The 14 Best Places Online To Order Your King Cake For Mardi Gras

On January 6, a yearly event known as Twelfth Night, or the eve of the Epiphany, serves as the opening of the Carnival season (via Fox 8). There are many rituals, parades, and events that come along with this unique time, especially when it comes to food. One such custom is the arrival of King Cake, which got its name from the Three Kings who were believed to have arrived to Bethlehem to see Jesus on this very day (via Eater). No matter what celebration you attend around the Gulf South, this distinctive French pastry is never far from reach during Mardi Gras season. Thanks to the advances of modern food delivery, local bakeries these days facilitate online ordering so that King Cakes can be enjoyed by people across the U.S.

The bakeries below have been included for their wide selection of options. Some serve the more time-honored and original styles of King Cake, while others present a special twist on the famed dessert. Traditionally, King Cakes are made from sweet dough that has been topped with a white vanilla icing and cinnamon sugar. The last component typically comes in Mardi Gras colors. Purple represents justice, green for faith, and gold for power (via Bustle). So, one should do justice to their fresh King Cake by having faith that they can eat it all, and the power to get it done. This is Fat Tuesday after all.

Haydel's Bakery

Haydel's Bakery holds a special place among the royal court of King Cakes. Among that prestigious group, multiple generations of Haydels have a crucial role in taking the history of the bakery from a family-run, 24-hour donut shop to a nationally recognized creator of local culture. Along the way, those family values have remained at the front and center. writes that brothers Ryan and David Haydel Jr., who are third-generation Haydels, picked up the baking business from their father, David Sr. In fact, David Jr. is one of Louisiana's only internationally certified Master Bakers.

Haydel's holds a Guinness Record for the World's Largest King Cake at 5,300 feet long. The cakes that are shipped nationwide may not be that big, but they are sizable. The Danish dough can feed approximately 30-35 people when cut into 1" slices, but after getting a taste of this, you'll likely need another King Cake for seconds (and thirds).

Haydel's serves cinnamon sugar topped King Cakes, as well as varieties drenched in icing, filled with cream cheese, or flavored in specialty tastes like praline pecan. The prices vary (typically between $58 to about $60), but the package is all-inclusive. Along with your made-to-order King Cake, you'll receive a bag of New Orleans French Market coffee and some Carnival swag, like Mardi Gras beads and a "King Cake History" scroll.

Joe Gambino's Bakery

Joe Gambino's Bakery, or Gambino's, as it is often shortened, is famous for cakes. Yet, it is not the traditional braided King Cake that put Gambino's on the map. In the 1930s, Beulah Levy Ledner developed the New Orleans specialty known as a Doberge cake, a nine-layer génoise filled with buttercream and topped with caramel. Years later, Joe Gambino would come to own Ledner's bakery, expanding it out to numerous locations around New Orleans and bringing the Doberge to greater fame. Hurricane Katrina pushed Gambino's outside of New Orleans, but the bakery, now with a regional base, has stayed true to its roots by whipping up fine Doberge and famous King Cakes.

Gambino's mails online-ordered King Cakes all across the continental United States. The prices for their fresh pastry are some of the best in the market, starting at just $22 for a traditional icing and cinnamon cake. Another great thing about Gambino's is the options. Grab a king cake with one filling, or two (from experience, the strawberry and Bavarian cream is highly recommended). In addition to multiple choices of filling, Gambino's offers packaged deals, so hungry eaters can order multiple King Cakes at once. One thing to note: The inexpensive prices do not include shipping costs.

Poupart's Bakery

Although the King Cake is synonymous with Mardi Gras, and Mardi Gras is always tied to New Orleans, some of the highest-quality recreations of this regional dessert are found outside of The Crescent City. Few American regions know good food as well as Acadiana, and Lafayette-based Poupart's Bakery represents that culture well. In 1965, Francois Poupart arrived from Paris with the intention to continue baking fresh pastries in Louisiana just as he'd done in France. These days, as Only in Your State reports, a combination of fine technique and definitive flavor can be tasted in all of Poupart's goods.

