Baked goods have not historically been a high point on the vegan menu, but local company Vegan Taste is on a mission to change that perception. “I always tell people [about our food] that if you didn’t know it was vegan, you wouldn’t guess it was vegan,” said KJ Jackson, who owns and operates Vegan Taste with his wife Kelsey.
For several years, Vegan Taste has built up a considerable wholesale business, providing baked goods such as cookies and muffins to coffee shops and food trucks throughout northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan. You’ve likely already had some of their pastries if you frequent Black Kite, The Flying Joe, The Leaf and Seed, or SIP Coffee. Their menu has also been available for orders through their website that can be delivered or picked up at one of several locations around town, including Black Kite Coffee and Erin Ann’s Homemade Ice Cream & Juices.
On Tuesdays, online orders are delivered throughout northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan – a complete map of the included territory can be found on their website. Though a majority of its business is wholesale, Vegan Taste welcomes customers in person at Perrysburg Farmers Markets and at its new storefront on Laskey Rd., inside a Graze shared kitchen.
The Graze shared kitchen is also known as a “ghost kitchen,” in which several food businesses utilize a shared storefront to provide a greater selection of menu items for customers and increased efficiency and decreased overhead costs for businesses. This Graze also contains Big Knuckle Burgers, Mozza!, Wings Up and Olga’s Express. The other food businesses are open for pickup from 10am-2pm and open for delivery from 11am-1:30am. The City Paper covered the phenomenon, and this specific kitchen, in 2021.
Where to get started on the Vegan Taste menu? Consider getting a sampler box of their treats: the selection we brought to the City Paper office was a great introduction to their offerings, and everything was gone by the end of the day. The menu offers something for every palate, as the baked goods do not just incorporate the needs of vegan eaters – much of the menu is also gluten-free.
A couple of the tastiest treats that we tried were the blueberry and strawberry pop tarts. Brown sugar cinnamon is also available. One of the benefits of eating vegan is that often, food is much simpler to prepare and contains fewer synthetic ingredients. These pop tarts tasted like ingredients I recognized: fresh, natural fruit.
To this reviewer’s way of thinking, the perfect breakfast includes lots of caffeine and sugar. Enter the Vegan Taste cold brew whoopie pie, which is a highly efficient mix of both. Other whoopie pie varieties include mint chocolate and peanut butter cup.
What’s next for Vegan Taste? Updated versions of cinnamon rolls and donuts. Stay tuned to their social media for more information, and swing by their storefront to select from an appealing selection of cookies, brownies, muffins, cakes, and more. 1734 W. Laskey Rd., Toledo. vegantastetoledo.com.