In response to the high consumer demand for dairy and egg free sweet treats, Edinburgh-based Cuckoo’s Bakery has launched a vegan cupcake range, which includes two core flavours – Chocolate & Oreo and Vanilla, priced at £2.75, and special flavours such as Peanut Caramel, Coconut and Raspberry for £3.25. To create this delicious vegan range, the company used a dairy-free spread instead of butter and vinegar as a raising agent instead of eggs.
“Veganism is becoming more and more popular and we really wanted to tap into that market,” said Cuckoo’s Bakery general manager Sophie McVey. “We always had customers coming to us on Facebook and Instagram, asking ‘when are you bringing out a vegan cupcake?’, so it was really important to us to cater for everybody.”
The first vegan products introduced by the Bakery were the dairy-free version of its popular crunch bars in February, followed by a vegan peanut butter cookie and a vegan cupcake for Easter.
“We’ve been trialling the cupcakes for a couple of months and didn’t want to launch then until we were completely happy with them,” said McVey. “Our head baker was a bit pessimistic at first, saying we need butter and eggs, but she was really surprised at how well they came out.”
In order to produce the vegan range, Cuckoo’s didn’t have to change its method of working. Firstly, they make the gluten-free products, and then clean the kitchen thoroughly for the vegan items.
“Cross-contamination is something we are used to and already very careful of,” McVey explained. “We let our customers know that it is baked in an environment where cakes containing dairy and such are baked, but we do take every precaution required.”
Giving advice to other bakeries, McVey suggested: “We’d definitely encourage smaller bakeries to experiment and see what works for them. If they can cater to people who have dairy intolerances or who are vegan, then that’s a really important thing to include in your business.”