Panettone or Pandoro

Better Panettone or Pandoro?

Easy, panettone is the king!  It’s a match between a heavyweight champion and an experienced and light competitor.  

Panettone is the best natural leavened artisan dessert;  delicious thanks to the ingredients and a multi-phase fermentation that gives complex aromas, but very complicated to make and even more difficult to master.

Today panettone is becoming a global trend among natural yeast enthusiasts and professional bakers (on Instagram there are more than 250 thousand photos!). 

Though there will always someone who says he prefers the pandoro (my son).  

 Naturally Leavened Christmas Miracle

The hyper-saturated dough of the panettone is the miracle of a naturally leavened fermentation.  Any mistake during the process and the baker can lose not only days of work but a really precious and rich mixture of pure butter, vanilla berries, egg yolks, candied fruit and the aromas developed during the long hours of fermentation.  

Obviously, the pandoro is not a walk in the park, but I have never heard a baker prey to panic because the fermentation of the Pandoro dough suddenly stopped, risking wasting an entire production.  

Milan for Panettone

 There is now an infinite variety of artisan panettone.  The bakers continue to raise the level, making this bread increasingly interesting, experimenting with local, traditional or organic ingredients, a mix of multi-grain flours or with Slow Food products.  Panettone is Milanese, but we all love it and regional customization.  New versions of panettone always appear without compromising its soul or identity.  


Verona for Pandoro

The star with a slender line and amber skin conceals a golden crumb inside with the typical dense and uniform sponge structure, of great softness, humidity, and looseness.  The perfume is quite clean, with strong notes of butter and light vanilla.  The taste, balanced, precise and pleasant at the entrance, gradually turns towards acid and closes bitter and appealing.

Pandoro Versatility

Pandoro is more versatile, it has a balanced, refined and rich character;  not to mention a solid and imposing but simple aspect.  A good artisan pandoro always finds the perfect balance between the sweetness and the pleasant sensation of melted butter in the mouth.  Its refined simplicity makes Pandoro the most obvious choice for those who do not like candied fruit or raisins.  Pandoro is also an excellent option for pairings with drinks, especially for single-origin hot chocolates or coffee so unique that a slice of pandoro becomes the perfect stage to make them shine.  


The Verdict

 Panettone will always win, its growing popularity confirms people’s love for this Italian “Classic All-Star.”  The growing trend of artisan panettone is helping people all over the world to discover the still unknown universe of leavened Italian desserts, including Pandoro.  If I had to choose, it is clear that I would take the panettone every time!  But since we all have a friend or family member who hates raisins, let’s face it: we will end up eating, and enjoying, a slice of each.

Best Commercial Brands

  • Panettone Motta; always a trusted name in both Panettone sold at about 9,90 euros per about 1 ½ Kg. 
  • Panettone Bauli, produced by the historic Veronese company with the iconic lilac packaging. About 7 euros. Bauli produces an equally good Pandoro.
  • Panettone Tre Marie: the shape is low, the external color golden and the internal yellow. We note the presence of pieces of candied cedar in the dough, which is good. This is my favorite. Sold at about 10 euros.
  • Panettone and Pandoro Giovanni Cova & C., a Milanese brand born in 1930. The Panettone is about 9,50 euros. However, Giovanni Cova & C. produces a very good pandoro, impeccable in leavening and cooking, aesthetically perfect, balanced in flavor, soft and soluble in the bite, presented in the elegant and sophisticated line “Giovanni Cova & C. Celebra Ricordi“, wrapped in a paper that reproduces the liberty poster of Madama Butterfly from the Archive Ricordi. The star-shaped Pandoro with a slender line and amber skin conceals a golden crumb inside with the typical dense and uniform sponge structure, of great softness, humidity, and looseness. Pandoro is about 20 euros.
  • Pandoro Galup [it does remind of Gallup, Inc. the American analytics and advisory companydoesn’t it? ] Galup is the name of this almost centennial Pinerolo pastry, but also that of the innovative panettone invented by Pietro Ferrua, low and crowned with a glaze of hazelnuts. And it is also the name of the pandoro that wins the ranking of specialized companies. Today Galup is a confectionery company of international scope but it produces with criteria close to the artisanal ones, like all its competitors, but with surprising results for harmony, cleanliness, and pleasantness.  About 1000 g price 18.5 / 26 euros


Both, however, are delicious the day after for breakfast.



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I lived the most part of my life in Washington DC, now in Italy getting to know again my country. Plenty of surprises, for good and bad, and lots of nostalgia for DC.

7 thoughts on “Panettone or Pandoro

    1. That’s why I said that Pandoro is more versatile. To think about, now that Xmas is gone by, a nice zabaglione cream would do wonders with a slice of pandoro.
      On a personal level, that choice of panettone (front picture), was made because of it’s size, one too many candies for my taste (I prefer raisins), yet it was good because it was artisanal (from a pasticceria).
      Pandoro are usually only commercially made, too big, and I had a couple of occasions when it was slightly undercooked.
      I’m hoping for smaller size, pasticceria made pandoro next Xmas.


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