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Molly Bakes

  • By Sophie Newman
  • Photography courtesy of Ben Dunkley
  • 20th Nov 2017

Freakshakes have hit London, prepare for a sugar sensation.

Get yo’ freak(shake) on

You may not have heard of London based, Molly Bakes – but that will soon change. Brit babe and owner of Molly Bakes, Maria Goodman has whipped up delicious desserts for clients such as Gucci, Toyshop and Disney, recently opened a Cafe in Dalston and is at the forefront of the latest food trend to hit London, the Freak Shake. We went and visited Maria to hear all about the sweet sensation and the Molly Bakes story so far…

“As soon as I saw them on Instagram I just wanted one. So, I knew that they where a bit special”

So, when did you first open Molly Bakes, the shop?

In January this year, but its been six years in the making!

So, how’s it been going in the shop?

It’s been incredibly busy; we’ve had a lot of press. It was more than we could’ve ever hoped for really.

Would you say most of the press comes from Freak Shakes?

Yeah, definitely. As soon as I saw them on Instagram I just wanted one. So, I knew that they where a bit special, judging from the reaction they got in Australia and the comments on Instagram saying “why don’t you have them in the UK?” I was just so surprised that no one did them and that’s why I nipped across to get this shop ready. We literally found this shop in late August last year.

I actually used to live in this area so I used to walk past the shop all the time and it used to be a wine shop. I looked at it and it was so…It kind of reminds me of Amsterdam… and I just thought it would make such a nice cake shop. Then one day, it was for rent, which was like a week after I’d first seen freak shakes and as soon as I saw it I just thought, why don’t I get a milkshake machine? I thought we could open in two months but actually it took about four months.

We were ready to open in January, and I just really thought that someone else would start doing them, but they didn’t. It was two days before payday when we launched them, and it was freezing cold; it just shows how much of an appetite people have for them. We had people who literally queued for two hours with literally a days notice. Secret London picked it up as well as the Metro and the Evening Standard.

What toppings do you put on each one, does it vary?Screen Shot 2016-04-07 at 08.45.33

So for the chocolate one, we make our own chocolate genache, we make our own salted caramel for the salted caramel, then peanut butter for the peanut butter. The raspberry we use marshmallow fluff and raspberry jam and fresh raspberries in the actual milk shake. The toppings are either an ice cream cookie or a homemade chocolate brownie. We also use toasted marshmallow and honeycomb which is also made by us.

What toppings do you put on each one, does it vary?

So for the chocolate one, we make our own chocolate genache, we make our own salted caramel for the salted caramel, then peanut butter for the peanut butter. The raspberry we use marshmallow fluff and raspberry jam and fresh raspberries in the actual milk shake. The toppings are either an ice cream cookie or a homemade chocolate brownie. We also use toasted marshmallow and honeycomb which is also made by us.

What’s the most popular flavour?

Chocolate…by far. I kind of expected it to be caramel, but chocolate outsells it by double!

What else do you do apart from Freak Shakes?

We do cupcakes, we do layer cakes, brownies, cookies, tarts. Cinnamon buns are really popular! We just responded to consumer demands and my business has evolved based on what the customers are asking for.

What would you say the hardest thing has been in starting your business?

The time and the sacrifices you have to make. When I first started molly bakes it was taking up so much time for about two years, and then I was able to employ people after that and it got a bit easier. I managed to go on holiday for the first time again last year, but now I’ve opened the shop it’s gone back to square one; it’s like a new business again. Because were so busy at the moment I’m here over the weekend, and we’re open til’ 10, I’m working double shifts, I’m in the bakery during the day as well. It’s very demanding but it’s also very rewarding.

What are your plans for the future of molly bakes?

We need a bigger shop! The place isn’t big and we can only fit about 20 people in at the moment. We can expand outside in the summer and also we’ve got a little yard at the back. We opened this thinking it would be popular, but we didn’t visualise quite how popular.

There’s not really anywhere else in London that are doing things like this…

No there isn’t and especially not with home baked goods because that’s what we’re about. It’s a full on desert in a jar! It’s not just one desert, it’s two or three deserts!

I remember seeing one on Instagram myself last year, and being like.. where can I get one!? They just looked so incredible.

It’s all about the baked goods, for me it’s not about putting shop brought goods on top. Also, nothing we make is mass produced so I really want to keep that quality. Even if we expanded to two or three shops I’d still keep that quality going.

Do you reckon you’ll expand flavours?

Definitely, I’ve got a few ideas of what we want to do. Maybe some alcoholic ones. But, we’re pretty limited on space so I may have to remove a few things from the menu like the breakfasts in order to expand and add more flavours.

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