Eat This Now: Cake Balls from Zen Baking Company in Dallas

Cake balls from Zen Baking Company in Dallas. Photo by Daniel Walker.

It looks like covering last week’s Cupcake Camp wasn’t enough to satiate SideDish contributor Daniel Walker’s sweet tooth. Today he files this report:

If you still don’t buy into the notion that Deep Ellum is alive and well, it’s about time you made a return visit. Or perhaps you’re like me and feel it was never dead in the first place.This week, I paid a visit to one of the newest residents of this quirky, eclectic neighborhood, Zen Baking Company. Zen was opened by two sisters, Chonnie Richey and Czarina Hounsel, and together they are determined to create the perfect cake ball. I’m pleased to report they may have done just that.


Cake balls from Zen Baking Company in Dallas. Photo by Daniel Walker.

Each of these heavenly little creations are begin with blending together delicious cake and frosting, rolling the resultant mixture into balls, then coating each one with dark or white chocolate. The result is a dense, moist, and sweet ball of cake with a crunch of hardened chocolate candy coating. I picked up a dozen in a variety of flavors, brought them home, and basically spent the better part of an hour savoring each bite, all the while, simultaneously planning out in my mind how I could successfully hide all leftovers from my wife before she got home.

Each flavor was a new adventure in my mouth, like I was the oral Odysseus. My favorites included the “What’s Up Doc,” a scrumptious rendition of carrot cake, the tangy “Blind Lemon,” and strawberry-infused, “Berry Yummy.” Other showstoppers included their red velvet, white chocolate raspberry, and Key lime. But for me, the “Nice Day for a White Wedding” truly took the cake (pun intended). This little beauty is a cinnamon-vanilla cake mixed with vanilla buttercream meringue frosting with a hint of cayenne, dipped it in white chocolate, all coated with crystal sugar and candy pearls. This thing could even bring a tear to Billy Idol’s eye. I took one bite, gave a rebel yell, and cried “More! More! More!”

The sisters also incorporate flavors tied to their Filipino heritage with their caramel-vanilla pastillas de leche and the exotic “Purplicious,” filled with a Filipino purple yam called “ube.”

If you are looking for a guaranteed-to-satisfy gift this week for Mother’s Day, Zen has got you covered.  Either way, find an occasion to stuff yourself silly with cake, frosting and chocolate and make your way to Zen Baking Company.  Your mouth will thank you forever.

Zen Baking Co.

2805 Main St.

Dallas, TX 75226


  • Monica

    I heard that Zen was a vegan bakery. Is that true?

  • I am Spartacus

    If you aren’t in Deep Ellum, check out The Cake Ball Company on NW Highway near Flagpole Hill. Or online at Delish.

  • RLA

    You can also buy them at Central Market. I stumbled upon them on one of my shopping adventures there, and fell in love.

  • Antonio

    Cake balls make my stomach hurt.

  • Tammy

    Wow, the description is so good, I feel like I ate the whole dozen myself without the calories!

  • Melissa

    Creme de la Cookie also makes them and they are FABULOUS!!

  • Will

    I had a sticky bun made with goat cheese and it was amazing. They may have some vegan offerings (I’m not sure) but they aren’t 100% vegan.

  • Liz

    I was at a party last weekend, and they served cake balls from Cakezies (\cakezies). I can’t wait to try Zen’s to compare!

  • Maria

    Zen’s are sooo good. Their buns are good too but you have to go in store to get them. They have so many different varieties that are unique! I tried them at Central Market and someone brought them for a shower – so good.

  • Alanna

    Zen Cake Balls has become a staple for corporate gifts for my Clients! If I can’t make it to Central Market or their location in Deep Ellum, Zen will ship anywhere in the US and a few locations overseas. I have tried the other brands…they just don’t compare. They have traditional and assortment of Zen only flavors.