Chela’s Bakery is a small family owned Panaderia located at 4022 Park Avenue. Owners, Chela and Javier Valencia came to Riverside from Michoacán, Mexico over 15 years ago and opened the bakery in 2010.
Javier Valencia comes from a family of bakers and learned the trade from an early age. All of the Valencia children helped at the bakery in Mexico before going to school and several generations now work at the bakery today. Chela worked at the Mission Inn Hotel & Spa for 11 years as a chef after which, the Valencia’s decided to start their own business and purchased the property on Park Avenue and completely remodeled it for the bakery.
Chela and her staff of 13 family members who work different shifts with her bake everything from scratch (with no preservatives) beginning early in the morning and throughout the day. They usually sell out of everything by 6 p.m. The most popular bread is the Tarasco, an indigenous bread from Michoacán. The similarity of the recipe to native breads in other cultures helps the bakery attract a variety of customers.
Chela’s Bakery has become very popular and the Valencia’s are hoping to expand to occupy the entire building where they are currently located. As business continues to grow they plan to employ additional people from the community.