It’s the last week of February. And for me, that means it’s likely that I have maybe $10 in my bank account. After a month of iced coffees and burritos, I’m (yet again) out of cash.
But hold on, here’s the best part: It’s also midterms.
And when exams aren’t curved, and papers keep me up forever, sometimes I just really need to treat myself (“desserts” is “stressed” spelled backwards, after all). So this is my simple list of the best stress-eats spots for students everywhere. May your day be a little bit sweeter.
Little Gem Waffles
Whoever decided waffles are only for breakfast has clearly never tried Little Gem. Located close to campus, this haven for waffle-lovers may just end the waffle versus pancake dilemma forever. Even better, most signature waffles, from the Smoreffle, topped with torch-toasted marshmallows, to the savory Maple Bacon and Cheese, sit between $4 and $5.
Cupcakin’ Bake Shop
Let me preface this with the fact that I have had a lot of cupcakes in my day. Like, a lot. From the dry and crummy to the artificial and cloyingly sweet, I’ve tried them all. So, when I say “go now” — really, go now. This place is insane. Not only do they have the traditional red velvet and classic chocolate peanut butter (my personal favorite), but they also carry gluten-free and vegan options. All for $3.50 a pop!
If you don’t know CREAM, you’ve probably never stepped foot on Telegraph Avenue. Famous for its customizable ice cream sandwiches (which are only $3.99!) in an abundance of flavors and combinations, this spot is perfect for those with only $5 to spend. With scoops of ice cream, warm cookies and coffee drinks to choose from, CREAM is full of options that will cater to anyone. If you’re on a budget, I’d shy away from the milkshakes because they are unbelievably overpriced — just make it at home, folks.
Not only are vegan sweets nearly impossible to find, but they are also especially so when you only have a few dollars to spend. But somehow, maybe by magic, Cinnaholic’s vegan cinnamon rolls do the trick. These moist, fluffy rolls are reminiscent of traditional ones and come topped to the heavens with Oreos, pie crumbles and chocolate sauce, if you so choose. With each additional topper at 25 cents and a base roll at $4.50, this cruelty-free shop is worth a visit.
NB: Sometimes day-old rolls are available for only $2!
Located in the heart of Elmwood, about a 20-minute walk from campus, this spot is notorious for long lines. Nonetheless, its small batch taste and unusual flavor combinations, such as cardamom-rose and toasted coconut Thai tea, make it entirely worth it. With a single scoop at $3.50 and a double at $5, this place will be a perfect escape in the spring and summer!