Chewy melt cookie cake at Home Bakery
This is high-end comfort food, since it’s pretty pricey at a cool Dhs320, but the gooey cake is worth your hard-earned cash. The cookies are fudgy and melty on the inside, with a caramelised, crumbly, sugary layer on the outside. The cake version comprises these cookies sandwiched between chocolate mousse, cream and berries, decorated with more chewy melt cookies. Phew. The cake is large enough to share with the whole family, and then some.
Dhs320. Open Sat-Wed 7am-10.45pm, Thu-Fri 7am-midnight. The Galleria, Al Safa, www.homebakery.ae (04 344 4462).
Chocolate and banana bread at Circle Café
A tasty snack bursting with wholesome bananas and decadent chocolate, this is the perfect afternoon pick-me-up. With a generous dusting of sugar icing and some sweet honey butter, this is the kind of bread to enjoy when you have nowhere to rush to and can relax and watch the world go by.
Dhs28. Open daily 8am- 11pm. Building No. 2 (EIT Building), Dubai Studio City (04 276 6283).
Chocolate mud pie at SugarMoo
It might look, sound and taste indulgent, but the chocolate mud pie is actually on SugarMoo’s HealthyMoo dessert menu. Packed full of cake and mousse, this jar of chocolatey loveliness has a hidden secret: despite its appearance, there’s no added sugar at all. The mousse is made from avocado and pear (also ideal for getting fruit into your kids) and contains no added sweeteners, either. The chocolate cake sponge nestled alongside the mousse is also – no prizes for guessing – sugar free.
From Dhs30. Various times and locations, including Mercato Mall, Jumeirah Beach Road, www.sugarmoo.com (800 78427).
Chocolate spring rolls at Café Isan
For starters, this is definitely a dessert. And leave behind your preconceptions at the door, as the unlikely pairing of tastes really does work. The golden crispy coating gives way to hot, gooey chocolate for a fantastic food fusion that is mouth-wateringly good. Once you get on a roll, you won’t want to stop. Perfect for a spring treat.
Dhs27. Open daily noon-11pm. Cluster M, Jumeirah Lakes Towers (04 513 5289).
Chocomozzarella sandwich at Kris Kros
Served for breakfast, lunch and dinner, this best-seller at Kris Kros restaurant in Downtown Dubai combines fresh, sliced banana (there’s your nutrition), oozing melted chocolate and stringy, creamy mozzarella, all in one rolled-up flatbread. Sure, it’s indulgent and delicious (come on now, how could it not be?), but at least it also has a sprinkling of calcium, potassium and vitamin C. Right?
Dhs22. Open daily noon-midnight. Kris Kros, Boulevard Plaza Tower II, Downtown Dubai (04 453 9994).
Classic molten chocolate cake at Alison Nelson’s Chocolate Bar
Like a blissfully warm hug on a cold winter’s day (okay, a chilly, air-conditioned room), the molten milk chocolate oozes from the centre of soft sponge at the lightest press of the spoon. Prepare for very messy fingers and faces as you all devour this delicious dessert, scraping every morsel of melted chocolate – milk, white or dark – off the plate until it’s completely clean.
Dhs51. Open Sat-Wed 10am-1am, Thu-Fri 10am-2am. Various locations, including The Dubai Mall, Downtown Dubai (04 453 9953).
Deep-fried Oreos and ice cream at Serendipity 3
This immense ice cream bowl is big enough for the entire family, loaded with an Oreo cookie sandwiching cookies and cream ice cream, some deep fried Oreos for good measure, a squeeze of marshmallow sauce, hot fudge, oodles of cream and it’s all topped off with a bright red cherry.
Dhs65. Open daily 9am-12am. Dubai Festival City Mall (04 4551666).
FuzziCream sundae at Fuzziwig’s Candy Factory
This wacky and wonderful ice cream treat is made from organic milk, and you can opt for vanilla, chocolate or a combo of the two swirled together. Once that choice is made, a “Lotus sandwich” is stuffed in, made out of caramelised cookie spread squeezed between two tasty Lotus biscuits that have then been dipped in melted chocolate. Then, you can choose from more than a whopping 700 toppings, with options such as gummy candy, the world’s smallest jaw-breakers and rainbow sprinkles (who doesn’t love a dusting of them?). To top it all off, lashings of chocolate sauce smother the sundae. That’ll keep you cool on a warm day by the beach.
