthazar stickey buns on occasion and always has Balthazar’s Belgian Dark chcolate scones and other top level morning bakery items from there. Plus they have some kind of new vanilla creme cake with coconut that looks to be worth a special trip. Not Just Rugelach is best at low price point Zabar’s still best overall for big coin droppers

  • Not just rugelach sucks.

  • after reading this post i had a sudden inkling for a sweet. i walked over to GC Joes and grabbed a coffee and the last doughnut plant dougnut, a strawberry shortcake. It was downright mediocre. I wish i could have tried the blackout or creme brulee but neither were to be had.

    heres to hoping for a better experience next time.

  • there’s a tisserie in SoHo too. Located on Thompson street. It shares a space with the DKNY store.

  • know where else they have doughnut plant doughnuts? tokyo. no joke, they had green tea doughnuts in one of the tokyo train stations.

  • Isn’t the Strawberry doughnut a seasonal item? And I rarely, if ever, see the blackout at Joe’s. They do usually have the chocolate cake, the coconut cream, and jelly-filled, plus the two seasonals.

  • No Tisserie – at Park Central Hotel (at least that is what the operator said when I called)

  • Too bad that rugelach is not to scale.

  • Pls. note that Oren’s no longer has two locations in Grand Central. one is closed and the other is just a stand in the GCT market with only bagged coffee. There is a location on 51st and 3rd, and I’m checking that one out on my lunch hour. The Joe’s in GCT didn’t have any this morning either.

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