Delicious Reads

American Dream Cakes: A Year in Review

The end of 2019 is fast approaching.  As we prepare for the New Year, we also pause and reflect over the joys, challenges and blessings of 2019.  We give thanks for reaching our 20th year of serving as Jacksonville’s premiere bakery.  Thank you to each of you for allowing us to make your life events and big moments delicious!  Without you, we couldn’t make a difference in our community.

In 20 years of operating as a military spouse and veteran-owned family bakery, we’re grateful for one of the busiest wedding seasons ever!  Thank you.

In February 2019, we made our first appearance at the Carolina Chocolate Festival and had a blast.  We can’t wait for the festival next year on Feb. 1-2, 2020.

In the spring, military orders and illness brought us to a tough season of staff changes and physical recovery.  Through this season, God provided for us and we are happily back to a full staff and the bakery is humming as we create new masterpieces every day.

In the summer, we were honored to create another Icing Smiles custom celebration cake for a family impacted by the critical illness of a child.  Those smiles are priceless, and we’re so blessed to help create them.  We also hosted a culinary intern during the summer months from Pennsylvania.  Currently, we have a Dixon High School senior taking culinary classes at our bakery.

Thanks to your support, we’ve also been blessed to support local causes like project graduation, the JHS musical, cake walks, DSS Foster Care, USO, Onslow Women’s Center, Soup Kitchen and Homeless Shelter, Rotary, Polio Plus and more.

In September, we attended the International Baking Industry Expo in Las Vegas, where we learned new techniques and bought new bakery “toys” to keep making life delicious one bite at a time!

As we’re now in the Holiday season, we’re excited to see our Sara’s Pepparkakor division growing. This year we’ll set up at 7 different Christmas markets around NC from Wilmington to Raleigh, and all the way out to Beaufort!

We’ll be busy making holiday pies, Christmas treats and more as we give thanks for our blessings at the end of 2019.  We’re looking forward to a new website reveal the New Year (thanks, 17blue!).  And we’ll be counting the blessings of a new season as we ring in 2020 with our friends and family in Jacksonville and Onslow County.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from
Gunilla & Randy Kroshus
and the ADC Bakery Team

The Marine Corps Cake Cutting Ceremony

On November 10, Marines all over the world celebrate the birth of their Corps. The yearly Marine Corps Birthday Ball celebrates the history and traditions of the illustrious Corps. The celebration symbolizes where the Marine Corps started and where it is now.

The Birthday Ball has humble beginnings that date back to 1921, when the 13th Commandant, Gen. John A. Lejeune, issued the Marine Corps Order No. 47, Series 1921. The order was directed to be read on November 10th each year to all Marines to honor the founding of the Marine Corps. It soon became not only a way to honor the birthday of the Corps, but a celebration.

In 1925, in Philadelphia, PA, the Commandant, the Secretary of War, and many other statesmen and elected officials attended the first “formal” Marine Corps Birthday Ball. As years have passed on, the yearly Ball has evolved to take on a life of its own with honored traditions. One such tradition is the cake-cutting ceremony.

The cake-cutting ceremony, formalized in 1952, mandates that a piece of cake goes to the oldest Marine present and he or she will pass it to the youngest Marine present. This exchange signifies the passing of tradition from generation to generation. The cake is guided to the center stage by selected Marines while the Marines’ hymn plays. It is then cut with the Mameluke sword and serves as a reminder that the Corps is a band of warriors, dedicated to carrying the sword, so that our nation may live in peace.


7 Decadent Fall Desserts For When The Temperatures Drop

One of our favorite things about the Fall season is that it is hands-down the best season for baking. Not only does tradition mix with the new to create memories that warm the heart and satisfy the soul but it’s a time of togetherness. Share the love this fall with these seven best fall desserts.

Pressed for time? We make these decadent desserts from scratch every fall season for you to pre-order.

