It is always a good time to shout out some of our favorite places for paletas (when spring brings those balmy days) and pan dulce (for stormier times when you just want comforting cookies and bread). Whenever a sweet craving strikes, check out these panaderías and paleterías around Dallas.
Baker Maricsa Trejo makes miracles out of laminated dough, crackling cruffins, braided babkas, cakes, breads, and the list truly goes on. Her holiday menu game is siempre on-point, like the ones she lines up for Cinco de Mayo (more to share her culture, less to celebrate the holiday, per se). We’re eyeing the elote tart, coconut tres leches cake, mole con pollo croissant, and margarita tart. While this isn’t a tongs-and-tray panadería, the way Trejo bakes—for cultural holidays or just any day—is something to celebrate. 580 W. Arapaho Rd., Ste. 154, Richardson.
When the morning is cold and the world is not feeling quite awake, you want the gaiety of purple, blue, and yellow oilcloth on tables and the smell of freshly baked pastries wafting from a kitchen that feels as though it’s been humming since long before you were awake. Vera’s is the right place—humble, family-run, perfect. If the brightly colored cookies don’t brighten your day, the pineapple jam stuffed into crimped pastries and spread between fluffy scone-like cookies infallibly will. And the pan dulce is very good with milk. 932 W. Davis St.
The shop no longer sells its popular and delicious breakfast tacos (sad face), but believe us when we say the pastries, like the conchas and churros, keep customers lining up out the door. What also keeps us coming back are the tamales and barbacoa by the pound. 2478 W. Illinois Ave.
On a corner of Davis Street and Clinton Avenue in Oak Cliff, a stone’s throw from the Kessler Theater, Maroches Bakery sells the most decadent pan de muerto in Dallas—the sweet, orange blossom-scented bread that’s as symbolic as orange marigolds or painted sugar skulls for the Mexican Day of the Dead. Of course, outside of the holiday, you’ll often find milk-drenched tres leches cake, feather-light conchas, and chocoflan. 1227 W. Davis St.
At the Dallas Farmers Market, let yourself be drawn to the rainbow hues of these vegan rainbow conchas, which peek from their packages on the stand of this family-owned, plant-based Mexican food micro-company whose claim to fame is its corn husk-swaddled tamales. The soft sweet breads’ crumbly cookie tops function as mood rings. We love to be surprised by the whimsical inspiration that leads to pink-purple-blue swirls on the market’s Watermelon Day or orange and green around pumpkin time. They’re only available to order online for pick-up or local delivery. 920 S. Harwood St.
Vegans, vegetarians, and omnivores alike all flock to this Pleasant Grove gem where soy protein tacos do an impressive impersonation of real-deal al pastor, carnitas, or carne guisada. But do not sleep on the classic pan dulce, like marranito (little pig-shaped molasses cookies), concha, and pecan-studded semita. 2537 S. Buckner Blvd.
The colorful and fluffy conchas, ultra moist tres leches cakes, and flaky, sugary, novias have made each of the locations across Dallas recognizably delightful. The bakery is family-owned, and the years of bread making are consistently shown by way of their sweet treats. The bakery also offers tamales, which are packed with pork, chicken, or bean-cheese with jalapeños. We recommend you order ahead of time to lock in a dozen or two. #2 839 Singleton Blvd., Ste. 150; #3 7843 Lake June Rd.; #4 3210 Falls Dr.
This paletería and frutería is a dessert wonderland, with chocolate-dipped bananas, sweet chile-spiced gomiloco (gummies) that are made in house, and of course a trove of paletas—if it’s available, get the one chock-full of fruity pebbles. 2947 Buckner Blvd., Ste. 300.
This Bishop Arts and Deep Ellum Brazilian paleta spot offers three types of paletas (fruity, creamy, filled). You’ll find fruity flavors like kiwi, guava, and vampy-purple acaí. Encrust the strawberry-cheesecake paleta with dark chocolate and coconut flakes. Or the incredibly creamy Nutella-filled banana with pistachios. When in doubt, ask for a fruity flavor to be dipped in Tajín or chamoy for savory-spicy zing. Flavors change seasonally and, for the adults, there are alcohol-infused options: coconut rum, strawberry daiquiri, mango margarita, to name a few. 415 W. Davis St.; 2656 Main St.
Inside Paleteria San Marcos, you’ll find colorful menus announcing the presence of snacks like bags of chicharrones and over-stuffed tortas. But the freezers are full of frozen treats that come in harder-to-find tropical flavors we crave, like mamey sapote and nance; the requisite mango, cantaloupe, tamarind, pineapple, or watermelon with chile; and a monster concoction of mango helado doused in a bright avalanche of chile lime sauce that could double as a fiery fudge sauce look-alike. We also love the small line of the ice pops called bolis in flavors like horchata and rompope (eggnog). 2740 Valwood Pkwy., Farmers Branch.
Watch out for push-cart and bicycle vendors rolling through the front door of this bustling helado shop. Grab a plastic basket and make your way through the frozen bins filled with cream- or fruit-and-water-based pops, such as rice and cinnamon, strawberry, and cucumber. (They’re a steal at a dollar each.) But lest you require something with some oomph, find mangonada, fruit cups, ice cream by the scoop, and much more. 517 E. Jefferson Blvd.