BEST French (Supermarket) Food Guide (2022)

This is a list of all the necessary French (supermarket) food items to bring back home from your France trip. Whether it’s the St. Michel madeleines that are only available in France or that Bonne Maman jam that makes for such a nice gift, we have a list of everything delicious for you!

French wines and groceries

Please also check out our 3 day itinerary for the Loire valley and our Loire valley wine guide

You can find all of the products contained in the list at E.Leclerc or at other hypermarchés, which is what bigger supermarkets are called in France.

Caramel au beurre salé
Caramel au beurre sale

Caramel au beurre salé was created in Bretagne in 1946. It is a caramel cream made out of salted butter that the foodies in France like to put on toast or on crèpes. Bretagne is famous for salted butter since it was the only region where in 1343 the “Gabelle” tax, the salt tax, was not applied. Meanwhile in all the rest of France, salt prices were rising and salted butter was only something one could dream of. The Bretagne became therefore the most important salted butter producer and the inventor of this delicious salted caramel cream.

French cheeses

Of course, the most important thing to take back when you’re in France is cheese. However, since you probably won’t be traveling with a refrigerator on you, you will have to stay away from all soft cheeses and those that spoil easily at room temperature. Cheeses that do travel well are mimolette, otherwise known as Boule de Lille, a hard cheese inspired by the Dutch Edam cheese. You can also buy aged, smaller-format goat cheeses like Chevrot and Charollais. Comté is another French hard cheese that travels well.

Galettes au bon beurre by St. Michel
Galettes au bon beurre by St. Michel

Another delicious cookie made by St. Michel are the Galettes, which are delicate French butter cookies. If you order coffee or tea at a French café, this is most likely the cookie you will be served alongside your drink. Make sure to try them when you’re in France and while you’re at it, purchase one or two additional packs to bring back home for yourself, friends and family since it’s just such a nice staple to have at home.


Pastis is a French spirit made out of different plants such as Chinese star anise and licorice root. Following the ban of absinthe, Ricard developed pastis in 1932 in Marseille. Pastis, which means “porridge” or “mixture” in Provencal, is one of the most popular drinks in France and is consumed both as an aperitif and as a digestive. The Parisian way of serving it consists of adding first the pastis drink (around 2cl), then ice cubes and then water (around 10cl). This blocks the development of aromas of pastis.

Bonne Maman
Bonne Maman jam

Bonne Maman is a brand of jam, marmalade, compotes, desserts, cakes and biscuits in France. The red-and-white gingham lids on the hexagonal jars definitely look very cute and make for a nice gift to bring back home to your loved ones. Bonne Maman uses ingredients “found in your grandmother’s kitchen” and is popular amongst professional chefs and foodies alike. You will find a huge variety of different jam flavors in the supermarket. We can recommend fig and the classic strawberry flavor.

Madeleines by St. Michel

Born in the 18th century, the famous Madeleine owes her name to a young maid who created these delicious cakes for Stanislas, the King of Lorraine in 1755 in Commercy. St. Michel is an institutional brand in France making madeleines since 1986 in their birth place of Commercy. They are such a delicious snack to have alongside coffee or tea and French up every Sunday breakfast.

Crème de marrons
Crème de marrons by Bonne Maman

The first time I had chestnut cream or crème de marrons was in Angelina’s in Paris when I ordered the mont blanc. The mont blanc is a famous French dessert made out of meringue, whipped cream and chestnut cream. The name comes from Mont Blanc as the dish resembles a mountain. You can definitely try to recreate this famous dessert at home, or you just put the crème de marrons on crepes or toast. It is not too sweet and resembles the Singaporian egg yolk spread Kaja. It’s literally heaven on bread!

La Vosgienne Candy
La Vosgienne Candy

The La Vosgienne candy was created in 1927 and tastes literally like a pine forest. It was created by André Deudon who wanted to invent a candy on the basis of eucalypthus, honey and pinecones. The brand has grown immensely since then and it is one of the most popular candy brands in France now. It is so good I regret only having brought one small pack and will definitely stock up the next time I am in France again, as well as try the other flavors that La Vosgienne offers.

Bret Crisps
Bret Crisps

Brets crisps are a crisp brand from France. The crisps are made using French potatoes and French oil and come in various different flavors. We went for the classic salt and vinegar but also honey and mustard. You will find a lot of other experimental flavors such as aioli, yakitori, goat cheese and piment pepper, stonebaked pizza, pesto mozzarella, blue cheese and pancetta, Brebis cheese and cherries, to name only a few. If that doesn’t sound mouth watering, then I don’t know what does.

Crackers by Michel & Augustin
Crackers by Michel & Augustin

Michel & Augustin sell different kinds of crackers. We went for the chevre flavored ones since the Loire valley is famous for their goat cheese. You will also find more cheese flavors like Roquefort or Comté. This is definitely an upgrade to any cheese plate you plan to serve back home. We planned to gift these crackers but once we tasted them at home, we could not help ourselves and indulge in a second pack. Make sure to pick those up from the supermarket as well!