New York is no stranger to the World’s Best Cinnamon Rolls organization. We crowned Maialino in New York City as the world’s best cinnamon rolls back in 2019. Our team has been back regularly to spotlight locally-owned bakeries that make these delectable treats. Ready to dive deep into the intoxicating world of New York’s cinnamon roll scene, just as Anthony Bourdain might have, with reverence for the craft and a bit of that famous snark? Let’s embark on this sweet journey and explore the top 12 cinnamon rolls in New York City.
BOURKE STREET BAKERY
Multiple locations / 718.744.4803
Born in the vibrant heart of Sydney, Bourke Street Bakery carries with it an undeniable Australian soul, yet it has seamlessly woven itself into the tapestry of New York City’s culinary scene. When they opened their doors in NYC a mere four years ago, it wasn’t just another bakery; it was the beginning of a cross-continental love story between the bustling streets of Sydney and the iconic avenues of New York.
Their signature cinnamon-raisin swirls are a testament to this love affair. Imagine the breezy coastal vibes of Sydney intertwining with the pulsating energy of the Big Apple. Every bite delivers a harmonious blend of these two cities’ essences. The cinnamon, aromatic and grounding, reminds one of the comfort of home, wherever that might be, while the sprinkling of raisins adds a burst of sweetness, much like the unexpected joys one discovers in a new city.
Attention to detail, authenticity, and a passion for merging traditional techniques with innovative ideas are the cornerstones of Bourke Street Bakery. As you step into any of their locations, it’s evident that you’re not just walking into a bakery – you’re stepping into a story. A tale of two cities, cultures, and a shared love for food that brings people together.
Let’s explore the rest of the top 12 cinnamon rolls in New York City.
Image Credit: Bourke Street Bakery
MEL THE BAKERY
1 Ludlow St. / 917.382.0278ebsite / W
Nestled in the heart of the city at Ludlow Street, Mel The Bakery is a sanctuary for those who truly appreciate the artisan’s touch in baking. With its minimalist interiors and a keen focus on ingredients and craft, this establishment transcends the norms of a typical bakery.
The cinnamon rolls are a prime example of Mel’s dedication to perfection. Beneath the crispy exterior lies layers of soft, fragrant dough that pull apart with the gentlest tug, revealing a heart of rich cinnamon and tender love. A dollop of sweet white icing isn’t just an afterthought; it’s the crowning glory, adding just the right touch of sweetness to balance out the deep, earthy flavors beneath.
But what truly sets Mel The Bakery apart is its juxtaposition of offerings. In a world where most bakeries might specialize and stick to one-star products, Mel’s doesn’t shy away from diversity. Their sourdough bread, a product of hours of fermentation and meticulous care, stands as a testament to their craft. With its tangy undertones and impeccably crispy crust, it’s no wonder that its sourdough has carved a niche for itself amidst the city’s bread connoisseurs.
However, the story doesn’t end at just sourdough and cinnamon rolls. At Mel The Bakery, every item on the shelf is a story of passion, patience, and persistence, waiting to be savored and celebrated. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a regular, every visit promises a dance of flavors, textures, and the warmth of genuine craftsmanship.
743 Driggs Ave., Brooklyn / 347.384.2212
Brooklyn, with its rich tapestry of cultures and ever-evolving culinary landscape, has always been a haven for food aficionados. Tucked away on Driggs Avenue, Ceremonia Bakeshop emerges as a beacon for pastry enthusiasts. This isn’t just a bakery; it’s a testament to the art of baking.
At Ceremonia, every cinnamon roll feels like a magnum opus. These aren’t just any oversized rolls; they’re a culmination of tradition, technique, and a touch of modern flair. Each roll is generously glazed, giving it a shimmering golden hue that promises (and delivers) a burst of flavors with every bite. Beneath this glossy exterior, the roll reveals layers of intricately swirled dough, imbued with the richness of cinnamon and the subtle sweetness that makes you close your eyes in sheer delight.
