Oct 16, 2023 - News

Kareem "Mr. Bake" Queeman's morning routine

Photo illustration collage of Kareem Queeman inside a red alarm clock.

Photo illustration: Axios Visuals. Photo: Ricky Day

Celebrity baker Kareem Queeman still has the pan from his first cake.

He was eight years old. It was a Pillsbury yellow cake with chocolate canned frosting.

  • It baked completely lopsided. "One side of the oven cooked faster than the other," he says. "But I still ate that whole thing myself."

Known as Mr. Bake, Queeman is a James Beard Award semifinalist in the outstanding pastry chef or baker category, the first queer Black man to receive the honor.

He runs Mr. Bake Sweets based in Prince George's County, churning out homestyle cupcakes and banana pudding — "nostalgic Southern/American comfort food."

  • We caught up with him about his DMV mornings:

😴 Wake-up time: 6am. "My body gets me up."

🍋 First drink: Fresh squeezed whole lime with two teaspoons of organic apple cider vinegar.

  • "It's a little tangy," he says. "But it's all healthy stuff. You're adding fresh hydrates to your body."

👟 First thing he does: Gym clothes on for 45-minute-to-one-hour of exercise. Workout tips: Insanity by Shaun T or the Fit Coach app.

ğŸŽ§ Must-listen: In the mornings he'll turn to motivational speeches by Christian preacher T.D. Jakes, Pastor Jerry Flowers Jr., or Les Brown.

  • "I try to set the tone for my day so it's really positive and energetic [for] whatever life throws," says Queeman.

🥣 Breakfast: Steel cut oats, with a little honey, cinnamon, and any combination of nuts and dried fruit.

🫖 Plus, Mr. Bake's ginger tea: Boil sliced fresh ginger and turmeric, with a cinnamon stick or two. Put half an apple on a low simmer. Add fresh lemon juice, honey, and a green tea bag.

🏁 Commute: About a 25-minute drive from Temple Hills to Riverdale in Prince George's County, Maryland.

Check out more morning rituals:

Editor's note: This story has been corrected to reflect that Queeman is a James Beard Award semifinalist in the outstanding pastry chef or baker category, not an overall semifinalist.

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