Snack Food & Wholesale Bakery was recently able to talk to Melissa Trimmer, corporate executive chef, Dawn Foods, Jackson, MI, about the upcoming Día de los Muertos holiday, and how in-store bakeries can participate. 

Liz Parker: How can in-store bakeries use Dia de los Muertos to highlight their creativity and increase sales to kick off the holidays?

Melissa Trimmer: In-store bakeries can showcase Día de los Muertos with themed cookies, cakes, and donuts. Incorporate bright and lively colors, such as orange and purple, and pair with sugar skull, bones decorations, and paper flags to provide a unique and creative holiday experience to go along with the Halloween set-up that many stores already have in their fall plans.


LP: What is the importance of incorporating this holiday into bakery display cases?

MT: As many Latin American cultures and the surrounding communities will gather with loved ones and share cookies, cakes, sweet breads and other desserts to celebrate the holiday, bakeries should include these products in their display cases to be inclusive toward the communities that celebrate while educating consumers on these customs. Like many cultural celebrations, cooking, and baked goods, are often at the center and this celebration is no different, as consumers are seeking to incorporate new and unexpected flavor experiences. Bakeries have an opportunity to serve customers from various backgrounds and spread the traditions of this cultural celebration to new places.


LP: How can bakeries incorporate Día de los Muertos-themed desserts with traditional fall flavors that they may already be producing?

MT: In general, one way to maximize bakery efficiency is to leverage one baking mix and use it multiple ways. For seasonal items such as Día de los Muertos and Halloween, bakers can use the same mix while incorporating unique flavors and other decorative items that best meet each celebration.

For example, in-store bakeries can include fall products such as caramel apple donuts or candy corn cupcakes that they are already making for the fall season, with Día de los Muertos-themed colors, decorations, sugar skulls or icings to celebrate each holiday.


LP: How can bakeries market Día de los Muertos items alongside Halloween desserts in-store?

MT: There are similarities in the decorations for both holidays as they often feature skulls, bones, and similar color palettes like orange and purple. In-store bakeries can incorporate these similarities with Día de los Muertos decorations such as bright Marigold flowers and traditional fall flavors like pumpkin, caramel, or apple to create desserts and a display case or table that highlights the celebrations all season long.