Start with the well-known, typical Mardi Gras King Cake ($69). Poupart's is happy to stuff it with anything from Red Velvet filling to blueberries and cream cheese. Mix and match, or just leave it as a plain sugar-decked cake. Along with these purple, green, and gold cinnamon King Cakes, Poupart's bakes a traditional French variety ($69) too. It's a round puff pastry that is un-iced, but filled with almond cream and baked to flakey perfection. Intended to be served warm, this style of cake is the ideal pairing for breakfast or afternoon coffee. Shipping and handling look to be included in the price.

Caluda's Bakery

Another well-known and popular King Cake bakery around the New Orleans metro area is Caluda's. Chef John Caluda is an alumnus of the Culinary Institute of America in New York, however, he also has a degree from th University of New Orleans. After a long career spent in hotels as a pastry cook and then chef, Caluda opened his own bakery called the Coffee Cottage. After two decades in business, the pastry shop was transformed into a wholesale bakery. Cottage Catering operates year-round, but things get especially busy during the carnival season as Caluda and teamwork to bring King Cakes to local residents and sweet tooths across the country.

The baseline price for a Caluda King Cake starts at $23, climbing to $30 for the filled flavors. Shipping through FedEx is an additional charge. The variety of options is a bit limited, but the flavor and quality more than make up for it. Writing from personal experience, Caluda's is one of the most well-regarded King Cakes suppliers in the 504. Whether you want an "old school" non-iced cake, one topped with vanilla icing, or a sweet praline cream cheese filling, Caluda's will definitely hit the spot.

Breads on Oak (Vegan)

New Orleans is a city of distinct neighborhoods, and each one offers a little something different in terms of food, scenery, and general atmosphere. Breads on Oak is named for its location on Oak Street in the Uptown neighborhood, where events like Po'boy Fest and famed restaurants like Jacques-Imo's can be found. As a plant-based bakery, Bread's on Oak slots neatly into this unique environment. The King Cakes that roll from their ovens this time of year are organic, non-GMO, and vegan. In line with those values, even the plastic baby has been replaced with a nutty almond.

Prices to have these vegan King Cakes shipped range from $74 to $108. Considering the fact that these are one of the only plant-based King Cakes available, that price is still a steal. Each cake is baked without artificial colors or flavorings and can be purchased in a plain vanilla iced form or filled with Bavarian cream. If get your Mardi Gras mambo on with a sustainable, vegan option.

Randazzo's Camellia City Bakery

Mardi Gras is one of many seasons in The Crescent City where the state of life becomes one big sequence of dancing and eating. So, if there was ever a bakery to have a history tailor-made for producing the perfect King Cake, the Randazzo family bakeries are the ones. However, these bakeries are not one and the same. A big question that comes up around Carnival time in New Orleans is "Which Randazzo's are we talking?"

In 1965, the Randazzo family turned their former Camellia City dancehall into Hi-Lan bakery. Generations later, there are more Randazzo bakeries than this — but this isn't a story of a successful chain. It's more like a House of Gucci-type tale (only with King Cakes instead of luxury clothes). The Randazzo name has been split among several different bakeries, each serving up a unique style of cake. There's "Manny Randazzo's," "Nonna Randazzo's," and the shop named after the original family's original dancehall, Randazzo's Camellia City Bakery.

Randazzo's Camellia City Bakery ships two varieties of King Cakes nationwide. Both King Cakes are made with fresh dough, cinnamon, and sugar braided into the traditional shape, then topped with sweet white icing and Mardi Gras colored sprinkles. One cake offers the option to have cream cheese infused within the pastry and each measures 12 by 16 inches. The cream cheese-filled goes for $65.95 and the traditional goes for $5 less. Best of all? These prices include shipping costs.

Paul's Pastry Shop

New Orleanians hold a rigid date when it comes to the start of King Cake feasting; It's not to be had before Twelfth Night (January 6). Fortunately, some pastry makers turn a blind eye to that unwritten rule, and this next bakery is one of them. Maybe it has something to do with the bakery being located in Picayune, Mississippi rather than NOLA. Or, maybe it's because owner Sherri Thigpen believes that no one should have to go without this guilty pleasure. (A Fat Tuesday philosophy if there ever was one). As a business that brings Mardi Gras flavors to the nation year-round, Paul's Pastry may become your "anytime" King Cake. Still, the taste of this one will make every bite feel like a one-of-a-kind moment.

