Where to find Vancouver’s most Instagram-worthy desserts

Let’s face it, half the fun of indulging in a calorie-rich, aesthetically pleasing dessert is capturing and sharing the moment with your social network. With great lighting, attractive interiors and eye-catching treats that taste as good as they look, these sweet spots in Vancouver are a must-try for Instagram-loving foodies. [Photo courtesy of Beta5 Chocolates]

Beaucoup Bakery & Cafe

2150 Fir St, Vancouver, BC V6J 3B5

We don’t have the exact numbers, but Beaucoup Bakery might just be the most Instagram-famous bakery in the entire city. Vancouver’s own viennoiserie queen Jackie Kai Ellis is widely celebrated for her authentic French baking – her buttery croissants, icing-dusted cinnamon scrolls and delicate tarts will transport you to Paris after just one bite. Visit early morning to get the best selection and snap photos of the counter displays stacked high with fresh-baked pastries. And be sure to score a seat by the window – the natural light and polished grey-and-white marble tabletops set the scene for the perfect photograph.

Beta5 Chocolates

413 Industrial Ave, Vancouver, BC V6A 2P8

Beta 5’s infamous crème puffs are delicate, creamy and sinfully delicious. The sculptural desserts have been known to attract long line-ups, and they vary in shape and style depending on the flavour. Crowd favourites from the signature collection include salted caramel, Vietnamese coffee, s’mores, and classic vanilla. Each season also brings limited-edition flavours that range from pumpkin to Pisco Sour – and there are even adorable snowmen-shaped cream puffs during the holidays. The gourmet chocolatier also offers arty confectionary, including chocolate covered fruit and nuts, and Polycon chocolate bars with a unique design that mimics the nearby mountain ridges.

Butter Baked Goods Ltd

4907 MacKenzie St, Vancouver, BC V6N 1G8

Fancy yourself an amateur food stylist? Then charge up your iPhone and make the trek to West Van. This feminine bakeshop is a real-life Pinterest fantasy; you’re sure to be enchanted by the floral wallpaper, mint-green cabinetry, stylish bistro tables and eye-popping array of scrumptious desserts waiting to be photographed (and eaten of course). Nostalgia reigns supreme here: think Nanaimo bars, whoopie pies, gooey cinnamon buns, butter tarts and cupcakes with buttercream icing and sprinkles. Owner Rosie Daykin is perhaps most famous for her homemade marshmallows, so these fluffy cubes (available in pre-packaged bags or s’more style) are a must-try.

Shishinori Japanese Eatery

2328 Cambie St, Vancouver, BC V5Z 2T8

Come for the sushi; stay for the wow-worthy ice cream parfaits. Shishinori’s multi-layered desserts are served in clear plastic containers – making them an ideal subject for casual food photographers. The Japanese parfaits feature pale green matcha ice cream layered with a wide variety of novel toppings: pastel mochi balls, crunchy cornflakes, bright gummy candies, whipped cream, fresh berries and chocolate wafer straws. With so many different layers, textures and colours, these complex masterpieces are best photographed against a plain white background.


32 Water St, Vancouver, BC V6B 1A4

Don’t let the dark interior throw off your Instagram game, the moody lighting is all part of the experience at this hip Gastown dessert and champagne bar. A chic spot for a little après dinner fun, Mosquito specializes in boozy bubbles and elegantly plated sweets that are on the pricy side but totally worth the splurge. The menu forgoes nostalgic treats like cupcakes and doughnuts in favour of sophisticated molecular creations such as dehydrated pecan sponge cake with giaduja cassis foam. Alternatively, opt for a selection of artisanal chocolates and pretty Parisian macarons that are great for snapping and sharing.

Rain or Shine Homemade Ice Cream Ltd

102-1926 4th Ave W, Vancouver, BC V6J 1M5

Even on the greyest days, it’s hard to resist the temptation of a waffle cone. With locations in Kitsilano and Cambie Village, Rain or Shine is an all-weather favourite among sweet-toothed Vancouverites. Peanut butter, London fog and salted caramel are on the list of always-available classics, while rotating flavours like apple cider and pumpkin pie can be found on a seasonal basis. Order a classic cone or a taco-style ice cream sandwich (available on Tuesdays) and take a photo in front of the signature lavender patterned wallpaper – the inverted ice cream cones that resemble raindrops!

