Gus Balon’s: Huge baked goods in Tucson, AZ

Review by: Michael Stern

Gus Balon’s sweet roll is a scenic wonder, the size of half a six-pack. There is always a pan of them on the shelf of the kitchen pass-through, but you don’t really realize just how big it is until one is presented to you on a plate, with a schmear of butter on the side. Utensils seem puny for attacking it; it makes more sense to use your hands. It is swirled with veins of sweet cinnamon sugar and frosted on top. Enormous as it is, the roll is surprisingly gentle-textured, easy to tear … and to eat.

What to eat at Gus Balon’s in Tucson, AZ

Everything baked is good at Gus Balon’s. The toast that comes with egg orders is made from Gus’s own white bread that is rugged and delicious. (And those eggs, by the way are something special, particularly if you like them sunny-side up or over easy: glistening in an abundance of butter.) The pie repertoire is staggering. One day’s list of available pies was: banana, chocolate banana, chocolate peanut butter banana, chocolate peanut butter, chocolate, coconut, lemon, butterscotch, blueberry, peach, raspberry, peanut butter, pineapple, apple, cherry, raspberry, peach, and raisin. Plus the crumb-topped pies: apple-cranberry, peach, raspberry, apple, apple-raisin, cherry, and pumpkin!

Aside from exemplary baked goods and inexpensive lunches served in a bare-bones coffee-shop setting (counter and booths), Gus’s is notable for its waitstaff, a team of girls who serve the food and coffee almost faster than you can speak the words to order it, and who refer to newcomers as well as friends as hon’, sweetheart, and doll. “You into pictures, hon’?” asked Pat, our waitress, when she caught me snapping a photo of the giant cinnamon roll. I showed her the digital image and she agreed that it was indeed a thing of beauty.

What To Eat

Sweet Roll



Breakfast Burger

Coarse Ground Round Breakfast

French Toast

Southwest Breakfast Burger


Gus Balon’s: Huge baked goods in Tucson, AZ Recipes


What do you think of Gus Balon’s: Huge baked goods in Tucson, AZ?

One Response to “Gus Balon’s: Huge baked goods in Tucson, AZ”

Tom Lewis

October 7th, 2011

The breakfast menu is every extensive. I chose the three egg omelet with ham and cheese. Included in the price were: coffee/tea, choice of toast, and breakfast potatoes. I sat at the counter so I could see all of the food being produced.

The noted cinnamon buns are huge and very popular. Food appears very rapidly and the portions are huge. The omelet was buttery and contained large amounts of ham and cheese (not the typical one slice of wrapped processed cheese) and came with house-made salsa. I selected wheat toast and was amazed at the size of the slices and their quality; I could have made a meal out of the toast and orange marmalade. The potatoes were tender and nicely browned.

The restaurant uses whole bean coffee that is roasted fresh with each brew and is wonderful. My waitress was very friendly and helped me experience one of the best breakfasts I’ve ever eaten. Nothing was greasy, the place was spotless, the staff was friendly, and I’d come back if I was in the area.


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