The Best Bakeries In LA

Flaky croissants, sugar-dusted pan dulce, pies, and more.
The Best Bakeries In LA image

photo credit: Jessie Clapp

Walking into a bakery is one of the better sensations in the human experience. The air smells like a hug and it’s acceptable to stare into the display case like a cat watching goldfish swim around in a tank. Fortunately, LA is rich with hot carb action, from exemplary baguettes to key lime pies topped with whipped cream. The next time you want to ride that flour and yeast high, you might as well go for the best of the best. Here are our favorite 25 bakeries in LA.


photo credit: Sylvio Martins



$$$$Perfect For:Breakfast
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Old Sasoon is a four-decade-old Armenian bakery in Pasadena where you can find beautiful za’atar-crusted flatbreads, beorags filled with spicy soujouk, and jingalov hatz stuffed with so much dill they glow green in the sun. All of these delicious, fresh-from-the-oven things are available to-go, but we much prefer sitting on Old Sasoon’s sidewalk patio. It’s a nice place to slow down, take in some sun, and drink coffee from a paper cup. It’s borderline therapeutic and maybe a little euphoric, too, if you show up before 3pm for the breakfast special: the khachapuri. These golden bread boats are big enough to share and hold a mix of soft, salty cheeses and a runny egg that doubles as dip for the crust.

photo credit: Nikko Duren

Named after a sweet custard-filled pastry, Cream Pan is the kind of French/Japanese bakery that understands the power of whipped dairy. The long glass cases inside their massive Lomita bakeshop are lined with things like melon buns, custard cups, and shortcakes covered in homemade icing. No trip here is complete with one of their strawberry croissants, too—it tastes like a cross between puff pastry and profiterole, with sweet cream and strawberry slices oozing from flaky laminated dough. Cream Pan also carries house-baked milk bread wrapped and ready to go, plus there’s a solid cafe menu with everything from onigiri to curry buns to egg sandwiches. We’re partial to the pork katsu plate—it usually takes about 15 mins to fry up an order, but the tender, golden-brown cutlet is worth every second.

Sweet Red Peach is an Inglewood landmark that’s home to LA’s best red velvet cake. Each thick slice is appropriately dense yet implausibly light, giving the silky cream cheese frosting several spongy, ruby-colored layers to cling onto. This strip mall spot is also rightly famous for its German chocolate cake and personal pans of peach cobbler. Don’t be intimidated if the line is out the door when you arrive—they’re extremely efficient here. Sweet Red Peach has been managing crowds of loyal customers (and occasionally Stevie Wonder) for twenty-plus years. Plan to get there before 3pm, when they start selling out of their more popular pastries and cakes.

If you leave Gjusta without bread and/or baked goods, you’re not to be trusted. In addition to a full food menu, this Venice establishment offers a huge variety of bialys, bagels, sourdough loaves, and baguettes. Their baguettes are hard to beat, but focus on the pumpernickel and olive loaves if they're in stock. Even the butter you spread on top will be in awe of their herby notes and spongy texture. Meanwhile, it’s impossible to go past the pastry case and not consider at least five things. The ham and gruyere croissants are the best we’ve had outside of France, and even those who believe vegetables have no business in cakes will approve of the carrot cake.

This tiny Armenian spot bake shop in downtown Glendale only has two items on its menu: honey and pistachio baklava (spelled paxlava here) and the namesake zhengyalov hatz. And while we’re always down for a daytime dessert moment, the latter is the reason why people drive across town to eat here. This warm, doughy flatbread is wrapped around 15 aromatic herbs and greens and then griddled to order. What you end up with is a delicious, perfectly constructed wrap that is the kind of quick lunch that fills you up without putting you to bed.

Rather than being famous for one item that blew up on social media, this family-run Lebanese bakery in Granada Hills makes over 70 different incredible things, including buttery cheese boats, falafel pies, and zesty za’atar saj. Even their shawarma is some of the best in town. Grab a sweet labneh and honey flatbread on the way out or don’t even bother telling people you came. And now that there are locations in Glendora, Calabasas, and San Diego, there’s no excuse to put off a visit.

For anyone who’s ever stepped foot in Southern California, Porto’s should need no introduction. But just in case you need a quick refresher, the family-run Cuban bakery has been serving guava pastries, potato balls, and every other baked treat under the Valley sun for the last 55 years. They’re the pride and joy of Burbank, and you should go here (or to any of their other locations) to join the lines of people waiting to stock up on their trademarked papa rellenas, which are deep-fried and filled with more meat than an Arby’s tagline. And since Porto’s is a streamlined operation, they’ll have you in, out, and eating pastries for lunch alone in your car in 10-15 minutes.

