By ROBIN DOHRN-SIMPSON | Mission Times Courier
Is it possible to have a tasty, ooey-gooey cookie that is vegan? Yes, and egg and butter-free never tasted better than Maya’s cookies. Maya Madsen, owner and baker, has taken her passion for cooking, healthy eating and sweet tooth to a new level that has made her the country’s top Black-owned vegan bakery.
Being a personal trainer for 30 years, Madsen always ate healthy and allowed herself a cheat day. On that day she made cookies. Everyone needs a cheat day. As a vegan she wanted to create excellent vegan cookies using the best quality of ingredients.
Over the past few years, people would pass by her bakery and peek in the windows and ask to buy her cookies.
“I was only licensed to sell online, so I had to turn people away,” Madsen said. “I always want to do what my customers want, so I decided to get all the city permits to sell directly from our bakery.”
She has now opened her bakery for retail sales to the public. Her storefront is off the beaten path, but not too hard to find — across the street from the post office in Grantville. Just look for the pink storefront at 4760 Mission Gorge Place Suite G.
Madsen also sells her cookies at the Little Italy Farmers Market on Saturdays and the Hillcrest Farmers Market on Sundays.
Madsen prides herself on using the highest quality ingredients in her cookies. She offers a variety of cookies and is constantly rotating them in and out. Some popular ones are her Classic Chocolate Chip, Birthday Cake, Snickerdoodle, White Chocolate Macadamia, Chocolate Chip S’mores and Marble Fudge.
Gluten sensitive patrons, you’re in luck. Madsen has expanded her business to include gluten-free cookies. The bakery is not “celiac safe” as they cook with regular flour and gluten-free flour in the same facility. But, depending on your level of sensitivity, you can enjoy two or three flavors that she has on hand at a time. It took her a few years to add this to her menu since she had to get her recipe perfected. She has twelve flavors in her repertoire. For the holidays Madsen features gingerbread cookies. To check specific ingredients, look on her website where she lists every cookie detail
This holiday season, Maya’s Cookies has four different deluxe holiday tins with unique flavors: Chocolate Peppermint S’Mores, Sparkle Sugar Cookies, Gingerbread and White Chocolate Cranberry.
You can order cookies online to be shipped to anyone on your gift-giving list or pass by the bakery and pick up an assortment. The proceeds from the sales of the holiday tins will go to support two charities near and dear to her heart, helping young women of color through high school and college and an animal refuge in Santee.
To order online or for information on ingredients go to www.mayascookies.com.
— Robin Dohrn-Simpson is a local freelance food and travel writer. Reach her at dohrnsimpson@#hotmail.com.