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Pastries from Bake Sum Bake Sum

21 of the Best Bakeries in the East Bay

Pies, cakes, and all the trimmings

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Pastry people take note: There's no shortage of opportunities for flaky croissants and crumbly crusts in the East Bay. In fact, Berkeley, Oakland, and Alameda are brimming with sweet, sweet baked goods, from bakeries specializing in pies to cakes made with seasonal fruits and pan dulce. And no need for those without a sweet tooth to feel left out: Savory croissants, pretzel buns, loaves of fresh bread, breakfast sandwiches, and pizza are also on offer at many of these spots. For all your baked good eating needs, these 21 bakeries will fulfill every sweet and savory craving you've got.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Starbread

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At the East Bay’s lone location of this local Filipino bakery chain, there’s no need to look beyond its trademark offering: señorita bread, a kind of cross between a dinner roll and a sweet, buttery pastry. Crucially, the bread is served piping-hot out of the oven all day long, and you can buy a huge boxful for around $10. It makes the most welcome addition to any potluck or barbecue.

A box of señorita bread from Starbread Bakery Luke Tsai

Gran Milan

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Tucked away in a cluster of warehouses on a side street next to the freeway, Gran Milan is one of Richmond’s real hidden gems. This little bakery has a short menu of pizzas and salads, but the main attractions are some of the finest Italian pastries in the Bay — a truly impressive lineup of flaky, delicate, and often-custard-filled beauties.

Pâtisserie Rotha

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Plan ahead before making a trip to this buzzy French bakery, which, despite its tiny, anonymous-looking storefront, draws some of the East Bay’s longest lines every weekend — to the point that if you arrive more than an hour after it opens for the day, you may find that everything in the display case has sold out. Buttery croissants are the biggest draw here, but the kouign amann, canelés, and Portuguese egg tarts all also have faithful followings.

box of croissants from Patisserie Rotha Luke Tsai

Starter Bakery

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Starter Bakery has the kouign-amann you crave: flaky, buttery perfection. In fact, baker Brian Wood handcrafts a plethora of flaky treats at his Berkeley bakery, where treat-seekers will be able to order online ahead for pickup. For your current pastry needs, check out their stalls at East Bay farmers markets (Temescal, Grand Lake, and Montclair) and cafes all around the Bay.

Masse's Pastries

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Husband and wife team Paul and Marcia Masse consistently produce some of the most gorgeous cakes and European-style patisserie in the East Bay. Call ahead to order museum-quality cakes and tarts, or stop by for a coffee and pastry at their North Berkeley bakery.

Masse's

Acme Bread Company

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It's a no-frills place that constantly has a line, but Acme is a wonderland of bread. Step up to the counter and choose from sweet and savory loaves, and pastries like flaky croissants, madeleines, and danishes. Sourdough, challa, olive loaf, pain de mie, and sticky cinnamon currant bread are all made fresh daily. Pop into Bartavelle a few doors down for a coffee while you wait.

Acme Bread

Fournée Bakery

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Some say this low-key Berkeley bakery has the best croissants in the Bay Area, rivaling even those of much-loved Tartine Bakery. The ham-and-cheese croissant is renowned for its flaky, buttery exterior and savory insides, while the pain au chocolate is unrivaled in the area. There's usually a line but it moves quickly, due to an efficient staff and customer base who knows what to order.

Janelle Bitker

Crixa Cakes

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Berkeley's Crixa Cakes has a wide array of specialty cakes and baked goods, with an emphasis on Hungarian, Russian, Central European, and American treats. That means cakes like amaretti cream cake and black forest cakes sit side-by-side with pavé vergiate, a flourless chocolate cake. And the bakery’s generous deep-dish fruit pies are second to none — whether it’s peak summer pitted fruit season or during the throes of your holiday-driven pumpkin pie cravings.

Third Culture Bakery

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Sam Butarbutar and Wenter Shyu made a name for Third Culture Bakery before even opening the Berkeley brick-and-mortar. Their cult-hit mochi muffins first made their way through Bay Area coffee shops and converted legions to Third Culture’s Asian-inspired treats. Start with the original mochi muffin, a squishy riff on Hawaiian butter mochi infused with coconut and pandan, and then move on to the matcha custard cakes and passion fruit-glazed mochi doughnuts.

Sesame Tiny Bakery

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This “pocket sized” bakery sharing space with The Kebabery in Berkeley, offers some of the best desserts and pastries made with seasonal fruits. Although its hours are limited to Friday through Sunday for now, items like the recent sesame chiffon and blood orange marmalade cake (sold in slices) and black sesame éclairs will have you planning a trip around their opening.

