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Meet Jade Warner and Andrea Bender of Hazel & Jade Bakery in San Diego

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jade Warner and Andrea “Hazel” Bender.

Jade and Andrea “Hazel”, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
We met nearly ten years ago working at a small cafe inside of a bookstore and since then we’ve stuck together. After the bookstore’s inevitable closing we started working at a local bakery and began to learn the art of baking. We’ve learned everything we know from working in bakeries and restaurants, the hands-on experience was (and still is) invaluable in this field. There’s no better way to learn than being thrust into a kitchen with only a recipe and a 300-piece order due in 24 hours. Or maybe there is, but it forced us to be fearless. We’ve learned from some great pastry chefs, they’ve given us the tools and the knowledge to grow on our own. Over the years we’ve experimented, we’ve dreamt, and we’ve perfected recipes with the hopes of someday opening our own bakery.

Like most, we haven’t always been vegan. Just last year we were each separately inspired to commit to a vegan diet. In the beginning we were glad to give up snacking on the pastries we once loved, but after a few months we began to miss our sweet treats. This is where the challenge arose, we set out to convert our favorite recipes. We didn’t want just any banana muffin, we wanted our banana muffin. So, one by one and through much trial and error we were able to recreate our favorite recipes in plant-based form.

Has it been a smooth road?
The scariest and hardest thing was taking that first step towards being on our own. Quitting our jobs and putting our life savings into a new business was at least an emotional struggle. It’s hard to leave behind the comforts of working a familiar job, of having a steady paycheck, and of being able to walk away at the end of the day; but now that we’re here we wouldn’t trade it for anything. The creative freedom and excitement we get from the growth of our business is completely worth it.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Hazel & Jade Bakery – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Hazel & Jade is a plant-based bakery currently focusing on wholesale and custom pastries. We pay really close attention to the quality of our product. We ensure that the texture, flavor, and presentation of each item is held to the highest standards. We don’t just want to sell vegan baked goods, we want to sell delicious baked goods that are worthy of both non-vegans and vegans alike. We wouldn’t want to have to settle for a mediocre pastry and the goal is that our customers won’t ever have to.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
San Diego is so unique, of course we love it for its weather and beauty but we also appreciate each of its neighborhoods. Since we’ve been selling our products to coffee shops all over San Diego County we’ve gotten to know all of the different areas, their cultural differences, and how each neighborhood has its own vibe. In a single day you venture from OB’s chill beach vibe to North Park’s hip urban feel. Our least favorite part is the traffic, hands down!

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  1. J C

    April 20, 2018 at 1:54 am

    Amazing work by San Diego locals! I’ve had Hazel & Jade wedding cakes and cookie deliveries at Christmas time. I personally love butter and eggs, but these women have a magic touch. Really beautiful presentation and honestly delicious treats. If no one had told us, we’d never know we were eating the healthy version. Be proud, San Diego. Hazel & Jade’s banana bread is one of our town’s hidden gems.

  2. Pattie Bias

    April 20, 2018 at 4:17 pm

    Congratulations to both of you on the success of your business. It’s good to know hard work and persistence pays off. Jade, I’m sure you don’t remember me, but your mom and I are very good friends and we used to visit your family in Virginia when you were very young.

  3. John Godfrey

    April 21, 2018 at 3:56 pm

    Very impressive! I have had the cinn rolls aka sin rolls – and they are sooooo amazing. Very good and you can taste the love these ladies put so much into their art. The cakes are amazing too! Cannot wait until I have my next roll…actually I am going to go to heartwork coffee for my next cinn fix.

  4. Anita

    September 26, 2018 at 11:39 pm

    Hey jade and Andrea am extremely happy with your progress. Hope to visit you guys very soon. Blessings

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