But what truly drives the charm of Ceremonia is the heart and soul poured into each pastry. It’s a place where baking isn’t just a profession—it’s a passion. This commitment to excellence is palpable in every bite, and it’s this unwavering dedication that has garnered them not just customers but ardent fans. Their cult following is not just about the love for a pastry; it’s about being part of a community that celebrates the finest in baking.
Beyond the cinnamon rolls, every pastry at Ceremonia Bakeshop is a journey. A journey through flavors, traditions, and the sheer joy of indulging in something crafted with love. A visit here isn’t just about satiating your sweet tooth; it’s about partaking in a ritual, a ceremony of savoring the best that Brooklyn has to offer.
Image Credit: Ceremonia Bakeshop
THE DOUGHNUT PROJECT
10 Morton St / 212.691.5000
In the bustling streets of Manhattan, where culinary wonders abound at every corner, The Doughnut Project emerges as a modern-day oasis for sweet lovers. Situated on Morton Street, this establishment is more than just a bakery—it’s a hub of creativity, innovation, and an undying love for the art of doughnut-making.
At The Doughnut Project, the doughnuts aren’t just pastries; they’re edible masterpieces. Each doughnut, whether customized to your tastes or a part of their classic lineup, is meticulously crafted, embodying both tradition and the spirit of experimentation. Their cinnamon rolls, a lustrous affair of deep browns and glistening glaze, are a tribute to the timeless beauty of classic baking. As the glaze catches the light, these rolls are almost jewel-like, promising a burst of sweetness and warmth with every bite.
But the magic of this place isn’t confined to just cinnamon rolls. Their range of offerings is as vast as it is vibrant. Imagine flavors that span from the familiar comforts of home to the adventurous tastes inspired by global cuisines—all coming together in the humble form of a doughnut. Every treat here tells a story—a story of the ingredients, the inspiration behind it, and the hands that shaped it to perfection.
Yet, with all its fame and fanfare, The Doughnut Project retains an intimate charm. The ambiance evokes a sense of community, where every customer is not just a patron but a part of their ever-growing family. And yes, word to the wise: this family rises early. So, if you’re planning a visit, remember that the early bird not only gets the worm but also the best pick of these delectable treats. With their ever-rotating lineup and limited batches, it’s best to get there sooner rather than later, or you might just find the ‘Sold Out’ sign greeting you. The Doughnut Project isn’t just about doughnuts; it’s an experience—one that remains etched in memory long after the last crumbs have been savored.
Under Umber Ahmad’s gifted hands, Mah-Ze-Dahr Bakery offers pastries that are a delightful blend of cultures and flavors. Their cinnamon rolls, each a tribute to culinary perfection, can even be delivered to your doorstep.
Mah-Ze-Dahr, a term in Urdu that captures the very essence of a food’s taste, its soulful flavor, and the enchantment that makes it irresistibly delicious. Founded by the brilliant Umber Ahmad in 2014, this bakery embodies the merging of science, culture, and pure culinary passion. An amalgamation of Umber’s business acumen, her robust science education, and the rich tapestry of her cultural experiences.
A cinnamon roll isn’t just a pastry; it’s a journey. Each swirl, a tale of cultures coming together, drenched in sweet nostalgia and topped with guilty pleasures.
Every bite of Mah-Ze-Dahr’s cinnamon rolls is like stepping into a portal of discovery. A journey through layers of fluffy, light brioche dough generously infused with quality cinnamon, exquisitely balanced sweetness, and crowned with a lusciously secret cream cheese icing. It’s a symphony of texture and taste that transcends the very definition of a cinnamon roll. Every swirl, every bite, transports you, and it’s no wonder they’ve earned a 5-star rating across the board – from presentation to the overall experience.
If you’re not in NYC, fret not. Their world-renowned cinnamon rolls are just a click away, ready to be shipped nationwide for those unexpected cinnamon roll cravings. And if you’re in the city, mark your weekends. They serve these masterpieces on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings.
READ our SPOTLIGHT ON May-Ze-Dahr here!
Their accolades speak volumes. From nominations for the prestigious James Beard Foundation baker awards to the honor of being named the Best Cinnamon Roll in NYC and qualifying for the 2023 Title of the World’s Best Cinnamon Roll, Umber Ahmad and her team have crafted an experience that leaves an indelible mark on your palate.
