Nestled in the heart of sunny Southern California, Pasadena is more than just the home of the Rose Bowl Stadium and the annual Tournament of Roses Parade. This culturally rich city is teeming with picturesque landscapes, historic architecture, art galleries, and vibrant neighborhoods, offering an irresistible mix of small-town charm and cosmopolitan allure.
When you stroll down the streets of Pasadena, you’re greeted by an array of boutiques, top-notch restaurants, world-renowned museums, and of course, a plethora of coffee shops. With the majestic San Gabriel Mountains serving as a breathtaking backdrop, Pasadena’s coffee scene is just as compelling as its vistas.
In this bustling city, coffee is more than a morning ritual – it’s a lifestyle. From third-wave roasters serving artisanal brews, to cozy hideouts offering the perfect ambiance for a lazy afternoon, there’s something to suit every kind of coffee enthusiast.
The coffee shops in Pasadena are sure to deliver an unforgettable experience.
Join us as we explore the city’s unique coffee culture, taking you on a guided tour of the best Pasadena coffee shops. Each one offers its own unique take on the beloved bean, promising a memorable and flavorful journey through this charming Californian city.
1. Copa Vida
We start off with a Pasadena coffee shop that has all the benefits of an airy and spacious area, but you can also have access to metered and free side street parking, so combine this with open outdoor seating, and you have all the freedom to dine as you see fit.
You also have the chance to try out their seasonal drinks, especially in the fall when you can find salted caramel and pumpkin lattes so that you can get into the spirit with friends or in your own company.
Address: 70 S Raymond Ave Pasadena, CA 91105 (click for map)
This place follows the philosophy that life is too short to drink bad coffee, and from seeing their signature drinks, it’s difficult to find fault with this, as you can find a black vanilla latte, cardamom oat espresso, sea-salted hazelnut cappuccino, and plenty of vegan options as well.
You also have a distinct wine bar that hosts tasting events, and if this doesn’t sound like you, there are always plenty of snack options for you to try out, whether these be delicious sandwiches or quiches.
Address: 854 E Green St, Pasadena, CA 91101 (click for map)
This cafe has all the comforts of home as the comfy furniture and pictures display the bright and vibrant personality of Pasadena, with all the ease of great coffee, snacks, and breakfast sandwiches that you can have made custom to your requirements.
You also get a good sense of community, as one of the aims of the cafe is to make their place your place, and with events taking palace here, there are plenty of reasons to stop by and perhaps make it your new regular spot.
Address: 2057 N Los Robles Ave Unit #10, Pasadena, CA 91104 (click for map)
This coffee shop specializes in plant-based coffee, tea, pastries, and snacks, so if you’re struggling to find areas in your city that accommodate your preferences, this place could be your new favorite.
It also has a chic look that brings feelings of a boutique, which can offer a unique yet quirky experience that will make sitting in or taking away all the more worth it, or perhaps you want to try something new. It is a very dog-friendly coffee shop, which is nice to see.
See the video about Coffee and Plants at the bottom of the page.
Address: 62 W Union St, Pasadena, CA 91103 (click for map)
You want the best coffee Pasadena can offer and simple snacks that go down well, so if this is the case, you might want to check out Dash.
You’ll find a contemporary space that gives you a good choice of seating, and the high ceilings and decorative plants are a modernist dreamscape.
You can find snack options such as their egg and cheese croissants and chicken melts that are oozing with flavor and make for a nice treat if ever you’re having a tough week, so watch as all you’re troubles melt away as you stop by.
Address: 912 Union Street, Pasadena, CA 91106 (click for map)
6. Amara Cafe
This cafe has a personal touch that is the staple of a great dining experience, as the staff here are more than happy to go through the menu with you and make recommendations.
It has a nice kiosk area to make purchases more manageable.
However, you’ll be pressed for choices. You can pick from grilled arepas, sandwiches, Cachapas, salads, Tekes, plantains, empanadas, churros, and a stunning selection of coffee, hot chocolate, juices, teas, and lemonades.
Amara Cafe also boasts an extensive bakery section, with freshly baked goods such as croissants, muffins, cakes, and pastries that are perfect for those with a sweet tooth. Each item is beautifully crafted and baked to perfection, making it hard to resist trying them all.
Address: 55 S Raymond Ave, Pasadena, CA 91105 (click for map)
7. Philz Coffee
This place has a classy feel with a lot of modern features that make this a refreshing change from the monotonous strain of everyday life, and with the variety of blends from dark to a single origin, there’s bound to be a strength that suits your palette.
