Dating back to a Milanese baker from the early 1800’s, Panettone can now be found on most Italian Christmas tables.  It has become very popular in other parts of Europe and South America and is spreading throughout North America as well. Popular brands are Maina, Tre Marie, Motta, Alemagna, Bauli and there are many more. According to a press release from Maina, in 2015 a total of  13.5% of their sales were from exports and the number is expected to increase this year. Maina panettone is available in the UK at Tesco and in the USA at Wallmart stores.

Most panettone are 1 kilo, but sizes also range from snack sized mini-panettone to extra-large 3 kilo panettone. Panettone is tall, looks like a chef’s cap, and  is made of fluffy sourdough cake with dried candied fruit, nuts and raisins. It’s usually served with a sweet mascarpone cream topping. Newer versions of panettone have been introduced into the market with chocolate chips or cream fillings.

The best place to get a Christmas Panettone is fresh from your local pastry shop. Order in advance, as the yeasting process takes up to two to three days.

Photo: 3 kilo Panettone by C. Abernethy

An extra-large 3 kilo Panettone –   Photo by C. Abernethy

Best Panettone bakeries in Italy

Via Spadari, 9 – Milan

Pavè Milano
Via Felice Casati 27 -Milan

La Cannoleria Siciliana
Piazza Re di Roma 10 – Rome

La Cannoleria Siciliana
Corso Trieste 100 -Rome

Il Vecchio Forno di Firenze
Via Guelfa, 32/34r – Florence

Pasticceria Bellucci
Via Vittorio Emanuele II, 67 – Florence

Have you found a great panettone in Italy? Let us know about it!

Make it

If you have a few days and want to try to bake a panettone yourself, read the instructions and recipe here from

christmas-market-540918_960_720 TOUR: North of Italy Christmas Markets from Milan

Christmas Markets in Italy are popular both with the locals and visitors from all over the world. The markets known in Italian as “Mercatino di Natale” are not as numerous or on the same grand scale as the network of markets in Germany. Nevertheless, a visit to an Italian Christmas Market is one to remember, especially the amazing Christmas Markets in the Italian Alps. From €45  Read more about this tour

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