What’s your vice? Cupcakes? Donuts? Freshly baked croissant that remind you of Paris? Or, how about a taste of Lithuania? Whatever your preference, it seems Omaha has the bakery for you. From Orsi’s to Le Petit, here’s a look at a baker’s dozen of Omaha’s amazing bakeries.
Wondering if these bakeries deliver or offer curbside pick-up during the COVID-19 pandemic? Read on, I have a section at the post where you can find out how to get your sweet fix.
Orsi’s Italian Bakery & Pizzeria
Where: Little Italy at 621 Pacific St.
Omaha’s oldest Italian bakery, Orsi’s opened its doors in 1919. The bakery has made fresh bread and rolls without preservatives almost daily for more than 100 years. The Italian twist loaves are perfect for dipping with marinara sauce. The store also bakes fresh rye bread, pumpernickel, and garlic bread.
Orsi’s has long been a stalwart of the Little Italy neighborhood. When the bakery was destroyed by fire in the late 1990s, locals rallied to help the owners rebuild. The home of Omaha’s Sicilian pizza, as well as other Italians goods, such as fresh olives, authentic pasta, and a deli, Orsi’s is a popular stop for Omahans from all neighborhoods.
You’ll want to take your goodies home, as the bakery has limited seating.
Related post: Old School Omaha – A Review Of The Pizza At Orsi’s
Olsen Bake Shop
Where: South Omaha at 1708 S. 10th St.
Olsen Bake Shop is your typical neighborhood bakery. Located in a small building, The bakery features two cases showing off the daily offerings – kolaches (pastries with fruit filling, jams, and other treats in the middle), donuts, other pastries, and cookies.
The South Omaha staple has been offering delicious pastries since 1942.
Related post: Olsen tops the list of the 13 best donut shops in Omaha
Where: South Omaha at 5217 S. 33rd Ave.
Open for nearly 50 years ago, the Lithuanian Bakery was created by Lithuanian immigrants and continues to be a family-owned bakery. Famous for its torte, the dessert takes three days to make and consists of eight layers of wafers, each coated with vanilla buttercream and lemon extract, with a layer of apricot in the middle.
The popular dessert has people arriving early and willing to stand in line every Saturday, when the torte is available. Try their chocolate torte for a change of taste.
The bakery also creates delicious bread, such as sourdough rye and country rye. The “Kommis Brot,” a thinly-sliced pumpernickel, is made in the old country tradition.
The bakery has a second location, Lithuanian Bakery and Kafe at 7427 Pacific St., which features “old country” recipes and the bakery’s treats.
Where: 608 S. 72nd St.
Known in its early days as Alotta Brownies in Fremont, Michelle Kaiser rolled the dice and moved the bakery to Omaha, changing its name to Omaha Bakery. Located about a block north of the world-famous Nebraska Furniture Mart, Omaha Bakery is known of its delicious brownies and cheesecakes.
The baker also makes cakes, including wedding cakes, as well as bread. Omaha Bakery has also added a keto menu.
Where: South Omaha at 5106 S. 24th St.
Deep in the heart of 24th Street, the South Omaha stronghold has been a fan favorite for nearly 20 years. A visit to International Bakery offers a fun experience, as donuts and pastries have Spanish names.
Even if you don’t speak the language, part of the fun is choosing a delicious-looking treat. Your taste buds will commend your choice.
Take your order to go and enjoy eating at a nearby plaza, where you can enjoy people watching, as well as the beauty and colors of the neighborhood. While a second International Bakery is located on Vinton Street, it is owned by relatives but isn’t associated with the original bakery.
Where: Downtown at 1603 Farnam St.
The original Culprit Café, along Farnam Street, features an open kitchen, where you can watch the staff create everything form cookies and pastries to the lunch specials.
Known for its homemade bread and cannoli, the café often changes its menus, so you may find new treats during your visit. Order a flavorful coffee to enjoy alongside your pastry. You can also treat yourself to breakfast or lunch, and then enjoy a pastry as dessert.
A second location opened at Midtown Crossing in 2018, which features a separate menu from the original.
Where: Aksarben Village at 2121 S. 67th St.
It started with a family chat at the kitchen table. Bill and Brad Jones, along with family members, created Jones Bros. Cupcakes, as a “dessert restaurant.” They opened their first location in Aksarben Village in 2010.
Jones Bros. quickly established itself as one of Omaha’s best places to go for great desserts, including cupcakes and cakes, even cheesecake. Made from scratch, cupcakes include fan favorites red velvet, vanilla, and strawberries and cream. From giant-sized treats, which require a fork, their cupcakes have earned them having been named as the best in Omaha several times.
The eatery has also been featured on national television programs, including Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars.” With competition from local restaurants, Jones Bros. Cupcakes added sandwiches, soups, and salad to its menu.
While the original location continues to anchor the franchise, Jones Bros. Cupcakes also expanded to two more locations in Omaha – Lakeside and Westroads’ Flagship Commons.
Where: North Downtown at 502 N. 16th St.
Not far from the campus of Creighton University, Pettit’s Pastry has called the North Downtown area home since 1954. Located in the neighborhood long before it became a trendy development area, Pettit’s Pastry adds an old-school touch to the modern buildings going up around it.
