San Diego is home to many incredible bakeries. Whether you’re craving doughnuts to start your day off right or specialty cupcakes after work, you can treat your sweet tooth to something amazing in almost every neighborhood of this city.
As the fall starts blurring into early winter, your sweet tooth or carb cravings may have a new focus: pie! While November is unofficially the month of pumpkin pie, it’s also a great time for apple pie. Whether you’re craving warm, gooey fruit fillings or chilled pies like French Silk, there’s definitely some place in San Diego that’s serving them up today. You also shouldn’t forget the joy that comes on a cold day from enjoying a savory pie, like a meat pie or a pot pie.
Pie is a deceptively simple dish. Some of the most incredible pies only have a few ingredients, but it takes a real expert to make the most of them. The crust itself is a major source of flavor and texture. The perfect pie crust should be flaky but firm, with just enough butter to melt in your mouth. It can be sweetened a little to complement fruit or pudding fillings, or even feature flavored or salted butter for savory pies. There are also tarts, which have a slightly different composition but a similar end product.
From creating the crust to carefully preparing the filling, it’s incredibly easy to make a mistake when baking a pie or tart. Instead of trying to make one at home, you can head out to any of these four incredible bakeries. You’re going to be glad that you did!
Pop Pie Co.
Location: 4404 Park Blvd., Suite A (map)
Hours: Seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
If you’re craving pie while near University Heights, Pop Pie Co. should be your first destination. Chances are, you won’t need to stop anywhere else once you see their menu. This locally owned eatery offers fast casual service that focuses on incredible pies. In fact, they serve all kinds of pies, including five-inch savory pies and Pop Mini sweet pies, which are only three inches across.
🙏🏽🇺🇸 We don’t know them all, but we owe them all! Happy Veterans Day to all past and present members of our military! We salute you with this stack of pies! . . . • Guava Cream Cheese • Fig & Brie • Mixed Berry & Cream Cheese . . . As always, current and former members of our military receive an in-store discount. . . . 📷: @justin_mw #poppieco #veteransday #pielife #inpiewecrust
They offer breakfast pies and pastries in the morning, as well as meat, vegetarian and vegan pies for lunch or dinner, paired with salads and other side dishes, including creamed corn, mashed potatoes and gravy, and even vegan slaw. You can order up something caffeinated from their multi-roaster specialty coffee bar or even a craft beer. Whether you’re there for sweet or savory pies, their all-butter crust and quality filling ingredients make for an incredible pie.
You can get full-sized pies here, too. Currently, they are taking pre-orders for Thanksgiving pies. Offerings on their daily menu include turkey, red chili pork and classic chicken pot pies, as well as steak & ale pie, green hog & cheese pie, a vegetarian creamy poblano & corn Rajas, and a vegan roasted veggie and yellow curry savory pie.
Location: 1430 Union Street (map)
Hours: Sunday-Thursday: 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday: 10 a.m. to midnight
As the name implies, Extraordinary Desserts focuses on making incredible sweet treats for those with discerning palates. The flavors on their menu are only rivaled by the incredible presentation of the desserts they bake. Unlike some bakeries, this place actually offers a full lunch and dinner menu, including soups, salads and sandwiches, as well as a kid’s menu.
Extraordinary Desserts likes to create unique pies that are individually sized. They have a buttery crust, pilled high with cream, fruit and meringue fillings. They have four standard pies available as individual pies, including banana cream pie, lemon meringue, French apple pie and coconut cream pie. These adorable and artistic mini pies run $9.95 each and require a half dozen minimum ordered per flavor.
Of course, they also have a range of both chocolate tarts and fruit tarts. Their chocolate tarts, which range from $9.95 to $10.95, include the caramelized hazelnut milk chocolate tart, the Reine du Chocolat, the Jivara milk chocolate Meringue and the tropical fruited duo chocolat. Their fruit tarts include a passion fruit meringue, a strawberry creme brulee, a Tahitian vanilla bean, a Reine des Cassis and a Reine des Framboises tart.
Location: 4686 30th Street (map)
Hours: Monday-Thursday: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
San Diego Magazine just named Blackmarket Bakery in San Diego the best bakery for 2017. This is the third location for Blackmarket Bakery, which also has shops in Costa Mesa and Santa Ana. Chances are, further expansion is in the works, because this place really knows how to make a pie!
Instead of standard pies, Blackmarket Bakery serves tarts, but you won’t be upset about the minor differences when you taste their crust and filings. They offer seven standard tarts, as well as some seasonal offerings available for special order around the holidays. Holiday options include a honey pumpkin tart and a caramel pecan tart. You can even special order mini tart collections with four of their flavors.
Standard offerings include Black Widow, which is a dark chocolate ganache and sea salt caramel filling in a chocolate tart sheel. Their Torchie, which is a take on Smores, also features a chocolate sheel with vanilla marshmallow chunks, hazelnuts and dark chocolate ganache, topped with torched marshmallows.
If you decide you’d like to try them out, you can always stop in during Pastry & Bread Happy Hours, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday. All pastries and breads are half off during that time, which makes it an ideal chance to check out this bakery.
San Diego Chicken Pie Shop
Location: 2633 El Cajon Blvd. (map)
Hours: Monday-Friday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
You can enjoy take-away or sit down and eat something incredible at San Diego Chicken Pie Shop. As you may have inferred from their name, this place makes flavorful and crave-worthy savory pies. Their “World Famous Pie Dinner” includes a pot pie made with a blend of chicken and turkey in a gravy served up with whipped potatoes, cole slaw, vegetables, a freshly made dinner roll and dessert.
Their chicken pie comes in individual sizes, as well as a mini, 2-inch size. You can also order up to three-dozen of their chicken pies for a party or special event. Of course, the menu doesn’t end with their chicken pie. You can enjoy chicken fried steak, fried chicken, chicken livers, sirloin roast, fish, sandwiches and daily soups. There’s a kid’s menu, which includes a mini chicken pie, grilled cheese or chicken tenders, all for less than $5. In fact, you can get a free kids meal for your child who is 10 or younger with an adult entree if you visit on Monday.
They also bake dessert pies every day, which you can buy by the slice or the whole pie. They have apple, cherry, blueberry, peach, rhubarb and pumpkin available daily, while banana, lemon, coconut and chocolate rotate on different days.