At first thought, Paris might seem like a destination just for history buffs looking to delve into European history, fashionistas seeking a sneak peak at the latest trends or couples searching for romance. While the City of Lights does cater to these types of travelers, it is also known for being a magnificent spot for those planning a trip full of award-winning food and mouthwatering treats.
In particular, pastry shops and bakeries are popular spots for foodies on vacation in this world-renowned city. Since there are countless places to indulge your sweet tooth here, we’ve narrowed it down to a short list of the best cake bakeries in Paris. Use these as a guide for planning your itinerary going from one bakery to the next because your diet can go out the window while on vacation in Paris.
Classic French cakes
It’s nearly impossible to turn down the offer of a slice of freshly baked cake, especially one of the French variety. Whether you prefer light and fluffy cakes or dense and chocolaty sweets, the appeal of such desserts is undeniable. Below are some of the classics that you can find at many of the best cake bakeries in Paris.
Baba au rhum: The small yeast cake is soaked in liquor, typically rum, and is made in individual servings. The batter is made from eggs, milk and butter, and the rich cakes are sometimes filled with pastry cream or whipped cream.
Charlotte: A charlotte cake is a trifle-style cake that can be served hot or cold. It is prepared by lining a mold with lady fingers, brioche or some other form of cake and then filling it with custard or fruit puree. There are many different ways to make a charlotte so be sure to try several different kinds when visiting the best cake bakeries in Paris.
Kouglof: This French dessert comes from the Alsace region of eastern France. It is a large ring-shaped marble cake. What makes this form of Bundt cake different is that most enjoy it in the morning or with coffee, so it’s easy to find at local coffee shops as well as many of the best cake bakeries in Paris.
Madeleine cake: It’s a dainty sponge cake that comes formed with shell-shaped depressions. Madeleine cakes originated in the Lorraine region of France and the genoise cake batter used gives each cake its light texture. Toppings of jam, coconut, cherry glacé or powdered sugar complete the Madeleine cake.
Moelleux au Chocolat: Often referred to as chocolate fondant, molten chocolate cake, or chocolate lava cake, moelleux au chocolate is as decadent as it sounds. Part flour-less chocolate cake, part soufflé, this type of cake has a warm, chocolate center that oozes with each bite.
Best cake bakeries in Paris
From dainty sweet petits-fours to extravagant made-to-order cakes, the best cake bakeries in Paris have many treats that are sure to delight your palate. At each of the places on our list, the bakers treat cake making as an art using only the finest ingredients for each masterpiece. Try something from each of these bakeries and you’ll see why these places are undeniably the best.
Although Angelina is first known as a tearoom where the likes of Coco Chanel and Proust mingled, this classic spot deserves to be recognized as one of the best cake bakeries in Paris, too. It is celebrating more than a century as one of Paris’s most sophisticated and elite places to indulge in tea and sweet petits-fours (miniature sweet treats). The Choc Africain on the menu is made from pure black African origin chocolates and the cake’s smooth, aromatic taste mimic’s Angelina’s famous African hot chocolate. Each baked good is based on the classics of French pastry making and utilizes seasonal ingredients to elevate each dessert. Angelina can also transform sweet petits-fours to be displayed as elaborate cakes, and you can order one for a special occasion.
Café Pouchkine hails from Moscow, Russia, but it has come to be known as one of the best cake bakeries in Paris where locals and visitors alike can treat themselves. The elaborate window displays of mouthwatering cakes at each location will be enough to whet your appetite and prompt you to go inside. The menu features desserts that have both Russian and French influences, are both salty and sweet, and all of which are dramatically decorated with bold colors and lavish edible decorations. Visit the Saint-Germain-Des-Prés location where there is a tea room and restaurant, so you can take your time savoring the bakeries gourmet desserts. Take an assortment of macarons and eclairs to go, so you have something to snack on later.
Baking runs in the family for Carl Marletti. His grandfather owned a bakery, and this childhood exposure to the industry helped feed his desire to obtain a vocational diploma in Pastry, Chocolate and Sugar Candies. He has a need to satisfy every customer that walks through the doors of the Carl Marletti bakery, which is evident with each bite of his delicious baked goods. The bakery is located in the heart of the 5th arrondissement, an area that many Parisians call “de bouche” or “gourmet.” Carl Marletti is known for its classic mille-feuille, which consists of razor-thin pieces of stacked puff pastry with cream filling separating each layer. You can also enjoy a heavenly slice of cake here or have a cake for a special occasion catered by this top bakery in Paris.
With one half of this bakery featuring freshly baked loaves of bread and the other half offering exquisite cakes, Des Gâteaux et du Pain is one of the best cake bakeries in Paris and a must-visit on vacation here. The sinfully good combination of bread and cake draws customers morning and evening each day. Pâtissiers Claire Damon is constantly reworking each of her cake recipes to near perfection, so every mouthful of dessert is a new taste sensation. Because the sweets on the menu are all bite size, there’s no need to feel guilty about sampling several of this bakery’s succulent creations.
La Pâtisserie des Rêves has become one of the best cake bakeries in Paris by continually revisiting traditional favorites, such as vanilla mille-fleuille and Paris-Brest cakes, to make them even more delicious and truly gourmet treats. Exquisite cakes are imagined and created by Philippe Conticini, one of the bakery’s talented pastry chefs, while co-founder Thierry Teyssier helps create the impeccable setting that lures so many through its doors. At La Pâtisserie des Rêves the aim is that every bite of cake or pastry will create a lasting memory or offer a link to a fond childhood (or adult) experience. Every baked good at La Pâtisserie des Rêves tells a story and transports the customer through time.
Pierre Hermé, the namesake for this Parisian bakery, is a master of pastry-making and his renowned bakeries have quickly expanded internationally in the past decade. With “pleasure as his only guide,” Pierre Hermé constantly challenges traditional flavors in an effort to produce some of the tastiest sweets in the world. He has also thrown some of the more traditional baking techniques out the window, instead preferring to revolutionize the pastry-making industry. At Pierre Hermé Paris, sugar is used as salt in an effort to heighten flavors in each cake and the relatively simple decor makes a statement in its own right. Order a pound cake, inspired by Hermé’s childhood, for a delicious cake that oftentimes has flavorful surprises inside.
Sugarplum Cake Shop opened its doors in the spring of 2010 and has quickly climbed the ranks of the best cake bakeries in Paris. Located in the Latin Quarter of Paris, this bakery is known for its unique cake designs and its traditional North American recipes used to make award-winning cakes daily. The team here bakes with only the finest ingredients and often uses its signature Swiss meringue buttercream frosting to hold each of the cake tiers together. The finished product is always a spectacular edible work of art. Call the bakery to order a cake for a special occasion, or make yourself comfortable in the cozy coffee shop within Sugarplum to nibble on a slice of its famous carrot cake.