Ten-year-old Makai Walker has lemon berry dreams. Ever since the age of two, she has been baking cookies or cakes with the help of her mom and dad. At the age of five, Makai started bringing her baked goods to charities and events for people to enjoy. Soon, she realized that she could start her own business! Four years ago, Kai started her business, which evolved into Kai’s Baking Studio (https://kais-kookies.com/), a keto, vegan, and gluten-free friendly bakery. Kai’s keto cookies and cinnamon rolls (the latter being her favorite) are famous all-around town. Her treats are also “diabetic-friendly with a taste that makes you feel like your cheating on your diet without falling off the wagon,” according to her website.
But it was not always smooth sailing for Walker in the scheduling department. “My brother and I had a soccer game but we also had an event for the business the same day so we had to decide – do we want to go to the event, or go to the soccer game? I chose my event because I am committed to it and also to my customers.” So, to better prepare, Kai drew up a schedule for herself. After she came home from school and finished her homework, she would head to the commercial kitchen her family rented out and would work her magic. During the coronavirus, Kai’s sales have taken a bit of a hit, but business is still doing well, so she spends up to five hours in the kitchen a day.
Kai has dairy and egg allergies, so she focused her business on catering to people with specific dietary restrictions, starting with vegan diets, and soon, she evolved to providing for keto diets. “My dad started [the] keto [diet] recently, and I realized he wasn’t eating any of our cookies or cakes anymore. And it was like, oh, we should make some stuff for him as well!” Speaking of Kai’s father, Roderick has been a massive source of support for Kai during the business-building process. Kai bakes all the goods, does sales pitches, business presentations… the whole gamut. Kai’s dad helps her bake certain things and is her personal chauffeur.
Kai’s favorite part of running the business is meeting new people and sharing her gift. “Networking is really important when you’re a kidpreneur (a kid entrepreneur),” Kai says. At many events that Kai vends at, she also teaches kids how to decorate and ice cookies after they purchase one. During COVID-19, Kai’s Kookies started no-contact deliveries, so she could maintain safety regulations and restrictions while giving her beloved customers some sweet treats! Kai’s message to kids who want to start their own business is “You have to be passionate about what you do because if you don’t really like what you do, you’re not going to put that much effort into it. Also, never give up!”
This is great advice from a multi-talented individual – Makai also enjoys dancing and volleyball along with baking! Makai encourages everyone to stay safe, stay happy, stay sane, and order online at kais-kookies.com!
Check out a lemon Berry Cheesecake recipe you can make with the kids.