Image Credit: Mah-Ze-Dahr
OLE & STEEN
Originating from the serene landscapes of Denmark and gradually making its presence felt across international shores, Ole & Steen is not just a bakery but a slice of Scandinavian heritage served on a platter. With multiple locations adorning the city’s culinary map, this bakery has become a comforting spot for New Yorkers, bridging the gap between Nordic traditions and the cosmopolitan vibrancy of the city.
The Cinnamon Social is a testament to the brand’s knack for blending flavors and textures. This offering isn’t just a cinnamon roll; it’s a narrative of layers, intertwined with velvety vanilla custard that tantalizingly juxtaposes the warmth of cinnamon. Each bite is an orchestration of flavors—deep, aromatic, and incredibly satisfying.
Much like the world’s best destinations, the best cinnamon rolls are a mix of the unexpected: a little heat, a lot of sweet, and layers upon layers of stories waiting to be unraveled.
Then, there’s the Cinnamon Swirl—a dance of flaky pastry layers swathed in a delicate embrace of cinnamon. The pastry seems to capture the essence of early Danish mornings, with hints of buttery notes and that quintessential cinnamon allure that beckons one bite after another.
However, Ole & Steen’s culinary prowess isn’t just limited to the sweet spectrum. They understand the nuanced balance between sweet and savory, ensuring their menu caters to every palate. From delectable sandwiches with perfectly curated fillings to heartwarming soups that feel like a hug in a bowl, the bakery offers an array of options that can satiate even the most discerning of tastes.
The ambiance at Ole & Steen complements their offerings. A harmonious blend of minimalist Scandinavian design with the bustling energy of New York, it’s a space that invites conversations, shared laughter, and moments of quiet reflection—all over a shared love for exceptional food.
In a city teeming with culinary options, Ole & Steen stands out, not just for its exceptional food but for the memories it helps create. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite, a hearty meal, or simply a momentary escape into the world of Danish baking, this is the place to be.
NICK + SONS BAKERY
205 Leonard St., Brooklyn
Nestled in the heart of Brooklyn, Nick + Sons Bakery is a testament to the age-old adage that sometimes, less is indeed more. In an era where many eateries vie for attention with flashy displays and overpowering flavors, Nick + Sons have carved their niche with subtlety, elegance, and an unwavering commitment to authenticity.
Their cinnamon rolls are a delightful divergence from the overly sweet versions found in many places. Instead, they offer a nuanced balance of flavors that tantalize the taste buds without overwhelming them. Each roll is a perfect amalgamation of soft, fluffy dough infused with subtle hints of cinnamon. The result? A pastry that’s not just a treat but an experience, an invitation to savor every bite and relish the craftsmanship that went into creating it.
There’s a certain reckless beauty in devouring a cinnamon roll. It’s an act of indulgence, a moment of surrender to the intricate dance of sugar, spice, and everything nice.
But what truly sets Nick + Sons apart is their connection to the community. It’s not just a bakery; it’s a local landmark, a place where every patron is greeted with the warmth of familiarity. The whispers of it being an “unspoken legend” aren’t just flattery—they’re earned accolades from loyal customers who’ve found their favorite haven in the midst of the city’s hustle and bustle.
The ambiance of the bakery mirrors its offerings—understated, warm, and welcoming. The rustic interiors, adorned with wooden furnishings and soft lighting, evoke a sense of nostalgia—a throwback to times when baking was a labor of love, and every loaf of bread or roll bore the personal touch of the baker.
In a borough filled with culinary gems, Nick + Sons Bakery stands out as a beacon of tradition, quality, and community spirit. Whether you’re a Brooklyn native or a visitor passing through, a trip to this bakery is not just about satiating your hunger—it’s about experiencing a slice of Brooklyn’s soul.
