by Fiona McMurrey

1. Le Drops

Courtesy of

“Drops,” “Drops au chocolat,” “patte d’ours,” (but not the same as the American bear claw) or “Brioche suisse aux pépites de chocolat,” is a pastry prepared with brioche dough hence their fluffy, decadent appearance, that lacks the crispiness of a pain au chocolat or a croissant. This pastry is composed of brioche dough layered over vanilla custard and little morsels of chocolate chips. They are incredibly rich so if you’re preparing on enjoying one first thing in the morning anticipate that it will be more of a brunch-style meal or split it with your partner after you run out to your local boulangerie while they’re sleeping to surprise them with pastries and coffee - that’s how we say “je t’aime,” in France (just joking but it’s an endearing gesture nonetheless).

I usually grab one of these when I am experiencing “mes regles,” the translation of which I’ll leave up to you but let’s just say it involves a certain avaricious lust for chocolate and sobbing hysterically at the sight of my neighbor’s three month old dachshund as he chases the petals of our Wisteria tree as they cascade down upon him from on high. Pair it with the coffee and mild painkiller of your choice and, particularly if you are a woman of a certain biological age, your day will be off to a relatively good start… considering the circumstances. For the best “le drops,” in Paris head to SAIN boulangerie at their respective locations in the 3rd and 10th arrondissements.

SAIN Boulangerie
📍13 Rue Alibert, 75010

2. Pain aux raisins

Courtesy of the Mamiche Instagram Page @boulangeriemamiche

The pain aux raisins is equally as iconic as the croissant and pain au chocolat and with good reason. Made with the identical flaky layers of a croissant and interwoven with mouth-watering frangipane and succulent raisins, this pastry should be at the top of your must-try list! Some variations include cognac interspersed with the frangipane, while others are glazed with a vanilla créme pâtisserie. For the best pain aux raisins in Paris, in my humble opinion, stroll up Hemingway’s Rue de Martyrs to Mamiche and indulge in a boulangerie that is truly a moveable feast!

📍45 Rue Condorcet, 75009
📍32 Rue Château d’Eau, 75010

3. Palmier

Two Palmiers, from the online journal Boulangerie, from La Boulangerie de la tour.

Perhaps the simplest pastry on this list, the palmier is a heavenly combination of puff pastry, sugar, and naturally, plenty of butter. The charming pastry is named for the palm leaf it resembles and is regularly enjoyed as an afternoon goûter or snack, pairing excellently with a delicate tea or coffee. For the best Palmier in Paris discover le Boulanger de la Tour in the 5th arrondissement, then pair your palmier with a steaming cup of the beverage of your choice from the boulangerie and wander through the quiet serenity of Jardin des Plantes located nearby.

Le Boulanger de la Tour
📍2 Rue Cardinal Lemoine, 75005

4. Chausson aux pommes

Courtesy of

Chausson aux pommes, or known to Americans as apple turnovers, are another fruit-filled French staple! The word “chausson” means slipper, so the term for the pastry effectively translates to “slipper from apples,” which I personally prefer to “apple turnover,” which would be “bouleversement aux pommes,” unless you want to use apples during la grève of course! SAIN boulangerie makes a reappearance on this list as one of the best places to try this pastry and was thoroughly recommended by acclaimed chef and author David Lebovitz who describes the chausson aux pommes from SAIN as unbelievably delicious despite their unassuming, rustic appearance.

SAIN boulangerie
📍13 Rue Alibert, 75010
📍23 Rue des Gravilliers, 75003


Babka fleur d’oranger, courtesy of the Babka Zana Instagram: @babkazana

Even though Babka does not originate in France, but historically comes from Jewish diaspora in Poland and Ukraine, I would be remiss not to mention one of the best boulangeries in Paris, Babka Zana, which first opened its doors in 2020. Renown for their sapid babka pistache fleur d’oranger, babka chocolat noisette, and their impossibly savory sandwiches, this boulangerie is a must-visit! If you pick up your pastries at their luminous location in the third arrondissement, be sure to also order a cup from their fantastic selection of coffee (also made in house!) and enjoy your babka in the recently reopened park of Place des Vosges for a perfect morning in Paris!

Babka Zana
📍65 Rue Condorcet, 75009
📍8 Rue du pas du la Mule, 75003

6. Mini Viennoiserie

The best way to try all French pastries at once, and believe me you will be tempted to, is to order them all in mini-viennoiserie form which are almost universally available in boulangeries - just make sure to specify that they are “mini”, add a little French accent to the word, and never forget to say Merci!