Oatmeal Cookies @ Dad's Cookie Company, St. Louis, MO
Walking into this shop is like stepping out of your car and into 1938, when Dad's first opened for business. You'll find more than one cookie on the menu, but the original Scotch oatmeal is the dense, crunchy star, perfect for dunking.
Ice Cream @ Glacier Homemade Ice Cream & Gelato, Boulder, CO
This ice cream shop makes Boulder's "best of" lists every year, and with good reason. The ice cream and toppings are all made in-house, and they develop a new flavor every other week. Try the peanut-butter-and-chocolate-flavored Funky Donkey – it’ll make the jaunt up the Denver Boulder Turnpike well worth it.
Cheesecake @ Mona Lisa Pastry Shoppe and Café, Brooklyn, NY
This Brooklyn institution has been serving up real New York-style cheesecake for more than 90 years. One taste of this dense, creamy treat and you'll see why it's worth braving the Gowanus Expressway (even during rush hour).
Key Lime Pie @ The Blond Giraffe Key Lime Pie Factory, Key West, FL
This award-winning Key West company offers key lime-flavored cookies, pecans and taffy, but the sweet, tart and tasty pies are the real stars. Try the pie-on-a-stick (easier to eat while driving), but save room for a slice of the original.
Donuts @ Voodoo Doughnut, Portland, OR
Voodoo gets a lot of attention for their wacky doughnut ingredients and even wackier decorations. Bacon on a doughnut? Sure. A pentagram doughnut? Absolutely. But they deliver on taste, and admittedly, the bacon-maple doughnut rocks. There’s a reason this place is the stuff of legend from Bellingham to Boise.
Where to next? Check back each week for new Sweet Spots!
Mid-Atlantic Shoofly Pie @ Beiler's Bakery, Philadelphia, PA You can't cruise through Pennsylvania Dutch country without sampling this sweet classic, basically sugar in a pie crust, topped with more sugar. Beiler's version – found at Philly's historic Reading Terminal Market – is impossibly flaky on the outside, and the fluffy molasses filling is worth the inevitable blood sugar spike.
Red Velvet Cupcakes @ Frosted Cupcakery, Los Angeles, CA
More than 950 miles down the I5, this L.A. eatery literally takes the cake when it comes to taste. The red velvet cupcakes feature an ultra-moist center and tangy-sweet cream cheese. The only downside? They're almost too pretty to eat. Almost.
Southwest New Mexican Apple Pie @ Daily Pie Café, Pie Town, NM When you have a slice in a town that's named after pie, you expect it will be good. At the Daily Pie Café, it's great. With spicy green chilies in the filling, this pie is a fresh take on the good ole American classic. Just one of the many reasons Pie Town should be in your GPS.
Upper Midwest Fudge @ Joann's Fudge, Mackinac Island, MI No trip to Michigan is complete without a visit to Mackinac Island, and no trip to the island is complete without sampling its famous fudge. The melt-in-your-mouth chocolate cherry squares earn Joann's top props.
South Pralines @ Aunt Sally's Praline Shop, New Orleans, LA Nestled in New Orleans' French Quarter, the scent of freshly-made pralines lures customers in, and the warm, sugary goodness keeps them coming back again and again. Nibble on samples while you watch them being made.