We all have a sweet tooth and we know some kids don’t hesitate for the chance to eat ice cream or even a chocolate chip cookie. Why not make their day by giving them an over-the-top sweet treat experience?
Many local businesses in Chicagoland go above and beyond to serve one-of-the-kind desserts that will not disappoint your family. From animal-decorated gelato cones to chocolate piñatas, we share our favorite unique desserts for Chicago kids.
Note: We’re also updating our website as quickly as we can, but changes may occur due to COVID-19. Please double check before heading out for the most updated information on safety precautions, vaccine requirements and any last-minute cancellations. Also, some of these places may only be open seasonally.
- Address: 832 W. Randolph St., Chicago
Put together your dream sweet drink with the help of Bar Siena’s walk-up dessert joint, BomboBar. Depending on the season, try the Gelato Shakes or Hotter Chocolates with interesting toppings like Oreo cookies and gummy worms. Not a milkshake fan? Opt-in for the regular gelato with a waffle cone or better yet, doughnut ice cream sandwiches known as the bombolato sandwich.
- Address: 108 N. Green St., Chicago (West Loop); 1824 W. Division St., Chicago (Wicker Park); 405 N. Dearborn St., Chicago (River North)
While you must get the pizza at Parlor Pizza Bar, save room for the dessert counter, which serves tacolatos. Taco Choco fans will be in heaven when they see the endless options for dessert tacos here, with choices ranging from cookies galore to a banana split alternative.
- Address: 955 W. Webster Ave., Chicago; 1028 Curtis St., Downers Grove; 284 S. Webster Road, Bolingbrook
Bubble waffles aren’t a new concept but at Eiffel Waffle, they dazzle up the treat with their own creations. Each bubble waffle specialty comes with ice cream and fun toppings like Oreos or Fruity Pebbles. You can even build your own bubble waffle! While the bubble waffles are what draws all the attention, Eiffel Waffle also has fantastic ice cream. Other great items on the menu are Waffle Towers, Eiffel Minis and milkshakes.
- Address: Various locations in Chicago, Oak Park and Naperville
There are plenty of doughnut shops in Chicagoland, but have you ever had a donut ice cream sandwich? Luckily, Firecakes offers build-your-own donut ice cream sandwiches. You select the donut, ice cream and sauce (and toppings too, of course!). Keep an eye out for the featured sandwich of the month if you can’t decide your own combo.
- Address: 11914 Illinois Route 59, Plainfield
If your kids are obsessed with cotton candy, then they’ll go wild for the Sugar Mountain at Freedom Brothers Pizza. We can guarantee that you’ll enough cotton candy for the whole table. Plus, the restaurant has two dessert pizzas — one with a Nutella base and the other with a cheesecake base.
- Address: Various locations in Chicago
Not only is Goddess and the Baker an Instagram-worthy spot, the desserts are to die for. Your family will be happy with everything from cinnamon rolls and cookies to mini pies. And parents, you can grab some needed caffeine! The kiddos will especially love the iconic sweet dish—a colorful slice of their six-layered rainbow cake.
- Address: 23 W. Hubbard St., Chicago (River North); 835 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago (Water Tower Place); 5 Jackson Avenue, Naperville
Families spending the day at Downtown Chicago can easily make a stop at JoJo’s Shake Bar. These outrageous milkshakes come topped with cookie crumbles, cotton candy, marshmallows and so much more. Keep an eye out for their seasonal milkshakes, too. They also have a new location in Downtown Naperville.
- Address: 2159 S. China Place, Chicago
Waffles and ice cream sound like the perfect combo. Joy Yee Plus takes that concept to the next level by selling Hong Kong-style bubble waffles with never-ending topping options. At the Chinatown Square Mall location, you can top your ice cream with candy, marshmallows and so much more sweet goodness.
Two flavors are better than one! New to the dessert scene, the Little Italy shop serves aesthetically pleasing ice cream. Soft serve flavors are constantly changing and currently, the menu highlights Uji Matcha x Kuro Goma (black sesame). Your tweens and teens will love to take a photo for Snapchat or Instagram!
While there’s plenty to order at this Pilsen ice cream shop from paletas and waffle sundaes, you have to get one of the Mangonadas. The cup is filled with mango ice cream, chopped mango, lime, chili flakes and more. It’s so good!
- Address: 2468 N. Clark St., Chicago
Enjoy soft serve ice cream filled in fish-shaped cakes. You choose a filling, a soft serve flavor (ask for today’s flavor!) and two toppings. The toppings list includes chocolate sauce, crushed Oreos, sprinkles and more.
- Address: Various locations in Chicagoland
Save this dessert for a special occasion because it makes a fun experience. Hit the chocolate piñata to find more sweet goodies inside like dark chocolate, fresh fruit and housemade churros.
- Address: 2730 N. Clark St., Chicago
XO Marshmallow has already impressed us with unique marshmallow flavors. But now you can find edible cookie dough on the menu. The Dat Cone Dough includes an ice cream cone filled with edible cookie dough and topped with vanilla marshmallow dipped in chocolate. Yum!
- Address: Various locations in Chicago
Get your churro fill at any of Xurro’s locations in the city and suburbs. There are plenty of treats to choose from like churro ice cream sandwiches, sundaes and milkshakes. Our personal favorite? The churro s’mores sandwich, of course.
Reopening March 22, 2022
- Address: 1843 W. North Ave., Chicago
This might be the cutest dessert place we’ve seen yet. Eli’s Ark serves traditional gelato with the incredible option to shape your scoop like an animal. Pick anything from a bear or pig to unicorn that will delight anyone in the family. Want more than one animal scoop? Try the “piggybacking” option.
Closed for the season
- Address: 630 W. 26th St., Chicago
If you’re craving classic funnel cakes, make your way to Bridgeport ASAP. The 26th Street Sugar Shack doesn’t offer your ordinary carnival dessert. No, it comes in a sundae, and you can add whatever toppings you want. Sprinkles? Oreos? Fruity Pebbles? The options are endless. Note: Closed for the 2021 season.
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