Mardi Gras—the famous carnival held every year in New Orleans in honor of Fat Tuesday—is upon us. The raucous celebration lasts about a month, but is most heartily celebrated on Mardi Gras Day (Feb. 9), and the proceeding weekend. The festivities include drinking, dancing, donning costumes in the traditional purple, green, and gold, and--our favorite--consuming mass amounts of king cake.
For those unfamiliar with king cake, the sweet confection is made of French bread-like dough and topped with icing and lots of sugar. Each pastry, which is in the shape of a ring, contains a tiny plastic baby—some say that whoever finds the trinket has to purchase the next cake; others believe the prize makes you Queen or King of the party. Since many of us will be celebrating Mardi Gras from afar, we’ve created a list of the best places to order your own king cake online. Enjoy!
1. Haydel’s Bakery King Cake
Haydel’s Bakery has been selling king cakes for over three generations and even holds the Guinness World Record for the world’s largest king cake. Order the Queen of Carnival package, which includes the cake, a pack of local French Market Coffee, and festive beads.
2. Sucré King Cake
The Sucré king cake is unique in that it contains layers of barely perceptible cream cheese, yielding a deliciously moist pastry. The classic purple, green, and gold accents are muted and shimmery, making this cake one of the prettiest of the bunch.
3. Manny Randazzo King Cake
4. Gambino's King Cake
Made with moist, cinnamon-infused Danish dough, the Gambino’s pastry arrives with the icing and sugar on the side, so you can customize your cake. The package also comes with a Mardi Gras poster to really get you in the spirit.
5. King Cake Kit
More of a hands-on person? Try making your own Mardi Gras dessert using the King Cake Kit from King Arthur Flour. The package includes almond paste for the filling, white icing mix, and bags of colorful sprinkles. (Do note, however, that you’ll need to pick up a plastic baby at your local craft store, if you intend on fully participating in the tradition.)