Italian Bakeries in The Bronx

Like the other NYC boroughs, The Bronx is a series of unique neighborhoods. While Belmont (the inspiration for A Bronx Tale) is the undisputed Little Italy of the outer boroughs, other areas, such as Allerton, Morris Park, and Pelham Bay, each have that one neighborhood bakery that supplies local residents and restaurants. The Italian bakeries in this list are neighborhood institutions where locals bump into their neighbors on Saturday morning and where their parents’ wedding cake likely came from.

If you’re having dinner in one of the Bronx’s Italian restaurants, the bread on your table probably came from one of these bakeries. You can see references to these neighborhood fixtures on t-shirts and reusable shopping bags. There are murals along Arthur Avenue depicting the local food scene and walking tours that will introduce you to the local flavors and history. The corner of East 187th and Cambreleng is named after Vincent F. Artuso Sr. Gino’s Pastry Shop even made it onto a Broadway stage, thanks to Chazz Palminteri.

While NYC neighborhoods have changed over the decades and continue to change, the places in this list remain pretty much the same, despite changes in management and local demographics. Even when local celebrities like Chazz Palminteri and Vincent Pastore leave the old neighborhood, they still crave the cannoli and pane di casa of their childhood. And since COVID, shipping has become more important than ever as people may be able to live without visiting New York in person but still need their cannoli fix.

Here are ten Italian bakeries in The Bronx that have stood the test of time and continue to survive despite these unprecedented times. A similar version of this post first appeared on Matador Network.

Conti's Pastry Shoppe

Madonia Brothers Bakery

Artuso Pastry Shop

Sal & Dom's Pastry Shop







Artuso Pastry Shop

The corner of East 187th and Cambreleng is named after Vincent F. Artuso Sr. Although they’ve been open since 1946, on the inside, Artuso’s feels like they just opened last week. Behind the counter, HD screens display the prices of whole cakes, which seem to go out the door as fast as their beloved individual cannoli. And when it comes to red velvet cake right and Artuso’s combination of light, airy cake and thick, sweet frosting is worth the trip from Manhattan, Long Island, New Jersey, Connecticut, etc. And they ship Monday through Wednesday

You should feel safe here as the professional-looking high plexiglass helps protect patrons from staff, both of whom are masked. Besides this, there’s little visual evidence of impact from COVID-19.

Year opened: 1946

What’s popular: cannoli, rainbow cookies, red velvet cake

Nearest Metro-North station: Fordham

Conti’s Pastry Shoppe

When it comes to creative cake designs, Conti’s takes (or sells?) the cake. No less than a dozen different creative cake designs are always visible from the entrance at Morris Park Ave. And there are more on the inside. While other places in this list stick to tradition, Conti’s pushes the envelope with confetti cake slices topped with French macarons and cakes in the shape of a Chicago-style pizza pie. They also manage to combine favorites like marzipan and cannoli cream with delicious results.

If Belmont is The Real Little Italy, then Morris Park is the hidden one. It’s the kind of neighborhood where you have to know where to go. It may take some research and talking to locals, but when you find the right place(s), it’s well worth it. Conti’s is one of those places.

Since COVID, they’ve removed their chairs and couches. As of this writing, there is still no indoor dining. Despite going to takeout only, they remain as busy as ever. When you enter, the pastries are on the right, and the café is to the left. You can still purchase from the café, but it’s takeout only.

Year opened: 1921

What’s popular: Boston Cream Pie, funfetti cake topped with macaron, marzipan cannoli

Nearest subway station: Bronx Park East (2)

DeLillo Pastry Shop

Despite being nearly 100 years old, DeLillo Pastry Shop looks and feels like it just opened last week. Cool lounge music greets those who enter, as does the noticeable variety of imported Italian sweets, gelato, and pastries. There are also perfectly placed framed pictures on the wall representing each major region of Italy.

During the warmer months, you’ll see patrons seated at their outdoor tables sipping Nutella cappuccino (one of their café specialties) and enjoying gelato. Indoor seating is currently limited to 20 minutes.

Year opened: 1925

What’s popular: cannoli, sfoglliatella, tiramisu

Nearest Metro-North station: Fordham

Edigio Pastry

Open since 1912, Edigio is the oldest pastry shop in Little Italy. They have an impressive variety of cake slices, and everything is made in-house, except for their sugar cookies. There are half-dozen tables for indoor seating as well as a few tables outside during the warmer months.

Prior to COVID, they were hosting cannoli classes. Classes have been on hold since January 2020. 