La Farine Boulangerie Patisserie

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Now serving three East Bay neighborhoods (Rockridge, Piedmont Avenue, and the Dimond), La Farine has been an Oakland institution for over 40 years. The original location on College Avenue is still offering boatloads of gorgeous breads, pastries, cakes, and the like, and can be counted on for holiday offerings like hot cross buns at Easter.

Firebrand Artisan Breads

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Firebrand has a treasure trove of unique pastries, including preztel buns stuffed with gruyere and dusted with pimentón pepper, mini apple pies, and cinnamon sugar pretzels, but their breads aren't to be ignored. In particular, the savory scone is a treat of bacon, cheddar, mozzarella and chives; the croissant Pullman loaf is a must for sandwiches at home.

Bake Sum

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This bakery is creating its own special brand of pastries mixing Asian flavors with traditional baking techniques. Take the strawberry-kinako bun, a baked croissant bun filled with kinako pastry cream and strawberry jam, or the gorgeous, colorful swirls atop their cereal buns. It’s a playful take on desserts that will be nostalgic for many.

Gregory's Gourmet Desserts

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Literally an underground bakery, located in little basement on an Uptown Oakland side street with barely any exterior signage, Gregory’s has nevertheless long been a local cult favorite for cheesecakes and pies. Try any of the most popular offerings — say, the lemon bars, the snickerdoodles, or the peach cobbler — and you’ll become a believer too.

Arizmendi Bakery

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The employee-owned co-op is known for its veggie-only pizza made with a sourdough crust, available by the slice or whole pie, and wide selection of cookies, breads, and pastries. The breads change daily, and include options like cinnamon-raisin sourdough, honey wheat bread, and corn-cheddar-onion bread; don't miss the bins full of cookies, granola, croissants, and scones. There’s also a location at 4301 San Pablo Avenue in Emeryville.

Ruby King Bakery Cafe

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For the most flaky, layered, and buttery egg tarts in the East Bay, there is only one place to go: Ruby King. The old-school, no-frills spot in Oakland Chinatown does brisk to-go business, serving a variety of Chinese buns for about a buck. But those egg tarts, with their quivering, still-warm centers? Just 95 cents apiece.

Pietisserie

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Unsurprisingly, Pietisserie is all about the pies and nothing but the pies. Baker Jaynelle St. Jean sells her craveworthy pies out of a petite shop in Oakland, offering flavors like ginger lemon custard, spiced apple, beet, and chocolate pecan. Flavors change daily, so check in before heading over.

Peñas Bakery II

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East Oakland is home to a number of Mexican bakeries, but the undisputed favorite remains Peñas Bakery II, a community staple since 1989. Trays are always stacked high, brimming with fluffy conchas, custard-filled empanadas, and other fresh pan dulce. Be aware it’s cash only.

Peñas Bakery II/Facebook

Crispian Bakery

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Alameda’s best bakery comes from pastry chef Beth Woulfe and baker Christian Fidelis de Goes, industry vets who met while working at Bouchon Bakery in New York. Breakfast pastries particularly sing here, but the breads, cookies, and French-style desserts all measure up, too.

As Kneaded Bakery

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Glistening challah, pointy baguettes, and custardy porridge loaves greet customers at As Kneaded Bakery, arguably the most serious bread bakery in the East Bay. The naturally leavened miche is extra tangy, the baguettes caramelized and crunchy, and the challah unusually eggy. You can find As Kneaded’s breads at some farmers markets and grocery stores across the Bay Area throughout the week, but head to the San Leandro HQ on weekends for treats.

Janelle Bitker

Silva Bakery: Portuguese Baked Goods & Artisan Breads

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One of the Bay Area’s only Portuguese bakeries, this family-run gem in Hayward is worth a trip for the pasteis de nata (Portuguese egg tarts) alone. The shop also carries a variety of other hard-to-find pastries and breads, as well as as imported foods like sausages, cheeses, and canned fish.

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Starbread

A box of señorita bread from Starbread Bakery Luke Tsai

At the East Bay’s lone location of this local Filipino bakery chain, there’s no need to look beyond its trademark offering: señorita bread, a kind of cross between a dinner roll and a sweet, buttery pastry. Crucially, the bread is served piping-hot out of the oven all day long, and you can buy a huge boxful for around $10. It makes the most welcome addition to any potluck or barbecue.