The Birds & The Beets

100-55 Powell St, Vancouver, BC V6A 1E9

Who needs a filter when you’ve got this much natural light! This new(ish) café in Gastown is an Instagram dream: the airy interior features exposed brick walls and vintage-inspired botanical print wallpaper, clean wooden tabletops, and plenty of fresh locally grown flowers from Wild Bunch at every table. Display cases show off an ever-changing selection of tempting desserts and pastries. Stop by and stage an impromptu photoshoot with adorable madeleine cookies, apple galettes topped with fresh fruit slices and icing sugar, or a rum bubba – a bite-sized snack made with brioche dough coated in rum, sugar and cinnamon.

Liberty Bakery

3699 Main St, Vancouver, BC V5V 3N6

This homey Mount Pleasant bakery is a true neighbourhood gem. A cozy spot to visit on a rainy day, Liberty serves light lunch fare along with a fun selection of novelty cookies and eye-catching desserts. The café interior is simple with a stark, Scandinavian-style aesthetic, and the pale pink tabletops make an ideal background for capturing your treats from above. The oh-so-adorable Totoro gingerbread cookies (inspired by the beloved Japanese cartoon character) are almost too cute to eat…almost. We also love the Princess Cake – a traditional Swedish marzipan dessert that photographs well thanks to its hot-pink and lime-green colouring.

Cartems Donuts Inc

2190 Main St, Vancouver, BC V5T 3C5

It’s no secret that Instagrammers adore doughnuts – whether they’re glazed, stuffed with jam or dusted with icing sugar. The classic old-fashioned might be a childhood favourite, but if you want to earn those “likes” you’re gonna have to step up your game with more creative flavours. At Cartems, gourmet doughnuts are designed to thrill the eyes, and the taste buds. The Canadian whiskey bacon flavour is a big hit, as is the cake-like Earl Grey doughnut topped with rose petals. Visit the original downtown location or check out the Mount Pleasant outpost if you want tons of natural light.

Bel Café

801 Georgia St W, Vancouver, BC V6C 1P7

Arguably the most Instagrammable dessert out there, macarons are visually interesting and delightfully stackable – making them a perennial favourite among food bloggers. Bel Café at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia gives these fanciful desserts the treatment they deserve by presenting them ceremoniously atop rustic wooden serving blocks. Mix and match a variety of seasonal flavours (we love the cookies and cream) for a colourful spread. FYI: these colourful morsels look just as attractive when presented in a beautiful gift box. Not a macaron fan? The café menu boasts an enticing selection of photo-ready tarts, cream puffs, cakes and pastries.

La Casa Gelato By International Ice Cream Factory

1033 Venables St, Vancouver, BC V6A 3R9

Even if you haven’t been to this East Van gelateria before, you’ve probably spotted its signature pink wall. La Casa Gelato’s exterior – in all its bright, bubble-gum pink glory – is all over Vancouver Instagram feeds in the summer. Order a double- or triple-scoop of creamy Italian-style gelato and then dash outside to snap a picture. Don’t worry; you won’t be the only one working your cone angles. There are more than 200 flavours available on-site daily, offering almost endless opportunities for sweet summertime snapshots. Bonus points if you can match your icy treat to your nail polish.

Tourism Vancouver’s annual Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary festival will see some of the city’s hottest restaurants serving an array of mouth-watering prix-fixe menus. If you want to take your significant other for a special meal, plan a date night at one of these romantic eateries. [Photo courtesy of Boulevard/Leila Kwok]
Tourism Vancouver’s Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary event will see some of the city’s top restaurants serving mouth-watering prix-fixe menus for lunch and dinner. If you’re looking for a kid-approved spot with a casual atmosphere and plenty of choices for picky eaters, book a table at these family-friendly restaurants. [Photo courtesy of Bufala]
Tourism Vancouver’s annual Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary event provides foodies with a great opportunity to eat at Vancouver’s most acclaimed restaurants for less. If you want an upscale meal in an elegant setting, these high-end spots deliver a great bang for your buck. [Photo courtesy of YEW Seafood + Bar]
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