Meet Elise… She’s tall, blonde & beautiful, a typical California girl. Besides training for triathlons, her other passion in life (other than her cute hubby of course!) is cupcakes. Maybe you’ve read her blog The Cupcake Activist? If you haven’t already, you really should check it out. The entire blog is dedicated to all things cupcakes – visits to cupcake bakeries, stories about cupcakes, reviews of cupcakes and even adventures in cupcake baking. & Although Elise reviews cupcakes everywhere & anywhere (she was recently on the cupcake hunt in Italy), she is an Orange County local & therefore the perfect person to give us the low-down in the best cupcakes in Orange County…

Looking for a cupcake? Well, you are in luck because cupcakes can be found everywhere! I’ve spotted them at Starbucks, my grocery store, and my favorite restaurants. The real question is, what are you looking for in a cupcake?

Biggest Selection: Sprinkles Cupcakes
944 Avocado Avenue, Newport Beach
(Just south of Fashion Island)
Twitter and Website

If you are an indecisive person, then you might want to avoid Sprinkles. Sprinkles lists 23 different flavors on their website, which they sell on different days of the week. They sell their top cupcakes daily, such as Dark Chocolate, Red Velvet, and Vanilla, but you should check the calendar before you go to see what’s being offered for the day.

Sprinkles does a great job at offering specialty cupcake flavors for every season and holiday. Currently they are offering a Key Lime cupcake in honor of the start of summer. Only available from June 12-21. Their cupcakes sell for $3.25 each. Don’t forget the milk!

My Favorites: Pumpkin, Chocolate Coconut, and Red Velvet.

(Pumpkin Cupcake from Sprinkles)

Biggest Cupcakes: Bristol Farms
810 Avocado Avenue, Newport Beach
(In the same shopping center as Sprinkles)

It almost seems strange that a grocery store would be one of my top places for cupcakes, but my taste buds don’t lie. Bristol Farms has fantastic cupcakes! And let’s not forget…huge! Bristol Farm’s cupcakes are $3.00, but worth every penny. The frosting is piled high and the cake is moist. Their cupcakes are refrigerated so I suggest waiting 30 minutes before devouring.

Favorite: Chocolate Coconut

(Bristol Farms cupcake display case)

Best Local Shop: The Perfect Circle Cupcakery
165 N. Glassell Avenue, Orange
(In the Orange Circle)
Twitter and Website

It’s always exciting to see a non-corporate cupcake shop pop up! The Perfect Circle opened earlier this year in Orange and has been very successful. It shows off it’s charm with a light-blue showroom displaying pictures of Audrey Hepburn and the Eiffel Tower. And let’s not forget what’s important: the cupcakes! I was thrilled to have a small-town cupcakery in my neighborhood, but even more excited with how good their cupcakes are.

The Perfect Circle closes early and sometimes run out of cupcakes before the end of the day. Don’t let this happen to you! Check back often, as they have new flavors popping up frequently. Their cupcakes are $3.00. Support your local cupcake shop!

Favorites: Red Velvet and Snickerdoodle

(Red Velvet from The Perfect Circle)

Best Value: Poul’s Bakery
770 N. Tustin Avenue, Orange
Website

Poul’s Bakery is a small Danish-American bakery hidden in a shopping center in Orange. Poul’s Bakery sells many tasty treats, but the most appealing is their cupcakes. And not just any cupcakes…economy-buster cupcakes! You can buy a cupcake at Poul’s for $1.00. Yes, you read that right. All of their cupcakes are $1.00, except for the Red Velvet which is $1.25. Of course, their cupcakes are not as yummy as some of the expensive shops, but they definitely have the best value.

Favorite: Carrot

(Carrot and Red Velvet from Poul’s Bakery)

Best Minis: Meringue Bake Shop
Inside Bliss Natural Frozen Yogurt
2094 N. Tustin Avenue, Orange.
Twitter and Website
Meringue Bake Shop
Meringue Bake Shop is a made-to-order cupcake company that recently began selling their mini cupcakes in Bliss Natural Frozen Yogurt shop in Orange. Meringue has some unique flavors like Watermelon and Hot Tamale, as well as classic flavors such as Queen of Hearts (red velvet) and Coconutty (chocolate coconut). Mini cupcakes are perfect for a cupcake craving that you need to squash. I also like minis because I can try several flavors without emptying my wallet or feeling like a whale. These minis sell for $1.50 each.

Favorite: Spring Break (graham cracker cupcake with key lime frosting)


(Mini cupcakes from Meringue Bake Shop)

Best Overall
: SusieCakes
2043 Westcliff Drive #104, Newport Beach.
(Near Keene Coffee)
Website

I fell in love with SusieCakes on my first visit there! They have a great selection of cupcakes, along with other amazing treats (chocolate chip cookies, brownies, and cake)! My favorite part of their cupcakes (besides the incredible taste) is that they are frosting-filled. This means that they have an extra shot of frosting in the middle of the cupcake. SusieCakes cupcakes are $3.00 each and oh-so-delicious!

Favorites: too many!…Banana, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Gingerbread, Red Velvet. I’ve actually never had a cupcake I didn’t like from SusieCakes!

Check back with my blog often as I post new reviews of cupcake shops frequently. I am the Cupcake Activist: fighting for the cupcake cause.
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All I can say is YUM! & Thanks Elise for the fantastic post! I think I know what I’ll be doing this week… taste testing cupcakes. I can’t wait to try all your favorites! Anyone else have a favorite cupcakery I need to check out?

xoxo, K