A few years ago, Fernanda Capobianco started a successful wholesale vegan bakery business. Last summer, the first retail location of Vegan Divas opened, bringing a glamorous spin to the world of vegan bakeries with sweets that taste more decadent than healthy.
Imagine a chocolate mousse that is pure velvet on the tongue, brownies that strike the ideal balance between cakey and fudgy, and a carrot cake I would happily devour daily. The jewel box cafe is certainly worth a detour, though you can also find her sweets at a number of markets in NYC including Citarella, Westside Market, and Garden of Eden. Here are Capobianco's choices for the top 5 not-to-miss sweets at Vegan Divas.
Made with plenty of shredded carrots and crushed, toasted walnuts, the Carrot Cake ($5) is my all-time favorite treat from the bakery. It's kept moist with crushed pineapples, spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, and sweetened with a touch of maple syrup. That extra hint of something something? Orange zest! Two cake layers and a silky smooth frosting, both simple and memorable.
The Chocolate Mousse ($5) is a Vegan Diva's signature sweet. The texture is velvety and decidedly rich, melting slowly on your tongue. It tastes like a classic ganache lightened with whipped cream, and vegan is the last thing that comes to mind. Take note, they also make a Mousse Parfait which alternates layers of chocolate mouse and brownies. And for those counting, each serving is a surprisingly low 42 calories.
Brownies ($3.50) are baked by the individual square, ensuring that everyone gets a bit of the crunchy edges which sink into a dark and super moist interior. It's right in the middle of cakey and fudgy (and pairs especially well with ice cream), an easy-to-love number made from a base of spelt flour.
Fernanda's cheesecakes ($5) come topped with either raspberry or passionfruit jam (pictured). The cake itself starts with a tofu base that combined with vegan cream cheese and sour cream. It's simultaneously light and creamy, set atop a maple syrup-laced toasted oat and walnut crust. What's not to love?
Dense like a traditional flourless, dark chocolate cake, this is the choice when you have that straight up chocolate cake craving. If you crave something fancier, consider the more extravagant sister otherwise known as the Decadent Chocolate Layered Cake. That combines a full cake layer of brownie topped with chocolate mousse, and final, glorious top of plush chocolate French glaçage.
About the author: Originally from Honolulu, Kathy YL Chan blogs at Kathy YL Chan, where she chronicles her eats and travel adventures between Hawai'i, New York and beyond. She firmly believes that there is always room for dessert.