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This sweet-savvy entrepreneur set out to open a bakery specializing in wedding cakes. But see how she whipped up something completely new on the local bridal bakery scene.

The Bakeist is homegrown bakery that specializes in weddings and special events.

Hannah Belanger is all about being fun and unique. Afterall, her friend Chris Fruci did give her the nickname “The Bakeist,” which ended up just sticking amongst her group of friends.

“Knowing full well it wasn’t an actual word, I thought it had a cute ring to it,” she says.

After she graduated from pastry school in 2013, she knew that wedding cakes were her calling and started a homegrown bakery that specializes in weddings and special events called The Bakeist.

Why wedding cakes? Belanger says it’s because there is a more personal interaction with her clients, and being able to see the joy on their faces when they see the final product makes every part of the process worth it to her.

“I also have a slight obsession with anything wedding related,” she laughs. “It’s one of the best days of every couple’s lives, so why wouldn’t I want to be a part of that?”

Belanger says she feels like she’s found something special in her homegrown bakery. “I feel like Cincinnati doesn’t have much to offer in the way of specialty wedding cakes, and so far people have responded quite well and are thankful to have some bakery diversity in the city,” she says.

Currently, Belanger is the only one behind The Bakeist. “As of now, it’s just something that I’m starting out of my home,” she explains. “I hope to eventually grow into a bigger kitchen one day, but I enjoy entertaining my passion with cakes on the weekends.”


Since launching The Bakeist, Belanger has had help with branding from The Storytelling Company, who also happens to be her wedding videographer Benjamin Nelson, which has helped her to get a good head start in the direction she wanted to take her business.

Aside from wedding cakes, Belanger says she’s open to any custom desserts. “I have done pies, cheesecakes, cupcakes, mini desserts for bridal showers, etc.,” she says. “Custom desserts are what I like to offer, opening the creativity to anyone involved!”

The Bakeist is a unique venture to join the Cincinnati bakery scene, and Belanger says that she doesn’t think there are many Cincinnati bakeries that offer custom desserts. “I find that people gravitate to someone who can create exactly what they are looking for,” she adds.

Belanger also makes all of her desserts from scratch. There are no shortcuts and she uses real ingredients, which she thinks makes all the difference in the baking world.

When asked what her favorite cake is, Belanger says that it has to be a peach vanilla cake layered with goat cheese buttercream and pistachios. “The flavor combinations will blow your mind and, in my opinion, it’s absolute perfection.”

Belanger says you can purchase a slice of cake from The Bakeist for $3. Wedding and birthday cakes range from $25 to $35. Any other small dessert items are individually priced out accordingly with each client.

While Belanger will continue doing cakes from her home, she says that she has participated in some styled shoots and has some opportunities for more in the near future. “I love to do those because then I can really let my creativity fly,” she adds.

To learn more about The Bakeist, visit or follow along on Instagram. You can also contact Belanger directly through her website. “I would love to hear from you,” she says.

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    'Tis the season for sweets and treats! For our annual Sweets Issue, we learn more about the woman and her two daughters behind 3 Sweet Girls Cakery, a bakery in Kenwood and now also in OTR, that can sweeten up any occasion.

    Lisa Ebbert and her daught
    Lisa Ebbert and her daughters Lauren and Kristen are the ladies behind Cincinnati’s 3 Sweet Girls Cakery.

    Lisa Ebbert and her two daughters, Lauren and Kristen, are the ladies behind 3 Sweet Girls Cakery in Cincinnati.

    “We are a cakery in Cincinnati providing cakes for all occasions: cupcakes, cake pops, cookies and other sweet treats,” explains Ebbert. “We like to use our creativity to create fun and unique sweets.”

    Coming from a family of bakers, it’s no wonder Ebbert and her daughters launched a cakery. According to Ebbert, she and the girls have always loved baking and art, and designing cakes and treats allows them to combine their love for treats and throw in their artistic abilities to create unique designs and tasty snacks for customers.

    “We started this business 5 years ago in our home,” says Ebbert. “We were having so much fun and it grew so quickly that we decided to open our first store in 2012.”

    Since opening their doors at 7458 Montgomery Road in the Kenwood/Silverton area, they’ve opened a second location at 29 E. 12th Street in Over-the-Rhine.

    At 3 Sweet Girls Cakery, you’ll find cupcakes, cake pops (including the very popular Flying Pig cake pop), decorated cookies, cake push ups, cupcakes in a jar and chocolate dipped pretzels.

    If you’re looking for a place to host a party, Ebbert says 3 Sweet Girls Cakery hosts Cupcake Decorating Birthday Parties at the location on Montgomery Road.

    3 Sweet Girls Cakery
    3 Sweet Girls Cakery offers sweet treats such as cakes, cake pops and cupcakes.

    Aside from being able to put her love for art and baking into one delicious concept, Ebbert says that one of the things she enjoys most about running the cake to is getting to work with her daughters as well as the staff they’ve brought onboard since they opened 3 years ago.

    “We just took a risk and started this and my daughters knew nothing about business and now I am amazed each day as they learn more and more about it,” explains Ebbert. “They know how hard you have to work to own a successful business and they also can feel great pride in what they have created.”

    She also enjoys seeing what comes out of the kitchen each day, adding that it’s exciting to see all of the different orders completed and then the look on customers’ faces when they pick up those orders. “It is always great to make people happy,” she says.

    Her team of 12 sweet girls and a few sweet guys also makes her job of running the cakery even more fun. “I love watching our whole team learn and grow,” Ebbert says. “We have quite a few people who have been with us most of the time and they have had the opportunity to really develop their skills. I look back at what they were doing when they started and what they are doing now and I am very proud of them.”

    Ebbert says that with the opening of the new store in Over-the-Rhine, they’re getting used to the increased business thanks to the tremendous response she says they’ve received from customers downtown.

    To learn more about 3 Sweet Girls Cakery, visit You can also check them out on Facebook and Instagram. Ebbert says they’re also looking for a few sweet girls and even sweet guys to join their team!