K&J’s Elegant Pastries serves sweets and smiles to Alabaster customers

K&J’s Elegant Pastries serves sweets and smiles to Alabaster customers
Customers enjoy the "colossal" milkshakes from K&J's Elegant Pastries on a sunny Saturday morning in June. The shakes are the most popular items on their menu. (Keisa Sharpe)
The K&J Elegant Pastries food truck sits outside the shop. It makes deliveries weekdays to the Birmingham Metro Area. (Keisa Sharpe)

K&J’s Elegant Pastries recently celebrated six years in business.

A special celebration was held Sat., June 1 and included deals on cakes slices, cupcakes and cinnamon rolls – all baked from scratch in the kitchen.

Customers came in droves to purchase these desserts from the store and also from their food truck, which was parked just in front of the bakery’s window.

But just ask the faithful customers, each day is a celebration and special occasion at this sweet shop.

K&J’s started in the home of its owner Kristal Bryant. She now runs the business alongside her husband Jonathan Bryant in Alabaster, hence the K&J of K&J’s Elegant Pastries.

Their teen daughters and other family help them run the business daily, too.

It Hasn’t Always Been Easy

For Kristal, an unfortunate circumstance led her to open her shop outside of home.

She has experience working in restaurants and has baked for a number of years.

Here’s one example of a themed cakes you can order from K&J’s Elegant Pastries. (Keisa Sharpe)
Here’s one example of a themed cakes you can order from K&J’s Elegant Pastries. (Keisa Sharpe)

She began baking cakes in her home and would deliver orders to customers.

According to Kristal, one customer called and reported her to the health department for baking cakes out of her home.

Determined not to give up on her dream, Kristal, after speaking with the health department, determined she would open a shop since it’d be too expensive to make needed renovations for her home bakery setup.

She moved to her first shop on Kent Dairy Road in Alabaster for several years and moved to her current home at 236 First Street South in early 2017.

Business is overflowing, thanks to help from customers sharing their treats and experience on social media. Instagram and Facebook have led to a huge following for K&J’s Elegant Pastries.

And it doesn’t hurt that they have more than 50 flavors of cupcakes that are offered to customers like lemon, vanilla, chocolate, Key lime, red velvet, peanut cutter cup, banana pudding and white chocolate raspberry. And for first-timers, Kristal recommends her favorite cupcake flavor – sweet potato pie.

And that’s just the tip of the icing.

Proof is in the taste

“It looks good and it tastes good.”

Tanisha Derico and her daughter partake in ice cream on the patio on celebration Saturday at K&J’s Elegant Pastries. (Keisa Sharpe)

Tanisha Derico has been a faithful customer for years and drives from Fultondale with her two young children to partake in cupcakes and ice cream most weekends. The bakery is open Tuesday through Saturday and is closed Sunday and Monday.

Tanisha knows K&J’s is on to a good thing – she’s also ordered several themed cakes from the bakery, the latest being a Dora the Explorer cake for her four-year-old daughter.

“The wait was originally just a few weeks for a themed dessert cake, but now, it’s stretched out to at least three months, so get your order in early,” said Tanisha.

Kristal bakes cakes for just about any special occasion including weddings, graduations and themed birthday parties.

Just Dig In

They are sweet – and a sight to behold!

Baked goods aren’t the only things behind K&J’s business success. On this busy celebration Saturday in June, as workers bring out the milkshake orders, those seated and those waiting to be served can’t help but stare at each masterpiece in a mason jar.

A top shelf of decor and a bottom shelf of samples with cookies and mini cupcakes for every customer who stops in the shop. (Keisa Sharpe)

“Where do I begin?” Laughter erupted from the family members of one preteen after he posed this question. He’d just ordered the Birthday Cake milkshake that came complete with a rainbow-colored cake slice, lollipop and lots of whipped cream.

He struggled to crack the opening code. Part milkshake, part work of art, he had to employ a few digging skills to get to the sweet, creamy goodness of the shake.

But when he did, much like other customers, smiles followed until he finished the last sip (or slurp) of his dessert.

A regular customer digs into his colossal strawberry cheesecake milkshake. (Keisa Sharpe)

It’s just one of the masterpieces you’ll see at this shop. Other colossal milkshake creations include the ultimate Oreo, cotton candy, salted caramel and strawberry shortcake crunch and a newer shake – the red velvet tacollasal.

There’s also the K&J original, which started it all, and the K&J cotton candy shakes selling as the most popular.

For more information on the award-winning K&J’s Elegant Pastries, visit the web site www.kjselegantpastries.com.

You can also find them on Facebook and Instagram.

Or stop by at 236 First Street South in Alabaster. The shop is open Tuesday thru Friday from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Some customers enjoy dessert outside, while others wait in line to order from the food truck on this sunny celebration Saturday at K & J’s Elegant Pastries.

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