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chocolate croissants in OC or LA

  • v

Where do I find awesome chocolate croissants in OC or LA? I mean, not the pathetic imitation with a smidgen of chocolate encased in a greasy, doughy dishelved mess --- but the authentic version laden with delicious, but not overly sweet chocolate.

Sock it to me.

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  1. If for some reason you do not want to leave you home in the morning. Try Trader Joes Frozen Choclate Croissants. 4 in a box for $3.99 Its a tasty treat for my 10 year old in the mornings.. I just take 1 out the night before and let it proof in a pan overnight ( top of the stove is fine) . In the morning I preheat the oven at 350 and cook for 14 minutes.. Box says 20 -25 but 14 works great for us.. Brush with a beaten egg for a more delicate crust.
    Otherwise I have heard that there is a great place near Pico and LaCienega ( few blocks West ) that has the best in town. Its not Maison du Pain but closer to that old school chinese resto there ( does any one know of this spot?? )

    8 Replies
    1. re: Foodandwine

      The best I have had was at le Pain du jour(Santa Monica).

      1. re: mrsjoujou

        I love everything at le Pain du Jour. Oddly enough, (I say oddly, because there is not much good food to be had in the Palisades) a la
        tart makes an excellent pain du chocolat

        1. re: mrsjoujou

          Have to agree, Pain du Jour's pastries are just like in Paris. From the eclair, to the croissant, to the baguette, its a bit of Paris in Santa Monica,

        2. re: Foodandwine

          Do you mean Delice Bakrey, the kosher bakery on Pico?

          1. re: highforpie

            many kosher bakeries do not use butter.
            that would certainly affect the flavor of a croissant.
            dunno about delice

          2. re: Foodandwine

            I know it's probably not what the OP had intended, but I will agree 100% with the Trader Joe's frozen ones...they are great and easy to make. One of the bestter products at TJ's for certain and very fairly priced. I probably wouldn't have replied to this post, except that i just got a package out of the freezer an hour ago and they are now thawing/proofing in the kitchen right now!

            1. re: Foodandwine

              I tried the TJs choc. cros. and they were great. Thanks.

              1. re: Foodandwine

                I thought you were joking about the TJ frozen croissants until I tried them. They are *awesome*. Thanks for making my X-mas morning so easy! :)

              2. As far as pains au chocolat are concerned, my heart belongs to Breadbar.

                8718 W 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90048

                1 Reply
                1. re: Woolsey

                  i've had their croissants and pain au chocolat at intelligentsia - they're amazing!

                2. Amandine

                  Amandine Patissiere
                  12225 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: wutzizname

                    Amandine -- Ask them to warm it. They use a real oven, not a microwave.

                    1. re: liu

                      Another vote for Amandine. Plus everything there is simply delicious.

                      Are any of these croissants close to the Au Bon Pain chain that we don't see out here? It's been years, but ABP was the first chocolate croissant I had and I have nostalgia toward it.

                      1. re: Pei

                        is au bon pain the chain of joints that are all over NYC?

                        1. re: kevin

                          Yes. And I don't know if they were ever quite as good as a place like Amandine, but I too have fond memories their croissants, particularly the almond.

                          1. re: wutzizname

                            Definitely agree re Amandine, though I also urge the OP to try their banana chocolate danish, which is transcendent.

                        2. re: Pei

                          I confess the same ABP guilty pleasure, Pei. It was my first, too.
                          Authenticity? Questionable. Big hunka chocolate and butter in my belly? DEFINITELY.

                      1. Chez Nous in Toluka Lake has great croissants.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: LMelba

                          I too am on the search for the best chocolate croissants around.

                          I live in Orange County so I go to this French Bakery owned by Vietnamese but it actually has French bakers.

                          Very crispy flaky outside, soft inside, bittersweet chocolate.

                          Boulangerie Pierre & Patisserie located at:
                          14352 Brookhurst St.
                          Garden Grove, CA 92843

                          I believe there is another location in San Gabriel Valley area.

                          1. re: Tony

                            Thanks Tony. I am gonna check it out this weekend.

                            1. re: vlad

                              No problem Vlad.

                              Here is a link from a fellow chowhounder, I hope he or she doesn't mind.


                              Grab a baguette while you are there. I think they are one of the best in the Little Saigon area as well.

                              The croissants like any croissants are best eaten immediately, they lose that flaky goodness, after a bit of time.

                              The prices here are awesome as well. I believe the croissants cost either $1.50 or less.

                              Let me know how it stacked up compared to the rest.

                            2. re: Tony

                              Do you have any more details on the SGV location? I can't seem to find any listings.

