Everything you need to know about Parisian bakeries
In today’s article I’ll be sharing everything you need to know about Parisian bakeries. Paris is known for being a beautiful, romantic city with some of the best food on earth! Of course, in a city known for its food, the iconic bakeries or boulangeries should be on the top of your foodie bucket list. Paris has more than 30,000 bakeries, each offering their own unique take on French baked goods. This article will tell you where, how, and why to enjoy some of the best treats Paris has to offer!
The neighbourhood bakery, or boulangerie is a staple in French everyday life. Locals usually visit their bakery every day to pick up fresh pastries and bread for the days’ meals. In France, it’s really important to eat fresh, delicious ingredients, especially bread! Although somewhat of a stereotype, it’s actually quite common to see Parisians walking home at the end of the day with a baguette or two. The most popular items at any Parisian bakery are the buttery croissant, the indulgent pain au chocolat and of course, the baguette.
The French Baguette
Let’s start with the most traditional item, the baguette. This long, thin loaf of bread is an important part of most meals in France. It can be enjoyed any time of the day, by itself, as a sandwich, or an accompaniment to literally any dish you can imagine. Not just any French bread is a baguette however, and the regulations about this iconic loaf are pretty strict. Firstly, there are two kinds of baguettes, the light and doughy baguette, and the slightly crustier, heartier baguette tradition. Second, in order to be called a baguette, the loaf must measure between 55-70 cm long and weigh 250-300 grams. There’s actually an annual contest amongst all of the bakeries in Paris to see who can make the best baguette!
But with so many Parisian bakeries, how exactly do you choose a delicious baguette? Each baguette is made with only four ingredients: water, flour, yeast and salt, but each bakery has a different recipe and therefore a different baguette! In order to choose the most delicious baguette, experts say it’s all about texture. The perfect baguette tradition should be golden brown, and be croustillant (meaning a mix of crusty and crunchy) on the outside. On the inside, the bread should be soft and dense with an unforgettable taste you just can’t find anywhere else!
Parisian bakeries are found on almost every block in Paris, but these ones are a few of my favourites. Here you can find some of the best baguettes the city has to offer!
Eric Kayser – La Baguette Monge
This bakery is actually a French bakery chain that can be found all over the world, but they are making excellent bread! Their baguette Monge was inspired by the lovely neighbourhood around Rue Monge in Paris. Definitely worth a try! You can find Eric Kayser all over Paris, but my favourite location is 14 Rue Monge, 75005.
Au Petit Versailles du Marais – Baguette Tradition
Nestled in the trendy Marais neighbourhood, this beautifully decorated bakery has some delicious baguettes. I would recommend their baguette tradition (and any of their cakes if you have a sweet tooth like me)! This Parisian bakery is located at 1 Rue Tiron, 75004.
La Prestigeuse – Tradition à l’Ancienne
This little Parisian bakery is one of the hidden gems of the fifteenth district. Using an ancient recipe to make their unique baguette, this one just can’t be missed. Their breads are all quite tasty, but their tradition à l’ancienne is simply the best! Find them at 123 Rue de Vaugirard, 75015. It’s best to arrive before noon to avoid a long queue.
Pain au Chocolat and Croissants
When you picture Parisian bakeries, you certainly think of a croissant, or perhaps a pain au chocolat. These are the two most popular pastries in Parisian bakeries, and for good reason! Buttery, flakey croissants are the perfect morning pick-me-up, and you can’t beat a delicious pain au chocolat and an espresso for a sumptuous breakfast. Originally, these types of pastries called vienoisseries, are believed to have been brought to France from Vienna by Marie Antoinette herself!
Today, these pastries can be found in any Parisian bakery, but where can you find the best ones? Below are some of my favourite Parisian bakeries across the city, hope you’ll enjoy!
Du Pain et des Idées – Chocolatine or Croissant
This bakery is one of the best I have ever tried! Using ancient baking techniques and only top quality, organic ingredients, their products are excellent. For the ultimate indulgence, try a pain au chocolat (called chocolatine here) and a café au lait. Their croissants are also perfectly flakey and delicious, as are all of their pastries! This bakery is great because there is space to sit and enjoy your goodies outside. If you’re eager to get out and explore Paris, they also offer really good coffee to-go. Find this Parisian bakery at 34 Rue Yves Toudic, 75010.
Tout Autour du Pain – Croissant
Offering perhaps the flakiest and most buttery croissants I’ve tried in Paris, this little Parisian bakery doesn’t disappoint. While the lines can get long around lunchtime, the queue moves fairly quickly and the wait is worth it! Treat your tastebuds to a delicious croissant at 134 Rue de Turenne, 75003.
Des Gâteaux et du Pain – Any Pastry or Cake
This Parisian bakery is a treat for the eyes and the stomach! Beautiful, glistening and perfectly flakey pastries can be found here, as well as some amazing cakes. Feast your eyes on picture-perfect vienoisseries and indulge in some of the best pastries Parisian bakeries have to offer. Located at 89 Rue du Bac, 75007.
I’ve shared with you almost everything you need to know about Parisian bakeries! The weather is starting to warm up in Paris, which means picnic season is almost here. Baguettes make the perfect base for a sandwich, or pair perfectly with some cheese and jam, and pastries are excellent for a morning excursion. Join the locals for an amazing picnic lunch in the Tuileries gardens, or on the riverbank in front of Notre-Dame Cathedral. You’ll be in Parisian heaven, the views and food just can’t be beat!
Hope to see you soon in Paris!