The Best Bakeries in Regional Victoria
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There’s nothing quite like a country bakery. Quaint, laden with baked goods, and adorned with stickers from when they won ‘Best Vanilla Slice’ in 2007. Victoria is a big place and has a plethora of excellent bakeries, but here we’re looking for the absolute best bakeries in regional Victoria.
A classic meat pie—with all manner of combinations—pasties, vanilla slice, neenish tart, biscuits, bread, a sandwich deli—all of these are the hallmark of a quality Victorian bakery. So, gather the troops, because it’s time for a road trip to one—or more—of the best bakeries in regional Victoria.
Recently in the news, North End Bakehouse in Shepparton beat out 143 other bakeries to take out the vanilla slice category at the 2023 Baking Association of Australia’s Victorian Baking Show in Bendigo in early March. North End scored 97 out of 100 for its vanilla slice with BAA’s Tony Smith saing that baker Matt Aylett’s vanilla slice “absolutely stood out from the rest.”
North End Bakehouse has previously held the title of Australia’s best hot cross bun, taking home the title in 2021, and 2022 before unfortunately missing out in 2023. North End’s Vegemite hot cross bun did take out first prize in the ‘Innovative Hot Cross Bun’ category however.
Starting off life in the gold rush boom town of Kyneton, Country Cob Bakery now has bakeries inside the city limits in Springvale, and Boronia. Country Cob Bakery has to be mentioned on any list of the best bakeries in regional Victoria simply because the team has won so many awards along the journey.
Country Cob Bakery has won awards for Australia’s best meat pie, sausage roll, best seafood pies, and many, many more. They’ve also been runner-up in Australia’s best vanilla slice awards in 2018, 2019 and 2023.
A certain reader of The Local Rag would be quite unimpressed if Birchip’s Sharp’s Bakery didn’t make the cut, but to be fair to Sharp’s, they make it on baked goods well and truly. Family-owned and operated in Birchip since 1977, Sharp’s Bakery has an award-winning vanilla slice on offer, along with pies, pasties, bread, and everything else you’d expect.
RedBeard Bakery is situated inside what was Trentham’s original bakery, and they still use the original scotch over that served the town from 1891 until 1987. The oven stores enough heat from one firing to baked 600 loaves of bread.
RedBeard’s bread is made from a wort more than thirty years ago from wild yeast and lactose bacteria harvested from potato skins, which is a traditional Scottish technique. RedBeard Bakery serves up a range of delicious sourdough bread, and top-notch pastries.
Ocean Grove, Queenscliff, and Leopold
Fresh from winning best pie at the Baking Industry Tade Show with its mushroom and truffle pie, Rolling Pin Pies & Cakes is an award-winning bakery that is well worth a visit. With locations around the Bellarine Peninsula, Rolling Pine Pies & Cakes serves up award-winning pies, pasties, quiches, lamingtons, eclairs, coffee scrolls, and much more.
Where is Wallington you ask? Well, it’s right in the guts of the Bellarine Peninsula and it’s where you’ll find Ket Baker, one of Victoria’s best bakeries. Run by French-trained baker, Miek Paulus, Ket Baker serves up sourdough croissants, pastries, and bread that will well and truly hit the spot.
Keep an eye out for Ket Baker’s bread and butter lamingtons.
Albury, Ballarat, Beechworth, Bendigo, Bright, Echuca, Healesville, Yackandandah
The home of the original Ned Kelly pie, Beechworth Bakery has spread well beyond its humble origins in Beechworth and spread out with bakeries around regional Victoria. Beechworth Bakery has a huge range of pies, sausage rolls, and serves all-day breakfast alongside a sandwich deli bar.
What is a ‘hotel and brewery’ doing on this list you ask? Well, Tooborac Hotel & Brewery is very well-known for its Tooborac Pie Shop right next door. Its menu of pies includes beef and ale, beef and mushroom, lamb, rosemary, and potato, rabbit ramble, and more. They also made a mean sausage roll.
Find out more about the historic Tooborac Hotel here.
Starting out with a bakery in Yarram, Paul the Pieman now just has the Inverloch bakery, and its award-winning pies are definitely worth a trip to the seaside town. Expect a large range of pies with excellent flavour combinations alongside lamingtons, neenish and custard tarts, biscuits, eclairs, and of course a large selection of fresh-baked bread.
Just before you reach Warrnambool on the Princes Highway you’ll pass a quick detour of Allansford, home to The Freckled Duck. The Freckled Duck is a wood-fired bakery that serves up a range of delicious pies, and artisan baked goods.
Try The Freckled Duck’s amazing croissants, and don’t miss the curry pies.
The Dunkeld Old Bakery has been baking loaves of bread on the same site since 1887. Dunkeld, probably best known for the Royal Mail Hotel, is just over an hour north of Warrnambool, and an hour and a half west of Ballarat.
Dunkeld Old Bakery has everything you’d expect from one of country Victoria’s best bakeries with a range of pies, sausage rolls, French pastries, and baguettes. Do not miss their egg and bacon roll, served in a fresh croissant.
Johnny Ripe can be found among the wineries of Victoria’s Red Hill wine region. Along with a range of delicious baked goods, including meat pies, lasagnas, bread, and more, Johnny Ripe also serves all-day breakfast with views across the rolling hills.
Take some of their delicious pies home with you from the takeaway fridge.
Dromana and Mornington
Just off the Mornington Peninsula Freeway in Dromana, you’ll find Millers Bread Kitchen, a bakery that produces a wide array of delicious baked goods. Millers’ lasagna is next level, and well worth buying one for the freezer. You’ll find Millers Bread Kitchen products stocked at many locations around the Mornington Peninsula.
Bridgewater on Loddon
Winner of Australia’s best vanilla slice in 2021, Bridgewater Bakehouse is impossible to leave off a list of the best bakeries in regional Victoria. Alongside its next-level vanilla slice, Bridgewater Bakehouse has a range of pies, pastries, and slices which includes hedgehog, jelly slice, custard slice, and more.
You’ll find The Old Rosedale Bakery halfway between Traralgon, and Sale, and it’s well worth a stop on the side of the highway for a pie. Expect the usual wares from a classic country bakery, along with slices galore, and freshly made sandwiches, and rolls.
A traditional country bakery with an excellent range of cakes, Inverleigh Bakehouse can be found about half an hour west of Geelong. Get stuck into their mini pastries range, pies, sausage rolls, slices, wraps, and more.