Sunday, January 25, 2009

Desserts at IKEA - Costa Mesa

Spending more than what's necessary just to tempt your sweet tooth is foolhardy, especially these days. People know it. I'm guessing this is the reason why the Pinkberry at The District in Tustin is always deserted.

It's probably also the reason why there's always a line at IKEA's bistro.

$1 is the total cost for their drippy-delicious non-fat frozen yogurt cone. There's no fresh fruit or cereal for toppings. What's more, IKEA's yogurt is squarely set on the sweet side of the spectrum, not the sour. But it's swirled by a trained IKEA employee into a standard cake cone as a windy, sky-scraping helix. They stretch it as tall as possible until it becomes a precarious, wobbly spiral that seems to dare gravity into reclaiming it.

And there's no need to break out the change. The charge is $1. That's it. Tax is included. It doesn't matter if you're in a branch in O.C. or L.A., it's still a buck.

As soon as you get it, concentrate on consuming it post-haste. Unless you plan to trek into the tundra with it, the frozen stack starts melting immediately. It's your mouth against against the clock. The race starts now.

In the concoction you'll taste a combination of dairy and crack. It's just sweet enough to titillate, creamy enough to satisfy. Best of all, it's guiltless on two fronts. After that last crumb of cone is gone, you would've only spent a buck and a hundred calories.

The cinnamon rolls, however, are another matter. Although it's also a dollar, I took a forkful of this stuff and literally heard my teeth starting to rot. With every piece I chewed, I inched towards diabetes.

Both are sort of IKEA's reward to you for completing its furniture showroom labyrinth -- the cheese at the end of the maze.

Also, since the bistro and its oh-so-cheap-sweets are strategically located near the exit, IKEA can be assured that you're not walking around the store dripping ice cream onto their couches and touching everything with your sticky, cinnamon roll-sullied fingers.

These Swedes thought of everything! Now if they can only figure out how to make affordable furniture that lasts.

IKEA Bistro
1475 South Coast Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
(714) 444-4532

Andrea at Pelican Hill - Newport Coast


At 12:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As I wrote in Monster Munching in early 2006
[see link below],
the Swedish Apple Cake with Vanilla Sauce is outstanding.
It actually makes IKEA a dessert destination, like a diner in New York City would be after a night out on the town.

(*(c) 2006 by JB; All Rights Reserved.)

At 12:15 PM, Blogger Eric said...

Little known fact (from what I've discovered at least): IKEA sells root beer floats, which is really just a cup with soft serve in it and then you can fill with whatever soda you want. I've yet to try the lingonberry with the soft serve.

And if you really know what's up, you'll get the float first, and then make your way through the showroom.

At 1:47 PM, Blogger Inez Valentina said...

I cannot leave IKEA without getting one of those cones. I want one now. And root beer floats?! Hells yes.

Also, I love how in your photo, the cone is positioned so that the wrapper reads FOO. As in, "I pity the FOO who hasn't yet tried a $1 IKEA ice cream cone."

At 2:52 PM, Blogger Passionate Eater said...

IKEA is truly a prize for cheap furniture and food!

At 4:05 PM, Blogger EatTravelEat said...

What a GREAT deal! Like the fact that it is swirled to the fact that it is extremely tall; it reminds me when I got a giant ice cream swirl cone in the UK. McDonalds doesn't even swirl that tall!

At 4:50 PM, Blogger Frequent Traveler said...

I love gummy bears in my fat-free yogurt. Go figure :)

And $1 is a great price!

At 9:13 PM, Blogger EatTravelEat said...

"it". I meant the frozen yogurt cone. This probably confused so many other people as both items you talked about were all swirly in a way.

Like how the cinnamon rolls look, but I agree with the sweet issue! I have never tasted a cinnamon roll that was not as sweet (only exception is school cafeteria...).

At 9:58 PM, Blogger elmomonster said...


Ah yes. I've eaten that many a time...I think after I read your comment. I was a Daim Torte devotee, but that Swedish Apple Cake is daim good too!

Nice touch with the copyright BTW! NICE!


That's excellent! I'll have to try that next. Truth be told, I take my cone up to the showroom. Though it doesn't last past the escalator.


