Magpies | All Butter All the Time | A Knoxville Best

Review by: Michael Stern

Words to Live By

As soon as I saw its motto, I suspected I was going to like Magpies Bakery. When I tasted its cupcakes, I became a convert. The motto is inscribed on an overhead sign outside: All Butter All the Time.

Notes I took: Italian wedding cake = fluffy bounce. Mexican hot chocolate cupcake = silky cocoa punch. Big, dark, luscious chocolate chips. Lightweight New York cheesecake. One fact that holds true across the board: They do not skimp. Not on butter. Not on any other luxury ingredient.

Crazy-Good Cupcakes

I first arrived at the beginning of May, when Cinco de Mayo set the theme for Mexican hot chocolate cupcakes. The holiday also inspired cinnamon-tinged churro cupcakes and buzzy citrus margarita cupcakes. The everyday cupcake repertoire ranges from vanilla, devil’s food, and lemon cream to caramel macchiato, chocolate raspberry, and almond apricot. Bakers make them normal-size and mini.

Brilliant flavor is what’s first impressive about these little pastries. But texture matters too. Fine and silky, they feel so smooth on the tongue. Is this refinement a result of the all butter all the time house motto?

Cookies, Too

Beyond cupcakes: After having savored Magpies’ cookies, packaged ones from the store never will make me very happy. Consider chocolate chip, which is extremely chocolaty, but not over-the-top, candy-bar so. It teeters perfectly at the balance of crunch and chew. I even love a wheat-free cookie known as a chocolate-cherry-chewie. Its name describes its goodness in full.

Elegant Cheesecake

Cheesecake is supposed to be rich, but needn’t be overweight. The word that best describes Magpies’ is fluffy. Oreo cheesecake delivers plenty of cookie flavor, but in a cloud of cream. It’s like cookies and cream ice cream, but richer.

Seasonable items from the kitchen and bakery include King Cake in February, apple stack cake and pumpkin cheesecake in the last two months of the year, and banana pudding in the summer. Any time of year if you are on a culinary tour of Knoxville, put Magpies on the must-eat list.

Directions & Hours

10am - 4pm
  • Monday: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 11:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Wednesday: 11:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Thursday: 11:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Friday: 11:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
  • Sunday: Closed

What To Eat

Chocolate Cupcake

Oatmeal Cookie

Italian Wedding Cake

Chocolate Cherry Chewy

Chocolate Chip Sammie

Margarita Cupcake

Churro Cupcake



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