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Warning: JCubed May Cause Intense Arguments over the Last Baked Good

This at-home baker is selling some of the best baked goods in San Diego. From a freaking toaster oven.
JCubed jalapeno cheddar bread

JCubed’s jalapeno cheddar sourdough bread

JCubed began as a way to alleviate boredom during the pandemic. “We started to trade with our friends,” says JJ Wang. “We knew someone who was raising chickens, so we traded for fresh eggs. To exchange homemade food is quite delightful.”

Soon, JJ was baking daily and dreaming about selling her goods at local farmers’ markets. “We didn’t know anyone in the industry or how to go about it,” she says. She began researching cottage food licenses, which authorize individuals to run micro-kitchens from their homes and earn up to $50,000 a year from sales. Each micro-kitchen operator must get certified as a food manager and pass a food handler test. There are also annual inspections and operational limitations. At first, JJ had only a couple of customers via online ordering. Today, you’ll see Clairemont residents lining up around the block to snag her coveted breads and pastries. 

When JJ first came to San Diego in 2008 from China, her knowledge of the English language was sparse at best. She had met her American-born Chinese husband, Jeff, a few years earlier while he was backpacking through Asia (his planned three-month trip around Asia turned into an unplanned one-year stay in China, where he met JJ). 

After moving, she began a course in English and continued to push her studies at home by learning the language through various cookbooks. “I never had the chance to bake stuff before because of the conditions over there,” JJ says, referring to the hot and humid conditions where she grew up. 

“Most of the households in JJ’s hometown don’t have ovens,” Jeff explains. 

I glance at the oven in the sunny kitchen we’re sitting in—I’ve seen bigger. JJ laughs and motions toward the tiny toaster oven perched on the counter. “I use that too!” 

I’m floored.

JCubed tahini chocolate cookies

JCubed’s dark rye tahini chocolate cookies

Despite her lack of commercial equipment, JJ produces around 200 kinds of baked goods from scratch, not including the various types of breads (multigrain, sourdough, jalapeño cheddar, and more). 

Every Saturday, she goes to sleep at 9 p.m. and sets an alarm for midnight. From midnight to around 11 a.m., she bakes. Her goal is to ensure that every customer gets the freshest baked goods. “We like to serve it the way we like to eat it, fresh from the oven,” Jeff says. “I think of what I want to eat. It depends on the season, what ingredients are available, or what kind of flavors I want.” 

JJ’s biggest challenge is managing production. With limited space, non-commercial tools, and her dedication to the freshest and best-quality food, she has to delicately balance her timing and variety of ingredients. “It’s a struggle,” she admits.

The process may be a struggle, but the results are simply sublime. My Sundays now include an early-morning pilgrimage to Jeff and JJ’s home, where I join other devotees in salivating over the display case. Her miso chocolate chip cookies are craggy yet gooey delights that my family members have taken to hiding around the house in an effort not to share. Her flaky cheese-and-chive biscuits are perfection on their own but, when lightly toasted and slathered in butter, they become an unsurpassable Sunday treat. 

As for her newest addition—garlic cream cheese bread—heaven help us all. It’s described on Instagram as “double baked with a crispy shell and a very soft center.” It would be more apt to describe it as “the very thing that will dissolve the peace in your household because you will fight over the last bite and it will get ugly. To the victor go the slightly sweet and divinely garlicky spoils.”

Someone get this woman an investor so she can go national. 

Follow JCubed on Instagram to stay updated on their latest offerings and how to buy. 


By Sabrina Medora

Sabrina Medora is a national food writer living with her husband and golden doodle Albus in San Diego. Her work has appeared in award-winning publications like Food & Wine Bon Appetit Wine Enthusiast and more.

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