Dhs20. Open Sat-Wed 10am-midnight, Thu-Fri 10am-1am. The Beach, JBR (04 554 1151). Other location: Riverland at Dubai Parks & Resorts, Jebel Ali (04 258 5824).
Hot Fudge Brownie at Hard Rock Cafe
Chocolate brownies are the ultimate comfort food, and when they’re oozing chocolate all over the plate then all the better. The brownie is warm, the ice cream is creamy and the fudge sauce is sweet. It’s topped off with crushed walnuts and fresh cream, creating an all-American treat for the whole family.
Dhs46. Open daily noon-2am. Next to Marks & Spencer, Dubai Festival City Mall (04 232 8900).
Ice cream cake at Baskin Robbins
If you ever fancied a piece of Frosty the Snowman on your plate, complete with a little blue scarf and a hat set at a jaunty angle, then the creamy, dreamy ice cream treat at Baskin Robbins has your name on it. Try the rich praline ice cream mixed with vanilla – a truly moreish combination.
Dhs125 (whole cake). Open daily 10am-midnight. Various locations, including Motor City (04 447 1470).
Jaffa Cake Pudding at Rhodes Twenty10
Gary Rhodes revels in recreating tastes of Blighty and this is a moreish masterstroke. Brilliantly indulgent, each bite takes you back to your schooldays (although where were these when we were kids?), while the orange custard is a citrusy delight. While this steakhouse is upmarket, they cater well to children, too, with a popular kids’ menu featuring the likes of mac and cheese, and fish and chips. Certainly a treat for the whole family.
Dhs50. Open daily 7pm-midnight. Le Royal Méridien Beach Resort & Spa, Dubai Marina (04 317 6000).
Matto Rock at Matto
This boulder-like dessert resembles a really big Ferrero Rocher and is an enormous amount of fun to share. It’s a crunchy, hazelnut-studded chocolate sphere that contains a rich, praline centre. Get your spoons ready and smash it, Easter-egg style, to get to the deliciously soft, sweet and chocolaty filling. Scoop it up and enjoy with shards of the nutty case and avoid spoon fights over the last morsel.
Dhs60. Open Sat-Wed noon-midnight, Thu-Fri noon-1am. The Oberoi, Business Bay (04 444 1335).
Nutella mini pancakes at Holland House
It’s the simplicity of this dessert that gets us every time. Tiny, moist pancake circles are served with warm, melting Nutella chocolate spread and a light dusting of icing sugar for added sweetness with a toothpick for scooping them up at double speed. Somehow one portion is never quite enough. And, if anyone in the family doesn’t have a sweet tooth (do these people exist?), there’s also a delicious, salty, cream cheese version you could try.
Dhs25. Open Sun-Thu 2pm-11pm and Fri-Sat noon-midnight. Various locations, including The Dubai Mall, Downtown Dubai (050 889 9929).
Peanut butter and jelly milkshake at Sugar Factory
A world of sparkle and colour awaits at Sugar Factory and the magical milkshakes have enticed stars all over the world (the Kardashians are big fans). These goblets of glamour are meals in themselves, with the peanut butter and jelly milkshake being the epitome of a kid’s dream lunch. Think vanilla and peanut butter ice cream, whipped cream and chocolate, all topped off with a cute little peanut butter and jam sandwich.
Dhs65. Open Sun-Wed 9am-11pm, Thu-Sat 9am-1am. Dubai Festival City Mall (04 284 3456). Other location: City Walk.
Peanut butter chocolate cake at The Cheesecake Factory
Chances are, you’ve been to this belt-busting venue with every intention of getting a massive slab of its namesake, but then been too full from the humongous mains to even think about attempting dessert. More fool you. The rich, peanuty, chocolatey cheesecake made from Reese’s has everything that’s good for your taste buds and bad for your waistline.
Dhs34. Open Sun-Wed 10am-midnight, Thu-Sat 10am-1am. Various locations, including The Dubai Mall. Downtown Dubai (04 325 3521).
Popping Cereal Monster Shake at Fumé
Fumé has shakes all figured out. This monster shake (served in a cute square mason jar) is like breakfast, lunch and tea all packed together and is a fusion of luscious ice cream, crackly popcorn, sweet caramel and salty pretzels – a lip-smacking combination of flavours. If you’re more of a chocolate family, then definitely go for the bro-nut monster shake (Dhs52), which combines a brownie, Nutella and marshmallows.
