10 Top-Tier Gift-Worthy Pastries and Baked Goods in Cebu
Yup, love can be boxed up and made into pasalubong.
(SPOT.ph) There’s no doubt giving is a huge part of Philippine culture. It is second nature to us and a major part of how we connect with each other. There's the sense that what we’re gifting isn't simply delicious food but a deeper symbol of what we mean to each other—making it a shared experience to cherish over the years. Even the word bitbit implies a hand-carried gift or pasalubong. And with Christmas right around the corner, that giving spirit only rings louder so to help you out, we round up some of the best Cebu pasalubong fare. Just imagining the smiles of people at home once they see the box of goodies you're touting is enough to make us smile too!
Here are some of the best Cebu pasalubong-worthy pastries and baked goods you can find in Cebu:
Lai Cha’s Strawberry Doughnuts
Chances are you’re never going to see a strawberry doughnut more generously filled with undeniably fresh, sweet-glazed strawberries than Lai Cha’s (P600/four, P900/six, and P1,350/nine). The doughnuts are stuffed so close to bursting that it honestly looks more strawberry than pastry—not that we're complaining. At all. And that fresh strawberry aroma! It’s the first thing that hits you once you open a box of these goodies.
The doughnuts are brioche-based, fried on the day it’s delivered, and coated in a vanilla glaze. Lai Cha uses a signature dough to get the specific light, fluffy texture that highlights the plumpness of the strawberries. Flown from the U.S., the strawberries are of topnotch quality. Despite the sweetness that comes from the glaze, the doughnuts are refreshingly sweet and slightly tangy thanks to the compote-coated strawberries.
Mon Dough Baking Co.’s Cremadettes
From their viennoiserie pastries down to their luxurious packaging, Mon Dough Baking Co. brings a new way to experience Parisian flavor. Their crowd-favorite Cremadettes (P145/piece) are caramelized puff pastries filled with a rich, velvety cream. The flaky exterior comes close to the burnt-sugar top of crème brûlée; it has that satisfying cracking sound when you press your finger into it. It contrasts well with the soft honeycomb interior and sumptuous pastry cream. You’ve got seven flavors to choose from: cream cheese, Nutella, ube, dulce de leche, peanut butter, mango, and strawberry. Completing the experience is Mon Dough’s packaging. The black box, embossed with the brand’s golden croissant logo, exudes a sleek designer-label boutique vibe.
Mon Dough Baking Co. is at Shell Robinsons Galleria, Sergio Osmeña Blvd, corner 13th Avenue, North Reclamation Area, Cebu City. For more information, contact 0933-818-7498, or visit their Facebook page, or Instagram page.
Reesha Sy’s C3 Brownies
We discovered this home baker on Facebook and haven’t stopped thinking about the C3 Brownies (P330/12 pieces) since. They’re thick and fudgy, for one, but that’s not all there is to it. It has dark chocolate chunks that pack a surprise crunch and give it an even deeper cocoa flavor. The sweetness is well balanced with a hint of salt, helping point the flavor toward the rich dark chocolate once again. Pro-tip: this brownie can be eaten in three different ways. You can have its traight out of the fridge, giving it more bite without sacrificing the fudgy texture. Served warm, it’s soft and fudgy with that nice little crunch. But here’s a secret Sy shared with us: microwave this dark-chocolate-loaded brownie and it turns into a sumptous mini lava cake.
Reesha Sy is in Banilad, Cebu City. For orders, contact her through her Facebook page.
Coco + Maco Patisserie’s French Macarons
Coco + Maco is passionate about doing French macarons justice—and that’s no easy feat in a humid country like ours. The shells of these almond cookies need to be aired out and dessicated for them to develop that signature shiny finish. Made from only ground almonds and meringue, the cookies are crisp, light and airy. They then give way to luscious filling, usually either a ganache or buttercream. Coco + Maco’s come in dark and milk chocolate, cookies and cream, matcha, lemon, and coffee. They’re also a steal at P550 a dozen.
Sweet Kreations’s Yakult Cheesecake
We can’t get enough of Yakult and cheesecake individually, but put the two together, and you have something better. Undeniably so. But what happens when you add another childhood fave to this mix? Like, say, cornflakes? What you now have is this amazing dessert from Sweet Kreations—the Yakult Cheesecake.
The cheesecake itself is sandwiched by layers of glazed cornflakes. So not only do you get that nostalgic tangy-sweet Yakult flavor infused into each creamy bite, but also that top-to-bottom cornflake crispness! The added texture of the cornflakes as well as the acidity of the Yakult give this cheesecake a lightness so you can keep coming back for more. The Yakult Cheesecake costs P320 for the extra-small size; P420 for the small size; P630 for the medium size; and P1,100 for the large.
