In Portland, desserts are serious business: From Portland’s various doughnut shops to its cabal of cookies, the city digs its sweets. But nothing feels quite as celebratory as a five-layer cake slathered in buttercream, dripping with chocolate, or all of the above. This enduring symbol of festive celebration doesn’t have to be homemade to be from the heart — below, find an assortment of bakeries across Portland offering impeccably decorated, delicious cakes for any special occasion, all without sacrificing great taste. For more desserts, check out our bakery map.Read More
11 Cake Shops in Portland for Any Occasion
From the hole-in-the-wall bakeries to the fancy patisseries
1. Miss Zumstein Bakery, Coffee Shop, Cakes & Desserts
A cozy neighborhood cafe, Miss Zumstein features an array of pastries, snacks, and cake-by-the-slice. Proprietor Anja Spence opened the shop after years as a pastry chef at renowned spots like Castagna and Genoa (RIP), and her custom cakes are especially sought after.
2. Back To Eden Bakery
Vegan and gluten-free cake fanatics, rejoice: Back to Eden features delicious desserts from a careful kitchen — no gluten, wheat, dairy, eggs, or meat. The cupcakes and cake slices can be paired with house-made vegan ice cream or soft serve. There’s plenty of seating for families, and the menu also includes savory choices if you’re looking for a meal before dessert.
3. Helen Bernhard Bakery
OR 97232, USA
This old-school Irvington bakery has been operating since 1924 and is the Platonic ideal of the classic American bakery. The glass cases at Helen Bernhard Bakery are practically overflowing with frosted sugar cookies, doughnuts, pastries, petit fours, and full cakes. The bakery has earned its stay in the Portland scene with delicious custom cakes for every style, from airbrushed beauties like the best version of a grocery store cake, or detailed, fondant affairs.
4. Papa Haydn
Papa Haydn is one of the pillars of the Portland cake scene, running strong since 1978. The bakery and restaurant’s two locations offer standout classic American cakes and single slices for dessert. The Triple Chocolate Cake is hard to beat, and history buffs will want to try the American Cassata, a variation of the Italian classic that’s original to Portland. Those dining in should get a reservation — there’s plenty of seating in the dining room, but both locations are popular for birthdays and special occasions.
5. Pix Patisserie / Bar Vivant
Pix Patisserie is known for intricately designed sweets, as well as an award-winning wine list and solid beer selection. The dining room can be a bit overwhelming, but the large space is highlighted with vintage French decor. The patisserie is open until midnight every night, making it a perfect post-dinner date stop.
6. Saint Cupcake
Saint Cupcake has been a go-to for cupcakes since the mid-2000s cupcake mania. All the flavors, like the crowd-pleasing Big Top (vanilla with chocolate chips and colorful frosting) and Red Velvet, are also available in miniature as dots. The cheery downtown location is spacious, with giant windows and a whisk-shaped bike rack out front. The bakery also makes custom cakes, and make wedding cupcake towers feel fresh.
7. Jaciva's Bakery And Chocolatier
Since 1986, Jaciva’s has been a staple for birthday and wedding cakes ranging from the cutesy to the ornate, creating geodes with rock candy and gravity-defying, cake-topping towers of doughnuts. Cakes run a little sweet, making them a good choice for birthdays; the Hawthorne bakery retained its ‘80s vibes, interior-wise, with a case of pastries perfect for kids who want to pick and choose.
8. Farina Bakery
While most known for its Parisian macarons, this Hawthorne bakery has a wide selection of pastries and baked goods. Farina Bakery offers show-stopping custom cakes, ranging from 6-inch mini cakes to full-blown tiered wedding cakes. The SE Hawthorne store has a rustic, woodsy feel, a collection of quaint mismatched seats and tables, and a colorful mural for cheer.
9. The Cakery
An offshoot of the Hillside favorite Baker & Spice, the Cakery specializes in stunning custom cakes. The bakers require a 72-hour lead time for cakes, and also sell cake-making equipment, stands, and copies of their cookbook Vintage Cakes (for those looking for a more DIY approach).
10. Garden Home Marketplace
Garden Home Marketplace, also known as Bales & Lamb’s Marketplace and once known as Lamb’s Thriftway, is the underdog bakery secret for those in the know. Yes, it’s a grocery store bakery, but its often-goofily-decorated cakes — including this hilariously terrifying Pennywise cake — are inexpensive and surprisingly tasty, holding their own alongside the tiered show-stoppers at Portland’s more notable bakeries. Its buttercream frosting is a must.
11. Piece of Cake Bakery
Piece of Cake is a Sellwood institution, featuring a huge variety of vegan and wheat-free options (including tofu cheesecakes!) as well as more traditional options. Cake aficionados can partake in a slice or cupcake, but the bakery shines in the custom decorations and specialty, pre-ordered cakes. The Pinterest-ready designs are perfect for baby showers, big birthdays, or bachelor / bachelorette parties.