Dhs53. Open Sun-Thu noon-2am, Fri-Sat 9am-2am. Level 1, Pier 7, Dubai Marina Mall (04 421 5669). Other location: Manzil Downtown Dubai (04 456 8784).
Rainbow cake at The Hummingbird Bakery
Somewhere over the rainbow, this cake is calling our name. Hailing from Notting Hill’s famous Portobello Road, this bakery is more than just a cake shop. Its world-famous (and Pinterest popular) rainbow cake, with vanilla icing and hundreds and thousands, is like a unicorn came to life. Get this in for your next birthday bash.
Dhs140 (whole cake). Open Mon-Sun 10am-midnight. City Walk Dubai, Jumeirah (04 449 8576). Other location: Mall of the Emirates (04 399 0352).
Rocky Road gelato sandwich at Walnut Café
An eye-popping tower of gooey, marshmallow-covered, brownie-style rocky road cubes are artfully decorated with a miniature metal whisk smothered in chocolate, as if it had just been stolen from the mixing bowl. It’s the whipped toasted marshmallow topping and hot butterscotch sauce dribbling temptingly down the sides, accompanied by a pretty sprig of blue candy floss, which makes this one stand-out dessert.
Dhs59. Open daily Sun to Wed 8.30am-10pm, Thu to Sat 8.30am-11pm. City Walk Phase 2, Al Safa, Al Safa (04 344 4441).
Santorini ice cream at Milkcow
This awesome ice cream has a great big weave of candy floss. That’s right – simple spun sugar. Made with organic milk imported from Milkcow’s approved farm in South Korea, the soft-serve is smooth, light and milky. It’s all smothered in tropical blue syrup, of course. Then crushed Oreos are layered at the bottom of the cup, while crushed peanut and pistachio is sprinkled on the top.
Dhs27. Open Sun-Wed 8am-10.30pm, Thu-Fri 8am-11.30pm. Trident Grand Mall, JBR (04 456 9988).
Soap cake at SpiceKlub
The delicious palate-cleanser is just one of a host of quirky culinary creations on offer at this Indian purveyor of molecular gastronomy. The sumptuous sponge cake comes served on a soap dish for an extra flourish of fun and is accompanied by a refreshing dairy foam that will work your taste buds up into a lather.
Dhs (to add). SpiceKlub. Open daily 12.30pm-3.30pm, 6.30pm-11.30pm. Kuwait Road, Bur Dubai (04 393 1233).
Strawberry rainbow ice cream sandwich at Sugar Factory
When a place has “sugar” in its name, you know its desserts are going to be good, hence why this spot has two entries on this list. The Las Vegas brand, popular with the US A-listers, has a treat that’s piled high with whipped cream, multi-coloured sprinkles, chocolate chips and glacé cherries. Chewy cookies sandiwched between smooth strawberry ice cream.
Dhs42.Open Sun-Wed 9am-11pm, Thu-Sat 9am-1am. Dubai Festival City Mall (04 284 3456). Other location: City Walk.
Sweet Cream ice cream cupcake from Cold Stone Creamery
It doesn’t get more decadent than an ice cream/cake combo and nobody does it quite like the experts at Cold Stone Creamery. Their Sweet Cream cupcake is a fluffy layer of yellow sponge, fudge and vanilla ice cream topped off with white frosting and milk and white chocolate curls. Then it’s all served inside an edible chocolate “cup”. We can’t get enough.
Dhs15. Sun-Wed 10am-10pm, Thu-Sat 10am-midnight. Various locations across the city, including Mall of the Emirates, Al Barsha (04 399 6526).
Vanilla cheesecake shake at Walnut Grove
A well-known neighbourhood spot in South Africa, Walnut Grove has attracted the likes of Nelson Mandela, Michael Jackson and Samuel L. Jackson. In Dubai, its rustic, family-friendly charm is maintained and it’s a big hit with foodies and sweet-tooths alike. This shake in particular has caught our attention. It’s sweet, it’s creamy, there’s plenty of caramel and the flavours work extremely well with the yummy, freshly baked, vanilla-flavoured cheesecake that’s perched precariously on top. Then choose between the fresh strawberry and the strawberry-flavoured lollipop. Pure indulgence.
Dhs49. Open Sun-Wed 8.30am-10pm, Thu-Sat 8.30am-11pm. City Walk, Al Safa (04 344 4441).