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Say “hello” to fall with a smooth and creamy pumpkin cheesecake! It is full of pumpkin flavor that melts in your mouth and is a great alternative to pumpkin pie. Check out this pumpkin cheesecake recipe from

pumpkin cheesecake drizzled with chocolate

Pumpkin Bread

Ah, pumpkin bread. Kids love it, adults love it and it can leave your house smelling like a delicious slice of fall!  Learn how to make spiced pumpkin bread from Once Upon a Chef.

buttered slices of pumpkin bread

Buttered slices of pumpkin bread in a holiday setting with pine cones

Butter Pecan Gourmet Cupcake

Enjoy the sweet side of fall with melt-in-your-mouth butter pecan gourmet cupcakes. Because who doesn’t love a cupcake? They are great for any gathering, whether you are hosting or bringing them to share with others. The Spruce Eats has a tasty butter pecan gourmet cupcake recipe you can try at home.

butter pecan cupcake drizzled with icing and topped with pecans

Spiced Caramel Apple Cupcake

Of course, our gourmet Spiced Caramel Apple Cupcake is a memory-maker! These flavorful cupcakes will be a new favorite, featuring the perfect amount of fall spice. Sally’s Baking Addiction had a spiced caramel apple cupcake recipe you can try.

spiced caramel apple cupcake drizzled with caramel and topped with pecans

Pecan Pie

A Thanksgiving dessert table wouldn’t be complete without this classic fall dessert that’s a perfect combination of sweet and salty. Here’s a pecan pie recipe from Food Network you can try.

pecan pie

Pumpkin Pie

A decadent fall dessert list would not be complete without this traditional favorite. Not only is pumpkin pie rich, smooth and bursting with flavor, it’s the perfect way to end your Thanksgiving feast. Learn how to make pumpkin pie from Sally’s Baking Addiction.

pumpkin pie with dollop of whip cream and sprinkled with spice

Dutch Apple Pie

The Dutch apple pie is perfect for fall with its golden layer of streusel crumbs over tart apple filling. This American classic is sure to be a fall favorite. Learn how to make a Dutch apple pie from Taste of Home.

dutch apple pie topped with crumbled streusel

We’re always here to make your life delicious (and easier!).  Click here to pre-order fall desserts or call our team at 910-346-2347 to place an order by phone.  Happy Fall!

Trending Wedding Colors

Each season has its own unique mood and favorite colors.  Here are trending wedding colors by season.

Spring: Peach & Mauve

This unique spring color combination adds warmth and brightness without being loud. Softened shades look great on anyone and are easy to replicate in floral bouquets.

You can create drama and dimension in your wedding palette by using splashes of coral or slightly darker versions of peach.

Who knew the marriage of peach and mauve would be so beautiful in spring?


Summer: Coral & Lemon

If you’re worried about choosing colors that might clash, coral and lemon pair together beautifully! Coral comes in many shades, so it’s easy to create a varied look throughout your wedding.

Yellow accents provide pops of color to round out the color scheme. These colors can be used in almost every element of your big day (invitations, dresses, flowers, table decorations, cake, food, etc.) Bold, warm and refreshing… coral and lemon make a splash as summer favorites.


Fall: Sunset Colors

Why settle for one or two colors when you can have them all? Greens, peaches, tans, oranges, yellows and creams all blend well together. Rather than just the traditional bright colors of fall, these muted tones and shades are more sophisticated.

Adding natural fibers and elements like burlap and twine provide a rustic, earthy look.  Adding gold and lights will lift a reception event with a greater sense of elegance.


Winter: Dusty Blue & Silver

This color palette is dreamy and romantic, while keeping an air of sophistication and refinement. You can mix and match bridesmaid dresses with different shades of blue, while groomsmen will be complimentary in gray.

Adding pops of muted sage will create dimension and reference the greenery of the winter season. You can let these colors stand out in big ways (invitations, statement centerpieces, grand flower arches, etc.) without them being overwhelming.



15 Ways to Celebrate Friendship

National Friendship Day is coming up on August 4th, 2019, so get ready to have some fun with your friends! We put together a list of ideas to get you started. You can do just one, all, or create your own list. How will you celebrate friendship?


  1. Host a Dinner Party

Everyone loves food, so invite all your friends over for a potluck dinner. Enjoy trying new foods and learning each other’s favorite dishes.

  1. Share a Sweet Dessert

No dinner would be complete without a delicious sweet treat. ADC has the perfect desserts to round out your meal. Check them out here!

  1. Host a Game Night

Board games can make you laugh, bring out your competitive side and give you an opportunity to bond. Get to know your friends in a casual environment where everyone can let loose and have fun.

  1. Write a Letter or Card

Can’t celebrate with your best friend in person? Write them a heartfelt letter or card just to let them know how much they mean to you!

  1. Take Some Photos

Commemorate this special day by taking some photos. Time spent with friends is special and photos will help you look back on the wonderful memories.

