Want to see your children eat spinach with a big grin on their faces? If your answer is yes, then Athens Pastries in the heart of Greektown is worth adding to your list of where to eat in Toronto. This charming bakery located on the Danforth has been serving up Greek pastries fit for the gods for almost 35 years. Their menu is not expansive, allowing them to perfect everything they make.
My two boys and I have been going to Athens Pastries for spanakopita at least once a month since my now six-year-old started solids. We love it, and it’s the only place my four-year-old will eat a vegetable without accusing me of trying to poison him. I am not alone in this, as the place is always full of kids eating happily alongside tables full of cooing Greek grandparents, there for their mid-morning coffee and tiropita (cheese pie to us mere mortals).
Where to eat in Toronto for Spanakopita
The spanakopita is a generous and heavenly rectangle of phyllo pastry stuffed with spinach and feta. The kids can eat a whole one each and there is a reverent silence at the table while this is happening, yet another reason I love this place.
If you can’t stay, take it home and warm it up in the oven. You can even purchase a whole pie uncooked to bake at home or freeze for later. I’ve given up trying to make it myself from scratch – the Athens Pastries spanakopita is truly the best.
Not to be Missed
Don’t skip dessert, and definitely don’t think about the calories this will entail. Loukoumades are basically the Greek version of the Timbit: a scrumptious ball of fried dough, soaked in honey syrup and sprinkled with cinnamon. Try to eat them in one bite or you may have sticky honey syrup dripping all over you.
The custard pie is also amazing with its delicate layers of phyllo blanketing a creamy but not too sweet pillow of custard. This also comes covered in honey syrup. They don’t mess around when it comes to honey in this place.
Insider Mom Tips
Take it out or eat in – there are a few tables in the back – but get there before noon to beat the school lunch rush. The teens love this place too. It’s cash only but there are several banks within a block. Everything on the menu is under $5. And bring wipes – I wasn’t joking when I said the loukoumades were sticky.
Two Locations are open Sunday-Thursday from 9:00am-11:00pm, and Friday and Saturday from 9:00am-12:00midnight:
Greektown – 509 Danforth Avenue, 416-463-5144
Scarborough – 2567 Victoria Park Avenue, 416-491-0095
*Photos by Rebecca Ruddle