One would be a FOO to go to IKEA and NOT get these cones. It's pretty much required. And it's a nice chaser to their $0.99 Breakfasts.


No wonder I love it. I'm a cheap person!


So true! Both are swirly. But the cone is the only one that's worth $1. Okay, actually, both are worth the dollar. But only the cone won't put you into sugar shock.

Loving Annie,

I like my frozen yogurt like I like my bird songs. Cheap! Cheap! Cheap!

At 10:46 PM, Blogger shavedicesundays said...

I'm so fed up with their furniture, keeps coming apart, but yes, we ALWAYs grab a cone before we leave.

At 2:47 AM, Blogger Right Way to Eat said...


The shock! You were shopping at Ikea? I always imagine you as a Crate & Barrel guy. Ha!

Only if Crate & Barrel has a mini bistro, I can imagine you shopping there for furniture that last. :P By the way, did you checked out their hot dogs before? I have heard it's almost rivaled Costco's dogs. In certain locations, I definitely would think Costco's Hot Dogs are very tasty.

For a buck, I'll be heading towards Ikea for a cone.

At 6:45 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...


Their furniture might last longer if it weren't made out of cardboard! Seriously! I peeked into the inside of my living room table (easy to do because the top part was peeling), and what did I find? A honeycomb structure of cardboard! What did I expect for $40?! HAHA!


Nah. Crate and Barrell is nice and all, but the cheapskate in me won't allow to spend full price on anything. But then again, as evidenced by my deteriorating living room set (read above), maybe I should.

At 9:15 AM, Blogger James @ The Eaten Path said...

IKEA is a wash- The true strength of the Swedes apparently lies in rebirthing American pop music and making the world's best vampire movie.

At 9:31 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...


For a second there, I thought you were talking about Abba. But that vampire movie looks awesome. It seems to make Twilight, that other tweeny vampire flick, look like Sesame Street. Thanks for the tip!

At 4:05 PM, Blogger Julian Hsu said...

I vote princess torta. I just love me some marzipan. Nice review, Elmo.. A bit off the beaten path. :-)

At 10:31 AM, Blogger Diana said...

When I was in college, we always made a point to get fro-yo whenever we were near an Ikea. I remember it being really good - much better than what we got in the dorms! (And, coincidentially, better than that tart Pinkberry nonsense that I still occasionally eat in private from time to time...)

At 11:22 AM, Blogger Mike said...

Have you ever considered combining the two and creating an ice cream cinnamon roll!?

At 2:58 PM, Blogger Melissa said...

Mmmm... dairy and crack.

At 4:58 PM, Blogger EatTravelEat said...

What is even more interesting is that my school also sell those cinnamon rolls for a dollar, but the icing isn't that white compared to IKEA. They look really similar though!

At 10:18 PM, Blogger elmomonster said...


Someone, perhaps me, should do a full run down of IKEA's desserts (the one at Lingonberry Cafe, not the Bistro). JB is right. It is a dessert destination.

I haven't even heard of the princess torta. It sounds great!


We actually stopped at this IKEA *JUST* for the frozen yogurt cone. Once we ate it, we marched right back to our car!


Now that's an idea. Of course, the warmness of the roll will make the froyo into a yogurt sauce! Which might work, actually.


It's crack-a-liciously affordable too!


Really, your school sells these too? Your school and IKEA must get them from the same place, somewhere that sells the dough raw. I think all the do is cut, bake and ice.

At 3:10 PM, Blogger gxyz said...


I've been reading your blog and taking your advice ever since I moved to orange county a few years ago. This blog has inspired me to start my own food-related blog. I just wanted to invite you to check us out.

At 10:34 PM, Blogger EatTravelEat said...

I agree with that; they probably use the same exact supplier! Both look very similar to each other. Just the icing is more translucent in our school (probably sitting out a long time or different icing for calorie problem...).

At 11:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

$1.00 a cone Here Here!!

At 9:01 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...


Thanks for the nice note. I like what you've got there. Keep it up! I've added you to my list of fellow food bloggers, of course.


A less sweet icing could actually do this cinnamon roll some good. Heck I don't even think it needs icing -- so sweet already!


Yup! Yup!


Post a Comment

<< Home