348 W 14th St / 917.261.2476
At Fabrique Bakery, artistry meets culinary expertise. Their intricately braided cinnamon buns, infused with traditional Swedish essence, aren’t just pastries; they’re edible masterpieces. Every swirl and fold promises a visual feast, setting the stage for the gustatory delight that follows with each bite. A visit here transcends the ordinary bakery experience, plunging you into a world where aesthetics and flavors blend in harmonious symphony.
550 Vanderbilt Ave., Brooklyn / 716.666.2426
In the vibrant streets of Brooklyn, Ciao Gloria stands as a beacon of Italian indulgence, seamlessly blending the rich traditions of Italian baking with a contemporary Brooklyn flair. More than just an Italian café, it’s a destination—a place where the aroma of freshly baked pastries wafts through the air, beckoning patrons from near and afar.
Their cinnamon rolls are a testament to the café’s commitment to excellence. These aren’t just any rolls; they’re a decadent affair. Imagine soft, pillowy dough, swirled with aromatic cinnamon, and then generously topped with a luscious layer of cream cheese icing. Each bite is a perfect symphony of textures and flavors, making them an irresistible treat for both the casual visitor and the ardent sweet lover.
But the allure of Ciao Gloria extends beyond these cinnamon delights. Their display counters are a visual and gastronomic treat, filled with a myriad of pastries that pay homage to the rich baking traditions of Italy. From flaky croissants filled with velvety creams to robust biscottis perfect for a coffee dip, every item promises an authentic taste of Italian craftsmanship.
The ambiance of Ciao Gloria further accentuates the experience. With its warm interiors, rustic touches, and a cozy atmosphere, the café exudes a sense of homeliness—a place where patrons can relax, converse, and savor the simple joys of life over a cup of coffee and a pastry.
For those seeking a slice of Italy in the heart of Brooklyn, Ciao Gloria is more than just a bakery—it’s an invitation to embark on a culinary journey that tantalizes the senses and warms the heart.
Amidst the city’s ever-changing culinary landscape, Breads Bakery stands as a timeless icon, holding its ground with unwavering dedication to quality and authenticity. With several locations scattered across the city, it has become a touchstone for many New Yorkers—a place synonymous with warmth, comfort, and the nostalgic allure of freshly baked goods.
Their cinnamon rolls are a testament to this legacy. Crafted with precision, each roll unfolds layers of buttery, flaky goodness infused with aromatic cinnamon. The exterior boasts a delicate crisp, giving way to a soft, melt-in-your-mouth interior. It’s not just a pastry; it’s an experience—a delightful dance of textures and flavors that promises to leave an indelible mark on one’s palate.
But the magic of Breads Bakery doesn’t stop with their cinnamon rolls. Their vast offerings range from artisanal breads, reminiscent of old-world European bakeries, to delicate pastries that capture the essence of New York’s vibrant spirit. Each product is a testament to the bakery’s commitment to excellence, blending traditional techniques with innovative ideas to deliver consistently outstanding results.
The ambiance across their locations further amplifies the experience. The scent of baking bread, the soft hum of conversations, and the sight of bakers at work—crafting, kneading, and shaping—creates an atmosphere that’s both bustling and intimate. It’s a place where memories are made, stories are shared, and the simple pleasures of life are celebrated.
In a city that never sleeps, Breads Bakery offers a moment of respite—a chance to pause, indulge, and savor the unparalleled joy of exceptional baked delights. For many New Yorkers, a visit to Breads Bakery isn’t just a routine; it’s a cherished ritual, a testament to the bakery’s enduring charm and unwavering commitment to excellence.
Nestled in the heart of New York, Michaeli Bakery is more than just a purveyor of fine pastries; it’s a canvas upon which Chef Adir Michaeli paints his culinary tales. With every creation that graces the bakery’s shelves, one can trace back the rich lineage of flavors, techniques, and traditions that have shaped Chef Adir’s journey.
Their cinnamon rolls are a prime example of this narrative. Crafted to perfection, each roll is a harmonious blend of sweetness, complemented by a delightful chewiness that beckons a second bite. Beneath the surface of these seemingly simple pastries lies a world of intricacy—the careful selection of ingredients, the meticulous balance of flavors, and the countless hours of honing the craft, all echoing Chef Adir’s exceptional training.
