These 11 baking-themed Instagram accounts showcase the emerging innovations, revenue streams and bakery trends coming from COVID-19
As recent supermarket shortages of flour and yeast make clear, during COVID-19, the world is full of budding bakers. Consumers following stay-home measures are flocking to Instagram to find #quarantinebaking and #stressbaking inspiration, trying new recipes while also spending time with family in the kitchen.
Professionals are answering this call, serving up feel-good content on social media including mouth-watering bakery images and live baking demonstrations as well as photos of safety measures designed to keep takeout and delivery orders safe.
We surveyed members of our global culinary, bakery and foodservice teams to find inspiring bakery Instagram accounts that highlight bakery trends during COVID-19.
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- Donal Lock, Research, Development & Applications Manager, Naas, Ireland
- Leslie Serrano, Senior Innovation Chef, Beloit, WI, USA
- Pascal Miola, Senior Development & Application Chef, Naas, Ireland
- Thomas Chai, Executive Chef & Senior Manager, Singapore
- Leonel Perez, Corporate Chef, San Juan del Río, Querétaro, México
- Uthappa Iychettira, Marketing Manager for Foodservice, Bangalore, India
The following restaurants, bakeries, bakers and pastry chefs are testing innovative bakery items, resourceful operating models and brand new revenue streams during COVID-19. Bakery brands looking for inspiration—from packaged goods and ready-to-ship mixes to baking clubs with livestream demos—will want to follow these innovative bakery accounts on Instagram.
Chef and baker Christina Tosi, founder of Milk Bar, which has outlets in New York, L.A. and Boston, has launched a free baking club via her Instagram account. Every day, she posts new baking tips for home cooks along with follow-along recipes for some of her most popular creations including the Compost Cookie. Snapshots of her fun and often unconventional creations are posted on the grid, with the full recipe and method posted on Instagram Live.
A sense of community is on full display on the Instagram page for Tiong Bahru Bakery. The Singapore-based bakery is responding to the island’s second round of “stay home” measures with ramped-up delivery services, partnerships, consumer engagement and user-generated content. One recent post advertised that some of the bakery’s five locations will offer up additional provisions for sale, such as wine and farm-fresh produce, while others debuted the brand’s wacky #croissantcurl backbend-to-croissant-bite fitness challenge… and consumers’ video responses. For locals who loved visiting the brick-and-mortar locations, this sort of dialogue is helping keep the brand top of mind.
London-based Calum Franklin is the Executive Chef of Holborn Dining Room in London, a British brasserie which has its own “Pie Room” dedicated to savoury pastry work. Chef Calum posts images of favourite pie room creations such as a chicken, girolles and tarragon pie, alongside pictures of to-go meals prepared for NHS health workers. The @holborndiningroom account also posts cooking and baking inspiration on their account, including a link to some of the restaurant’s best-loved recipes.
The Instagram account for Panderia Rosetta highlights the great variety of baked comfort foods currently trending in Mexico City, where the bakery has three locations. (Use the translate feature if the Spanish text trips you up.) From avocado, herb and cheese sandwiches to rosemary rolls and guava pastries, the focus is on integrating local favourite ingredients into traditional bakery and pastry preparations. During COVID-19, the bakery is mostly relying on delivery and takeout orders placed via WhatsApp. The business is also testing out “bake at home” kits, such as a DIY scone preparation.
The Theobroma Patisserie, with locations in Mumbai and Delhi, India, is optimising its Instagram use to keep consumers informed about current offerings and availability during COVID-19. Posts clearly show the bakery’s evolving lockdown menu and advertise the various delivery services the bakery has partnered with as well as stores selling the fresh-baked goods. Although pastries make an appearance on the menu, most offerings are more of the standard staple variety, including various bread loaves, pizza dough, burger buns and brownies.
