New York City, 1996: the first Magnolia Bakery opened in Manhattan’s Bleecker Street, garnering a cult following for its (big) bite-sized, sugar-frosted cakes. Four years later, fictional style-setter Carrie Bradshaw popped in to try one during an episode of SATC, and the cupcake craze was born.

Dubai has long been an avid proponent of cupcake-mania and boasts a gaggle of dedicated bakeries: Magnolia even chose our city as the venue for its first international outlet, which landed at The Dubai Mall in 2010.
New venues continue to spring up across town: the aptly named Sugaholic launched recently in Karama, and London-based specialist The Hummingbird Bakery is set to open at The Dubai Mall this month. What’s more, barely a week goes by without existing bakeries launching themed cupcakes to mark local events.

With so many of these sugary treats available across the city, we assigned ourselves the enviable task of tasting as many as we could get our hands on in an attempt to find the best. Here are our sugar-frosted findings.