Pan dulce is a staple in Mexican kitchens. Most Hispanic families have been enjoying the traditional sweet bread with loved ones for as long as they can remember.
But what if you can share it with more than just the people you love? One South Gate entrepreneur is doing just that.
Adriana Montoya said she was inspired by her love for dogs, baking and her Hispanic heritage when she started baking colorful treats in her kitchen.
“I have conchas, puerquitos, galletas, cuernitos, carita felices, mazapanes,” Montoya said, as she showed off some of the popular baked goods. “Growing up in Paramount, there are panaderias everywhere and one that we would always go to was a panaderia called Adriana’s Panaderia. Knowing that there was one out there with my name, I was always like, ‘well maybe one day I’ll have my own’.”
In November 2022, Montoya launched La Pawnaderia, a panaderia exclusively for dogs. It’s a concept she said she had never seen done before.
“My whole life, I was that one person who was always petting dogs at parties,” Montoya said while laughing. “Being able to create something that a lot of dogs love, that makes me happy.”
Montoya said she was always interested in baking, but it wasn’t until she started researching the ingredients in dog treats that she became interested in baking for dogs. She wanted to create treats that were equally healthy as they were tasty. In addition, she wanted to showcase her Mexican roots.
“My grandma is originally from Sinaloa, so my whole family is from down that way and Culiacan. When my mom was younger, like 10 or 11, they came down this way,” Montoya explained. “They grew from nothing, so it’s like just seeing that, seeing how independent my grandma was and working all the time, and my mom as well; she’s such a hard worker – and growing up around that just inspired me to keep pushing and not giving up.”
Montoya said her business started growing in popularity after she posted a video that showcased her unique baked treats on TikTok. The next morning, she woke up to find the video had been viewed 4 million times. Now she works every day of the week to fulfill orders from dog owners who are captivated by the detailed treats she creates.
In addition to pan dulce, Montoya also bakes and designs ornate cakes for dogs. When asked if she would consider baking for people, she said, “probably not,” while smiling. For now, Montoya said she is focused on building her brand, while making her family proud.
“Everyone wants to have that feeling of making your parents proud,” said Montoya.
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Source: NBC Los Angeles