Jasmine Davis of Sweet Jazz Treats Bakery discusses her new food truck endeavor, her best-selling sweets, and why she’s not unnerved being chased by hordes of cake-seeking children.
How long have you been baking?
I have been baking for four years now when it comes to my business, but I have always loved to cook/bake.
What drew you to baking?
I love sweets but what really drew me to baking was it allowed to me bring two things I love to do to it: eat, and make art. I’m an artist/creative at heart so I was very excited to be able to do both at the same time.
Why start a bakery?
I wanted to start my own business to give me the flexibility that I wanted when I decided to have children. I didn’t see that possible too much in corporate America. I felt over time it was more security for me and not wanting to miss those special moments when I do have children. It became a no-brainer. It was scary and exciting at once!
How did you get started?
It all started with a dream and having to deal with the infertility process. My doctor told me I had to make a decision—either staying in my demanding, stressful job in IT as a resource manager or do something more relaxing. I prayed about it and God gave me the name Sweet Jazz Treats Bakery. After I had my promotion review, I put in my two weeks’ notice and hit the ground running and never looked back. Baking is not more relaxing, but I do enjoy it and I’m very passionate about it.
What would you say is your most popular item?
My most popular items would be my strawberry cheesecake cake and Oreo cheesecake cake. It’s a combination of cake and cheesecake all into one. It sells out every single time.
What do you want people to think when they taste your sweets?
When people taste my desserts, they always taste the love. They taste every single flavor in the cake. I want you to think about a party of flavors in your mouth.
Who inspires your baking?
My future children inspire me. My goal was to leave a legacy behind for them to call their own. I wanted to always open up a family-owned baking business or business in general, so this was my chance.
Why start food truck?
I’m the type of person who never wanted to be put inside a box. I didn’t see [doing] an all-dessert bakery food truck that only served ice cream or funnel cakes or snow cones. I wanted to serve desserts like cakes, cupcakes, dessert jars and more. I wanted to do things people really enjoyed, especially children. They flock to my truck because you can see it a mile away and they are screaming, “I want a cupcake!” It’s hilarious to me!
It was my idea to do the dessert truck because I like the fact to be able to move around from place to place and meeting new people. I have customers all the way from Dayton down to Maysville, Kentucky. They have seen my journey from beginning. It warms my heart so much.
What’s the reception been like to the food truck so far?
The response has been amazing! People like how bright and colorful it is and then they are even more amazed when I tell them I [created] every cake, cupcake, and dessert. I get a lot of calls for catering, festivals, and events.
What are your long-term goals?
My long-term goal is getting my own bakery location and another food truck in the next four years. It’s looking very promising on both.
How has the pandemic changed how you operate?
Surprisingly, the pandemic increased my business. I learned how to shift and deliver everything, and still cater to my customers’ needs. I had cupcake specials every Friday and Saturday for my customers in different neighborhoods each week. I grew a lot.
Any advice for up-and-coming entrepreneurs?
Go for your dreams no matter how stupid it sounds to someone else. People thought I was crazy quitting my $65,000 [a year] job to bake. It was a huge leap of faith. But I thank God every day for giving me the vision and blessing my hands to do what I can do now.
I thank my husband Antoine Davis for allowing me to go for my dreams, I thank my family and friends for also supporting me as well. I really thank my customers for following and supporting me though every process. Being an entrepreneur is not easy at all but it’s so worth it when doing it. I’m looking forward to the journey and the many more opportunities coming.