                          2. Breadbar's chocolate croissant is ok. But the chocolate almond croissant is MUCH better.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: jaykayen

                              word to the motha', jaykayen. just had one this weekend and it ROCKED. excellent quality chocolate and loads of fluffy almond goodness. but...even better than breadbar's, surprisingly enough, was the one at masa of echo park, though it has been a good 2 years since i have been there. did you notice the dough of the breadbar version isn't that flaky? almost like they are using scraps. and the filling of masa's is more buttery. i will have to stop by and compare anew.

                            2. Also - La Maison du Pain, on Pico near La Brea.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: jacinthe

                                the one in mid-city on pico is really good.

                                amandine's chocolate croissants on wilshire near bundy are really great and really cheap compared to the rest of croissants around town (at 2 bucks for a large fluffy one)

                                1. re: jacinthe

                                  i second the La Maison du Pain recommendation.

                                2. i used to get chocolate croissants from the french bakers at the culver city and westwood farmer's markets. i think they're pretty tasty and reasonably priced - $2 each. maybe you could give them a try.

                                  1. The Cream Pan at the El Camino Plaza Mall on El Camino Real in Tustin

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: oxygenozone

                                      I was disappointed with their chocolate croissant. They don't even use butter.

                                    2. No one yet has mentioned The Little Next Door (3rd at Crescent Heights) it's a wonderful french cafe owned by The Little Door and their croissants (and many other things) are quite excellent.

                                      1. I had an absolutely wonderful chocolate croissant at the Los Feliz Cafe last weekend ... it was formerly La Conversation.

                                        Top quality with a large piece of dark chocolate inside.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: SilverlakeGirl

                                          Completely agree. Now that Back Door Bakery (Silverlake) is gone, these are the best croissants on the east side. Large, flaky, fresh, buttery. A bit pricey ($2-3), but truly amazing! Lots of savory ones too. (spinach/cheese, mushroom/cheese, ham/cheese) which are a meal in themselves.

                                        2. Paris Pastry on Westwood Blvd - I think 3 stop lights south of Wilshire. Delicious. Not in the traditional shape.

                                          1. I had a good Pain au Chocolat at Bonjour Café in Dana Point recently. Just enough chocolate to balance against the very layered crisp croissant.

                                            1. very good oneas at La Dijoinaise near the Helms Complex.

                                                1. re: condiment

                                                  Trader Joes: wonderful wonderful 3 out of 4. one somehow did not rise right? but those other 3 oh my i have to say MUCH better than many i've tried in my surrounding area!!!!

                                                  I have had lots of good things at Europane, this is not something I've tried yet there. I do have a problem with eating too much chocolate methinks.

                                                2. I swear the ones from Blackmarket Bakery, sold at the Irvine FM near UCI on Saturday mornings, are made with butter, chocolate and crack cocaine. They're SO. GOOD.

                                                  5 Replies
                                                  1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                                    The chocolate croissants at BLD are made on site and I like them a lot. Flakey, with good quality bittersweet chocolate.

                                                    1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                                      And I can't believe I forgot about Porto's -- if you get them warm out of the oven, they're unimaginably good. If you don't, well, ten seconds in the microwave will soon fix that. Bring lots of napkins.

                                                      1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                                        Blackmarket is the absolute bomb. That's the biggest thing I've missed leaving OC for LA. My weekend FM visits just aren't the same without one of their pastries as my breakfast to kick start the day.

                                                        Large Mocha from the late Diedrich and a scone was a standby. Then some orange shortbread and any of their chocolate offerings.

                                                        DU, have you tried their marshmallows?

                                                        1. re: Jase

                                                          Holy moley yes. FANTASTIC marshmallows.

                                                          1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                                            I don't think I disliked any of their items. My wife would laugh at me because I'd go overboard at times and come wandering home with a bunch of pastries, a large brioche and another loaf of whatever bread struck my fancy.

                                                      2. My friends always want to stop by Le Pain Quotidien for their Pain Au Choclates, that is the only choclate croissant I've tried and i do enjoy it a lot.

                                                        1. Here are my favorites. With the caveat that a greasy, doughy mess sounds delicious to me!

                                                          Nazo's on 8th Street between Flower and Figueroa downtown. Really an amazing treat in the morning around 8-9am when they are fresh.
                                                          The Conservatory on Washington in Culver City
                                                          Back Door Bakery on Silver Lake Blvd north of Sunset
                                                          Urth Caffe

                                                          1. my favorite is susina bakery, very buttery and the chocolate is great. I think it is the one foodandwine was referring to.

