Bakersfield is a city located in Kern County California. Bakersfield has a 2023 population of 416,175. It is also the county seat of Kern County.Bakersfield is currently growing at a rate of 1.04% annually and its population has increased by 3.17% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 403,401 in 2020.
The average household income in Bakersfield is $89,574 with a poverty rate of 16.3%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to - per month, and the median house value is -. The median age in Bakersfield is 31.3 years, 30.2 years for males, and 32.3 years for females.
There are two interesting statistics about the population of Bakersfield. Multiple studies have found that it is one of the least educated metro areas in the country, having one of the lowest populations of adults with bachelor’s degrees when compared to other metropolitan areas. The city was ranked as one of the most obese metro areas in the US, with over 33% of inhabitants classified as obese, exceeding the national average of 26.5%.
Bakersfield has seen steady growth throughout its history, with each 10-year census reflecting increase since 1990. The highest rate of growth was recorded between the 1880 and 1890 censuses – over 227% growth recorded during this time. While the population has not grown at such a rapid rate, double-digit percentage growths have been observed every ten years. The population in 2016 was already up over 8% from the census data taken in 2010. Based on the past growth of this city, the population is only expected to continue to grow and will soon hit the next milestone of 400,000 residents.
Bakersfield history dates back thousands of years. However, it was first explored by the Europeans in 1776. It wasn’t until the discovery of oil and gold that the city became settled. The original settlement was washed away in floods in the 1860s and was moved in 1863. By the 1870s, the settlement had a population of several hundred people. It was incorporated as a city in 1873 and the following year was designated as the county seat.
Throughout the 1800s, the city’s population continued to grow. Many people moved to Bakersfield from states including Oklahoma, Texas and Louisiana, as well as other cities in California, due to the employment opportunities offered within the oil industry. The city’s population has continued to grow, and it has been one of the fastest-growing cities in the state. Not only does it still have a thriving oil industry, but it is also a regional transportation hub. The city has lots to do for both tourists and residents, including annual events, historic restaurants and landmarks, and multiple theaters.
According to the most recent ACS, the racial composition of Bakersfield was:
Two or more races
Black or African American
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
Average Family Size
Average Household Size
Rate of Home Ownership
Less Than 9th Grade
9th to 12th Grade
High School Graduate
High School Graduation Rate
The highest rate of high school graduation is among white people with a rate of 82.89%.
The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among asian people with a rate of 39.11%.
Other Indo-European Languages
Asian and Pacific Island Languages
58.11% of Bakersfield residents speak only English, while 41.89% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 34.12% of the population.
Overall Poverty Rate
Male Poverty Rate
Female Poverty Rate
The race most likely to be in poverty in Bakersfield is Black, with 28.65% below the poverty level.
The race least likely to be in poverty in Bakersfield is White, with 11% below the poverty level.
The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 3.35%. Among those working part-time, it was 14.47%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 24.89%.
Overall Marriage Rate
Male Marriage Rate
Female Marriage Rate
The age group where males are most likely to be married is 55-64, while the female age group most likely to be married is 35-44.
Second Gulf War
First Gulf War
World War II
Less Than 9th Grade
High School Graduate
Bachelors or Greater
Veteran Poverty Rate
Veteran Disability Rate
Labor Force Participation
Non citizens include legal permanent residents (green card holders), international students, temporary workers, humanitarian migrants, and illegal immigrants.
Born in Bakersfield
81.86% of Bakersfield residents were born in the United States, with 69.08% having been born in California. 10.17% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.