Most of us would agree that we feel better when we eat a healthy and well-balanced diet. That said, ‘well-balanced’ can definitely leave room for an indulgent meal or a tasty treat now and again. And lucky for us, Panama City offers plenty of places to indulge. Whether it’s cakes or cookies, burgers or french fries, there are plenty of spots when nothing will satisfy like a decadent meal or treat.
We bring you a teasing and tempting article of the best places to treat yo self and give into your sweet or savory tooth in Panama City.
***WARNING: Do not read this article when hungry – may cause severe cravings***
The Cookie Jaar
The Cookie Jaar might as well be heaven for anyone with a serious sweet tooth. As the name suggests, cookies are the star of the show here. They bake up fresh, giant cookies daily in a number of chocolatey sweet flavor combinations. While there are often cookies fresh out of the oven, you can also request to have any cookie lightly heated for a gooey, warm treat. While we would head here just for the cookies alone, there are a number of other sweet treats available. With more than a dozen flavors of ice cream, plus milkshakes, sundaes, cakes, ice cream sandwiches and popsicles, you’ll find it hard to decide what you want. Your best bet is to choose something to enjoy there and something to take home. And then plan on coming back again next week.
Miranda Bakery and Cafe
Miranda Bakery and Cafe is a local favorite in the San Francisco neighborhood that’s the perfect spot for a tasty lunch or special treat. With a wide variety of sweet and savory offerings, you can come here for a full meal or to grab a hot cup of coffee and a delicious pastry. Cakes, donuts, cookies, and croissants are all baked fresh in house and are exquisite (don’t pass up the carrot cake if it’s available). Additionally, they offer plenty of soups, sandwiches, and salads as well as one of the best cheeseburgers in the city. Can’t decide if you’re in the mood for sweet or savory? Try one of their famous maple bacon donuts for a little bit of both!
If you’ve been tasked with bringing a cake for a birthday dinner or finding a catered lunch for an office/work event, V Sweet is the perfect place to come. Located just down the street from Miranda’s Bakery and Cafe in San Francisco, V Sweet bakes up delicious and stunningly beautiful cakes, pies, and sweets. Cakes come in small and large sizes, and such delectable flavors as triple caramel and chocolate, blueberry velvet, and lemon meringue. There are also a number of vegan, sugar-free, and gluten-free cakes and dessert offerings. If savory is what you’re in the mood for don’t miss their flaky empanadas with fillings such as buffalo chicken, spinach and ricotta, or achiote pork. No matter what you choose, it won’t disappoint!
Tucked away in Costa del Este, Bistro Market is the ultimate pit stop if you’re in the area and need a quick lunch but also have a hankering for something sweet. This simple but stylish bistro serves tasty lunch fare and some of the best cookies around. Try the soup and salad or sandwich combo for lunch and round out the meal with a perfectly baked chocolate chip cookie. If you’re feeling extra indulgent then go for the warm skillet cookie topped with vanilla ice cream and chocolate sauce –proof that happiness can be bought.
Bistro Market is also a great place to pick up prepared foods to take home. Whether it’s prepared cookie dough or a creamy crab dip, they have plenty of items to take home and enjoy in the week ahead. Last but not least, they also offer keto cookies and sweet treats for those following a keto diet but still looking for a chance to treat yo self.
Royale Cookie Bar
You may have caught on by now, but Panama City has something of a cookie addiction. And who can blame us? A cookie really is the perfect single-serving way to treat yourself and satisfy any sweet tooth. Royale Cookie Bar is another location where it’s all about cookies, and they take the matter very seriously.
Their unreal chunky cookies almost resemble brownies more than any grocery-store version of a cookie. Chocolate chip, double chocolate, red velvet –they’re all delicious. You can even add an injection (literally served in a syringe) of Nutella, peanut butter, or dulce de leche. Buy one, or get the Royale box with five cookies if you plan to share (or not). They also have delicious milkshakes if you aren’t the cookie type or want to wash down your sugar with more sugar.
Ay Mi Negra
If no sweet treat is complete in your mind without an Instagram shoot to go along with it, then add Ay Mi Negra to your list of Panama City dessert spots to visit. Located in the heart of the Casco Viejo, Ay Mi Negra offers up a wide range of delectable dessert options and has a cult social media following to prove it. The three pillars of their dessert philosophy are crepes, ice rolls, and waffle pops. Crepes and waffle pops are freshly made and filled or topped with gooey Nutella, chocolate, or dulce de leche and fresh fruit.
The show stealers here, though, are the ice rolls. Liquid ice cream is poured thin over a frozen slab, sprinkled with toppings, and then rolled into delicately creamy rolls that melt in your mouth (but not after adding more toppings). Try one of their custom flavor combinations, or invent one of your own. Either way, you’ll want to go back for more as soon as you finish.
Forever Yogurt won’t just satisfy your sweet tooth, it’s also a ton of fun. This serve-your-own frozen yogurt joint is a relatively new concept in Panama and one that we absolutely love. Grab a container and fill it with any combination of the eight rotating flavors of frozen yogurt available. Then, take it to the topping bar to make your creation unique. From cereals, candy, and cookies, to fresh fruit and sauces, the combinations you can choose are literally endless. Ring up your order where you’ll be charged by the weight of your creation, and get ready to dig in. With dairy-free and low-sugar yogurts available, as well as a section of gluten-free toppings, you can even find a healthier or diet-compliant dessert option.
If eating a waffle from a cup sounds crazy, you’ve clearly never been to Sweets&Fun. Piping hot waffles are rolled and placed inside a plastic cup where they’re then filled with ice cream, chocolate sauce, and any creative combination of toppings that appeals to you. This may be one of the messier desserts to eat on this list, but it’s well worth it. There is also a selection of milkshakes and smoothies to choose from.
Dodó is proof that indulgent can also be healthy. This adorable cafe prides itself in dishing up delectable vegetarian and vegan meals to hungry customers. Located in Casco Viejo, this is the perfect cozy spot for a delicious breakfast, brunch, or lunch packed with fresh, natural ingredients –and tons of flavor. Don’t worry, if it’s sweets you’re after, their french toast, cupcakes, and specialty coffee drinks will all hit the spot and keep you coming back for more.