In 1992, Frank Carollo and Zingerman’s Delicatessen founders Paul Saginaw and Ari Weinzweig opened Zingerman’s Bakehouse. After a decade of fun and flavor at Zingerman’s Deli, Paul and Ari in their ongoing effort to improve the quality and flavor of the Deli’s food decided to bake their own bread. To make it possible, they contacted their longtime friend and Paul’s former business partner, Frank, and asked him if he’d like to open a bakery with them. There were just eight of us making a go of it then, including Amy Emberling, who is now the managing partner of the business. In 2020, founder and former managing partner Frank Carollo retired.
We started as a simple bread bakery with a single customer, Zingerman’s Delicatessen. Driven by our passion for baking great bread and pastries and sharing them, we’ve grown and evolved. Today we proudly serve our Zingerman’s partner businesses, the southeastern Michigan community, and beyond—363 days a year.
We’ve been committed to our mission “the relentless pursuit of being the best bakery we can imagine” from the very beginning. We are true artisan bakers, which means we use traditional recipes, time-honored processes, our hands, and flavorful ingredients to make our bread and sweet treats. And, we’re making them fresh for you each and every day.
We bake using the best ingredients we can find including organic wheat flour, rye, and cornmeal and Michigan-grown grains like spelt and einkorn. We aim to showcase the flavors and benefits of enjoying whole grains and highlight the spectrum of wheat varieties and other grains that are out there. For select breads and pastries, we freshly grind whole grain flours on our own stone mill here at the Bakehouse.
We use local farm fresh sour cream and milk, Wisconsin sweet cream butter, high-cacao-percentage chocolates, Madagascar bourbon vanilla extract, Michigan honey, local farm apples, fresh cage-free eggs, and more. We continue to move toward using more locally grown or produced ingredients, organic when possible, and building lasting relationships with those local farmers, millers, and producers.
We also consider time a key ingredient in our baking. Allowing the fermentation to work its magic in our naturally leavened breads is how we develop maximum flavor, but it requires patience and determination. Our naturally leavened breads take anywhere from 18 to 28 hours to make. In the name of that relentless pursuit we mentioned earlier, we don’t hesitate to do things the right way all over the bakery. Not the easier, cheaper, and more convenient route, but the path that will result in food we can be proud of and you’ll fall in love with. This means folding and resting puff pastry dough over and over for just the right layers, making our own fondant so it tastes like nothing but sweet vanilla, milling some of our own flours in-house to achieve a desired texture and flavor, and countless other steps. We believe you really can taste the difference, and that’s what we’re here for.
We think what we’re not using in our food is just as important. You won’t find preservatives, fake flavorings, or things you can’t pronounce. You won’t find us pumping up our doughs with extra yeast to speed up the process, or taking shortcuts like using frozen doughs or pre-made fillings.
We take extra care during our baking and packaging processes to keep allergens like tree nuts and dairy from mingling while in our bakery and store, now that allergies are a common concern for our customers. Zingerman’s Bakehouse is also a peanut-free facility.
We strive to be conscientious neighbors and all-around good humans. We have an active community giving program, distributing food and funds every single week to local causes that support children, families, those in recovery, veterans, libraries, music, and environmental groups. We proudly help sponsor local initiatives like Pathways to Success Internships, Grillin’ for Food Gatherers, the Dexter-Ann Arbor Run, Ride For Recovery, Champs for Mott, and many more.
It’s important to us to create a positive work experience for and with the 150 bakers, packers, drivers, servers, and cleaners on the Bakehouse team. We aim to provide a work experience that is enriching—financially, emotionally, socially, and intellectually. To that end, there are many opportunities for us all to participate in the shaping of the business. We are committed to each other’s success. People are the heart and soul of our bakery and we are very proud of what we each contribute every day.
Taste For Yourself
Visit our bakery shop for exclusive batches, views of baking in action, kind service, free samples, and free parking. Shop our full selection of baked goods, birthday cakes, sandwiches, salads, and soups, and weekly specials like grilled cheese or doughnuts. We also offer home baking supplies including freshly milled flours, whole grains, chocolates, and bake-at-home pie crusts.
Bake With Us
Join us for a class at BAKE!, our onsite school for home bakers. We offer fun hands-on classes, both in-person and virtual, to learn Zingerman’s Bakehouse recipes and special events with guests from the baking world. Teaching others to bake is one of the most joyful things we do.
Pick up a copy of our cookbook to get your hands on Zingerman’s Bakehouse recipes, as well as a piece of the history and soul of our bakery. Share your home recipe success with us on social media #zingbookbakers.
Keep In Touch
We’re always baking something new and have no shortage of tales to tell. Stay in the know on new foods, special events, and behind-the-scenes stories…