Republique wears a lot of hats, some of them better than others. But one thing that’s not up for debate is Republique’s reputation as a pastry powerhouse. You won’t find a more attractive display case anywhere in LA, with tiered rows of custardy Basque cheesecakes, chocolate tarts with shiny ganache, and pain au chocolat piled on top of each other like fluffy pillows. They taste just as good as they look, and we suggest splurging on a box of these baked goods before they run out after the brunch rush. You can’t go wrong with any of them, but the creme brulee bombolini and sticky caramel pecan brioche are especially good.

If you’ve ever ordered anything bread-related from a place in LA with cutesy menu fonts and small-batch coffee, you're likely familiar with Bub & Grandma's. The wholesale bakery has been supplying amazing baked goods around town for years but had never had a space of its own—until now. The Bub & Grandma’s cafe in Glassell Park is an homage to the early-morning American diner, complete with cushy white booths and a wrap-around counter. But if you don’t have time to stay for a full breakfast, do what we do and show up early, grab a loaf of sesame bread for the week, and raid their pastry case of every almond cake, croissant, and blueberry donut that catches your eye.

Long Beach's Gusto Bread is a new-wave panadería specializing in pan and pan dulce made with natural yeasts and heirloom grains. You’ll find beautiful seeded loaves, studded with sunflower, pumpkin, and poppy seeds that go nicely with a cup of coffee, or just a quick smear of butter. Semi-sweet pan loaves are made with house-milled yellow corn, and conchas come with a thick sugar cookie frosting that's the right amount of sweet. They also carry a rotating list of weekend-only specials, like jalapeño cheddar biscuits and strawberry jujube tamales, so plan on getting there early before they sell out.

Gemmae’s original location opened in 1979 just outside of Manila, but the family behind it moved the business to Long Beach over a decade later. These days, the Filipino bakery is run by a mother-daughter duo who can usually be found working the counter. If you’ve never had a crush on a baked good, you will after a few bites of Gemmae’s specialties, like sugar-coated Spanish bread oozing buttery cheese filling or a soft ensaymada stuffed with pandan and ube. The order station up front is lined with packaged baked goods like bright red longganisa pandesal, a luscious meat-stuffed roll with the luscious fluff of a donut hole. Plus, they’ve got a hot bar in the back with rotating Filipino fast food—pick up pork adobo and a whole ube cheesecake in one go.

Des Croissants Paris is a traditional French bakery that smells like a tub of butter. Maybe that's not your first choice when picking out an air freshener, but inside a boulangerie, it's a good sign. You'll only find French staples at this minimalist Culver City cafe, like arms-length baguettes, glossy croissants, and kouign-amann that's worth a visit alone. The layers of pastry peel apart like tissue paper, and the sugar crust shatters like candy but is still gooey inside.

This small Armenian bakery in East Hollywood doesn’t have a ton of signage (or tables, or chairs) and it may take a few laps to find it (look for the massive 99 Cent Store), but once you get there, you’ll be treated to Armenian baked goods with the power to realign your whole week. Boreks are $2.75 a piece, so loading up a bag full is always a good idea, but the must-order here is the lahmajune. These warm round flatbreads are topped with a thin layer of spiced, tomato-y ground beef, and most customers order them by the dozen (with a yogurt drink on the side). If you've got room, stop by for an Armenian doughnut at nearby Papillon International afterward.

A visit to Coin De Rue in Koreatown can go several ways, from grabbing a to-go box of yuzu sponge cakes and red bean sweet rolls to lounging with an iced dalgona coffee and eating said box of pastries. The odds of the second scenario increase if you order this Korean bakery's masterpiece: the green onion pesto loaf. This gigantic scored bread looks like a garlic knot fell into a vat of radioactive waste and mutated into the Hulk version of itself. It serves four people easily, with melted cheese, scallions, pesto oozing out of every crevice, and pomegranate seeds adding surprise bursts of sweetness. If you order this monster, bring friends—or a good book—because you'll be here a while.

Do you ever say “cow” when you pass your first cow on a road trip? After one visit to Bhan Kanom Thai, you’ll probably say “Bhan Kanom” every time you pass the East Hollywood strip mall that houses this Thai bakery and mini-mart. At Banh Kanom, delight is at full throttle. For starters, they make the best mango sticky rice in the city (temperature and texture are always spot on). But they also have fresh coconut pancakes, jellies, puddings, cakes, and dumplings. Get some grilled sticky rice with banana or taro, and the gooey, bite-sized taro cakes studded with corn kernels.

Before you pull up and question whether you’re in the right place: there’s nothing French about this Arlington Heights bakery. It did sell baguettes in its previous life, but after quite the rebrand, came into its own as an excellent panadería. Expect long lines on most days, which means plenty of time to stare at beautiful sugar-crusted pan dulce and mentally debate which you’ll eat on the drive home. Their selection is massive, but highlights include buttery custard-filled pastelitos, gusano rolls with crumbly streusel, and fluffy tortas de azucar that are so airy they tend to magically disappear in your morning coffee. Cash only.