  1. Make a Bucket List

Create a list of fun activities that you and your friends want to do this year. Take time each month to get together and cross items off your list.

  1. Volunteer Together

Helping others is a really great way to provide a sense of purpose, feel connected and relieve stress. Whether your tasks are big or small, giving back can make a difference in your community.

  1. Learn a New Skill

Ever wanted to try something new, but didn’t want to do it alone? Grab a friend or two and step outside your comfort zone. Just be sure you stay safe and have a good time!

  1. Have a Movie Marathon

Sometimes great friendships don’t need a lot of bells and whistles. Grab some snacks, hang out on the couch, and enjoy the company while you watch a few of your favorite movies.

  1. Get Outside

Take advantage of the beautiful weather and go discover what the great outdoors has to offer. You can go on a hike, eat a picnic lunch, swim at the beach, walk your dogs, go fishing or even explore a local cave!

  1. DIY Craft

See how good you are with your hands and create a unique gift that you and your friends can exchange and keep forever. Here are some ideas to get you started:  friendship bracelets, picture frames, coasters, sugar scrubs, bath bombs, succulent gardens, keychains, stress balls, flower wreath, photo puzzles and much more.

  1. Share Your Dreams

If you can’t share your dreams with your BFF, who can you tell? Celebrate your successes and lift each other up when you are doubtful. Remind each other to always strive to do your best and never give up.

  1. Sing Karaoke

Karaoke is a great way to let loose and forget about life’s worries. Whether you go out to your favorite bar or hang back at home, hopefully you can work up the nerve to sing!

  1. Make a Phone Call

You don’t have to make a grand gesture to let your friend know you care. Give them a call just to say hi and catch up on what’s going on in their life. Communicating with each other, even if it is just over the phone, can strengthen your bond and emotional connections.

  1. Send a Box of Sunshine

Receiving a gift in the mail is always exciting, so send your friend a box of sunshine to brighten their day! Include several items that are yellow or have yellow packaging (candy, chapstick, chips and other snacks, herbal tea, soap, bath bomb, loofah, notepad, pen/pencils, back massager, gum, lotion, socks, stress ball, sunglasses, etc.)

4 Refreshing Summer Desserts

Nothing says summer quite like a good old-fashioned cookout. Whether you’re swimming with friends at the beach or catching up with family at your annual reunion, food brings people together. Occasions like this elicit happiness and create lasting memories. Spending time with the ones you love is all about having fun, making connections, and sharing with others. So let’s share dessert!

Let’s face it, we all look forward to the end of the meal. Quintessential grilled summer foods like hamburgers, corn on the cob, and potatoes are great…but the one thing that makes everyone’s mouth water the most is dessert. If you’re looking for that grand finale, that perfect sweet treat to finish your meal, we’ve got you covered!

After spending all day in the sun and eating a hot meal, you’re going to need something to bring those temps down. Here are some of our favorite in-season desserts to help keep everyone cool and refreshed.*


Our gourmet cupcakes come in dozens of flavors, but these three are sure to excite your taste buds. The Tropical Toasted Coconut, Strawberry Shortcake and Peach Cobbler cupcakes are so good, you might even eat two! Check out our other cupcake flavors here.


Our frozen cheesecake pops will keep you extra cool in the summer heat. A slice of classic creamy cheesecake with graham cracker crust is dipped in sweet chocolate to create the perfect chilled treat.


Our fresh fruit tarts (small and large*) are just as refreshing as they are stimulating to eat! Ripe berries are layered on top of a creamy custard and crumbly crust, creating the perfect blend of textures all in one bite.


Our NY style cheesecake* is a creamy, dreamy dessert that is sure to please a crowd. You can get them plain, or with your choice of toppings (such as strawberries and chocolate). Let your taste buds be your guide!



*This item is custom made, so please place your order 24-48 hours in advance to ensure your sweet treats are ready when you arrive!

Don’t Get Tied in Knots

5 Self-Care Tips to Survive the Stress of Wedding Planning

To hire a wedding planner or not to hire a wedding planner- that is the question.

From venue locations to cake flavors (and everything between), many decisions go into wedding plans. You may have questions like, “How can I NOT stress about wedding planning?” or “How can I actually enjoy my wedding planning experience?”.

Some brides tackle planning as DIY brides-to-be, which can generate more stress that anticipated.  Other brides hire a wedding planner to help reduce stress. They offer experience in planning and advice along the way. While a planner is helpful, you will still need to make many decisions.

