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Local bakeries we love, in honour of GBBO 

Bake Off is back on TV so time to drag out the food mixer. Can't be bothered? Fair enough! Put down that spatula and support these 11 drool-worthy bakeries instead.

It’s Bake Off season and boy are we ready for it this year – the reliability of great bakes (now common parlance thanks to GBBO!), good humour, and pure simple TV-shaped joy…

GBBO is – by far – my favourite show on TV and the televisual equivalent of an open fire and hearty bowl of stew on a freezing February day. It warms the cockles, so it does.

Anyway, I don’t know about you but now it’s back on the box, I’ve got a hankering for pastries and cakes with ‘a good crumb’. Here’s Muddy’s pick of the best bakeries in Bucks & Oxon.


Pobi, Witney

A couple who started baking during lockdown have taken their hobby onto Witney high street and have already won a legion of local fans, as well as coverage in The Times, no less. They make every baked goodie from scratch in-house from sourdough loaves (natch) to sausage rolls, babka (sweet loaves) and cakes.

Hamblin Bread, Oxford

This is the bakery for purists – all of the bread, buns, cakes and pizza are made with stone ground flour from organic wheat and rye, grown within 50 miles of the bakery. Check out the website to see what’s cooking for each day (it also now stocks local cheeses, cured meat and fish, fresh fruit and vegetables and natural, organic and biodynamic wines – talk about one-stop shop).

Barefoot, Oxford

It’s not hard to spot Barefoot in the cute bunting-strung North Parade – there’s usually a queue outside. Whatever the wait, the bakes are 100% worth it. Lemon cheesecake cruffin anyone? White chocolate and raspberry doughnut? There’s also breads galore and decent coffee to take away. Weekend starts here… (or weekdays if you’re lucky enough to be close by).

Quince and Clover, Great Tew

In March last year, on the doorstep of Soho Farmhouse, the former Great Tew post office and village shop was being transformed into an artisan bakery and cafe. Then lockdown hit. Down but not out, the team behind Quince and Clover swiftly set up a takeaway and delivery service and now, mercifully is back open as a cafe for breakfast, brunch and lunch. Expect breakfast pastries (but get there quick), homemade cakes, savoury tarts, cookies and Cotswold Crunch loaves.

The Bakery by Knife and Fork, Oxford

Are you gluten intolerant and of the mind gluten-free bread tastes like pap? Well, so was owner of Knife and Fork home restaurant and award-winning chef Tanya Young until she started experimenting and creating gluten-free bread recipes that deliver on both texture and taste. The Bakery now delivers UK-wide and offers gluten-free cakes, brownies and granola as well as standard and more elaborate (cinnamon, orange and sultana, for eg) bread loaves. 

The Orange Bakery, Watlington

Father and daughter bakers, Alex and Kitty Tait, deliver exemplary sourdough everyday along with other specialist loaves flavoured with such delights as miso and sesame, walnut and even Marmite. Pastries – including to-die-for cinnamon rolls – grace the shelves in the morning. For lunch, how about a wild garlic and chorizo swirls followed by a rhubarb bun? Tip: Get there quick to avoid disappointment.


The Bakery, The Stables at Long Crendon

This bucolic spot at Long Crendon Manor fires up in the early hours to get baking its traditional farmhouse and malthouse loaves and sourdough. Stop for a baguette, sausage roll, brownie or muffin and a cuppa and perch on one of the picnic tables with a meadow view.

Zanni’s, Aylesbury 

If you are a regular at food markets in Aylesbury Vale, chances are you’ve already snaffled some of Zanni’s baked goods out of a paper bag, while still trying to look glamorous despite icing sugar covering half your face. They’re regular fixtures on the market scene in Marlow, Haddenham, Little Gaddesdon, Winslow, Tring and of course, Aylesbury. We’re big fans of their Chelsea Buns.

Rex Bakery  – Little Chalfont, Bucks

These guys are serious about their bread. Multiple award-winners, the team hand make their loaves on site with quality ingredients, specialised know-how and a no-rush attitude. The results are pretty special, which is why they often sell out before their 2.30pm closing time. Fancy a pastry? Their almond croissants are normally demolished by 9am. If you’re pottering about in Berkshire, check out they’re new bakery in Windsor.

Darmon Deli, Amersham

Darmon Deli offers worldwide cuisine with a French twist – and you know what that means… *sounds patisserie klaxon*. This week they’ve got tarte tartin on the menu along with lemon meringe. Dreamy. Plus, they offer takeaway and sit-in options although walking anywhere with that much cream and fruit in hand has got children’s TV pratfall written all over it.

Woodstock Artisan Bakery, Stony Stratford, MK

For an old fashioned bakery with the sort of charm you remember from your childhood, you could do a lot worse than turning up here. Expect traybakes, brownies, eccles cakes, flapjacks and tiny treats for the children such as gingerbread men. Speciality breads are produced for the weekend and traditional and continental breads line the shelves otherwise. Carby heaven.

2 comments on “Local bakeries we love, in honour of GBBO ”

  • Jill Mitchell September 26, 2021

    As above, the Farm Deli in Winslow High Street is definitely worth a visit.

  • alison crook September 27, 2020

    The Winslow Deli is just devine….worth a Muddy visit.


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