Home to old-fashioned pastry treats, such as rolls, donuts, and fruit-filled turnovers, order a flavored coffee, cappuccino, or latte, and you can mix old-guard bakery treats with a modern take on coffee. Take your order to go and enjoy it during a stroll around Creighton University’s beautiful campus.
Whisk + Measure
Where: 2505 S. 133rd Plaza
Whisk + Measure isn’t your typical bakery. Home to all types of baking, they pride themselves on creating cakes and treats that include vegan, paleo, and keto diets. They also offer gluten-free and dairy-free options.
While cakes, cupcakes, and cheesecakes are among the most popular items at the bakery, its menu includes muffins, scones, cookies, and bear claws. Enjoy a fresh cup of coffee – they use local distributor Reboot – with your treat in the comfortable seating area.
Farine + Four
Where: Midtown at 3020 Leavenworth St.
Home is where the heart is, they say. But, after some time in New York, a Nebraska woman returned home to open her own bakery. Farine + Four is the vision created from the days in New York for Ellie Pegler.
Today, the Omaha bakery creates outstanding pastries, bread, croissants, and bagels, using organic flour and no preservatives. Along with breakfast sandwiches and freshly-brewed coffee, a visit to Farine + Four provides a worldly experience. Grab an order of chocolates to enjoy at home.
Sweet Magnolias Bake Shop
Where: Cathedral Neighborhood at 813 N. 40th St.
Located in the Cathedral neighborhood, Sweet Magnolias is a boutique bakery, whose menu features delicious cinnamon rolls, scones, cookies, and more.
Known for its cardamom cake, Sweet Magnolias is owned and operated by a Nebraska native, who grew up learning to cook and bake from her parents and grandparents.
Located next door to Lisa’s Radial Café, grab your treats to go and take a walk around the area, taking in the views of St. Cecelia Cathedral and Joslyn Castle.
Where: 1314 S. 119th St.
Omaha’s original cupcake shop, Cupcake Island opened in 2006, offering a unique take on cupcakes. With flavors like Pink Champagne, Strawberry Shortcake, and Devil’s Food Among Us, there is no shortage of cupcakes to satisfy your sweet tooth. It’s been my family’s go-to spot for birthday cakes for years, too.
When Ed LeFebvre decided it was time to sell the bakery and head off to retirement, he sold Cupcake Island to sisters Melany Dean and Crystal Ryczko in 2018. They’ve added to Ed’s original concept – why mess with success? – with their own specialties. Melany is a chocolate connoisseur, while Rachel enjoys making cheesecakes.
Cupcake Island annually competes for “Best in Omaha” honors.
Le Petit Paris Bakery
Where: Pepperwood Village at 567 N. 155th Plaza
Travel to Paris without leaving Omaha with a visit to Le Petit Paris Bakery. Like its neighbor, Le Voltaire French Restaurant, the bakery is also owned by world-renowned Chef Cedric.
The bakery features croissants made with pure butter, handmade eclairs, and macarons, as well as bread, pastries, and other sweets.
Imagine life along the Champs-Elysees by adding a cup of rich coffee and enjoying your croissant or other treat at an outdoor table, just like in Paris. The bakery is closed on Monday.
Which Omaha bakeries open during the pandemic?
This post was written before we had heard much about COVID-19, so it’s totally fine to wonder if they’re open “business as usual” these days. So, here’s my update on each business’s situation*:
- – Orsi’s – Business as usual, since it is mainly a take-out operation anyway. Call (402) 345-3438 to place an order.
- – Olsen Bake Shop – Closed until further notice.
- – Lithuanian Bakery – The 74th street store is still serving lunch with limited seating. They take to-go orders, so call ahead to order at (402) 391-3503.
- – Omaha Bakery – They do take-out and curbside pick-up. Call (402) 991-9200.
- – Culprit – Both locations are closed until further notice.
- – Jones Bros. – Takeout is available to order online here for the Aksarben and West Center locations, or you can place a phone order for Askarben at (402) 884-2253 or West Center at (402) 905-9701. The West Center location also has a drive-thru.
- – Pettit’s – Pettit’s downtown location is still open. You can come in the small lobby to order or pre-order over the phone at (402) 345-1111.
- Whisk + Measure – You can order your coffee, pastries, Dough-to-Go and special orders at their website: whiskandmeasure.com/menu. To-go orders are available from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday curbside pickup available with over the phone payment.
- – Farine + Four – The bakery offers carry-out, curbside and neighborhood delivery from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call (402) 905-2432 or for advanced orders, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- – Sweet Magnolia’s – The bakery is closed until further notice, but you can still support the bakery by ordering a gift card to use when they reopen.
- – Cupcake Island – The bakery is open and will bring your order out to the car. You can place an order by calling at (402) 334-6800.
- – Le Petit Paris – The bakery remains open and you can place your order over the phone at (402) 934-9374.
*Businesses update their hours and modes of operation daily (or even faster) during this unprecedented time. Please have patience and call ahead before going to any of the bakeries, just in case.
Which Omaha bakery is for you?
Whether you’re looking to pick up a dozen donuts for home or enjoying a true dining experience, Omaha’s bakeries offer the best of all worlds. Whether you want a good old-fashioned donut or maybe a classically-designed cupcake or pastry, you can travel around the world for the best treats, all without leaving Omaha.
From Omaha’s oldest Italian bakery celebrating more than 100 years in business to new owners of local classics, enjoy visiting the city’s best bakeries.