From saltwater taffy to soft serve ice cream, the California coast is sprinkled with culinary delights for anyone with a sweet tooth. And no matter how old you are, there’s something wonderful about treating yourself to some sugar during a beach vacation. These are a few of the places on the coast that are known for their delightful desserts.
Coastal Cone and Parlor, Ventura
Photo Coastal Cone Facebook
Coastal Cone is well known for their amazing homemade waffle cones, lost list of flavors and their signature drinks, like the Mocha Freeze. They’re located at 1583 Spinnaker Drive in Ventura.
Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream, Redondo Beach
Photo Handel’s Facebook
Since 1945, Handel’s has been serving freshly made ice cream to their lucky patrons. They never skimp on quality or flavors, which is very evident. This is a small chain that started in Ohio and now has several California locations, but the Redondo Beach shop is the most popular.
Cottage of Sweets, Carmel-By-The-Sea
Photo Cottage of Sweets Yelp
Candy lovers, rejoice. Cottage of Sweets, located on Ocean Avenue in Carmel, has every sugary concoction you’ve ever dreamed of and a few you probably haven’t.
Soda Jerks, Santa Monica
Photo Soda Jerks Facebook
Soda Jerks is an old-fashioned soda shop located right on the Santa Monica Pier. They serve all the classic concoctions from “back in the day,” but remember to bring cash if you come—they’re so old school that they don’t take cards.
Gelato Paradiso, Laguna Beach
Photo Gelato Paradiso Facebook
You’ll find Gelato Paradiso at 448 South Coast Highway in Laguna Beach (they also have locations in Newport Beach and San Diego). Not only do they serve some seriously tempting gelato, but they create beautiful special occasion cakes as well.
B.Candy, Corona del Mar and Huntington Beach
Photo: B.Candy Facebook
Kippy’s Non Dairy Ice Cream Shop, Venice
Looking for a healthier treat? Allergic to dairy? You’re in luck if you’re at Venice Beach. Kippy’s serves raw, organic coconut-based ice cream that’s sweetened with honey. And it’s delicious.
Cousin’s Candy Shop, San Diego
Photo: Cousin’s Candy Shop Yelp
The original Cousin’s Candy shop was founded in Virginia City, Montana in 1970. The current owner, Judy, bought it in 1987 when the original owners were retired—and since she’s a California native, she decided Old Town San Diego needed a Cousin’s. It’s a perfect setting for the old-fashioned candy they sell.
Rori’s Artisanal Creamery, Santa Barbara
It doesn’t get any better than this. Owner Rori Trovato crafts all of the ice cream, cookies, cones and candy recipes sold at Rori’s, and the flavors here are both unique and addictive. This is a dessert shop for foodies.
Powell’s Sweet Shoppe, Long Beach
Photo Powell’s Sweet Shoppe Facebook
A visit to Powell’s Sweet Shoppe in Long Beach feels nostalgic, almost like you’ve gone back to your childhood for a few precious minutes. They sell old-fashioned candy but also carry a selection of vegan options and candy free from high fructose corn syrup.