Whether you go it solo or hire a professional for help, planning a wedding is stressful – completely worth it, but stressful.  Don’t be a burned-out bride!  Take care of yourself during the planning process.

Here are five self-care strategies to help minimize stress.

  1. Start with Self-Awareness & Couple Compatibility

Before you take on any other parts of wedding planning, sit down for an honest assessment. What types of decisions do you love making and which details are not as important to you? Involve your soon-to-be spouse! What decisions can you share? Are there some you will make on your own? Are some based on personal preference or following traditional beliefs?

Knowing yourself and your dynamics as a couple are both important. It will improve your planning experience as you move forward into life together. Consider valued areas that are priorities and identify those that aren’t as critical. Defining the most important elements and establishing clear roles for decision-making prevents conflict and stress. It also opens opportunity for delegation of non-critical items if planning gets overwhelming.

  1.  Ensure you have Time to Exercise.

You may already have a pre-wedding or regular lifestyle workout in place. It is important to keep exercise on the top of your priority list, even during the business of wedding plans and preparations. Here’s why…

Exercise has proven psychological and positive emotional effects for your body. It’s known to reduce stress and improve mental attitudes. You can double up on the good-feel effects by adding an outdoor walk. According to UNC Health Talk, “different parts of our brain activate in nature.”  Physical reactions such as lower heart rate and blood pressure. A simple 15-minute stroll around the block can help calm your body and refresh your mind.

Staying active helps combat the effects of a demanding schedule and decision-making stress.

  1. Creatively Express your Feelings.

This is a once-in-lifetime experience. Take time to express your feelings throughout the process. Enjoy writing or sketching? Keep a journal of important moments throughout your wedding planning process. According to Very Well Mind, journaling counteracts many negative effects of stress, improves cognitive functioning, and strengthens the immune system.

Make note of the key details for the day. Receive the best advice or hear a story that was unforgettable? Jot it down, include doodles, photos or stickers. Process and express your feelings about the journey you’re on.  Celebrate the positive and acknowledge and clear the negative in a creative way.

Added plus?  You’ll have a keepsake you can look back on later.

  1. Get Good at Delegating.

Remember rule number one?

If friends and family offer help, give them something to do!  Allow them to contribute to your wedding in a meaningful way and reduce your stress levels.

Individual tasks such as vendor pickups can allow a loved one to contribute and reduce your to-do lists. Creating DIY décor can offer a personal way other share in the wedding experience. If done as a group, DIY décor can become a beautiful in-tandem wedding memory with its own stories to tell.

  1. Wedding Insurance is Worth Considering – especially for destination weddings and military couples.

What is wedding insurance, and do I need it? We’re glad you asked.

Wedding insurance is event insurance. It protects you if unforeseen circumstances occur and cause damages or injuries. Some insurances even cover some circumstances that preventing you from having your wedding when or where planned.

There are two common types:

  • Cancellation
  • Liability Coverage

Ask your venue if they offer any amount of coverage. If so, ask specifically about body and property damage coverage limits.  Learn more about wedding insurance in our related article: Your Wedding Life Preserver.

Military couple? Most wedding event insurance carriers do not offer coverage for military deployments, USAA has it specifically cited. In some instances, this could the extra padding you need to take the stress off events you cannot control.

Have a “Plan A” and “Plan B”

Some details and plans will be set in stone – like venue, colors, and theme. Some parts of planning include backup plans. For example, an outdoor garden wedding venue will need an indoor space in the event of rain. If an outdoor event is a must for you, consider wedding insurance that would cover costs in the event of rain. Mishaps and circumstances come up. You can choose to make those details (in the event it happens) part of your unique wedding story. Either way, having backup or contingency plans will help make stress levels manageable, even if the “unexpected” happens.

No matter how important this day is, you will want to be happy and healthy when you get there and for many years afterward. Planning for self-care and stress-reduction will prove to be energy well-spent.  A beautiful bride is beaming, not burned-out. Love yourself and it will show.

Bride-to-be’s and newly Mrs., share your story with us!  Get social on Instagramor facebook and share your favorite self-care tipor a best advice you received during your wedding planning journey.

Personalized Romantic Gestures

Each couple will define romance in their own relationship. While traditionally it may be roses, wine, or gifts, there are some romantic gestures that take the everyday to extraordinary. Let’s look at some of these unique and meaningful romantic gestures.

Listen to your partner’s DIY Dream.

