A sweet tooth’s guide to downtown Columbia

These shops and restaurants sell locally sourced, unique sweets to the Columbia population.

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When sweet cravings strike, many college students turn to local, late-night delivery staples like Insomnia Cookies and Hot Box Cookies. Or to cool off in the summer, they hit up local ice cream joints like Sparky’s or A Little More. Just off-campus in downtown Columbia, several havens for your sweet tooth exist. Here are some of the bakeries to try.

Harold’s Doughnuts

Harold’s prides itself on being “a modern version of the neighborhood doughnut shop you loved growing up.” This shop is known throughout the community for its fresh, made-from-scratch doughnuts. Beyond those, the shop also serves up apple fritters and cinnamon rolls.

Hours: Closed Monday, 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday

Location: 114 S. 9th St.

U Knead Sweets

This family-owned shop’s menu is full of surprises. It lives up to its namesake with its baked goods: macarons, cakes and brownies are just some examples of what they offer. However, you can also find boba tea and traditional Chinese beef noodle soup. According to Vox magazine, owners Helena and Allen Shih began selling the soup when they noticed “a lot of Chinese students who were looking for a fast, home-cooked meal.” If you’re looking for something savory to match the sweet, stop by!

Hours: Closed Sunday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Saturday

Location: 808 Cherry St.

Uprise Bakery

This Columbia bakery/restaurant shares a building with Ragtag Cinema. The shop describes its food as “Fast Casual. Handmade Everything.” Uprise offers homemade artisan bread and pastries, as well as fresh salads and soups from scratch. The bakery’s pastry options range from sweet, like their cookies and brownies, to savory, like their spinach, beef and mushroom pastries.

Hours: Closed Sunday, 6:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Thursday, 6:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday to Saturday

Location: 10 Hitt St.

Range Free

Range Free’s food helps Columbia in a unique way by catering to people with allergies and dietary restrictions. Its highly-specialized kitchen is 99% grain-free and completely free of gluten, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, fish and shellfish. In addition, it serves locally-sourced cookies, breads, pies and doughnuts.

Hours: Closed Sunday and Tuesday, 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday

Location: 110 Orr St.

Good Food Co.

Good Food Co. is a morning bakery and evening dessert bar. Heralded by pastry chef Jill Rostine, the flavors at this shop change with the seasons. Ingredients are sourced from the Columbia Farmers Market.

Hours: Vary with special events and pop-ups.

Location: 1023 E Walnut St., Ste 7

Edited by Caroline Fellows | cfellows@themaneater.com

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