The regular posts on the Bread 41 Instagram account show the types of orders coming into this on-trend brunch spot based in Dublin, Ireland. Though closed for sit-down business, the restaurant is still serving up tasty treats to-go for customers, including its signature cruffins and pastries. To adjust to COVID-19 circumstances, the bakery is staying open into the evening in order to sell more wood-burning-oven-baked pizzas for dinner (a once occasional item that’s now a regular menu staple). They’ve also given away free bread starter kits to home cooks and food donations for Dublin’s neediest populations.
While the storefront for the Supermoon Bakehouse in New York City is essentially closed due to current restrictions, that hasn’t stopped the team from innovating. In addition to selling gift cards for future purchases, they recently launched a “weekend care pack” which can be delivered or picked up in-store. Offerings change by the week, but the pack typically contains goods such as a loaf of sourdough bread, an 8oz jar of homemade jam and six baked goods including an assortment of croissants, doughnuts, pastries and cookies. The weekend-focus package is the businesses way of consolidating workload while giving customers something to look forward to.
The Sourdough Club is selling information and education, rather than actual baked goods. The Instagram account essentially supports and advertises the offerings of the club—mostly recipes, tips and instruction—which are only available to paying members. Due to the surge in recent applications, the club has reduced the cost of reducing membership by up to 75% for people who qualify (students, front-line workers and chefs, among others). The hallmark of the brand is engaging video content around creating sourdough from scratch.
For artistic takes on cakes and cookies, look no further than the Instagram account of Mexico City-based chef Ivan Trejo. His profile says he is “Putting a little magic to the sweet!” and this shows in his images of Star Wars-themed macarons, crown-topped layer cakes and Disney-inspired creations. As consumers increasingly turn to food for comfort, nostalgia, excitement and entertainment, the bright hues and fantastical images on this feed may serve up product inspiration for satisfying homebound consumers.
Despite the surge of interest in carbohydrate rich breads and bakery items, the gluten-free trend is still humming along. North Carolina company Simple Kneads sells gluten-free breads including those made with quinoa, ancient grains and sourdough. The bakery has always been in the business of delivery—it ships nationwide—but lately its feed has included images of mask-wearing bakers in a bid to grow consumer confidence.
Pastry chef Antionio Bachour has won a number of notable awards for his creations, in part because of his novel approaches to new pastry trends. Fresh fruit is regularly incorporated into his creations, giving them a strong dose of colour as well as a “health halo”. Bachour is a prolific poster here as well as on the Instagram page of his Miami-based brick and mortar operation @BoucharMiami. In addition to showcasing food, safety measures and acts of giving, many posts offer detailed recipe instructions and some promote limited time offers the brand is testing out, such as takeout brunch and barbecue packages.
To try your own bakery skills, try this recipe for Brown Soda Bread from Kerry Development & Application Chef Brian Daniel:
Brown Soda Bread
- Oven proof frying pan
- Mixing bowl
- 260g bread flour
- 1 tsp bread soda
- 220ml buttermilk
- 7g sugar
- 5g salt
- Vegetable oil or beef fat
Heat the oven to 180C.
Place a pan on low heat on the cooker top.
In a large bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients well – no need to sift.
Add the buttermilk and mix with a spatula until just combined (the dough will be quite wet).
Lay a piece of parchment on a chopping board and liberally dust with flour.
Turn the dough out on to the parchment paper and dust the top liberally with flour.
Shape until a flat disk approx. 2-3 cm thick.
Add a layer of fat to the bottom of the pan.
Gently slide the dough into the pan and turn the heat up to medium high.
The delicate bit! When the dough is cooked on one side using a spatula and gently turn over in the pan and add a little more fat.
Cook until golden brown and then place the pan in the oven for 15 min or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Leave to cool slightly on a wire rack – serve with fresh butter!
To learn more about how COVID-19 is affecting the food and beverage industry, including changes in consumer preferences and purchasing behaviours, visit Kerry’s COVID-19 resource page.