Today we’d like to introduce you to Jessica Freda, MT Gibbs and Cece Loessin.
Zucchini Kill started as a pop-up bakery business in May 2016, founded by Cece. She was a vegan baker at Green Vegetarian Cuisine in San Antonio for many years, and upon moving to Austin, TX, went gluten free and began rewriting recipes while experimenting with her own gluten free flour blends. Selling at small vegan markets and baking at Counter Culture became a great outlet for getting her baked goods to the public. Cece reached out to Jess Freda who had been a worker/owner at Red Rabbit Cooperative Bakery (r.i.p.) about her idea for Zucchini Kill expanding and Jess jumped at the chance to get back into the vegan baking scene. Jess introduced Cece to fellow north eastern vegan baker, MT Gibbs, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America who has a long history of both casual and fine dining under her apron strings; and the incredible force that is the current incantation of Zucchini Kill was born.
Jess and Cece have played in bands together, and all three women have been in the music scene since they were kids. It has always been important to them to incorporate their love for music with their love for baking, thus many of their products are named after bands they love, (including Zucchini Kill being a pun of 90’s riot grrrl band, Bikini Kill) and they often deliver complimentary baked goods to bands that come through town, and offer a 10% discount at their new retail shop to any traveling musicians. Their goal is to appeal to everyone who wants dessert… but also be able to accommodate those with dietary restrictions.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
We are a totally DIY business and like other small businesses, we’ve had our fair share of snags along the way but are super stoked on what we’ve accomplished so far. With a name like Zucchini Kill, we are constantly explaining that we don’t use zucchini in all our products 🙂 Also transitioning from a wholesale/pop-up company to having a retail space was a big leap. We’ve put a lot of heart and energy into creating a community-oriented space that spotlights local musicians and women-owned businesses/artists and always on the lookout for new badass people/companies that we can include in our shop.
Zucchini Kill – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Everything we make is gluten-free, vegan, and soy free. We take a lot of care of creating products that are allergy-friendly. We are completely DIY and woman-owned, run and operated. We are very focused on animal welfare/rights and have a gumball machine of our gluten-free/vegan dog treats that all proceeds go to local Austin pets alive, as well as stickers and artwork that also directly benefit other local animal rescue groups.
We are probably most known for our Cream Coffins which are vanilla cream-filled sponge cakes.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Opening our retail shop in the building that is located in Possum Park, which is an entirely vegan food truck yard. Being a part of an amazing little vegan oasis has been awesome.