Best Bakeries in Orange County


Tara Afshar, Journalist

Ever wondered where to find the best baked goods in Orange County? This past year has shut many customers of flocking to their favorite neighborhood eateries. News of emerging reopening’s rings music to everyone’s ears, and this handpicked list of OC bakeries will come in handy.

Frogs Bakery was created by chefs that really wanted to practice and respect the art of breadmaking. Ten years ago their first sourdough starter was produced, and today this same leaven is used to create their daily breads baked in their bakery. Frogs Bakery prides itself in using organic ingredients, using zero additives, and a slow fermentation process for their breads. Their assortment of croissants, pastries, scones, and muffins is out of this world. Customers who are vegan or have other special dietary needs will not be compromised. Frogs has the tastiest vegan treats. Their baked goods can be found at local farmers markets, or at the factory outlet in Crenshaw.

Rye Goods organic bakery is the latest hotspot in Lido village. A group of incredibly talented bakers and chefs set out to make a difference, and their arduous collaboration resulted in this new neighborhood favorite: Rye Goods. Their bread assortment is mind boggling, and their pastries and cookies are spot on. Certain items sell out, but ordering online will guarantee your baked goods wrapped and ready to go.

Sweet Lilys is an institution. Its owner Lily has been baking for thirty years. She first apprenticed at the famous Yas Bakery in Tehran, Iran, where their learned the intricate art of baking from great masters. Sweet Lily’s Bakery is tucked away in a shopping mall in Lake Forest. Their baked goods and cakes are fresh and delicious. The sales staff are amongst the friendliest, extending their Persian hospitality by offering customers samples of piping hot baked goods straight out of the oven. This bakery has been a staple, and their quality and freshness is consistently outstanding.

C’est Si Bon, founded in 1979, was the first bakery in Newport Beach to offer its residents French baguettes and croissants. With a newly renovated exterior, and outstanding patio seating, C’est Si Bon can’t be beat. Their baguettes are out of this world, and perhaps the best in Orange County. It is no longer a secret, but their seasonal pumpkin pie is one of the best pumpkin pies in California. Pierce Hemphill, a junior at CdM, says “I used to not be much of a fan of pumpkin pie, I was hooked. Most pies will be served with ice cream, but this one I always have by itself not to diminish the flavor at all”. What truly sets C’est Si Bon apart from other bakeries is its friendly neighborhood boulangerie vibe.

Moulin Bakery truly transports their customers to authentic boulangeries, patisseries, and bistros found in France. The croque Monsieur is spot on, and the jambon fromage sandwich is a reminiscing must. The baked goods do not disappoint. On a recent visit, the famous Galette Des Rois was being offered along with a golden paper crown and a feve. In France, the “Kings Cake” is a sweet French tradition celebrating the epiphany, a religious feast day commemorating the arrival of Three Kings to the manger. However, today in France it is a way to celebrate the new year with family. Moulin Bakery also stocks quintessential French boxed cookies and candies only found in France.

Other notable bakeries in OC are Black-market Bakery at The Camp, Viktor Benes in Irvine, and the notorious Porto Bakery, still drawing a crowd at 5 am for their famous empanadas and baked goods.

As 2021 starts up, many bakeries are revamping their menus, some have sadly taken their last bows, as others are fine tuning their blueprints and gearing up for their grand openings. Stay tuned as there will be an exciting grand reveal near the Great Park in April 2021.