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July 27, 2023

Great American Cookies, creator of the cookie cake, opens two locations at Philadelphia Mills

The 45-year-old company is expanding its foothold on the East Coast with new outposts at the Northeast Philly shopping mall

Food & Drink cookies
Great American Cookies Philadelphia Mills Provided Image/Great American Cookies

Great American Cookies, the company that created the cookie cake in the 1970s, has opened its first two Philly locations at the Philadelphia Mills.

Philadelphia residents can get their sugar fix at the Philadelphia Mills as Great American Cookies, the company that invented the cookie cake, opens two new locations inside the Northeast Philly shopping center. 

The classic mall staple opened two shops inside the mall on Wednesday. There, the team will serve up soft-baked cookies, brownies, cookie cakes, sodas, take-home cookie kits and "double doozies," two cookies with a layer of icing in between them. Cookie cakes, which are baked fresh, can be customized with colorful icing and a handwritten card for special occasions.

The new cookie shops are opening as part of the company's plan to expand further across the East Coast. There are over 370 Great American Cookies locations across 31 states and five countries, including locations in Exton and Lancaster. One New Jersey location, at the Willowbrook Mall in Wayne, Passaic County, opened more than 10 years ago. 

"At Great American Cookies, every new store opening is an opportunity to bring joy to a local community," said Allison Lauenstein, the company's president. "Making our debut in Philadelphia is a tremendous opportunity for Great American Cookies from a brand visibility standpoint and we look forward to treating locals to our sweet offerings that continue to stand the test of time since our founding over 45 years ago." 

While many Great American Cookies locations are co-branded with Marble Slab Creamery, an ice cream brand helmed by Great American Cookies' parent company, neither of the Philadelphia Mills locations have plans to add ice cream to their menus. Those looking to pair their cookies with frozen treats can make a pit stop at the Rita's Italian Ice or Melt 'n Sip outposts inside the mall. 

Great American Cookies co-founders Michael Coles and Arthur Karp opened the company's first cookie shop at the Perimeter Mall in Atlanta in 1977 using a chocolate chip cookie recipe created by Cole's mother. There, the two developed the recipe for the cookie cake, which was later replicated by larger brands like Mrs. Fields.  

Coles and Karp ran the company and turned it into a chain before selling it to Mrs. Fields in 1998. In 2021, the company was once again purchased by FAT Brands, a conglomerate that owns chains like Johnny Rockets, Fatburger, Elevation Burger, Yalla Mediterranean and Round Table Pizza. 

Both Great American Cookies locations at Philadelphia Mills are open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Patrons can also design custom cookie cakes online and pick them up in store.