Year opened: 1912

What’s popular: cannoli, cartocci, limoncello mascarpone,

Nearest Metro-North station: Fordham

Gino’s Pastry Shop

You may have heard of this place from A Bronx Tale – The Musical. The sign from the play sits proudly below the numerous autographed celebrity pics that adorn the walls of this neighborhood institution. Although they specialize in wedding cakes, Gino’s also has a small storefront that feels like it hasn’t changed much since they first opened in 1960. Bronx Little Italy native Chazz Palminteri swears by this place to the point where it was the only Bronx bakery that he mentioned in the Bronx Tale episode of his podcast. And Chazz is not the only loyal customer they ship to. UPS trucks also stop by Gino’s on a regular basis to pick up shipments for Vincent Pastore and others who remain hooked on their cannoli cream. 

Since COVID, they’ve cut back store hours from six to four days a week. But where shipments were once an occasional favor for loyal customers, they’ve since become a major part of their business. Owner, Jerry Raguso frequently works with other neighborhood bakeries and delis on gift packages for people who have been unable to come to 187th and Arthur Avenue in person. He only takes orders by phone. It’s best to stop by and meet him first.

Year opened: 1960

What’s popular: cannoli, Chazz (replica of Palminteri’s wedding cake), donolli (cannoli donuts)

Nearest Metro-North station: Fordham

Madonia Brothers Bakery

This cozy, Bronx institution has been a local fixture for more than 100 years (or centi anni, as they say in Italian). You’ll likely hear as much Italian as you will English in this cash-only, old-world bakery known for their olive bread and cannoli, which they fill on the spot. They also supply local restaurants, like Enzo’s, which is located directly across the street.

Year opened: 1918

What’s popular: cannoli, olive bread, pane di casa

Nearest Metro-North station: Fordham

Morrone Pastry Shop & Cafe

A relative newcomer to Arthur Ave., Morrone opened in 2006 in one of the most convenient locations possible. Soft Italian music greets patrons, along with the smell of Italian espresso, which they import from Italy. Morrone is part pastry-shop and part café with a half-dozen small, marble-top tables.  They also sell frozen desserts and Italian sodas.

In terms of safety, there are signs in every direction reminding people to put on their masks. As the new kid on the block, they were hit particularly hard by COVID. They laid off some staff and cut back their hours, but their selections remain at pre-COVID levels.

Year opened: 2006

What’s popular: cannoli, Pignoli cookies, rainbow cake

Nearest Metro-North station: Fordham

Sal & Dom’s Pastry Shop

The northernmost bakery in this list, Sal & Dom’s is a local favorite in a part of the Bronx that feels more like Westchester County than New York City. As the only well-established Italian bakery in the neighborhood, they have not had to lay anyone off as of this writing. Like most of the bakeries in this list, they ship nationwide.

The high plexiglass barrier between the staff and patrons helps keep everyone safe, but it does not prevent you from enjoying the smell of fresh bread as you enter from the busy Allerton Ave. thoroughfare. Capacity restrictions and social distancing are strictly enforced, so don’t be surprised if you see a line outside. It moves quickly, though. Only one person per group is allowed inside.

Year opened: 1956

What’s popular: cannoli, Pignoli cookies, rainbow cake

Nearest Subway station: Pelham Pkwy (5)

Terranova Bakery

Their brick oven dates back to 1904, making it one of the oldest in the area. When you enter Terranova’s small 187th Street storefront, you’ll notice two refrigerators full of pasta to go on the right and varieties of fresh bread behind the counter on the left. The friendly staff are likely to greet you just as fast as the smell of fresh bread. Some of what they supply to walk-in customers, local restaurants, and grocery stores is made behind the storefront. They have a larger facility in Westchester County.

Because Terranova supplies grocery stores, they have not been hit too hard by COVID. You can order from their website.

Year opened: 1967

What’s popular: homemade ravioli, pane di casa (house bread), pizza bread

Nearest Metro-North station: Fordham

Zeppieri & Sons Italian Bakery

If you believe that the best Italian bakeries in The Bronx are all along Arthur Ave. or 187th St., then you haven’t been to Zeppieri & Sons. This cash-only Pelham Bay neighborhood institution serves walk-ins 14 hours a day, 7 days a week. They also supply their famous pane di casa to local restaurants, like Orrico’s, across the street. Zeppieri & Sons is located under the elevated 6 train, making it the most conveniently located Italian bakery in The Bronx.

Although they have seen a dip in business since COVID, the individual selections remain the same.

Year opened: 1968

What’s popular: Berry Napoleon, marzipan cannoli, rainbow cookies

Nearest Subway station: Buhre Ave (6)

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All pictures were shot with my Panasonic Lumix ZS100 4K Point and Shoot Camera.

Have you visited any of these bakeries? Any that I missed? Leave a comment below!