Cleveland is home to myriad wonderful things including the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Superman, and Halle Berry. To foodies, it’s also known for Polish delights like handmade pierogies, Ball Park Mustard, and Slyman’s corned beef sandwiches. While these are all fabulous and culturally significant parts of The Land, this midwest lakeside city also hosts a plethora of divine coffee shops, cafes, and bakeries. After all, we Gen Z all need a little treat on the daily so we don’t absolutely perish from the crushing weight of the world. Whether you live in Cleveland full-time or just plan to visit soon, make sure to follow this coffee and croissant trail to make the most of your time while at “the mistake on the lake.” From downtown hot spots all the way to suburban neighborhood faves, we have the places you need to try out if you’re a coffee shop queen.

#SpoonTip: While in Cleveland, check out the West Side Market for several staple and seasonal vendors who have delicious coffee and bread. 

Coffee: Lekko Coffee

The ultimate cute coffee shop is located just off the bridge leading to downtown Cleveland. Lekko Coffee is a buzzing local hub where artists can sell their fine art, musicians can perform, and the casual coffee drinker or connoisseur can grab a strong espresso-based drink. Aside from beautiful lattes, you can also grab their award-winning Ube cold brew with coconut milk. It’s both delicious and purple. 

Croissants: Leavened

Located in Cleveland’s Tremont neighborhood, this little shop is a bread lover’s dream. Brimming with fresh focaccia, baguettes, and even pizza, Leavened is my personal heaven. This is the right place to pick up chocolate, classic, or even savory ham and cheese croissants. Plus, they freshly bake cruffins — their signature pastry dough baked in a muffin tin and filled with locally-sourced seasonal jams. These are always a hit for my guests who spend the night in CLE. 

Coffee: Ready Set! Coffee Roasters 

The roasters of Ready Set!, located in Cleveland’s Gordon Square, are making their coffee into straight-up art. With every holiday arrival, Ready Set! baristas brew up beautiful lattes, such as March’s Rainbow’s End made with blue butterfly pea flower tea. A menu classic that can’t be beaten is the Black Cat Mocha, which always comes with their signature cat design on top. 

#SpoonTip: trying to amp up your latte game at home? Try these cool coffee bar accessories

Croissants: On The Rise Artisan Breads

When my mom asked me what she needed to see in Cleveland, I didn’t tell her to go to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame or catch a show at Playhouse Square. I told her she needed to have some of the best pastries I’ve ever eaten at On The Rise Artisan Breads. I drove my family to Cleveland’s East Side and had them sample the apricot, chocolate raspberry, and almond croissants. It was one of my family’s favorite CLE field trips. Each pastry is perfectly fluffy and filled with goodness. Plus, you can taste all the local love that goes into each item. And, while it’s not a croissant, their bacon and gruyere roll is to die for.

Coffee: Roasted 

This little Tremont coffee shop is a home away from home, as well as the place that houses the best dark chocolate mocha I have ever tasted, and that’s saying a lot. I got mine with a pump of raspberry for an extra dash of fanciness. Beyond a cozy, colorful, plant-filled space perfect for both remote workers and friends catching up, Roasted also opens its doors to local comedy shows and artists to share their work. I am certainly all for more daytime coffee shop stand-up performances.

Croissants: Sophie La Gourmande

Sophie La Gourmande is the place to be if you’re into French pastries and little treats. This Cleveland Heights-based cafe and patisserie is home to flaky and buttery croissants, as well as Parisian cakes, tarts, and the like. Bon appétit!

Coffee: Milk + Honey

Are you a latte girlie through and through? You need to check out downtown’s own Milk+Honey which has a host of unique lattes including a lavender flavor, a dragon fruit flavor, and even cereal lattes including their Cinnamon Toast Crunch menu item. If you’re looking for something outside of coffee, grab a turmeric or beetroot latte, too. Also, this is a fab place to grab a quick bagel breakfast sandwich or arugula salad. Needless to say, this shop offers Insta-worthy drinks and food to make friends outside of Cleveland jealous. 

Croissants: Blackbird Baking Company

Blackbird Baking Company was voted Best In Bakery Cleveland by Cleveland Magazine for a reason. This Lakewood neighborhood shop offers the most divine savory croissants that are ideal to start your day, end your night, or eat as a snack. The spinach and feta croissants are my personal favorite, but one can never go wrong with a chocolate or raspberry croissant. You know what? Just order one of everything in the case, you won’t regret it.