Trained under the guidance of renowned pastry chef Roni Fredy Mordechai, Chef Adir brings to the table a fusion of time-honored techniques and innovative flair. It’s this unique combination that sets Michaeli Bakery apart, turning every visit into an exploration of tastes and textures.
But the allure of Michaeli Bakery isn’t limited to just its cinnamon rolls. Every pastry, from the flaky burekas to the rich rugalach, is a chapter in the culinary storybook that Chef Adir has curated. Each offering is a testament to his passion, dedication, and the endless pursuit of perfection.
The ambiance of the bakery further enhances the experience. With its warm interiors, the soft hum of conversations, and the tantalizing aroma of fresh bakes, Michaeli Bakery offers a slice of serenity amidst the city’s hustle and bustle. It’s a space where patrons are not just customers but a part of an ever-growing community, bound together by a shared love for exceptional pastries.
In a city teeming with culinary offerings, Michaeli Bakery stands as a beacon of authenticity, craftsmanship, and unparalleled passion. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a regular patron, a trip to this bakery promises a gastronomic journey that lingers long after the last bite.
80 Spring St. / 212.965.1414
Set amidst the urban tapestry of New York, Balthazar Bakery stands as a tribute to the timeless elegance of French patisserie. With its roots deeply entrenched in the culinary traditions of France, the bakery seamlessly translates the charm of a Parisian boulangerie to the bustling streets of NYC.
Their cinnamon rolls are an epitome of this exquisite craftsmanship. Emanating a delightful aroma that beckons from blocks away, these rolls aren’t just pastries but an experience. Each bite reveals a cascade of layers, impossibly flaky, that crumble and melt in the mouth, transporting one to the cobblestone streets of Montmartre. The rich warmth of cinnamon, combined with the bakery’s signature flaky texture, offers an indulgence that’s both comforting and luxurious.
Yet, the magic of Balthazar Bakery isn’t just confined to these rolls. As you step into the establishment, you’re greeted with a symphony of sights, sounds, and aromas—golden-brown croissants, rustic loaves of bread, delicate tarts, and a plethora of pastries, each bearing the hallmark of unmatched quality and authenticity.
The ambiance, with its vintage fixtures, warm lighting, and the soft hum of conversations, mirrors a quaint café in the heart of Paris. Patrons, both locals and tourists, find solace in this oasis, sipping on a coffee, reading a book, or simply watching the world go by.
Balthazar Bakery’s reputation is not merely a product of its offerings but a testament to its unwavering commitment to quality, authenticity, and the art of traditional baking. Underneath the fame and accolades lies the heart of the bakery—a passionate team dedicated to bringing the authentic tastes of France to the plates of New Yorkers.
In a metropolis that never sleeps, where culinary trends come and go, Balthazar Bakery stands tall, reminding everyone of the timeless allure of classic French baking. It’s not just a place to grab a bite but a destination to immerse oneself in the rich tapestry of flavors, textures, and traditions that have shaped the world of baking.
There’s a certain reckless beauty in devouring a cinnamon roll. It’s an act of indulgence, a moment of surrender to the intricate dance of sugar, spice, and everything nice.
In the sprawling culinary labyrinth that is New York City, every corner holds a promise—an unspoken invitation to embark on a gastronomic journey. And as you wander these streets, from the quiet alleys of Brooklyn to the bustling avenues of Manhattan, the city whispers tales of sugar, spice, and everything nice. Cinnamon rolls, each different, each bearing the soul of its creator, beckon from behind glass windows.
Whether you’re a seeker of the sticky, a devotee to the flaky, or someone who finds solace in a generous slathering of frosting, this city, with its myriad bakeries, promises a rendezvous with the perfect cinnamon roll, waiting just for you. So, throw caution to the wind, and let your senses lead the way. Dive into the rich tapestry of flavors, textures, and aromas, and let your taste buds embark on an adventure, drawing their own map of delights. In this city of endless culinary tales, find your own story, one bite at a time. Bon appétit and happy indulging, traveler.