For decades, Montenegro’s Silvanas (P388/15 pieces, P488/20 pieces) has been a dinner-party open secret. These cashew-meringue cookies have an airy wafer with a layer of smooth, frozen buttercream in between. But the best way to have them is straight out of the freezer. If they’re nowhere near frozen, then we really suggest you wait. The temperature highlights the crunch of the wafer as the butter filling slowly melts in your mouth. It’s so rich, but also well balanced that you don’t even notice it. What also makes these Silvanas special is the pure butter used in them, creating a pleasant homemade taste instead of a processed one.
Montenegro’s Silvanas is at 20 Dr. Tojong Street, Lahug, Cebu City. For more information, contact (032) 232 2902 or 0906-507-8137 or visit their Facebook page.
Rhapsody Desserts and Delectables’s Basque Burnt Cheesecakes
Rhapsody’s Chef Franz Ivan Dy made his own version of the famous La Viña Basque Burnt Cheesecake in Spain. This take on the cheesecake is traditionally crustless and carefully baked under high heat to create that heavily torched exterior. Rhapsody’s take adds a play on the texture and taste by contrasting the firmer exterior with a soft and creamy center. This cheesecake is not overly sweet, either, as it was created with a sense of balance and subtlety in mind.
Rhapsody offers two sizes and a selection of flavors: Original (P750/mini and P1,450/regular), Coffee (P800/mini and P1,550/regular), Chocolate (P820/mini and P1,550/regular), and Matcha (P1,000/mini and P2,000/regular). They also have a special menu: the Mother’s Day Special Cake 2021 (P1,350/mini and P2,700/regular) and the 5-Cheese Burnt Cheesecake (P360/slice and P3,200/regular). The former has chocolate, cacao de bola, fresh strawberries, edible flowers, and vanilla pods from Mindanao. While it was launched for Mother’s Day, it’s available all year round, depending on the availability of the strawberries. The latter has a combination of five types of cheese (cream cheese, Brie, Mascarpone, goat’s cheese, and Parmesan).
Cebu Cardinal Bakeshop’s Cheese Rolls
Cebu Cardinal Bakeshop is home to one of the town’s favorite pasalubong items—the very affordable Cheese Rolls (P200/10 pieces). This sugary bread roll is unbelievably soft, like a tiny, erm, tasty pillow. It squishes almost effortlessly as you bite down into its soft cheese-filled center. The bread is a blank slate, which makes it the perfect vehicle for the flavor of the salty cheese filling and the butter-sugar topping.
Cebu Cardinal Bakeshop has branches at Don Jose Avila Street corner Don Gil Garcia Street, Cebu City; 207 Don Mariano Cui corner Don Jose Avila Street, Cebu City; Zone 6, Ernesto Bascon Street, Dumlog, Talisay City; Sitio Gabon, Lawaan II, Talisay City; and G/F The Space, A. S. Fortuna Street, Mandaue City. For more information, contact 0919-066-0766, or visit their Facebook page or their Instagram page.
Cocina Estella’s Molten Fudge Brownies
What started as a chorizo business in 2015 has now become famous for its brownies! “How?” you might ask. Well, it started in 2020, when Jenna Estella’s son asked her to bake brownies at home. After nonstop research, tweaking, and taste-testing, she finally achieved the perfect Molten Fudge Brownie that her son loved.
Imagine this. As soon as you sink your teeth into its delicately crisp layer, the dense brownie instantly breaks. It melts and glides smoothly over your tongue, like dark-chocolate lava. Impressively, the flavor is indulgent without being overbearing, so you’ll be eager to go get that next bite—it’s addictive stuff! These Molten Fudge Brownies come in two sizes (P270/half box, P500/full box), and it’s up to you how you want them cut, be it by 8s, 10s, 16s, or even 25s. If you want something with texture, you can go for the Walnut version (P320/half box, P600/full box).
Fudge’s Chocolate Crinkles
These Chocolate Crinkles from Fudge (P100/six pieces, P190/12 pieces) are carefully baked to achieve the soft, gooey, fudgy texture they’re famous for. Between the namesake crinkly cracks, you can see the deep color of chocolate, which sets off against the dusty, snow-white confectioners’ sugar coating. Altogether, these little treats are indulgent enough for dinner parties, but also accessible enough for random and well-deserved celebrations like making it through a long work week.
Fudge has branches at A. S. Fortuna Street, Mandaue City; The Terraces, Ayala Center Cebu; and North Wing, SM City Cebu. For more information, contact (032) 416-1727 or 0915-008-9408, or visit their Facebook page.
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