Perfectly flaky pastries, artisan chocolate in unexpected flavors, and brightly colored macarons abound in Seattle, where you can satisfy your sweet tooth cravings while taking in the natural beauty of cooler seasons in the Pacific Northwest.
From sweet to savory and classic to innovative, the city’s bakeries and shops beckon with warm breads and decadent confections. Here are a few of our favorites in Seattle and the surrounding area, complete with suggestions for what to order (first) from the team at The Woodmark:
You can smell Bakery Nouveau before you can see it. Aromas of freshly baked, sweet and savory pastries and indulgent desserts fill the streets for blocks as the team crafts one-of-a-kind creations like the twice-baked almond and chocolate croissant. The bakery is one of the most well-known in Seattle, offering huge variety headed by Chef William Leaman, who once claimed victory at the Coupe du Monde de Boulangerie (World Cup of Baking). Along with the much-loved twice-baked croissant, try specialties like the Phoenix mousse cake with caramelized pecans.
4737 California Avenue SW, West Seattle
137 5th Avenue E, Capitol Hill, Seattle
426 SW 153rd Street, Burien
Photo: Clare Barboza
With a tagline like “Confections and Chaos,” it’s safe to say you are in for a memorable experience at Lady Yum. The French macaron and champagne parlor in downtown Seattle (or Kirkland) welcomes you with a pastel rainbow of perfectly baked macarons and glistening chandeliers over each high-top table.
Macaron flavors like Chocolate Mint, Honey Lavender, and Raspberry Champagne await year-round, along with seasonal flavors (Salted Brandy Nutella, Blackberry Almond, and Not Your Basic Pumpkin Spice for the final days of fall) and monthly flavors. From light to decadent, indulge in your choice of macarons with a glass of bubbly.
2130 6th Avenue, Downtown Seattle
111 Lake Street, Downtown Kirkland
Photo: Lady Yum
Born out of a passion for natural chocolate and fair trade practices, Theo Chocolate crafts everything from classic chocolate bars and bites to Fantasy Bars like Cinnamon Horchata and Root Beer Barrel. The first organic, fair-trade-certified chocolate maker in North America was founded by Joe Whinney, who pioneered the supply of organic cocoa beans to the United States from Central America and Africa in 1994. Stop into the Fremont shop for samples of the self-proclaimed “mind-bendingly wonderful chocolate.”
3400 Phinney Avenue N, Fremont, Seattle
Photo: Theo Chocolate
Seattle’s first cupcake bakery and café, Cupcake Royale has garnered attention from the likes of The New York Times and Food Network with its made-from-scratch-daily cupcakes topped with smooth buttercream frosting. Amidst the pink, cutesy décor, you will find the bakery’s classic flavors like Lavender, Lemon Drop, and Salted Caramel as well as seasonal flavors and sweet treats from ice cream to cake pops. Try the Boozy Rumball cupcake or the Cranberry White Chocolate cupcake for fall.
111 E Pike Street, Capitol Hill, Seattle
Various Other Locations
Photo: Benjamin Blackketter
Filled with whipped and Bavarian creams, spread with fresh raspberry jam, and covered in marzipan, the Princess Torte sponge cake is well known in the Seattle area. You can find the Swedish delicacy at Hoffman’s Fine Cakes and Pastries in Redmond, along with other award-winning cakes (try the much-loved Tiramisu or the German Chocolate with pecan filling), pastries, small desserts, and light lunches. Stop into the bakery anytime for a 6-inch cake or place a custom order ahead of your visit.
16175 Cleveland Street, Redmond
Photo: Hoffman's Fine Cakes and Pastries
The maple bars from Chuck’s Donuts are so famous in the Seattle area that some patrons will head to the bakery at 3 a.m. just to enjoy the first batch of the day. Headlining an amazing selection of donuts, the light and fluffy maple bars are topped with whipped frosting rather than the traditional thin layer of icing (and for die-hard fans, the frosting is available for purchase by the tub). Plan to visit the family-owned donut shop early – although perhaps not before dark – because they sell out quickly.
5335 NE 4th Street #1, Renton
Tamarind Cayenne Salt and Grappa are just a few of the fascinating truffles to come out of Intrigue Chocolate this fall. Famous for complex flavor profiles, the small artisanal chocolate company updates its selection daily with flavors like Jamaican Hot Chocolate, Curry Maple Carrot, and Bourbon and Vanilla (check Twitter for the current menu).
The delicate truffles are crafted by Chef Aaron Barthel, who was a farmer, botanist, brewer, and baker before ever becoming a chocolate maker. His small, natural batches of handcrafted ganache reveal rich flavors as they melt, so he encourages taking your time with tastings – perhaps even pairing them with wine, coffee, or a fine spirit.
157 S Jackson Street, Seattle
Photo: Intrigue Chocolate
Located on Main Street in Bellevue, Belle Pastry is a charming French bakery with a selection ranging from classic eclairs to pear caramel mousse. Pastry chef and chocolatier Jean-Claude Ferré founded the bakery in 2003, and today Chefs Khalid Kaskou and Kathryn Campbell continue his legacy, crafting delectable crème brulee, danishes, génoises from tiramisu to raspberry Napoleons, macarons, and custom cakes.
10373 Main Street, Bellevue
Photo: Belle Pastry
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