Surprise them with favorite coffee or morning drink.

After a long week, do their laundry.

Write your favorite memories on post-it notes and fill your loved one’s space with these reminders.

Fill a jar with messages full of love.

Surprise your partner with a clean house or do some of their most-dreaded chores.

Get ingredients to make a meal that supports their diet goals and decisions.

Schedule time for just you two.

Hold hands.


What’s Hopping This Easter?

Easter is a time to celebrate life. From Resurrection Sunday to bunnies, Easter eggs and spring flowers; bright spring colors abound.  However your family celebrates the season, American Dream Cakes has beautiful and tasty spring-inspired desserts for your parties and get-togethers.  Here’s what’s hoppin’ this Easter at ADC:

Easter Inspired Flavors

Carrot Cake Torte

4 layers of carrot cake with walnuts, raisins, and carrots complete with whipped homemade cream cheese frosting. It’s finished with a garnish of walnuts around the base and adorable buttercream carrots on top. 48 hour pre-order is recommended.
Smaller crowd?  Get all of the delicious taste in half the size when you order a carrot cake halvsie!

He Is Risen Cake

Celebrate Resurrection Sunday with your family or church family with a beautifully decorated “He is Risen” cake.

Easter Bunny Cake

This happy little bunny is ready to hop into your Easter weekend festivities.  Made from a half-round cake dusted with coconut flakes, it’s sure to be a family favorite.

Spring-Colored Cookies

Can you say sprinkles, sugar and colorful fun?  These brightly colored sugar cookies and tea cookies are sure to be crowd pleasers.

Ensure your Easter get-togethers end on a delicious note with sweet treats from American Dream Cakes. It’s all about #makinglifedelicious.

Easter Pre-Orders until April 12th! 

Spring Forward with These Gourmet Cupcakes

The first official day of spring is March 20th. That’s worth celebrating, and we recommend making the arrival of spring delicious with gourmet cupcakes featuring spring flavors.

A little bit about our gourmet cupcakes:

There are over 100 varieties available!  Each day we feature a selection of gourmet cupcake flavors in the bakery. Cake flavors range from traditional vanilla or chocolate to grape-infused and other exotic flavors. Each gourmet cupcake has it’s own deliciously complimentary fillings, frostings and toppings. There’s a unique combination for everyone! Single cupcakes are $3.99 each.

Oh Oh Pistachio!

A light sugar sponge cake filled with pistachio custard filling. Topped with pistachio cream icing and a pistachio shortbread cookie.

Did you know that pistachio is also known as the “green almond”?

Kiss me I’m Irish

How can you celebrate spring and St. Patty’s Day? With the “Kiss me, I’m Irish” gourmet cupcake that’s a nod to the ‘luck of the Irish.’ A sponge cake infused with Irish cream and vanilla Irish cream filling. Topped with Irish cream icing and shamrock sprinkles.

Lemon Cream

If you love lemon, this beautiful gourmet cupcake is for you. Lemon infused sponge cake folded with vanilla crème filling and light vanilla whipped icing. Welcoming spring with a bright sugar daisy garnish on top

Green Tea-rrfic

Ideal for any spring day – indoors or out!  The Green Tea-rrific brings sweet green tea flavor together with a Green-tea crème and a honey-butter cake.  Topped with infused Chantilly icing and a dreamy lemon-honey drizzle.

Carrot Cake

Carrot cake baked with walnuts and raisins topped with yummy cream cheese frosting.  Topped with an adorable buttercream carrot garnish.

Strawberry Cream

It just wouldn’t seem like spring if we didn’t include a fresh Strawberry Cream groumet cupcake!  Vanilla whipped icing tops a strawberry flavored sponge cake. Filled with whipped vanilla creme and topped with a pink sugar daisy.


For your next special event, check out our special-order only gourmet cupcake flavors. Here’s one: The Grape Knee-High!

Grape-infused cake filled with grape-soda flavored cream filling. Topped with grape-infused meringue icing and a sugar grapevine garnish. This one is perfect for your favorite grape enthusiast.

With so many delicious flavors, you’ll be enjoying trying new flavors all spring!  Buy individually from the bakery rack, by the half-dozen assorted for $22.50 or a full dozen for $45. Special order flavors have a one dozen minimum per flavor.

Follow our Facebook page to see each day’s special gourmet cupcake feature. Comment and tell us your favorite spring flavors or what new flavors you want to see!