A box of señorita bread from Starbread Bakery Luke Tsai

Gran Milan

Tucked away in a cluster of warehouses on a side street next to the freeway, Gran Milan is one of Richmond’s real hidden gems. This little bakery has a short menu of pizzas and salads, but the main attractions are some of the finest Italian pastries in the Bay — a truly impressive lineup of flaky, delicate, and often-custard-filled beauties.

Pâtisserie Rotha

box of croissants from Patisserie Rotha Luke Tsai

Plan ahead before making a trip to this buzzy French bakery, which, despite its tiny, anonymous-looking storefront, draws some of the East Bay’s longest lines every weekend — to the point that if you arrive more than an hour after it opens for the day, you may find that everything in the display case has sold out. Buttery croissants are the biggest draw here, but the kouign amann, canelés, and Portuguese egg tarts all also have faithful followings.

box of croissants from Patisserie Rotha Luke Tsai

Starter Bakery

Starter Bakery has the kouign-amann you crave: flaky, buttery perfection. In fact, baker Brian Wood handcrafts a plethora of flaky treats at his Berkeley bakery, where treat-seekers will be able to order online ahead for pickup. For your current pastry needs, check out their stalls at East Bay farmers markets (Temescal, Grand Lake, and Montclair) and cafes all around the Bay.

Masse's Pastries

Masse's

Husband and wife team Paul and Marcia Masse consistently produce some of the most gorgeous cakes and European-style patisserie in the East Bay. Call ahead to order museum-quality cakes and tarts, or stop by for a coffee and pastry at their North Berkeley bakery.

Masse's

Acme Bread Company

Acme Bread

It's a no-frills place that constantly has a line, but Acme is a wonderland of bread. Step up to the counter and choose from sweet and savory loaves, and pastries like flaky croissants, madeleines, and danishes. Sourdough, challa, olive loaf, pain de mie, and sticky cinnamon currant bread are all made fresh daily. Pop into Bartavelle a few doors down for a coffee while you wait.

Acme Bread

Fournée Bakery

Janelle Bitker

Some say this low-key Berkeley bakery has the best croissants in the Bay Area, rivaling even those of much-loved Tartine Bakery. The ham-and-cheese croissant is renowned for its flaky, buttery exterior and savory insides, while the pain au chocolate is unrivaled in the area. There's usually a line but it moves quickly, due to an efficient staff and customer base who knows what to order.

Janelle Bitker

Crixa Cakes

Berkeley's Crixa Cakes has a wide array of specialty cakes and baked goods, with an emphasis on Hungarian, Russian, Central European, and American treats. That means cakes like amaretti cream cake and black forest cakes sit side-by-side with pavé vergiate, a flourless chocolate cake. And the bakery’s generous deep-dish fruit pies are second to none — whether it’s peak summer pitted fruit season or during the throes of your holiday-driven pumpkin pie cravings.

Third Culture Bakery

Sam Butarbutar and Wenter Shyu made a name for Third Culture Bakery before even opening the Berkeley brick-and-mortar. Their cult-hit mochi muffins first made their way through Bay Area coffee shops and converted legions to Third Culture’s Asian-inspired treats. Start with the original mochi muffin, a squishy riff on Hawaiian butter mochi infused with coconut and pandan, and then move on to the matcha custard cakes and passion fruit-glazed mochi doughnuts.

Sesame Tiny Bakery

This “pocket sized” bakery sharing space with The Kebabery in Berkeley, offers some of the best desserts and pastries made with seasonal fruits. Although its hours are limited to Friday through Sunday for now, items like the recent sesame chiffon and blood orange marmalade cake (sold in slices) and black sesame éclairs will have you planning a trip around their opening.

La Farine Boulangerie Patisserie

Now serving three East Bay neighborhoods (Rockridge, Piedmont Avenue, and the Dimond), La Farine has been an Oakland institution for over 40 years. The original location on College Avenue is still offering boatloads of gorgeous breads, pastries, cakes, and the like, and can be counted on for holiday offerings like hot cross buns at Easter.

Firebrand Artisan Breads

Firebrand has a treasure trove of unique pastries, including preztel buns stuffed with gruyere and dusted with pimentón pepper, mini apple pies, and cinnamon sugar pretzels, but their breads aren't to be ignored. In particular, the savory scone is a treat of bacon, cheddar, mozzarella and chives; the croissant Pullman loaf is a must for sandwiches at home.

Bake Sum

This bakery is creating its own special brand of pastries mixing Asian flavors with traditional baking techniques. Take the strawberry-kinako bun, a baked croissant bun filled with kinako pastry cream and strawberry jam, or the gorgeous, colorful swirls atop their cereal buns. It’s a playful take on desserts that will be nostalgic for many.