In an interview with VIP Jackson Magazine, Thigpen says that Paul's Pastry is one of the original fruit and cream cheese-filled King Cakes. The wide offerings definitely suggest pride in that history. Along with the usual suspects like strawberry and blueberry, King Cakes can be ordered with pineapple, lemon, cherry, or even key lime fillings. Some fruits can be combined in the popular Berry Deluxe flavor, and a Raspberry Amaretto stands out as a unique choice, too. Medium cakes serve 16 to 20 single-inch slices and ship across the continental United States through UPS. Prices hover in the $60-$70 range when shipping is taken into account.

Maurice French Pastry

Chef Jean-Luc Albin has a familiar story among King Cake bakers. Albin, like Francois Poupart, is a French native who found a home in the international culture of Southeast Louisiana. Similar to John Caluda, Chef Jean-Luc spent time in the service industry, honing his skills at various restaurants and hotel properties. From the classical Tain L'Hermitage to the Paris's Georges V Hotel, from Bermuda to Atlanta to Los Angeles, the Chef now calls New Orleans (and Maurice French Pastries) his home. Not surprisingly, the King Cakes that emerge from this bakery look like a world-class dessert.

Maurice French Pastries ship via a national food delivery service called Goldbelly. This shipper supports small businesses like Maurice French Pastries in delivering their goods all across the country. The King Cake offerings aren't limited in variety, and they're also loaded with convenience. There is a 12-inch, icing-topped, braided brioche cake that can be filled with one of nine fillings ($55), a traditional unfilled King Cake of the same size ($49), or a four-pack of mini traditional King Cakes at 5 inches in size and $59 in price. Best of all is the sweet deal on shipping included through Goldbelly: Delivery is free for Maurice French Pastry King Cakes.

Debbie Does Doberge

Joe Gambino's is the undisputed heir to Beulah Levy Ledner's doberge history. But, bakeries all across the city have emerged over the decades to pay homage by trying their hand at creating an original take on Ledner's sweet delight. Charlotte McGehee and Charles Mary IV are a few such students of the craft. Their bakery, Debbie Does Doberge, began by selling miniature, cupcake-style Doberge treats before moving into the full sha-bang, génoise and pudding-layered, fondant-coated cakes.

The cakes they create for the New Orleans metro area have generated a popular reputation, facilitated the opening of their Bakery Bar restaurant, and left a lasting memory on the tastebuds of the city. They serve an endless variety of Doberge flavors, but this time of year it is the specialty King Cake style that gives a premier twist to a prominent dessert.

Although shipped for free delivery nationwide through Goldbelly, a Debbie Does Doberge cake comes at a steep cost ($119). Despite that, there are few splurges that satisfy as deeply as this one. For starters, this is a primo King Cake in an untraditional form. DDD starts with seven layers of cinnamon-spiced cake, each one separated by a layer of cream cheese pudding. Then, the entire cake is drenched with cream cheese fondant and topped with characteristic colored sugar. First-hand account: Restaurants that carry this cake on their menu has been known to sell out within the first hour of service, it's just that good.

Cartozzo's Bakery

Cartozzo's Bakery is located in Kenner, Louisiana, just minutes outside New Orleans proper. The company is primarily a wholesale operation, but similar to Caluda's, the carnival season finds them floating along with a heavy flow of orders. Starting with the traditional at $48 (shipping included), Cartozzo's Bakery offers a unique experience when it comes to ordering King Cakes. Their baked brioche arrives naked, with the icing and colored cinnamon sugar arriving in DIY packets. Not only does this preserve the cake in a different way, but it also gives you the opportunity to get involved with adding a personal touch of Mardi Gras spirit.

When it comes to flavored stuffings, Cartozzo's King Cakes have a number of options, including almond cream cheese, strawberry cream cheese, praline cream cheese, chocolate cream cheese, and plain cream cheese. The bakery also has a long history as one of the first to unconventionally fill their plain pastry. In an interview with New Orleans publication Gambit, Angelo Cartozzo recounted that back in 1983, his grandfather nearly renounced him for trying out a Bavarian cream-filled King Cake. These days, you might say the fourth-generation baker was just ahead of his time.

