New Orleans’ Royal Desserts

The Sweet History of King and Queen Cakes

The king cake's long and distinguished history dates back 300 years to Twelfth Night, a biblical holiday honoring the night Jesus revealed himself to the Three Kings—hence the name "king cake". 

Traditionally, religious parishioners in New Orleans and elsewhere would prepare for the lean days of Lent in the best way they knew how: eating lots of cake. And since this tradition was nearly impossible to improve upon, it continued for centuries.

But hold on—New Orleans wouldn’t be half of what it is today without some seriously impactful women, even if they were rarely given royal titles. Don't they deserve a slice of recognition?

Peggy McDonald Cannon, the granddaughter of Aunt Sally’s founders, points out, “Mardi Gras is not just about kings. It’s about queens, too.”

Aunt Sally’s Almond Croissant Queen Cake celebrates New Orleans’ history of women leaders and changemakers. We tip our crowns to these marvelous matrons with a buttery croissant cake featuring a delicate, nutty almond marzipan filling and sparkling pale-pink icing!

We Three Queens: Three Women Who Helped Build New Orleans

Margaret Haughery: “The Mother of Orphans” was a beloved New Orleans figure in the 19th century for her endless compassion. If someone calls you a “living saint,” you’re doing something right. Read more about her amazing life here.

Sister Francis Xavier Hebert: An Ursuline nun who came to New Orleans in 1727 and began making medicine for the Royal Hospital, Sister Hebert saved many lives as the first female pharmacist of the New World. The story of her life and her famous herb garden can be found here.

Eleanor Laura McMain: Few people could claim to have shaped 20th-century New Orleans more than Ms. McMain. The prodigious social worker helped establish the Tulane School of Social Work, the Kingsley House, and many other hugely important social programs that continue to support this city today. Get inspired by her incredible story.

Aunt Sally's King and Queen Cakes ship starting Jan. 5!
Order yours now

P.S. Be on the lookout for our next blog on Jan. 10, featuring some heavenly recipes using our King and Queen Cakes.

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