Black-Owned Bakeries in Detroit
The holiday season is upon us. It is a moment of conviviality and fraternity; nothing says love like sweet treats. Many Detroit bakeries are more than a business – they are a legacy of family entrepreneurship and recipes passed down from generation to generation.
Take Sweet Potato Sensations to the northwest side of town. The nationally acclaimed bakery and cafe is the fulfillment of a couple’s dream of being a place of refuge for their otherwise underserved neighborhood. The shop started when Cassandra and Jeffrey Thomas married in 1976 and compromised on a Thanksgiving dessert – sweet potato cookies. More than 40 years later, the family business has been featured on Food Network.
“Kids come into our store and say, ‘Wow! It’s in my neighborhood,” says Espy Thomas. “In Detroit, it’s downtown that gets a lot of love and we’re starting to see development in neighborhoods, but everyone in the city deserves to see that great things are possible in their communities.”
Bakeries were one of the types of businesses that, even during Detroit’s toughest economic times, remained available and serving the community. This holiday season, Visit Detroit is showing some love to some of the black-owned bakeries that are making our sweetest dreams come true.
17337 Lahser Road • Detroit, MI
In their 5,000 square foot bakery/restaurant, customers can order from the sweet or savory menu. On the sweet side, try the sweet potato cookies that started it all or the sweet potato cheesecake. The traditional sweet potato pie is also a crowd pleaser. On the savory side, the sandwiches and soups are very popular, especially the black-eyed pea and collard greens soup served with a side of sweet potato cornbread. Check the website for advance orders for the holidays.
19363 Livernois Avenue • Detroit, MI 48221
According Crain’s. Owners April and Michelle Anderson have been featured in various national news outlets as both a Black and LGBTQ-owned business. Their mission is to provide quality, healthy and organic bakery products; and to provide our baked goods in a positive, creative, educational and friendly environment for our employees and our community.
For the holidays, try one of the yeast cakes and/or buns that perfectly complement your holiday meal.
By online order or by phone only
This mother-daughter business is an Eastside favorite. The bakery offers delicious flavors of cakes like carrot-apple cake, cookies and cream cake, peach dream and much more. They also offer cinnamon rolls and 4oz “Hipster Cupcakes” which are sold in a jar and easily ship across the country. Terri’s Cakes specializes in event cakes, especially for weddings and birthdays.
Nicole’s Bakery Shop
19210 W McNichols Rd • Detroit, MI • (313) 740-7356
While some Google reviewers have noticed how patchy the hours at this West Side bakery are, they seem thrilled to be able to get a slice of the famous cake from Nicole’s Bakery Boutique, formerly known as The Cake Lady. The bakery serves classic flavors like caramel, red velvet, coconut pineapple, carrot, double chocolate, pound cake, German chocolate, yellow chocolate, and lemon pound cake. Whole cakes range from $45 to $50 and cost $5 per slice. Call ahead to order.
19120 Grand River Ave • Detroit, MI
Chef, food educator and owner of Estella’s Vegan Cuisine and Desserts, Chantele Jones has made it her mission to spread the plant-based lifestyle and its many health benefits. Her cookbook, “Our Vegan Family Favorites,” is her latest venture into presenting delicious vegan meals for the whole family. On the sweet side of its menu, try pound cakes, cookies, and muffins — Jones also ships its delicious vegan treats across the country.
By online order and by phone only
Specializing in tiered cakes, Sugar & Shenanigans is an in-house bakery that offers beautifully created and ornate cakes custom-made for each owner.
13835 W. 9 Mile Rd. • Oak Park, Michigan
This family business is known for its two-layer cheesecakes and has become a local staple by putting its mark on other local eateries, like more than a dozen Captain Jay’s Chicken & Fish restaurants. They offer thirty (30) cheesecake flavors in their bakeries, but claim to have recipes for over 90 delicious cheesecake flavors. Wholesalers can order five (5) flavors to choose from: Original, Sweet Potato, Key Lime, Turtle and Strawberry Delight.