Ambrosia's Bakery

Carnival is a weeks-long season of unique festivals and parades, and each event has its own particular character and spirit. These parades occur all across the metro area. Along with a distinct personality, they can also show off the identity of the neighborhoods where they take place. Many parades are known for their signature "throws," which are items custom-made or decorated by the krewes that ride in them. One of these important parades is Zulu. The historically black krewe's special autograph is beautifully hand-painted coconuts. Folks turn out in droves to try and snag one. Those lucky enough to catch them cherish it as a treasure. For those who don't, there's always Ambrosia Bakery's special Zulu-themed King Cake.

Fortunately, you don't need to be at the Zulu parade to get a slice of this chocolate and coconut cake thrown your way. Per 225 Baton Rouge, Ambrosia has been baking their special King Cake in partnership with the Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club for over two decades. But, it won't take nearly that long to reach you. Ambrosia uses UPS to ship nationwide. King Cakes, including the chocolate-chip studded Zulu, start at $16.95 with around $45 added for shipping. The process will have your cake delivered in just days' time.

La Louisiane

La Louisiane's bakery and pastry products can be found in restaurants, hotels, cafes, and grocery stores all throughout The Crescent City. They are one of the many New Orleans-based businesses that make up the city's wide network of local, independent bakeries. La Louisiane specializes in sweetening special moments such as weddings, birthdays, and Mardi Gras with both traditionally made and unique styles of desserts. As far as King Cakes go, it's all in the name: There's nowhere better to get a tasty, classic King Cake than the heart of Louisiana.

La Louisiane bakes a traditional brioche King Cake. You can also purchase them in plain style with purple, gold, and green cinnamon sugar, cream cheese, or praline pecan. Each one serves about 16 people. Their cakes require an advanced 72-hour notice prior to shipping, but the cost is on the lower end of the market per King Cake at $18. Shipping will run about $50. As writes, this one is a truly old-fashioned style. So if you want a taste of local roots, get your order in!

King King Cakes

King King Cakes serves up some of the moistest and most luscious King Cakes of the season, but they can be found even outside the parameters of Carnival. As a business that prides itself in passing out slices of culture year-round, King King Cakes provides more than just sweet pastry. Each box comes with a printed history of King Cakes and Mardi Gras and a couple of authentic doubloons. They even ship with a calendar of important Mardi Gras dates until 2025 and a pamphlet on specialty foods and fine restaurants in NOLA. You're fully equipped to start planning your next trip down south.

King King Cakes has a typical slate of flavors: Bavarian cream, strawberry cream cheese, chocolate, and praline (among others). They also offer a sweet and spiced apple King Cake for a unique twist on the braided brioche. Pricing starts at $33.99 and goes up to $41.99. Shipping costs vary per location. You can expect your King Cake to arrive un-iced, which just adds another touch of fun to eating this celebratory food.

Nonna Randazzo's

Who makes the "best" Randazzo's King Cake is a disputed fact. One thing that's not is the supreme quality of Nonna Randazzo's. The Randazzo family has had a long history as professional bakers, one that spans all across southeast Louisiana. From their former Hi-Lan bakery in Chalmette to the North Shore of Lake Pontchartrain, this traveled experience delivers one of the most flavorful and appealing types of King Cake that you can get. Some shippers give you the chance to try a regional dessert that's traditional to Mardi Gras. Nonna Randazzo's gives you the opportunity to eat like a local.

What makes Nonna's so special is the family recipe of icing, unique to their King Cakes and unmatched by other bakers. Your braided sweet dough can come filled with one of several cream cheese fillings. However, the unstuffed traditional cake is sweet enough for dessert, yet not too much so for a morning breakfast bite. It pairs perfectly with coffee, which is good considering that a bag of Nonna Randazzo's special java blend comes with every cake. Prices are reasonable for the size. A medium traditional is 12 by 16 inches (which serves 15-20 2" slices) and goes for $59.95. Going through the order process showed free shipping, but that may depend on your location. A filled cake is $64.95, and a box of two smaller cakes goes for $79.95. Get it while you can, because supplies go quick.