Counter cupcakes - Bell's Bake Shop

Keys to a Successful Recipe

Butter, sweet things and social responsibility is a recipe for success. Those three key ingredients is what you’ll find over at Bell’s Bake Shop in Steveston. If you have a thing for all things sweet, cupcakes and doing things the right way, this is the place for you. Jen Bell was born and raised in Richmond, BC, so after a few years of working in the UK, coming home to open up Bell’s Bake Shop in 2010 was the natural thing to do. Steveston was the perfect landing spot since no one else was doing cupcakes and she could bike to work every day!
Although her vision was initially a Cake-By-The-Slice shop, it had to be put on hold because cake shops typically have to throw out a lot of product and that’s something she’d never feel comfortable with. Luckily, cupcakes are much easier to manage and produce in batches based on demand.  However, in this type of business, there will always be leftovers and that’s unavoidable. A cupcake is still a cupcake and to that end, Bell’s Bake Shop donates their leftover cupcakes to the Richmond Family Place.

Being a Difference-Maker and Going Local

The biking to work, the donations, using compostable take-out cups which are more expensive but so much better for the environment are some of the small ways Bell’s Bake Shop is making difference. Jen also pays it forward by supporting some of the local businesses. In a community like Steveston, it’s those types of relationships and support that make all the difference. Their coffee comes from just down the street via Steveston Coffee and their eggs from Rabbit River Farms in Richmond, Canada’s original certified organic egg farm.
Red Velvet - Bell's Bake Shop
But, sustainability and good deeds will only take you so far. When it comes down to it, a cupcake shop is all about the cupcakes! The big purple cupcake hanging outside the store is a pretty good indication of what awaits you inside. Although Jen’s favourite cupcake is the Coconut cupcake topped with toasted coconut and made with coconut milk, the go-to cupcake at Bell’s Bake Shop is Red Velvet. I think the appeal of a cream cheese buttercream frosting is just too much for anyone to handle!


In addition to Coconut and Red Velvet, the other cupcakes that you’ll find on any given day are Confetti, Devil’s Food, Carrot, Rich Chocolate, Cookies & Cream, and Lemon. There are cupcakes for everyone at Bell’s Bake Shop in the form of gluten-free as well as vegan. Jen will start her morning baking a few batches of gluten-free cupcakes, but since it’s all produced in the same kitchen, once they’re done for the day, there are no more until the following day, so you better get them in the morning! There are also vegan cupcakes on the weekend or made to order.

As for me, when it comes to anything peanut butter AND chocolate, I cannot say no. If it happens to be topped with crushed Reese’s Pieces, all the better! I opted for the Rich Chocolate Cupcake topped with a silky smooth peanut butter buttercream frosting. Once I had ensured every last drop of frosting was gone, I wouldn’t have said no to a spoon and a bowl of it! I also sampled the Lemon cupcake and if lemons grew on trees in cupcake form, the world would be a much happier place. The buttercream frosting had the very crucial zest and more importantly the zing of lemon that you would expect to find in a lemon cupcake. The cake part was equally full of lemon flavour and like the chocolate cupcake, it passed the light and fluffy test with flying colours!

chocolate and peanut butter - Bell's Bake Shop

I used whatever restraint I had and said goodbye only having sampled a couple of cupcakes at Bell’s Bake Shop. As I left, I knew I’d be back because there are many more cupcakes to be consumed for “research” purposes.

About Our Guest Writer: Ethan Adeland is a freelance food and travel writer and the voice behind FeedingEthan. He shares his honest adventures in the kitchen, behind the camera or iPhone and wherever his travels may take him. He has never turned down an opportunity to Instagram a sunset or his next meal.