Where to Buy Mooncakes for Mid-Autumn Festival
Whether you want lava custard filling or more traditional lotus seed paste, here’s where to buy mooncakes.
Mooncake season has finally arrived and there’s always something for everyone. Are you a traditionalist? Get your hands on a lotus seed paste cakes filled with a sphere of salty egg yolk, shaped just like the moon. Want something a bit more modern? Mooncakes now come in a range of designs with myriad fillings: lava custard, chocolate, and taro are some of the newer iterations.
Mid-Autumn Festival is a celebration of the harvest time, where it is believed that the full moon brings luck to provide bountiful yields of fall produce. It is celebrated throughout East and Southeast Asia and culminates in family gatherings, moon-viewing parties, and of course, food—with the namesake mooncake being one of the most popular dishes to eat. Whatever you’re searching for, here’s where to buy some mooncakes before Mid-Autumn Festival begins on September 21.
If there’s one bakery associated with mooncake season, it’s undoubtedly Kee-Wah Bakery. This Hong Kong bakery has been around since 1938 and churns out so many different designs of mooncakes with fillings galore. Whether you want lotus seed paste, red bean, or even chocolate, it’s likely Kee-Wah has it. You can order through the website, as well as on GoldBelly, or visit a location in California.
Umami Cart is the online Asian grocery business that began in the pandemic, and what’s an Asian grocery store without mooncakes for Mid-Autumn Festival? If you’re in the New York, DC, and Philadelphia area, as well as select zip codes in Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Virginia, Umami Cart can deliver mooncakes—as well as other Asian snacks and fresh produce—straight to your door. Currently, the market has a selection of mango crunch mooncakes, green tea and red bean mooncakes, and even a lava custard flavor.
This Taiwanese bakery took America by storm when it first arrived in 2008 thanks to its fresh bread, sea salt-topped coffee, and flaky pastries. During Mid-Autumn festival, the chain also serves mooncakes and gift boxes. Although they’re currently sold out of the mooncake gift boxes online, you can try your hand visiting one of the dozens of locations in California, Texas, and Washington.
Believe it or not, Etsy is one of the best places to buy homemade food items online. Whether you’re searching for Mexican candy, alfajores, or fresh salsa, Etsy likely has it—this includes mooncakes. There are vegan mooncakes, red bean mooncakes, and even molds if you’re itching to make your own mooncakes at home.
When it comes to mooncakes, Sheng Kee is a classic. There are dozens of styles and fillings to pick from, which all arrive in beautifully wrapped boxes perfect for gifting—to others or to yourself. If mooncakes aren’t your first choice and you’re not a traditionalist, Sheng Kee also offers pineapple cakes, mixed nut candies, and individually wrapped melon cakes.
Each fall, customers eagerly await Lady M’s mooncake collection, which always arrives in a showstopping box with unique flavors and fillings. This year, the box is shaped like a ferris wheel (that can actually rotate!) and glitzed up with string lights that light up. Inside each carriage are either chocolate or custard mooncakes, made in partnership with Kee-Wah Bakery. Although the box is already sold out online (you have to buy them as soon as they release, almost like a sneaker drop), you can try your hand at picking one up at locations in Chicago, Boston, DC, New York, and California. If they’re still not available, the purple yam crepe cake—which was released specifically for Mid-Autumn festival—is just as delightful.
Kat Thompson is a senior staff writer of Food & Drink at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @katthompsonn.