                                                            1. I love the pain au chocolate at La Conversation, which is on Doheney just above Santa Monica in Beverly HIlls.

                                                              1. I don't ever remember finding Nutella in one. Usually just chocolate.

                                                                1. I find it hard to believe that Cream Pan's pain au chocolat do not use butter. Their croissants certainly do.... Their stuff (baguette included) is the closest you'll find to the best of French pastries (and I'm talking about excellent places like La Duree or Pierre Herme not your average corner bakery). Take it or leave it, but this is what the real thing tastes like....

                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                  1. re: ausfrench

                                                                    I tried plenty of Pain au chocolat in paris and Cream Pain is no where near perfect. Their baguette is too hard. I can't believe you use Cream Pain and Piere Herme in the same sentence. I will try Cream Pain again to see if they have improved.

                                                                    1. re: mrsjoujou

                                                                      by cream pan do you mean the tiny japanese influenced pastry shop on el camino real in tustin.

                                                                      1. re: mrsjoujou

                                                                        Totally agree with mrsjoujou here. Cream Pan was a huge disappointment and has absolutely nothing in common with Pierre Herme (or Laduree for that matter). I tried a pain aux raisin and it was clearly not made with butter -- unless it was some sorry excuse for butter that tasted like shortening. Blech.

                                                                      2. re: ausfrench

                                                                        Of course all the laminated doughs at Cream Pan are made with butter. You can see the blocks of Plugra going in if you are there at the right time, but the taste and texture are unmistakable besides.

                                                                      3. Union Bakery in South Pasadena has excellent chocolate croissants. Supposedly the owner is the previous pastry chef from the Waldorf Astoria in New York. That aside, the croissants are flaky and filled with just the right amount of high quality chocolate. If you get there early in the morning they are still warm and melty inside. Note: They are closed on Mondays.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: magicapple

                                                                          You must try Dolce Isola , the bakery of the Ivy on Robertson, just north of the 10 fwy @ Cattaraugas. The chocolate croissants are just as good as in Paris-- and the hot chocolate is amazing as well.

                                                                          1. re: holleygolitely

                                                                            can i get more details on this bakery is it the bakery besides the ivy that was called L.A. Desserts at one time or did it move a couple miles south??? thanks for any info and also is it an actual shop or a wholesaler???? thanks.

                                                                        2. Just stopped by Blackmarket Bakery and the chocolate croissant is excellent. At first glance I was dubious - looked too big to be good and seemed to have some kind of 'topping' but overally DELICIOUS! I bought shortbread, macaroons, marshmallows, brownie etc to try at home - everything there looked great.

                                                                          1. The chocolate croissants at Lido Bakery in Manhattan Beach are so wonderful!

                                                                            1. We've split a discussion about Nutella and chocolate croissants to the General Topics board. You can follow it here:


                                                                              1. I love the ones at Grounds in Long Beach. Blueberry's great too. Pics...


                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: Oh Robin

                                                                                  Some Crust Bakery in Claremont has divine Choco-cros's. They're huge, though, so be prepared to either share or skip lunch.

                                                                                2. i have a serious love for all versions of croissant at SK's Donut and Croissant on the corner of 3rd and Cochran (three blocks W of La Brea) in Miracle Mile. I hope I don't regret letting the secret out but that place is amazing.

                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: LAcupcake

                                                                                    at a donut shoppe? are you sure? gues it must be a gem.

                                                                                      1. re: LAcupcake

                                                                                        As a columnist for the SF Weekly back in the mid 90s, I once interviewed local Punk legend, Dr. Frank, of the Mr. T Experience. For “lunch” he took me to his favorite Oakland neighborhood spot, Lee's Donuts and Croissants, commenting that though “the sign says Donuts and Croissants," he couldn't really "recommend the croissants."

                                                                                        So it was with a fair dose of skepticism and morbid curiosity that I took LAcupcake's advice and drove over to 3rd and Cochran to give SK's Donut and Croissant a try.

                                                                                        Did the almond version I sampled stand up to Amandine's or Breadbar's or La Maison du Pain's? No. It did not. But it was surprisingly decent for this basic strip mall locale. And very cheap. And closer, for me at least, than any of the rest. The coffee wasn't half bad either. And more importantly, the very cute young girl behind the counter was so genuinely sweet and helpful, it made me want to do everything I could to see this little shop succeed...including going back again and again.

                                                                                        N.B. They also sell Lotto tickets. Two birds, one stone.

                                                                                        1. re: wutzizname

                                                                                          I am so happy you gave it a try. I walk there almost every morning with my dog (they have a walk up dog window) for coffee and the family that runs it is so sweet; they remember everyone's usual (which often goes something like "medium coffee, glazed donut, two lotto tickets"). For what it's worth I was recently reading Thomas Keller's French Laundry cookbook and the paragraph that introduces his coffee and donuts dessert states that he was inspired while poor and living in LA... across from "an SK's donut shop". Maybe it's not one and the same but I like to think it is!