New cottage style bakery stems from a local confectioner's lifelong hobby

Muffins. Cookies. Cupcakes. No matter which of her baked goods is up for review, Jacqueline Rubio never gets tired of hearing “nostalgia-inducing” and similar adjectives as feedback from her customers.

click to enlarge New cottage style bakery stems from a local confectioner's lifelong hobby
PHOTO COURTESY OF JACQUELINE RUBIO
FRESH OUT OF THE OVEN : When it comes to ranking her own cookies, cottage industry baker Jacqueline Rubio can’t decide which one takes the top spot. It’s a close tie between her sprinkled sugar cookies and chocolate chip cookies, she said.

“I love when someone tells me it reminds them of a specific time or memory after they taste a certain treat,” said Rubio, the founder of Jackie’s Treats to Sea, an Orcutt-based cottage bakery.

Rubio started her business during the summer of 2022. Since then, she’s offered deliveries of her baked creations to residents of cities in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties and has worked as a vendor at a handful of farmers market events along the Central Coast. 

New cottage style bakery stems from a local confectioner's lifelong hobby
SEA FOR YOURSELF: Find out more about Jackie’s Treats to Sea on the cottage bakery’s Instagram page, @treatstosea, or Facebook page, facebook.com/treatstosea. Baker and founder Jacqueline Rubio offers delivery options to residents in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.

While her ingredients and recipes vary from treat to treat, Rubio’s goal is consistent with each of her confections: to transport tasters to a fond place or memorable moment in their lives.

Rubio described her aim with baking as an attempt to “bottle up a feeling or memory,” similar to a candle with a scent that reminds someone of home, she said as an example. She hopes this feeling comes across in not only her baked goods’ taste, but their appearance as well.

“I am an artist in many media, such as painting, and I feel like that also shows through my baking. I try to make each treat I create look beautiful,” Rubio said. “I was thrilled to start this business because I love trying new things and being creative.”

click to enlarge New cottage style bakery stems from a local confectioner's lifelong hobby
PHOTO COURTESY OF JACQUELINE RUBIO
MEET YOUR BAKER : Orcutt local Jacqueline Rubio has worked as a vendor—serving items from her new cottage industry bakery, Jackie’s Treats to Sea—at a few farmers market events and pop-ups on the Central Coast since the summer of 2022.

Rubio, who works as a full-time teacher in Santa Maria, has enjoyed baking as a hobby for nearly as long as she can remember.

“I have been passionate about it since I was really young,” Rubio said. “I would often bake for family and friends, and I would bake with my grandparents sometimes.”

click to enlarge New cottage style bakery stems from a local confectioner's lifelong hobby
PHOTO COURTESY OF JACQUELINE RUBIO
AN APPLE A DAY : Among her current offerings at Jackie’s Treats to Sea, baker Jacqueline Rubio’s personal favorite of her muffin options is the apple cinnamon muffin.

She continued to bake for fun in adulthood, and her ever-expanding reach has extended to friends of friends of friends and beyond simply through good word of mouth.

“Everybody would always ask, ‘Oh can you bake this for our party?’ or, ‘Could you bake this for my birthday?’” Rubio said. “That’s kind of where I got started with it, baking for family and friends. And I would constantly find new things to bake for them. After a while, they started telling people or would take it to a party. It kind of got around that way.”

Rubio said she had dreamed of running her own cottage bakery for a long time, before taking a leap of faith, shortly after her first son was born in May.

click to enlarge New cottage style bakery stems from a local confectioner's lifelong hobby
PHOTO COURTESY OF JACQUELINE RUBIO
WHAT DOES THE BOX SAY? : Since starting her cottage bakery in the summer of 2022, Jackie’s Treats to Sea founder Jacqueline Rubio has delivered her baked goods to residents of Orcutt, Lompoc, San Luis Obispo, Morro Bay, and other cities along the Central Coast.

“I’ve been wanting to do it for a while. I just kind of felt like I really didn’t have a lot of time,” said Rubio, who decided to start the bakery while on maternity leave from her teaching job. “I had a lot of downtime. I was like, ‘You know what, I’m going to try this and see how it works out.’ So far, it’s been really good for me.”

Once Rubio started an Instagram page for Jackie’s Treats to Sea, her clientele gradually grew in size. Many of her orders are placed through direct messaging on the app, and her followers have a big say in what she bakes, as she frequently posts polls for the public to vote on new kinds of items she should add to her selection. The baker’s personal favorite items in her current offerings include apple cinnamon muffins, sprinkled sugar cookies, and chocolate chip cookies. 

When Rubio returns to teaching, she plans to continue running the cottage bakery, she said.

“As far as when I go back, I feel like I will be able to balance it out,” Rubio said. “Most likely I’ll just bake either early in the morning—because sometimes it doesn’t take me too long if it’s a small order—or after school hours.”

Arts Editor Caleb Wiseblood is too cool for school, but never too cool for raw cookie dough. Send comments to [email protected].

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