The Philz community also ensures that their coffee-making process is sustainable, with responsible sourcing that can help the coffee harvesting process, and is taking steps towards a healthy planet, which is even more reason to visit them.
Address: 146 South Lake Avenue, Suite #106, Pasadena, CA 91101 (click for map)
Let’s say you want to go on a coffee-tasting tour of the city, and if so, you can try the specialty tea and coffee from a place that is in a concentrated area near the Copa Vida shop on this list.
In fact, we highly recommend this place in the hotter weather, as you can find iced Toddy lattes that come in vanilla, pistachio, Mexican spiced, salted caramel, coconut, and even Nutella in case you were looking to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Address: 39 N. Arroyo Pkwy Pasadena, CA 91103 (click for map)
The interior of this cafe may remind you of a bakery, and many of the pastries, croissants and baked goods would suggest so, but it is described as being the perfect place to gather, eat delicious food, drink strong coffee, and listen to great music.
With quite a few options on the menu that stretch beyond sweet treats, there are even more reasons to try out their salads and soups, which can offer you some unique flavors that can be just the thing you need while on break or after a long day.
Address: 1422 W Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91105 (click for map)
10. The Pie Hole
If you’re a dessert and treat connoisseur, this place is the ultimate stop, as you can get these assorted pie holes that are described as bite-sized pies that contain pie filling inside, which includes apple and blueberry.
They also have a cozy seating area outside, so you don’t have to wait to try these sweet desserts, and they will likely go down well with some earl grey tea or a specialty cup of joe.
Address: 59 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91105 (click for map)
11. Peet’s Coffee
This coffee shop loves its coffee, so it’s no surprise then that the coffee beans are roasted by hand and handcraft an exceptional variety of beverages, going from the white chocolate mocha to the Havana cappuccino, all the way to your coffee of the day, which skips the milk.
If you go on cerian days, you might be in a chance to try out some unique tea and coffee blends, and buying different types of coffee blends from them gives you more excuses to introduce these into your day.
Address: 605 South Lake Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91106 (click for map)
Just as you enter this shop, you’ll see why many are drawn to it as we have yet to see any dark or dingy places which can take you out of the mood, but here, you can expect a brew with a distinct flavor that has strength and a hint of sweetness.
You’ve also got a distinct menu that shows you all the classics, as there’s nothing we hate more than having to be elaborate with the specifics of a menu, and here, the staff is warm enough to guide you to your desired beverage.
Address: 18 S Fair Oaks Ave Pasadena, CA 91105 (click for map)
If you’re tired of store-bought treats, try out this place as it may have all the features of your traditional cafe, but the goods they offer are full of flavor and color, so you’d be hard-pressed to walk past without at least trying what’s on offer here.
If you’re on the go, you can order via toast takeout and have it prepared and ready to go as soon as you enter, or you can have it delivered to you for convenience, but the excitement is very much with the inviting seating area.
Address: 712 S Arroyo Pkwy, Pasadena, CA 91105 (click for map)
14. Rosebud Coffee
This coffee shop wants to work with the community, and this is why they support the homeless and at-risk youth, which is a very inspiring mission and does well to help bring people together, so visiting for a bite to eat and a cup of coffee is a great place.
You can also choose from breakfast and post-brunch menu items which are made with some vibrant ingredients, and all this pairs well with their exciting drinks menu.
Address: 2302 E Colorado Blvd Pasadena, CA 91107 (click for map)
15. Urth Caffe
This cafe has some unique features, from its exclusive heirloom organic coffees and hand-selected fine teas.
They have a farm-to-table variety of bites and beverages made with passion and a love for organic coffee.
You could try a rich and dense blueberry cheesecake or a Spanish latte, and with an elegant indoor and outdoor seating area, it’s hard not to resist the urge and find out more about this place, which is possible if you’re in the area.
Address: 594 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91101 (click for map)
You have now seen the best coffee shops Pasadena offers and hopefully, you will get to try one or two to see if you agree with our choice.
If you’re just looking for a new place to work, these spots are great to improve your productivity and get you out of that slump, so see what wonders are in store for you.
Even if you just want to people-watch, there’s nothing better than sitting back and enjoying the ambiance of these vibrant places.
What to do in Pasadena
My name is Dana Dupree and I am an avid coffee lover. Since I began college and realized what a heavy load writing majors took on, I have been a fan of the bean juice.
My job has taken me all over the US on book tours and press conferences, and my favorite part about the trip is exploring the best places to grab my cup of Joe.