Your Paris Guide to Popular French Pastries

Discover your Paris guide to Popular French pastries. The rich aroma of butter, pastry dough, and melted chocolate are enough to lure passers-by into these local shops, where you will find cases overflowing with tasty treats. Next comes the perplexing dilemma: what to choose? Never fear! Consult this handy list of French pastries to select the confection that’s meant for you.

Pain au chocolat

A pain au chocolat is similar to a flaky croissant with one or two strips of delectable chocolate inside. Pair this affordable treat with a coffee for a true Parisian breakfast!


The French macaron consists of two airy cookies surrounding by a heavenly unctuous filling. Like miniature hamburgers, macarons come in a wide array of flavours: chocolate, pistachio, raspberry, strawberry, lemon — why not just try them all?


A mille-feuille features layers of light pastry with a rich, sweet filling. Literally translated as “a thousand sheets,” the mille-feuille often comes in different forms and flavours at local patisseries, in which each interprets it in their own distinct way.


Light and fluffy, madeleines are similar to little pound cakes. They are often shaped like cockle shells with a delicious citrus kick.


A delicious puff pastry filled with rich crème and topped with a swath of smooth chocolate, an éclairs au chocolat is the ultimate post-lunch indulgence.


Longing for something deep-fried? Grab a beignet, a light pastry that usually comes served with a dusting of powdered sugar on top.


The baguette, the iconic French bread, has become a symbol of France. This long, slender loaf with a crispy crust and a soft interior is made without preservative and to be eaten from day of purchase.


Looking for something especially light with just a touch of sweetness? Pick up a palmier, a flaky pastry rolled into the shape of a leaf and tinged with caramel.

Eager to learn more about French gastronomy? Académie des Arts de Vivre organises culinary programs and tours that will initiate you into the world of French gourmet.
Visit or email for more information!