Mardi Gras may trigger your craving for beignets, Sazerac and jambalaya, but here in the Bay Area, we can celebrate New Orleans and French-inspired cuisine all year long. And once you try the beignets on this guide, you’ll want to.
Keep reading to find out where to track down the best in powdered sugar smothered fried dough, and don’t forget to order your hot coffee, too!
Embarcadero | Facebook
Photo courtesy of Boulettes Larder
Located on the Southeast side of the Ferry Building, Boulettes Larder opened in 2004 as a specialty shop and restaurant and has quickly become a favorite in the city. Though the menus change daily based on locally sourced ingredients, you’ll always find sweet beignets on the breakfast and lunch menus.
Tenderloin | Facebook
Chef Brenda grew up on the West bank of New Orleans, Louisiana and began her cooking career in New Orleans kitchens. And in 2017, she brought those flavors to the city when she opened her own kitchen, Brenda’s French Soul Food. Beignets are always on the menu and come in plain, chocolate, granny smith apple and crawfish flavors, and there’s also a Beignet Flight available!
NoPa | Facebook
In 2014, Chef Brenda followed up her first Louisiana-inspired eatery with the Bay Area’s first genuine meat and three-style restaurant. This style invites diners to choose one meat (or entrée) and three side dishes from a daily selection of down-home favorites which always include her famous beignets.
San Carlos | Facebook
This New Orleans-inspired bistro in Silicon Valley offers a seasonal menu packed with NOLA favorites po-boys, hush puppies, jambalaya, fried chicken, catfish and, of course, beignets. You can order them off the dessert menu and the weekend brunch menu.
Outer Sunset | Facebook
This hidden gem in Outer Sunset serves up comfort food and fresh baked goods for breakfast and lunch every day of the week. But on Sundays, they celebrate Beignet Sunday and offer their golden, sugar-dusted creations for just $1 each.
The Castro | Facebook
Photo courtesy of Frances
Brought to us by Chef Melissa Perello, Frances is her take on approachable fine dining and she builds her menus based on seasonal produce and products from Northern California. While you won’t always find beignets on the dessert menu, you can find them on the dinner menu in savory preparations like the Applewood Smoked Bacon Beignets served with maple chive crème fraîche.
Fisherman’s Wharf | Facebook
Photo courtesy of Misha Bruk via Frankie’s Pier 43
The home of the world famous Fishwich, Frankie’s Pier 43 dishes up a full menu of seafood served in comfort food style. That includes some of the city’s best fish and chips, the buttermilk fried Fishwich and Chickenwich, and fresh-made beignets available in orders of one, three, six or thirteen.
Bernal Heights | Facebook
This Bernal Heights eatery serves Southern-inspired lunch boxes, dinners and weekend brunch. There will always be a line and reservations are recommended but the wait is worth it—even if you’re just there for the beignets. You can find them on the dessert menu and the brunch menu.
Fairfax | Facebook
Located across the Golden Gate Bridge in Fairfax, The Hummingbird is a true New Orleans-inspired eatery complete with fried chicken hash, fried okra, fried green tomato eggs Benedict, beignets and even live jazz every once in a while. Stop by for breakfast and you’ll have a new favorite in Marin County.
Potrero Hill | Facebook
Undoubtedly, Just For You Cafe is one of the top places to find beignets in San Francisco. The cozy cafe serves breakfast and lunch inspired by American eats, Mexican culture and New Orleans style. That means everyone can find something to love on the menu, and you’ll all love the made from scratch beignets. They come with toppings like classic powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar and homemade dark chocolate sauce.
Oakland | Facebook
Lake Chalet opened in January 2009 inside the 100-year-old Oakland Boathouse and offers a spacious outdoor deck where you can dine over Lake Merritt. All the ales on the menu are handcrafted at the team’s Chalet Brewery in San Francisco, and the food offerings include a raw bar and contemporary California cuisine with a focus on seafood. At weekend brunch, available Saturday and Sunday, you can order Dungeness Crab Cakes, Crab and Shrimp Huevos Rancheros, Ceviche and a plate of Chalet Beignets topped with powdered sugar, chocolate and berry dipping sauces.
North Beach | Facebook
Piperade combines the rustic culinary traditions of the Basque Country with the local ideals of Northern California cooking. That means they use fresh, local ingredients to craft French, Spanish and Basque dishes you’ll come back for again and again. Order the Orange Blossom Beignets and you’ll want to come back for more the very next night.
Oakland | Facebook
Powderface was born from a love of beignets, so it makes sense that this little Oakland cafe would have some of the Bay Area’s best. In true French and New Orleans style, you can order yours with a hot coffee. Or, opt for a fresh fruit smoothie. It’s all made to order (yes, even the beignets!).
Portola + Embarcadero | Facebook
This San Francisco original is a counter service restaurant offering authentic New Orleans dishes, including award-winning gumbo, jambalaya, etouffee and beignets served with hot coffee.
Do you have a favorite local beignet?
Tell us about it in the comments below!