How To Pick The Menu For A Pop-Up Cake Shop

Starting a business is an enormous undertaking--but in many modern cities, pop-up spaces are available that will allow you to launch your ideas into the world on a temporary basis without making any huge commitments. If you're that one friend who's always bringing cake to the party amidst cries of "You should sell these!" and you live in a big city with pop-up spaces available, you might very well have considered getting your basic food safety certification and renting one for a few weeks to see what all the fuss is about. There's one major thing left to consider, though: what should you put on the menu?

Don't get too ambitious.

This isn't a long-term venture, so start with what you're good at and what you know. If you have a few signature bakes that reliably turn out perfectly, build the rest of your menu around those. Staying in your comfort zone isn't always a bad idea, and can help you hit the ground running!

Be as inclusive as possible.

Offering at least one vegan option and at least one gluten free option should be obvious--but why stop at just one? It's easier than you might imagine to veganise and de-gluten many of your other recipes. Experiment for a while to see where you can use gram flour rather than wheat flour, where a flax egg can replace a hen's egg and where ganache might do an even better job than buttercream.

Consider where and when you'll be open.

Catering to a target audience is an important part of any business, even a temporary one! Find out what's near the pop-up you're renting and think about who might come by there. If you're right next to a gym, consider adding some protein balls to the menu as a quick pick-me-up for enterprising exercisers. If you're in a very commercial area, opening before 9am and offering breakfast muffins is a great choice. For a street with loads of shops catering to a particular cultural market, consider looking into some recipes from that culture.

Don't forget the logistics!

Depending on the food safety laws in your jurisdiction, you may well be baking your produce at home. Even if you're going to be hiring professional kitchen space to comply with regulations, it probably won't be right next to your pop-up cake shop either! Elaborate baked goods aren't a great choice in situations like these--make sure you're creating things that will definitely survive the journey.