What makes the perfect brownie? For Katie Cross (pictured above), the answer is lots of melted chocolate and high-quality fillings. “We usually have around 12 flavours running at any one time - we put a lot of filling in them and we don’t cut corners.”
Katie, 41, is the founder of Cake or Death, a Devon-based bakery that sells vegan brownies, delivered through your letterbox, in a pink leopard print box.
For Christmas, Katie and her team have created a mince pie brownie. “We make a dried fruit mincemeat mix and run some Christmas spices through the brownie mix so it’s like having a really chocolatey mince pie,” she says.
“We’ve also got a gingerbread kit you can use to bake gingerbread at home - it makes your kitchen smell amazing.” The brownies and baking kits are sold online and at local markets. Cake or Death has a stand at the Exeter Christmas Market, running throughout December. For her banking, Katie uses Starling.
Pivoting from wholesaler to online bakery
Cake or Death began in 2019 as a provider of wholesale vegan brownies and cakes to bakeries, cafés and restaurants. “I was living in East London at the time and I went round a bunch of cafés and asked ‘If you were going to take on a new wholesale cake supplier, what would you be looking for?’ And they all said ‘Really good vegan cake’. So that was a clear steer for me.