Clark Street is no longer the cute, little subway-tiled stall in the Grand Central Market where we’d celebrate getting out of jury duty with ricotta toast. This well-oiled baking machine is now a local mini-chain with four locations selling incredible pastries like twisty Swedish cinnamons buns, buttery cheddar-chive scones, and kouign-amann that taste like a caramelized croissant. If you’re looking for something a little heartier, our favorite item is their “Scandinavian Breakfast,” a massive platter with a sourdough roll, Comté cheese, ham, butter, jam, and a hardboiled egg. It's the kind of simple, filling meal that makes you feel like you’re picnicking in the fields from The Sound of Music. Which is kind of the best way to start the day.

Sometimes, when the days get long and every night blurs together, we slip into a very specific daydream—one where we cut off all our hair, move to the Danish countryside, and go by a new name. When that daydream hits, we head to Copenhagen Pastry. The brightly lit bake shop in Culver City has more Danish goods than an IKEA showroom, from pretzel-shaped kringles to butter cakes to loaves of rye. If you come on the weekend, get their special morning rolls. They cost just $1.35 each, and are made from soft, slightly sweet dough—the perfect vehicle for any jammy eggs or jellies you might have on hand.

While eating the pies and baked goods from Fat + Flour you might get hit with a wave of déjà vu. Maybe you’ve eaten it in a parallel universe, but most likely it’s because you've had Nicole Rucker's treats from one of the many places she's baked around town. Now in Culver City as well as a stall in DTLA's Grand Central Market, she's doing her signature pies back in flavors like rhubarb cherry and whipped-cream-topped Key lime topped with whipped cream, as well as a variety of chewy brownies and sprinkle-topped cookies. Pies are sold by the slice, but you can preorder them whole through their website.

Some people may think the words “gluten-free” and “vegan” have no business in baked goods. But those people are wrong, and obviously have never been to Just What I Kneaded. Besides excellent baking puns, this bright and airy Frogtown shop serves dairy-free scones, cookies, turnovers, and galettes (many of which are GF). They’re located right next to Wax Paper, and churn out giant cinnamon rolls that come with (what feels like) a pound of icing as well as "pop-tarts" decorated with everything from Snoopy to seasonal horoscopes.

Open for nearly 75 years, it doesn’t get more classic than La Mascota in Boyle Heights. The bakery space on Whittier Blvd. has been heavily renovated over the last few years, but not to worry, the baked goods are better than ever. That includes pan dulce, fresh bolillo, and a flan worth driving across town to get. But let’s be real—most everyone in line is here for the tamales. Beyond the masa bundles, some highlights include the custardy capirotada pudding that's heavy on the raisins, warm, piloncillo-infused puerquitos, and fresh bolillos that smell twice as good when you're in the tamale line at 6am and need a strong coffee.

This legendary Chinese bakery has everything you need for a dessert-heavy feast, including favorites like strawberry cream cakes and freshly steamed buns. Crackly deep-fried butterfly cookies go perfectly with a cup of tea, and flaky almond pastries glow like the sun and are filled with sweet red bean paste. Whether you need to pick something for Lunar New Year (it’s never too early to start planning), are taking a trip to your grandma’s house, or just want a tiny little action figure to add to your mantle, Phoenix Bakery has got you covered.

The lines at this cute Atwater bakery can get long on the weekends (we’re talking sneaker-store-on-Fairfax lengths), but with some patience, you’ll be treated to a treasure trove of pastries, croissants, and bread loaves. Rotating sandwiches come on crusty baguettes, ideal for munching on at the park. Fluffy brioche buns are airy and light, and the chocolate chip cookies are what we wish every chocolate chip cookie tasted like: soft and sprinkled with sea salt. The energy here is friendly and neighborhood-y (you’ll definitely see a young family or two), so if you don't want to wait to consume your carb haul, grab one of the small patio tables outside.

Throw a Gen Z bread specialist, cultured butter, and a bag of stone-milled grain into a vat, stir a few times, and you get Jyan Isaac Bread. The Santa Monica bakery, which is attached to pizzeria Ghisallo in Ocean Park comes from an ex-Gjusta baker who honed his craft during the early days of the pandemic. Jyan Isaac offers fresh bread daily, including everything from seeded sourdough loaves and Danish rye to fresh baguettes and poppy bagels. The bakery is open from early morning to late afternoon daily, but if you can't make it to Santa Monica, they also sell their good at farmer's markets across the Westside. (And you can try their bread in sandwich form at Ghisallo.)

With locations in San Pedro and Long Beach, Colossus is one of our favorite destinations for bread and pastries, not just in the South Bay, but anywhere in LA County. Their naturally fermented country loaf is thick and moist, ideal for dipping into beef stew and pretending you’re an extra on Game of Thrones. The kouign-amann is salty and sweet, and the sticky buns combine the texture of a buttery croissant with pecan flavor. If you’re heading to meet some friends (or are just extra hungry), grab one of their assorted pastry boxes: it comes with six sweet treats, based on “availability, farm selection, and whims of our chefs.” We like to think of it like a breakfast omakase.

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