No food screams “breakfast” like pancakes. Many of us have childhood memories of sitting at the table with a stack of delicious pancakes. Some of us — I won’t say names but their initials start with me — even love them for dinner. Pancakes are also big business. Kodiak Cakes — whom no one has ever heard of — rakes in $100 million in revenue annually. We can only imagine how much Aunt Jemima takes in. Billions are made just from pancake batter alone but little of it comes back to our community. That changes now. We have several Black owned companies that can help us recycle our dollar and deliver amazing quality for breakfast.
Christian Carroll Westbrook and husband Cortney are the founders of Vicky Cakes. Christian named the company’s goodness for her mother, Vicky. Her mom’s pancakes were legendary — as a kid Christian’s cousins were upset if they ever came over and her mother did not cook them! Christian had literally never seen a Black owned business growing up, nor had she heard the term “entrepreneurship.” Christian’s husband repeatedly told her and momma Vicky that they should monetize their pancakes but it took years before they listened and Vicky Cakes was born. Vicky Cakes are fluffy and rich in flavor. They are very easy to mix and vegan friendly — the mix features no dairy products. Vicky Cakes offers original, pecan, blueberry and chocolate buttermilk flavors. In addition, they offer gluten free buttermilk mix. Their products have no artificial preservatives, flavors or GMOs.
Deven and Marquita Carter are the owners of Blanket Pancakes & Syrup. The husband and wife team always had a desire to blend their love for business and food. Their first pregnancy came with complications and the doctors told Marquita to watch her diet more. Quicker and healthier was needed and with that Blanket Pancakes & Syrup was born. Their products are all natural — no artificial flavors, preservatives or ingredients grown in a lab. They worked on perfecting their products for years before selling to consumers. Their pancakes are a complete meal — crispy, light and fluffy but very fulfilling because they have no fillers. Very little processing is done to the flour and you can taste the difference. They feature buttermilk, honey butter (with real honey in the batter) and chocolate chip pancake mixes. Blanket syrups have at most 3 ingredients and no high fructose corn syrup or silicon, like other syrups. Blanket makes vanilla bean, cinnamon and original flavor syrup.
Rashed “Ray” Dukes spent years working in financial services but knew early on that corporate America would always try to place a cap on his ambitions. Rashed’s father later opened a seafood restaurant, where his sweet potato hushpuppies were a hit. Pops asked Rashed what he thought about packaging the mix for sell. Rashed quickly thought that pancake batter would also be a good idea and Rosella Baked Goods was born. After Rashed’s father died in 2014 from lung cancer, however, Rashed was unsure if he wanted to continue in business until his wife Monique encouraged him to finish what his father had started. Motivated by his father’s dreams and passion, today Rosella Baked Goods is going strong. Their sweet potato pancake mix is entirely unique and delicious! It’s naturally sweet, yet low in fat and no cholesterol. It’s also rich in vitamins and minerals while being Certified Heart Healthy by the American Heart Association. They offer a mix for vegan customers, also. The sweet potato is not only delicious but a much healthier option than the regular potato, often used in other brands. Rosella’s flavor is so naturally sweet that you don’t even need syrup!
*Also see Michele Foods