A carnival classic, cotton candy combines nostalgia and whimsy with playful colors and a familiar airy texture of spun sugar. While cotton candy may be found packaged on retail shelves, restaurant operators are using this sweet treat in more innovative ways: as a creative addition to desserts and beverages.
Swirled into ice cream or topping a cupcake, cotton candy infuses desserts with color and contrasting texture. In beverages, cotton candy provides a unique sweet flavoring for coffee drinks like mochas or lattes, or it serves as an eye-popping garnish atop themed cocktails.
Market research firm Datassential found cotton candy is found on 1.4% of U.S. menus, a 37% increase over the past four years.
Click through the gallery to learn more about this flavor of the week and see how one restaurant is using cotton candy on its menu.