The enchanting fragrance of fresh croissants enveloping the streets early in the morning – nothing screams France more than this peculiar smell. Personally, it is the first thing I notice when I come back to the country, and the one I miss the most when I am away.

After living in France for a while, going out to get a warm croissant in the morning becomes a decadent habit that fails to get old. After all, who doesn’t like to start the day with a buttery pastry and a steaming hot coffee? 

Due to my obsession, I have done some due diligence trying as many croissants as I could possibly ingest from all around the city to identify the best the capital has to offer. And I am ready to disclose my findings to you.

But first – we cannot utter the words “buttery croissants” without mentioning this year’s list of winners for the best croissant in Paris from the Paris baker’s union competition.

On the left is a close up of pastries on the counter, and on the right is a photo of pain au chocolat.
Top: Conor Brown
Above left: @boulangeriemamiche / right: Nicholas Doyle

Meilleur Croissant au Beurre 2023 du Grand Paris – The best butter croissant in Paris 

We recently unveiled the winners for the best baguette in Paris. Just a few days later, le Syndicat des Boulangers du Grand Paris (the association of Paris bakers) announced where to find the best butter croissants in Paris. There were 144 entrants and 119 croissants baked by bakers in the greater Paris area. Past winners have included Jean-Michel Carton of Maison Carton in 2022, located on boulevard de Denain just near the Gare du Nord and Isabelle Leday’s (formerly of Maison Pichard) La Maison d’Isabelle in the heart of the Latin Quarter on boulevard Saint-Germain.

What Makes For a Good Croissant? 

Head into any bakery and you will find variations on the classic plain croissant: pain au chocolat, almond croissants, etc. This competition is very specific. Chefs that take part in the competition produce a croissant au beurre and must use Charentes-Poitou AOP butter. The jury evaluated the visual appearance, cooking, the layers, the texture and above all, taste. 

What’s the best croissant in Paris? The winners are:

  1. Eric Teboul, Chez Meunier – 185 rue de Crimée, 75019 Paris
  2. Thierry Rabineau, Boulangerie Moderne – 16 rue des Fossés Saint-Jacques, 75005 Paris
  3. Cyril Daniel. Boulangerie M. Jacques – 132 rue Saint-Maur, 75011 Paris
  4. Maxime Taranne,  Boulangerie Alexine – 15 rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis, 75010 Paris
  5. Thierry Meunier, Boulangerie Thierry Meunier Île Seguin – 58 rue Marcel Bontemps, 92100 Boulogne-Billancourt
  6. Alexis Rouges, Boulangerie Rougès – 45 avenue de Saint-Ouen, 75017 Paris
  7. Frédéric Comyn, Boulangerie au 140 – 140 rue de Belleville, 75020 Paris
  8. Benjamin Turquier, Tout autour du Pain – 134 rue de Turenne, 75003 Paris
  9. Eric Thevenot, Boulangerie Vibrations Gourmandes – 101 Gd Rue Charles-de-Gaulle, 94130 Nogent-sur-Marne
  10. Jean-Yves Boullier, Le Moulin de la Croix Nivert – 39 rue de la Croix Nivert, 75015 Paris
  11. Florent Cadot, Le Grenier à Pain Vaugirard – 270 rue de Vaugirard, 75015 Paris
  12. Baptiste et Maxime Sohier Maison Sohier – 2 allée Christophe Colomb, 93160 Noisy-le-Grand
  13. Laurent Bergeron, Maison Bergeron – 112 rue Saint-Dominique, 75007 Paris
  14. Nicolas et Magali Roquais, Boulangerie Magali Charonne – 35 rue de Charonne, 75011 Paris
  15. Thierry Soulet, Boulangerie Plutus – 204 rue des Pyrénées, 75020 Paris
  16. Frédéric Antunes, Boulangerie Au Fournil du Château – 8 avenue du Château, 94300 Vincennes
  17. Pierre Laigle, Boulangerie Cerise – 23 rue Michelet, 92100 Boulogne-Billancourt
  18. Patrick Benichou, Boulangerie Liberté Vinaigriers – 39 rue des Vinaigriers, 75010 Paris
  19. Joël DEFIVES, Boulangerie Baptiste Batignolles – 17 rue des Moines, 75017 Paris
  20. Sami Kerchaoui, Maison Kerck – 76 rue Saint-Maur, 75011 Paris
A fresh croissant in a brown bag next to a white cup filled with hot coffee.
Markus Clemens

And our favorite places in the French capital, for tried and true flaky croissants? 

In no particular order, here are some of our favorite croissant spots:

Des Gateaux et du Pain

If you find yourself on the south side of the city around Montparnasse, Claire Damon’s pastries are certainly worth a try. You can go for the classic croissant or try their delicious chausson aux pommes, which takes no fewer than six days to make.

63 boulevard Pasteur – 75015 Paris

89 Rue du Bac – 75007 Paris

Mamiche

Cécile Khayat and Victoria Effantin put a modern twist on the classic French bakery when they opened Mamiche in 2017. Now, with two shops and a bustling delivery service, their boulangerie is a great place to satisfy your morning cravings in the city. 

32 Rue du Château d’Eau, 75010 Paris

45 Rue Condorcet, 75009 Paris

Croissants on the left and the doorway of the bakery on the right with the counter in the distance
left: mahyar motebassem / right: @boulangeriemamiche

Laurent Duchêne

Usually, French croissants are always nature, meaning that is extremely rare to find a croissant filled with something (chocolate, jam, cream, and so on) like an Italian cornetto would be. Award-winning pâtissier Laurent Duchêne (he was given the title of Meilleur ouvrier de France in 1993) changed that when he decided to bring chocolate into the picture. His chocolate croissant is not only beautiful to look at, but it’s also filled with delicious praline. Basically, dessert for breakfast.

2 rue Wurtz, 75013 Paris

238 rue de la Convention, 75015

Boulangerie Comptoir Gana, Paris 15e

If you want to experience a French bakery like a Parisian and avoid queues of tourists, make sure to pay this family-run boulangerie a visit. No fuss, just a friendly local bakery producing fresh traditional pastries that are loved by locals.

various locations including

212 rue de la Convention, 75015 Paris

On the left is a hand holding a plating of croissants covered in chocolate drizzle, and on the right is a sunset atop of Parisian rooftops
left: @boulangerie_gana / right: @jeffonline

Boulangerie Utopie

The best croissants are the ones that show off all their crunchy layers on the outside and are deliciously soft and buttery on the inside. Boulangerie Utopie, in the 11th arrondissement, nails the balance and delivers some of the best pastries in the capital.

20 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 75011

The only downside to living in a city full of the best bakeries? Far too many excellent croissants to choose from! Wherever you are in the city, whether you’re a local or it’s your first time here, make sure you start your day right!

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Written by Alessia Armenise for HiP Paris. Looking to travel? Check out Plum Guide and our Marketplace for fabulous vacation rentals in Paris, France or Italy. Looking to rent long or short term, or buy in France? Ask us! We can connect you to our trusted providers for amazing service and rates or click here. Looking to bring France home to you or to learn online or in person? Check out our marketplace shop and experiences.

WRITTEN BY

Alessia Armenise

Alessia is a writer and creative based in Paris. After a few years working in London, she moved back to Paris and now writes freelance for media and brands, specialising in eco-luxury, slow travel and sustainability. Her work has been featured in Stylist, Milk Magazine and Grazia France among others. She also runs a sustainability and slow living focused website called Pretty Slow and hosts a podcast called Pretty Good Business.

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