Today I want to share with you a Miami staple–Cuban pastries! You can find a Spanish bakery on nearly every corner in South Florida. There’s nothing like starting your day with a cafecito and a baked good to remind you that you’re on vacation.
What are Cuban Pastries Called?
Each culture has its own version of baked puff pastries. It’s too good of an idea not to have caught on. Although I may be geographically biased because living in South Florida, Cuban pastries in particular are out of this world–and I’m not even Cuban!
Sometimes referred to as pasteles, I call them pastelitos, because everyone knows what I’m talking about. Also, I’m Puerto Rican and there are language variations in each of the 25 Spanish-speaking nations in the world, so this is what I think of when I reference pasteles:
An acquired taste that typically elicits a gag reflex from any non-Puerto Rican guests at my grandmother’s house, our version of pasteles are a far cry from the warm, universally delicious baked goods Cubans are famous for.
Where can I buy Cuban pastries in Miami?
If you’re ever in Miami and looking for a place to get good Cuban pastries, look no further than Karla’s Bakery. Located right off Flagler Street, they’re affordable, authentic, and sooooo yummy. I cannot stress that last part enough.
I relish the whole experience, from finding the place (I always get lost) to taking my time with selecting my treat(s). There are many pastry options available, from cakes to meat pies.
Another popular place for tourists to visit is Versailles Restaurant. You can order from the ventanita (outside window) and sip a Cuban coffee while you watch life unfold on adjacent and iconic 8th Street.
Locals also endorse croquetas from Isla Canarias, with just a hint of lemon. Pictured and explained further below, the croquetas at Isla Canarias are fatter than most, perfect if you have a voracious appetite.
Another popular option is Sergio’s, famous for its variations on empanada fillings. They have everything, from the typical meat and chicken options to guava or spinach pastries. They also have a window so you can order to go, or sit inside for a more expansive dinner menu. Sergio’s is a South Florida staple; so much so that they have a cafe in Fort Lauderdale Airport.
Finally, if you’re looking for a quality bakery with locations all throughout the South Florida area, head to Vicky Bakery. Their pastries are affordable and authentic. If you walk into party with a platter of mixed goods from Vicky’s, you’ll be the most popular person there.
What type of pastries should I get at a Cuban Bakery?
My personal favorites are the empanadas. I actually make them at home, though not as large. And I would be remiss if I didn’t pay tribute to the croqueta. You may be asking, what’s a croqueta? If you don’t know the answer to that question, I’m sad for you. You have been missing out on what might be the most delectable deep fried ham concoctions known to man. Each one consisting of no more more than 3 bites, it’s a savory snack that’s common in Hispanic households.
So there you have it folks, and introduction to all that is Cuban pasteles, or as I call them, pastelitos! Make sure to grab a few if you’re ever in Miami.
Till next time, safe travels!
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